WASHINGTON -- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said on Thursday the Cut, Cap and Balance bill passed by the House Tuesday is "some of the worst legislation in the history of this country," resoundingly rejecting claims by Republicans that Democrats will eventually accept the bill in a last-ditch effort to raise the debt ceiling.
"I think this piece of legislation is about as weak and senseless as anything that has ever come on the Senate floor, and I'm not going to waste the Senate's time day after day on this piece of legislation which I think is an anathema to what our country is all about," Reid said on the Senate floor.
Reid announced that the Senate will vote on the bill Friday, despite a Senate rule that a full day must pass after cloture is filed before the body can take a cloture vote. He said anyone who wants to debate the legislation is free to come do so "to their heart's content," but that a vote would take place Friday rather than Saturday.
Cut, Cap, and Balance, a Tea Party-backed bill that includes major spending cuts and demands a vote on the Balanced Budget Amendment, is almost certain to fail in the Senate. President Barack Obama issued a veto threat on the measure earlier this week. But Republicans insist the bill offers a possibility for breaking the gridlock on negotiations over raising the debt ceiling.
Democrats are eager to move past the bill and begin work on other plans to increase the debt limit.
"Time to move on to more serious proposals," Democratic policy spokesman Brian Fallon tweeted when announcing the vote.
Reid said it was time the bill was cast aside in favor of better proposals.
"I feel confident that this legislation will be disposed of one way or the other," he said on the floor. "The American people should understand that this is a bad piece of legislation."