Senate Averts Filibuster Showdown, For Now

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The U.S. Senate has averted a filibuster showdown - at least for now.

Democrats were threatening to ban filibusters of presidential nominees because they're frustrated that Republicans have failed to move forward on seven key confirmations.

Republicans have now agreed to confirm those stalled nominees if Democrats drop their plans to change voting rules in the Senate.

The Senate voted 71-29, Tuesday, to advance five executive picks, including Richard Cordray as director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Thomas Perez as Labor Secretary, and Gina McCarthy to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

As part of Tuesday's deal, President Obama will withdraw the nomination of two union-backed members of the National Labor Relations Board, Richard Griffin and Sharon Block. In exchange, the GOP agreed not to block replacement nominees.

Tuesday's agreement does not permanently resolve deep partisan divisions over the use of filibusters to block a president's picks.

Nevertheless, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., seemed pleased with the deal.

"It is a compromise, and I think we get what we want, they get what they want. Not a bad deal," Reid said.

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