Senators attempting to garner support for a bill to codify the proper to marriage equality are openly raising concerns that the procedure for building Republican backing is taking longer than expected.
Why it matters: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) is likely to apply for cloture on the bill on Thursday, establishing votes in a few days, but at the very least 10 Republicans will undoubtedly be had a need to break a filibuster.
Driving the news headlines: Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) said she along with other senators focusing on the bill are crafting a consensus amendment to handle the concerns of Republican senators, specifically protecting the tax-exempt status of religious institutions.
- Collins said its encouraging that her Republican colleagues attended in with suggestions, instead of immediately ruling out voting for the bill.
- Were making progress, nonetheless it takes time this technique taking is longer than I wouldve anticipated, she said.
- I believe well take action, Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), who’s dealing with Collins on the bill, said of wrangling 10 Republican votes. The question is timing.
What were hearing: The feedback process on the bill is becoming a lot more sprawling as time passes, with an evergrowing selection of Republican senators proposing their very own fixes.
- Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), an integral vote, told Axios he’s got several of their own amendments, centered on “religious freedom,” he wants incorporated in to the bill.
- Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) has been circulating an amendment aswell, alongside Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), to safeguard federal funding for religious non-profits.
- “I am involved in a few these efforts in this Congress, and I believe that there surely is a path. We have to be attentive to the concerns … so we are able to bake it in to the bill and obtain the support we are in need of,” said Sen. Tillis.
Hawaii of play: There is absolutely no indication right now that Democratic leadership will postpone the vote if additional time is required to shore up GOP support.
- “I haven’t heard that,” Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) told Axios when asked if the vote could be delayed.
- Tillis said the chance of cancelled sessions in the coming weeks threaten to help make the timing even trickier: “The largest issue we now have is we’re hearing lots of October will undoubtedly be yielded back we will not be in session.”
- “In order that would indicate we would want to do it following the election if we’re not successful within the next few days,” he added.
Between your lines: Democrats see this vote as a win-win, permitting them to tout another bipartisan accomplishment if it passes and excoriate Republicans if it fails all significantly less than two months prior to the midterms.
- “There are several dark forces encapsulated, embodied, in the MAGA Republicans, so a lot of whom come in this chamber, who would like to do something backward,” Schumer said in a floor speech Wednesday.