With Republicans gaining four seats last November to now hold 55 U.S. Senate seats and increasing its strength by four seats as well in the House of Representatives, the pro-business agenda in Washington looks better in 2005 than for a long time, according to a range of speakers at the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors annual meeting in late January.
But don't count on smooth sailing. "The Senate was stalled out in 2004," said Sen. John Thune (R-SD), who defeated Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle last November. "Our hope is that this year we are closer to breaking a filibuster (60 votes) than in the past."
Thune ticked off the major agenda items for the year from his perspective: