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Reid Holds Senate Hostage to Allow Vote for Embattled Democrat's Bill

11:20 AM, Sep 21, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
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Senate majority leader Harry Reid is holding up the Senate to allow a vote on a bill introduced by embattled Democrat Jon Tester.

Harry Reid

"Electoral politics appears to be interfering with the Senate's ability to wrap up its business and hit the campaign trail," Roll Call reports. "In an eleventh-hour attempt to help a vulnerable incumbent - Montana Democrat Jon Tester - Senate Democrats say they will insist on a vote on Tester's bill to ease restrictions on hunters and sportsmen before Congress adjourns for the elections."

The bill Reid wants the Senate to vote on is the Sportsmen's Act of 2012. Or, as one political hand dubbed the legislation, "the get Jon Tester reelected bill."

It's a bill meant directly to appeal to Tester's constituents, which is why Reid wants a vote on it, even though it's expected to fail in the Senate.

Currently, Tester, the Democratic senator from Montana, is falling behind in his Senate race. The RealClearPolitics average of the Senate race has Republican challenger Denny Rehberg with 45 percent of the vote to Tester's 44 percent of the vote.

Rehberg's lead explains Reid's eagerness to have a vote on the Tester bill--so that the Montana Democrat can have at least one (minor) victory to bring home to his constituents before his November election.

"Harry Reid is literally holding up a bill to fund the government so that Jon Tester can use the Senate floor as a campaign studio," says one senior Republican aide in the Senate. "He’s more concerned with saving this guy’s seat than keeping government funded, avoiding the biggest tax hike in history, or preventing across-the-board defense cuts in January. This is Washington at its worst."

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