The Senate inched closer to passing the long-stalled small-business bill on Tuesday, voting 61-37 to cut off debate and move toward final passage later this week.
The measure aims to boost growth in the small-business jobs market. After the cloture vote Tuesday, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) suggested Republicans yield back some debate time so Senators could pass the bill and move on to other priorities. A vote on final passage could occur Wednesday or Thursday.
“I hope that we can finish this very quickly,” he said. “There are a number of technical things that could be done by those that oppose this legislation, but it would just waste a lot of the Senate’s time, which we don’t have a lot of.”
Reid praised Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) for siding with Democrats and giving Reid the necessary 60 votes to move forward on the small-business measure.
Also Tuesday, Senators voted 52-46 against a procedural motion to consider an amendment by Sen. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) to repeal a piece of the health care law affecting small businesses. Senators also rejected a motion to consider a similar amendment by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.).