Couldn't you just as well say, in hindsight, that it was a small group in the Senate leadership using every parliamentary maneuver they could find to delay the Senate's rejection of the Grand Bargain? ... Update: The same goes for Harry Reid's complaint that "the big winner today was obstruction." When a majority blocks a minority, is that "obstruction"? [But a majority was against cloture only because of last minute votes by Senators who saw the bill going down and didn't wanted to risk defeat in the next election--ed Isn't that my point?]
Obvious winner in today's vote: John McCain, who can now try to take the issue "off the table" in his presidential campaign.
Obvious loser: Rupert Murdoch, whose Fox News Channel took a pro-comprehensive dive. It turns out conservatives don't need Big Murdoch Media to make themselves heard any more than netroots left needs the "liberal MSM." ... 8:28 A.M. link
Comprehensive Tenterhooks!The second cloture vote on the immigration bill--which could either kill it or send it to likely passage--happens this morning. It looks close. Proponents need 60 votes. That means opponents need a net switch of five votes, after losing the first cloture vote 64-35. Momentum appears to be against the bill, but the decision rests with a large block of undecideds who may be susceptible to White House arm-twisting. It's also possible pro-comprehensives may be able to draw on "hidden" supporters--Senators who voted against cloture last time but can be persuaded to flip and vote for the bill if they're needed.
National Review Online focuses attention on Webb and Ensign (potential swing "no" votes) and Bayh (a potential flip to "yes").
And here's the list of Senators the bill's proponents seem to be worried about, according to Noam Askew:
Senator Bingaman (D-NM) Senator Bayh (D-IN) Senator Domenici (R-NM) Senator Coleman (R-MN) Senator Brownback (R-KS) Senator Bennett (R-UT) Senator Gregg (R-NH) Senator Bond (R-MO) Senator Murkowski (R-AK) Senator Stevens (R-AK) [E.A.]
Cochran and Hatch and Stabenow are mentioned as potential flips the other way.
P.S.: Emailer B.T. has some phone advice for citizen-lobbyists: