Proceedings, Debates of the U.S. Congress
(Senate - April 10, 2003)
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[Page S5103] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] SCHEDULE Mr. BENNETT. Madam President, this morning the Senate will be in a period of morning business until 11 a.m. Following morning business, the Senate may address any of the following items: The FISA bill, if unanimous consent can be reached; the PROTECT Act conference report; the digital technology bill; the nomination of Priscilla Owen to be a U.S. circuit judge; the BioShield bill; and any other conference reports that may become available. Therefore, Members should expect rollcall votes during today's session. The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Democratic whip. Mr. REID. Madam President, if I could, through you, ask the acting majority leader: All we know on this side is what we read in the newspapers and listen to on the news. Are we going to be able to work on the budget before we leave here, either today or tomorrow? Members are concerned some will leave. This is the most important vote we have, it and the supplemental. We have a pretty good idea what is happening in the supplemental but less of an idea of what is happening on the budget. Does the acting majority leader have any information for this side of the aisle? Mr. BENNETT. Madam President, I am not in a position to give any definitive answer to the Senator from Nevada. It is my understanding, however, that intense negotiations are going on with the chairman of the Budget Committee and other Senators who have an interest about the conference report. It is my understanding that an agreement has been reached and that a conference report will, in fact, be available to be voted on, if not late tonight, sometime tomorrow. But in the absence of any absolute word about that, I will simply put that in the category of rumors. They may be true rumors, but rumors nonetheless, that I can pass on as my best understanding. I will, as a courtesy to the Senator from Nevada, and to the Senate, ask the majority leader to come forward with that information as quickly as it has been firmed up. But it is my expectation that there will be resolution of the budget situation before we go out for recess. Understand, again, that is my personal expectation. That is not an official statement on behalf of the majority leader. ____________________