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GOP Skeptical of Harry Reid's 'Promise' to Paul Ryan

Image: GOP Skeptical of Harry Reid's 'Promise' to Paul Ryan
Harry Reid (Photo by J. Scott Applewhite, File, AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 23 Dec 2015 12:42 PM

GOP lawmakers are reportedly skeptical of Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid's vow this week to embrace "a thoroughly bipartisan process" on appropriation bills that move through the upper chamber.

The Nevada Democrat even gave a "promise" of cooperation to GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan, The Hill reports – a vow that was met with open laughter by his Republican colleagues.

There's nothing cynical about the GOP mistrust; the House passed six spending bills in 2015, and none of them got anywhere in the Senate, The Hill notes.

"I have some doubts," Michigan GOP Rep. Justin Amash of the House Freedom Caucus tells The Hill. "We're talking about Harry Reid. I think Harry Reid is pretty clever and I would take anything he says with a grain of salt."

"Harry Reid may be playing the game," Amash adds. "Ryan's new to the post. There's going to be some testing of each other. But I'll give Ryan the benefit of the doubt — he's the one who has to assess if Senator Reid is being honest."

Texas GOP Rep. John Carter, chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee on Homeland Security, was more blunt.

"I personally don't trust Harry Reid as far as I could throw him," he tells The Hill.

"I don't want to be pessimistic, but Harry's a tough character to deal with and he'll find some way to stop virtually anything that he doesn't completely support, which is most of what we care about," adds House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-Ohio).

And Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn notes Reid has a history of blocking spending bills in the upper chamber.

"I'm as hopeful as anybody else," the Texas lawmaker tells The Hill. "But I think experience has proven that that hope is not always met with actual follow through."

Though The Hill reports Ryan said in an end-of-the-year news conference that he's making it his "goal to pass all 12 appropriation bills through regular order," there could be roadblocks.

For example, The Hill reports, if Democrats objected to a specific policy rider Republicans attached to a spending bill, such as one to defund Planned Parenthood, Reid could block that bill from reaching a final vote.

"To be truthful do I think we can get 12 bills individually passes? No," North Carolina Rep. Richard Hudson, a deputy GOP whip, tells The Hill. "But can we get six? Maybe, and that would be great."

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GOP lawmakers are reportedly skeptical of Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid's vow this week to embrace "a thoroughly bipartisan process" on appropriation bills that move through the upper chamber.
harry reid, gop, lawmakers, skeptical, promise, paul ryan
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Wednesday, 23 Dec 2015 12:42 PM
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