Things were looking bleak yesterday for the New START arms treaty—but that was yesterday. Following a closed-door meeting, GOP Sen. Scott Brown said he’d vote for the treaty and two other Republicans said they would likely support it, giving supporters enough votes to push it through as voting begins today. Meanwhile, John McCain put forward an amendment to accompanying legislation that could soothe START’s opponents.
Republican amendments were voted down yesterday by margins approaching the figure needed for approval of the treaty. Joint Chiefs chairman Mike Mullen pushed for ratification in a letter to the Senate, calling the treaty “vital” to security. And Russia, for its part, yesterday told the US the treaty “cannot be opened up and become the subject of new negotiations;” McCain’s amendment wouldn’t call for such a move.
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