Republican Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham, among others in the party, want to get rid of the "nuclear option"
that Democrats used last year to end filibusters on presidential nominations, but other GOP senators have decided they like the plan after all.
Last year, the party complained when Senate Democrats used the option to change the Senate rules, which required 60 votes to break a filibuster, reports Roll Call
Republicans were angered because such changes to Senate rules usually require a two-thirds majority, but the nuclear option allowed Democrats to change the rules without that vote.
The procedural issue ended a requirement on the 60-vote threshold on all nominations except for Supreme Court justices. GOP senators at the time said the move dealt a blow to the Senate's integrity.
Last year, after the nuclear option was invoked, an angry Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander blasted the Democrats' action, calling it "the most important and most dangerous revision of Senate rules since Thomas Jefferson wrote them at the beginning of our country."
Other Republicans, however, want to leave the rule change in place. Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch has written opinion pieces in favor of leaving things as-is, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said he agrees.
"But once it's done, I don't think we should go back," Cruz said. "I don't think there should be one rule for Democrats and one rule for Republicans."
Cruz called for whatever is eventually decided to be ratified under the usual process, requiring 67 votes early after Congress convenes.
Alexander said he agrees with Cruz on requiring 67 votes, and that he would like to see proposals be considered by the Senate Rules Committee, and to allow Republicans and Democrats to offer amendments for the plans.
"I'd like to adopt a rule the right way through the regular order with 67 votes," Alexander said, adding, "How can people trust us to write rules for them if we don't follow our own rules?"
Alexander said he and Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah plan to co-author a proposal on the issue, and that other plans may be offered.
But Alexander said he prefers requiring a simple majority of 51 votes for all nominations, even those for Supreme Court justices.
"I imagine that some senators would say that they prefer 60 votes for the Supreme Court and that is an amendment they could offer in the Rules Committee. It's an amendment they could offer on the floor of the Senate," Alexander said.
© 2022 Newsmax. All rights reserved.