Making the case for rules reform in the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Sunday that Congress’ approval ratings have sunk “lower than North Korea” because of partisan gridlock.
Reid’s comments came on back-to-back appearances of “Meet the Press” from Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
The two bickered earlier this week about the so-called “nuclear option” Reid is considering that would dramatically change Senate rules in confirming Cabinet appointees, shifting the approval process to a simple majority vote in the Seante.
“He’s going to defend the status quo,” Reid said of McConnell. “Is there anyone out there in the real world that believes that what’s going on in the Congress of the United States is good? Our approval rating is lower than North Korea’s. It is really, really difficult.”
Reid clarified that he is not trying to change Senate rules for lifetime judicial appointments or legislation — though some have cautioned that this could be the first step in a slippery slope toward that path.
“A president — whether it’s President Obama, the new President [Hillary] Clinton, or the new [President Jeb] Bush — whoever’s president should be able to have the people on their team that they want,” Reid said.
Appearing after Reid, McConnell — who was part of a Republican-led majority that threatened “nuclear option” reform in 2005 — said that Reid and Democrats were overreacting to a few controversial appointees.
“We need to start talking to each other instead of at each other, and see if we can’t resolve this in the same way that we did 10 years ago when Republicans had genuine provocation,” McConnell said.
Here are clips of Reid and McConnell’s appearances:
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