Senate looks to end secret holds in defense authorization bill


Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid promised a vote on a bill to end the practice of secret holds in the Senate before the end of the year. Reid has now informed the senators pushing the bill that he will hold a vote on the bill as an amendment to the defense authorization bill, according to CongressDaily.

Senate Majority Leader Reid has informed Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., that a bill they have co-sponsored to curtail secret holds will receive a vote as an amendment to the defense authorization bill that Reid plans to move to next week, McCaskill and Senate aides said today.

More than 60 senators have signed a letter circulated by McCaskill that urged curtailing secret holds through steps like the Wyden-Grassley proposal, generating expectations that the plan has the votes to overcome any filibuster. But how the measure is brought up may influence how much support it can get.

All 67 senators who signed a letter supporting this bill circulated by Sen. Claire McCaskill should vote yes on this bill when it comes up as an amendment next week. This is a test of whether senators wish to have a more transparent and open Congress or not.