One casualty of the so-called "nuclear option" could be bipartisanship.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., hinted that Republicans such as himself might be less likely to reach across party lines now that Democrats have changed the rules on how judges are nominated
"There's still quite a bit of legislation that goes through the United States Senate, and it's done on the basis of people's agreement with one another and work with people across the aisle," McCain said Thursday on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer
"There are going to be difficulties from time to time where cooperation was probably the case in the past and will not be now."
Still, McCain said, he would continue to work with Democrats on legislation "when it's in the interest of the country."
McCain has served in the House and Senate for three decades, and said he has made many friends in the Democratic Party during that time. Thursday's vote puts a strain on those relationships he said.
But more important, he said, is the damage to the institution.
The Senate had required 60-vote majorities before judicial nominees could be brought to the floor. Now, only 51 votes, a simple majority, are needed.
The Senate had been described as a place where legislation comes to "cool off" after simple majority legislation in the House of Representatives. Should the Senate move to simple majorities on all legislation, McCain said the two houses might as well be merged.
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