Update: John Brennan will not be confirmed as CIA director tonight. "We're through for the night," said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, after attemping to bring Sen. Rand Paul's filibuster to a close and force a confirmation vote. Paul refused to stop his filibuster until the White House promises that it will not unilaterally order a drone strike on an American in the United States who isn't an immediate threat.
A Democratic leadership aide tells FP that Democrats will try again tomorrow to confirm Brennan. "We still expect to file cloture before the end of the day, and are still hoping to secure an agreement to hold the vote tomorrow," the aide said. "(Assuming we file cloture today, we will still need a UC [unanimous consent] agreement to hold the vote tomorrow since the cloture process would take us into the weekend if we have to burn all the time)."
A final vote on John Brennan's confirmation was set to take place as early as today, but now all bets are off thanks to Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul's fillibuster attempt.
A frustrated Democratic leadership aide tells Foreign Policy that Paul's long-winded speech against drone strikes is preventing Democratic and Republican leaders from scheduling a time to vote on Brennan's confirmation, which Democrats say already has the 60-plus votes needed.
"We are seeking an agreement with Republicans to hold a vote today at a 60-vote threshold," the aide said. "Senator Paul is, obviously, preventing us from getting a time agreement to set up a vote on the Brennan nomination."
At last check, Paul was joined by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) in the filibuster effort, which began at 11:47 a.m. East Coast time. "We are still cautiously optimistic that we'll be able to secure an agreement once Senator Paul ends his filibuster, but only Senator Paul knows when that will be," the aide told FP.
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