NH Sen. Shaheen doesn't rule out 'nuclear option'

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 16, 2013 at 6:46 pm •  Published: July 16, 2013

BOSTON (AP) — The U.S. Senate has averted the worst-case scenario in Washington's filibuster debate — at least for now — but New Hampshire Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is not ruling out the so-called "nuclear option" to prevent "further obstruction" from Republicans going forward.

"I hope the compromise we struck today prevents further obstruction on executive branch nominations in the future," Shaheen, who faces her first re-election test next year, said on Tuesday. "But if it doesn't, I would consider rules reform."

"Rules reform" is a Washington euphemism for the so-called "nuclear option," a Senate rule change that would prevent the minority party from using filibusters to block presidential appointees. While filibusters have been allowed for decades, Republicans have used them more often against Democratic President Barack Obama than any other president in history.

Shaheen's comments came shortly after Senate leaders announced a compromise.

"I've always believed that all presidents, regardless of party, should be allowed to fill their own cabinets," she said. "I hope today's agreement helps lay the foundation for greater bipartisan cooperation on the many important issues facing the country."

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