Held up again by a cavalcade of unrelated amendments on such topics as the Keystone XL pipeline and the Obama administration's new birth control coverage rule, a motion to proceed to a final vote failed by 52-44 margin.
However, according to O'Keefe, "Aides on both sides of the aisle said Tuesday morning that leaders were close to striking a deal to permit the consideration of amendments not directly related to the legislation, and other related amendments, before final passage by Thursday."
The delay in the Senate will allow the House additional, "time to regroup...to decide what, if anything, they will try to pass before the current extension of the 2005 transportation law runs out on March 31," reported Ben Goldman.
This comes amid speculation that, "Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-FL) has received a rebuke from House leadership, and will play a lesser role as the House reworks its foundering transportation bill. Mica will retain his chairmanship, but he will take a back seat to Railroad Subcommittee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA)," an assertion that House Majority Leader Boehner has denied.