November 1st, 2010
09:30 AM ET

What's at stake in the Senate: More gridlock ahead?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/POLITICS/11/01/senate.at.stake/story.reid.gi.jpg caption="Senate-watchers are pondering what will happen if Majority Leader Harry Reid loses his seat in Tuesday's election." width=300 height=169]

Ted Barrett
CNN Congressional Producer

Editor's note: Ted Barrett has covered Congress for CNN for 11 years.

Washington (CNN) - Senate Democrats learned this year how difficult it was to pass bills over a determined GOP minority. Now they are bracing for possible legislative gridlock as Republicans are poised to pick up several seats in Tuesday's election.

Any expectations that a more evenly divided Senate might actually lead to cooperation and compromise could be unrealistic. The animosity and distrust between the two parties is already thick, and likely to get worse as the 2012 presidential campaign gets under way.

President Obama regularly talks about bringing the sides together - doing so might allow him to hash out deals this year on energy, education, trade and the debt - but Republicans are highly skeptical he will make compromises. "He will go into campaign mode and try to make us look evil," a senior GOP leadership aide predicted, echoing the broad sentiment of Republicans on the Hill.

Democrats are equally doubtful that Republicans will want to work with them. For starters, they think newly elected Tea Party-backed senators, who have promised to curb Washington's influence, will press Republican leaders not to cut deals.

"Many Republicans appear to be opposed to the very idea of coming here to legislate," said a top Senate Democratic leadership aide.

Full story

Filed under: 360° Radar • Raw Politics • Ted Barrett
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. pepe


    I really hope you show does better. I'd like you to have Ron Howard on your 360 show and tell him why you're so offended by his film. I'd actually watch that. Seriously!

    November 2, 2010 at 12:21 am |
  2. William of Iowa

    Then why show up? Here's an idea, spend one week in Washington to pass budget resolutions keeping the government open for business and then take off to do what they do best, campaign. Forget the idea of governance, just stick with the notion the people just love to watch campaigns and dream the dream with them. Besides, there is more money in campaigns.

    November 1, 2010 at 11:21 pm |
  3. Annie Kate

    Whoever wins I hope that the nonpartisan spirit will prevail and both parties can work on reducing the deficit and spending. I hope its not at the cost of current Social Security recipients who are dependent on their benefits for support. Most have worked a lifetime paying social security taxes to have this benefit in their advanced years; they cannot afford to lose it now or have it curtailed.

    2 years of gridlock is not a positive move for either party nor will the voters be pleased with it. One would think that both parties would have learned that by now.

    November 1, 2010 at 10:13 pm |
  4. ronvan

    GRIDLOCK? How could that happen? WE, the people, have been told by our "elected children" that they are looking out for our best interests! Sadly, to many of US are not in touch with reality and beleive these statements! Watch what happens after the election, it is going to get worse and it will be WE the people who get the shaft!

    November 1, 2010 at 6:26 pm |