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Senate GOP Invokes ‘Nuclear Option’ to Change Rules by Simple Majority

WASHINGTON—Senate Republicans invoked the so-called nuclear option to use a simple majority to change the chamber’s rules for confirming many appointees to the executive and judicial branches.

Under the new, permanent procedures, the Senate will allow for two hours of debate after cloture votes on nominees to noncabinet executive positions and district courts, down from 30 hours. Nominees to circuit courts, cabinet positions, and the Supreme Court are exempt from the reduction in debate time.

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