This starts the process of delivering on commitments to key Democratic constituencies.
Every Democrat present voted for the bill, including Blanche Lincoln and both Nelsons. (Only Kennedy missed voting.)
Snowe, Collins, Murkowski, Hutchison (!) and Specter crossed over to vote for it as well. (I.e., every woman in the Senate voted Yea.)
The cloture vote was even more lopsided, 72-23. If that means that some Republicans will tend to support cloture even while voting against the underlying legislation, we’re in clover.
Given that the bill was going to pass, I guess I’m a little surprised the leadership and the Chamber of Commerce insisted that so many Republicans cast a futile and politically damaging vote. Or maybe their hatred of trial lawyers is genuine enough to warp their political judgment. As long as the bill passed, I’m happy to have lots of Republicans voting Nay.