Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday the Senate will vote on President Barack Obama’s budget alongside a vote on the House budget written by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).
The Kentucky Republican’s announcement comes a day after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) announced plans to vote on the budget written by Budget Committee Chairman Ryan — for the express purpose of killing it.
“I understand that the Majority Leader would like to have a vote on the House-passed Ryan budget and we will,” said McConnell. “But we’ll have a vote on the President’s budget at the same time. Since there is no Democrat budget in the Senate, we’ll give our colleagues an opportunity to stand with the president in failing to address the problems facing our nation while calling for trillions in new spending, massive new debt and higher taxes on American energy, families and small businesses across the country.”
Both sides are eager to vote down the others’ budget plans.
Obama has already walked away from his own budget blueprint by calling for another $4 trillion in deficit reduction over the next 12 years. And Reid is trying to hang Ryan’s budget, and in particular its controversial Medicare overhaul, around the necks of Republicans.
A similar Senate dance occurred in the fight over this year’s spending. The House Republican bill, H.R. 1, received 44 votes and the Democratic plan got 42. Back-room negotiations then commenced in earnest.
McConnell, meanwhile, also ripped Democrats for failing so far to come up with a budget of their own.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.