Four Republicans joined Democrats in a key cloture vote moments ago, allowing debate on a jobs package to move forward. After overcoming this hurdle, debate on the bill can begin.
Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) broke with his party and voted with the Democrats. So did Sens. Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Susan Collins (R-ME), Kit Bond (R-MO) and George Voinovich (R-OH).
Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) was the only Democrat to break with his party.
The final vote tally was 62-30.
Our two Texas morons Corndog and Kay Bailing-Out, naturally, voted against unemployed Americans. Only slightly less disgraceful than the execrable Nelson.
"I hope this is the beginning of a new day here in the Senate," (Senate Majority Leader Harry) Reid said.
The bill, which is much smaller than some original proposals, would exempt businesses from paying Social Security payroll taxes this year after hiring from the nation's pool of millions of unemployed. The Build-America Bonds Act of 2009 would be renewed by the jobs bill. The scaled-down bill would also extend some tax breaks for small businesses, renew highway programs through December, and put $20 billion in the highway trust fund.
Go to the link to see Scott Brown's statement and expression of hopeful bi-partisanship. Let's see if his colleagues denounce him for it. With the announcement that HCR will be presented shortly for a vote again, this is, dare I say it, a good sign. A healthcare bill -- without a public option and with the odious Nelson abortion amendment in -- appears to be on the docket and subject to a majority vote (what's referred to as reconciliation, meaning of course that 51 votes is all it will take to pass it).
If that's all that can be done, then get on with it, ladies and gentlemen.
Update: Eight more Republican senators found their way over to the light. Let's not accuse them of being against it before they were for it ...
But Kay Bailey skipped out on the vote. I believe that''s called 'cutting-and-running'.