No Holds Barred

One of the more more insidious tricks of the trade in the US Senate is the so-called "hold." Using this pseudo-parliamentary procedure, any senator can single-handedly block any piece of legislation or any nomination he or she cares to. And usually without the public having any idea who applied the "hold."

The Senate just had an opportunity to dilute, at least, this extreme form of minority rule. The measure would have made public the names of lawmakers who put holds on presidential nominees.

Alas, someone saw to it this slight reform was stripped from the bill it was amended to.

Not surprisingly, no one is sure who did it.

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