A plain blog about politics: Manchin-Toomey and the Filibuster
The background checks portion of the bill will be defeated today. It was being added as an amendment to the bill, and under a consent agreement all amendments needed 60 votes; it's not going to get there.
The correct thing to say about this is that the amendment was defeated by filibuster. It's a little tricky, but that's the essence of it. The UC agreement under which the amendment (and all amendments to this bill) is considered requires 60 votes; that's agreed to in order to avoid a cloture vote, which is necessary because of the standing GOP plan to filibuster everything. It is wrong to say that "Senate procedure requires 60 votes." Senate procedure only requires 60 votes in case of filibuster. Which, under current conditions, means in virtually all cases. Manchin-Toomey is defeated by filibuster.