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Reid taps Reed

December 23, 2011

Rhode Island Sen. Jack Reed has been tapped by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to serve on the Senate side of the conference committee that will try to negotiate a year-long extension of the payroll tax cut and deal with the prickly issues of  extending unemployment benefits and Medicare reimbursement rates for doctors.

In announcing Reed’s appointment, Reid says the Rhode Island Democrat is a senator “with a proven history of forging bipartisan agreements.’’

While this appointment is an indication of Reed’s stature within the Democratic Senate Caucus, it is no Christmas present. It may not be an easy task to deal with a House Republican leadership that increasingly looks like it is being held hostage to the Tea Party fringe.

Joining Reed as Senate conferees are Max Baucus of Montana, Ben Cardin of  Maryland and Bob Casey of Pennsylvania.


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