Schumer says Senate could pass an additional bill without GOP votes

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U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) touts Senate Democrats legislative accomplishments as he holds a news conference at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, March 25, 2021.

Jonathan Ernst | Pool | Reuters

Democrats may have just gotten a boost in getting their agenda through Congress.

The Senate parliamentarian told Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer that the chamber could use budget reconciliation an additional time to pass a bill with a simple majority, a spokesman for the New York Democrat said Monday. The ruling would give Democrats, who control a Senate split 50-50 by party, three attempts to approve legislation without Republican votes before the 2022 midterm elections.

Democrats have not decided whether to use the third attempt at reconciliation. "No decisions have been made on a legislative path forward" and "some parameters still need to be worked out," but the opinion "is an important step forward," the Schumer spokesman said.