By Craig Gilbert of the Journal Sentinel
June 29, 2011 5:20 p.m.
Freshman Sen. Ron Johnson said Wednesday he will try to block any move by the Senate to recess tomorrow in advance of the Fourth of July holiday, saying lawmakers should remain in session to work on the budget and spending issues.
Johnson’s comments come a day after he took to the Senate floor vowing to block regular business unless Democrats advance a budget plan.
“We’re just trying to ratchet up the pressure on Democratic leadership, who controls what we do by and large,” the Oshkosh Republican said in an interview. “I’m doing this to make a point, to make sure we start turning our attention to the budget.”
President Obama also suggested Wednesday lawmakers remain in session to work on a debt-ceiling agreement instead of recessing, and there are some signs Senate Democrats may decide to stay in town.
Johnson has assailed Democrats for failing to move a budget in the Senate, and said Wednesday that “I have been here for six months and US Senate has accomplished virtually nothing.”
“It’s time to get serious about this. Unless they get serious I’m going to begin to object, which … can really gum up the works in the US Senate.”
Individual members have the capacity to tie up the Senate procedurally because so much of the institution’s regular business is done with the unanimous consent of its members. What Johnson is threatening to do is withhold that consent for “moving forward on things that aren’t related to the bankrupting of America.”