Well, that was fun while it lasted:
Fourteen Republican and Democratic senators announced this evening they had reached a compromise designed to prevent a showdown over President Bush’s judicial nominations.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), speaking for the group of seven Republicans and seven Democrats, announced the agreement at a news conference at 7:40 p.m.
Under the deal, the Democrats agreed to accept cloture votes on three of President Bush’s judicial nominees: Priscilla R. Owen, Janice Rogers Brown and William Pryor.
In return, the Republicans pledged not to support the so-called “nuclear option” to end the ability of the minority to use filibusters to block nominees.
I suppose it’s interesting that the guaranteed votes are for the three nominees anyone had ever heard of. Now at least Washington can move on to its next kabuki theatre event. (þ: Robert Tagorda)
Update: Steve at Begging to Differ provides a conventional wisdom watch (McCain, Reid win; Bush, Frist lose) that sounds reasonably right to me, while Stephen Bainbridge thinks it was a worthwhile compromise. I tend to agree with BTD Steve that Republicans probably won’t get the credit for being “bipartisan,” but if you’re the sort of person who likes the small-c conservative nature of the filibuster, Bainbridge points out it’s the smart long-term move—although, should the Democrats ever regain the majority, there’s nothing stopping them from going “nuclear” absent some (highly unlikely) pangs of conscience due to further hypocrisy on their part.