Obama Secures Enough GOP Votes to Back Nuke Pact

Tuesday, 21 Dec 2010 12:19 PM


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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has the votes for Senate ratification of a new arms control treaty with Russia.

At least nine Republicans have announced publicly that they will vote for the accord, with several Republicans coming on board Tuesday. Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, the No. 3 Republican in the Senate, said he would back the pact.

The Constitution requires two-thirds of those voting in the Senate to ratify the pact. Democrats needed at least nine Republican votes.

Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, a newly announced supporter, told reporters he thought it would pass and likely get a strong bipartisan vote.

Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, who opposes the accord, said, "We know when we've been beaten."

The Senate set a vote to cut off debate on Tuesday afternoon and ratification was likely on Wednesday.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate is on track to ratify a new arms control treaty with Russia, a top foreign policy priority of President Barack Obama.

Republican Sens. Robert Bennett of Utah and Bob Corker of Tennessee said Tuesday they would vote for the treaty. Corker told reporters that the treaty will definitely pass and likely with a solid bipartisan vote. Earlier Tuesday morning, Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, the Senate's No. 3 Republican, announced that he would back the accord.

The Constitution requires two-thirds of those voting in the Senate to ratify the pact. Democrats need at least nine Republican votes. Eight Republicans have said they would back the treaty and three others have said they are leaning toward approval.

A vote to end debate on the treaty was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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