How McConnell outfoxed Reid on the omnibus

In this season of thanksgiving, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Republican appropriators deserve a pat on the back.

With a government shutdown looming at midnight Saturday, McConnell managed to outmaneuver his Democrat counterpart and save American taxpayers a large chunk of change in the process.

He did it with one sheet of paper. Yesterday morning McConnell introduced a one-page continuing resolution to fund the government for two months.

The move united Senate Republicans, including appropriators, and spelled the beginning of the end for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's (D-Nev.) massive $1.27 trillion omnibus spending bill.

Shortly after Democrats unveiled the nearly 2,000-page bill Tuesday, McConnell was out front leading the opposition. There was just one problem: Republicans didn't have a viable alternative to avoid a government shutdown.

McConnell's embrace of a two-month continuing resolution gave them one. While relentlessly attacking the bloated omnibus, the McConnell boxed Reid into a corner. With nowhere to go, Reid shocked everyone and admitted defeat last night.

The omnibus, which contained 6,700 earmarks costing $8.3 billion, was a last-ditch effort by Democrats to advance their agenda and implement the first phase of Obamacare.

Reid's strategy to buy votes in exchange for pork-barrel projects may have worked in a pre-Tea Party era. But not today. Even big-spending Republicans with millions at stake in earmarks came out against the measure.

It's still unclear how Democrats will fund the government before the deadline of midnight Saturday. But one thing is certain: American taxpayers won’t get a omnibus for Christmas.

This post has been promoted to Beltway Confidential.

Beltway ConfidentialearmarksHarry ReidUS

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Baseball Hall of Famer Willie Mays attends an event to honor the San Francisco Giants' 2014 World Series victory on Thursday, June 4, 2015, in Washington, D.C. (Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/TNS)
Willie Mays turns 90: San Francisco celebrates the greatest Giant

By Al Saracevic Examiner staff writer I couldn’t believe it. Willie Mays… Continue reading

Ja’Mari Oliver, center, 11, a fifth grader at Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy, is surrounded by his classmates at a protest outside the Safeway at Church and Market streets on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 in support of him following an April 26 incident where he was falsely accused by an employee of stealing. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
School community rallies behind Black classmate stopped at Safeway

‘When you mess with one of us, you mess with all of us’

A warning notice sits under the windshield wiper of a recreational vehicle belonging to a homeless man named David as it sits parked on De Wolf Street near Alemany Boulevard on Friday, Aug. 31, 2018. A proposed SF Municipal Transportation Agency law would make it illegal for overnight parking on the side street for vehicles taller than seven feet or longer than 22 feet. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA to resume ‘poverty tows’ amid calls to make temporary ban permanent

Fines and fees hurt low-income, homeless residents, but officials say they are a necessary tool

Income from Shared Spaces will provide financial resources to the San Francisco Municipal Transporation Agency, according to its director, Jeffrey Tumlin. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA director says Shared Spaces serves transit agency’s financial interest

$10.6 million price tag for program raises concerns among transit agency’s board members

A broad coalition of tenants and housing rights organizers rally at Stanley Mosk Courthouse to protest eviction orders issued against renters Stanley Mosk Courthouse on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020, in Los Angeles, CA. (Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
Federal judge strikes down CDC’s national moratorium on evictions

David Yaffe-Bellany, Noah Buhayar Los Angeles Times A federal judge in Washington… Continue reading

Most Read