The Senate will take up the Ryan-Murray budget deal on Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced Friday, one of the final items on the agenda before the Senate heads home until 2014.
On Thursday evening, the House the budget plan forged by House and Senate Budget Committee Chairs Paul Ryan and Patty Murray won by a large margin, with a majority of both parties voting for it.
In the Senate, the bill’s support is less bipartisan. A number of Republicans have come out against it, since the agreement was announced on Tuesday.
Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican on the budget committee, said in a statement Tuesday that he would “be unable to support the legislation,” citing the discretionary spending levels that are greater than the caps set in the budget control act, among other issues.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is not expected to support the plan either, as The Daily Caller previously reported, based on sources with knowledge of his thinking. Nor is Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the second-highest ranking Republican in the Senate.
South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham came out against the bill, saying in a statement that he felt “it will do disproportionate harm to our military retirees. Our men and women in uniform have served admirably during some of our nation’s most troubling times.”
Graham, McConnell, and Cornyn all face re-election next year and all have primary challengers on the right.
New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte said she shared Graham’s concerns.
“I cannot support a budget agreement that fails to deal with the biggest drivers of our debt, but instead pays for more federal spending on the backs of our active duty and military retirees — those who have put their lives on the line to defend us,” she said.
The three Senators considered to be likely 2016 presidential contenders, a campaign that could likely pit them against Ryan and his own presidential ambitions, all came out against the budget deal Ryan helped author. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio called the budget “irresponsible.” Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said it “moves in the wrong direction.” Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul called it a “huge mistake” and “shameful.”
If every Democrat supports the bill, they will need five Republicans to come on board to get the proposal past the procedural hurdles before it can be voted on by a simple majority vote. One of those Republicans is likely to be Arizona Sen. John McCain, who said he is “leaning toward voting for it,” Roll Call reported.
“We need at least five, and I’m hoping there’ll be more than that,” Sen. Dick Durbin told reporters Thursday.
But, he cautioned, “I’m not sure of anything. There are not five Republicans that have announced they’re for it.”