Dems, GOP may be near end of filibuster dispute

A compromise could be reached as soon as Thursday on modest changes to the practice that the minority party uses to kill legislation.

WASHINGTON — Senators may be nearing an end to their partisan dispute over curbing unlimited delays called filibusters.

Whatever the resolution, it probably won't require filibustering senators to debate on the Senate floor until exhaustion, like the actor Jimmy Stewart did in the movie "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington."

Senate aides say lawmakers could compromise as soon as Thursday on modest limits on filibusters, which a party in the minority uses to kill legislation. If no deal is reached, Democrats may push a package of changes that would place mild restraints on the practice.

Some newer Democratic senators want to require filibustering lawmakers to talk continuously as Stewart did in the 1939 film. But No. 2 Senate Democratic leader Dick Durbin says Democrats lack the votes for that aggressive change.

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