Durbin Says Senate Might Adjourn Early

Posted September 21, 2010 at 1:15pm

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin acknowledged Tuesday the chamber might adjourn a week early to go home and campaign for the midterm elections.

Speaking at a news conference about the defense authorization bill, the Illinois Democrat said “we have a very limited amount of time” to accomplish a handful of legislative goals. “In fact, we may only have another week or 10 days before we adjourn, and I know we have to pass a continuing resolution and there will be other issues that come up,” he said.

The House and Senate are scheduled to adjourn Oct. 8, but leaders in both chambers are considering leaving a week early, on Oct. 1.

Durbin also said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) will meet with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and later, with Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), to discuss a path forward for considering the CR and expiring tax provisions enacted under President George W. Bush. Democrats are in continued talks over how to extend those tax cuts, and Durbin said it was possible an amendment could be added to the CR to renew them before Members leave for the campaign trail.

“The continuing resolution is the one must-do, and I think everything is tied to that,” he said.

Durbin’s comments came hours after House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) dismissed rumors that the House would leave this week, noting that work continues on the CR.