Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Did Collins Just Blink?

I'm not convinced. But it's a plausible reading of the situation given the junior senator's comments just a little while ago. Here's David Kurtz of TPM:

On its face, her demands can probably be met by Harry Reid without too much sweat. That's probably why Reid has now put off tonight's vote.

Now, you could argue that Reid just caved by putting off the vote, but I think that's the wrong read on this.

Collins has finally made her demands concrete and public. And they are not outrageous. At one point she wanted or was said to want two weeks of debate. Now she's asking for a manageable 4 days. Would we have gotten here anyway? Maybe. Did Reid's forcing the issue make the difference? Hard to say for sure, but probably.
Not exactly a profile in courage. But promising--at least potentially.

UPDATE: Politico reminds us why this is far from a done deal:

As the day wore on, Reid seemed to have struck a deal with Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and perhaps other Republicans who favor ending “don’t ask” over the number of amendments that should be allowed to the defense bill and was inching towards an agreement on the time for debate.

However, Collins said she and Reid remained in stark disagreement over when to take up the bill, with Collins still insisting upon waiting until the Senate acts on a tax-cut extension deal the White House reached with Republican leaders.

No comments: