The Senate's chief Republican negotiator on the New START Treaty, Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ), says the nuclear treaty with Russia (WashPost) shouldn't be considered until next year. If Kyl--who helped defeat the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty more than a decade ago--is successful in blocking a vote in the lame-duck session, it could mean jeopardizing the treaty, which needs sixty-seven votes to pass. It would be less likely to pass in the new Congress because of Democratic losses in the midterm elections.
Kyl's announcement came only days after President Barack Obama said that congressional ratification of New START before the end of the year was a priority. The move infuriated the White House, which said it would keep pressing for the treaty's approval (NYT). Vice President Joe Biden urged Congress to ratify New START (BostonGlobe), saying that failure to do so would "endanger our national security." Secretary of State Hillary Clinton planned to meet with congressional leaders today (Bloomberg) to push for the treaty's passage.
Secretary of State Clinton and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates argue for New START's passage in this Washington Post op-ed.
The United States and Russia should make cuts in their nuclear stockpiles beyond the New START treaty, CFR's Micah Zenko argues in this Council Special Report.
Read the text of New START.
This Backgrounder looks at the Senate debate on New START.
A White House fact sheet on the treaty can be found here.