Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday said the chamber will vote on Republican budget bill Friday, a day earlier than anticipated, before trashing the measure as among the “worst legislation in the history of this country.”
“I think this piece of legislation is about as weak and senseless as anything that has ever come on the Senate floor,” said the Nevada Democrat.
Mr. Reid went on to say it was a waste of the Senate’s time to even debate a measure that is “anathema to what our country is all about.”
“The American people should understand that this is a bad piece of legislation — perhaps the some of the worst legislation in the history of this country,” he said.
The House Republicans’ “cut, cap and balance” plan would raise the debt ceiling $2.4 trillion, but only after significant and immediate spending cuts and the adoption by Congress of a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced federal budget.
Democrats say the measure would lead to cuts in entitlement programs for seniors, middle-income Americans and the nation’s most vulnerable.
The bill passed in the House Tuesday mostly along party lines, but is seen as having no chance to pass the Democratic-controlled Senate. The bill also faces a White House veto threat.
The Senate is still scheduled to be in session Saturday and Sunday, as Mr. Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell agreed earlier this week to keep the chamber working every day until Congress agreed on a deal to increase the government’s $14.29 trillion debt ceiling. But without a scheduled vote that would require the presence of senators at the Capitol, attendance over the weekend is expected to be far less than 100 percent.