Coburn Plans More of the Same Next Year

Posted September 24, 2008 at 3:12pm

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) said Wednesday he plans to hold more bills up when Congress reconvenes next year if it adds to the deficit and grows the government.

Coburn has blocked a package of popular bills for those reasons, enraging Democrats who say the bills do neither. Democrats reached an agreement on one of those bills Wednesday. Coburn pledged he would use the Senate rules next year as well to block initiatives.

“The events of the last few weeks in the financial section have highlighted the dangers of borrowing without regard to consequences. Unfortunately, Congress is continuing its business-as-usual spending practices,” Coburn said. “When the Senate reconvenes next year, I look to forcing debate on even more bills that increase spending but are not paid for with spending cuts.”

For months, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) tried to fast-track a number of bills, but Coburn forced Reid to make compromises. Wednesday morning, Coburn agreed to pass legislation that would try to close civil rights criminal cases that had gone unsolved for decades.