I think that the American people spoke loud and clear against amnesty, why else would these Senators who voted for cloture the first time, vote against it when they knew it was going to be defeated. They didn't want to be on record supporting it. Bush is clueless or putting on a good face over his rebuke by the American people:
“Legal immigration is one of the top concerns of the American people, and Congress’ failure to act on it is a disappointment.”I guess we won't be seeing him at the signing.
BTW, here is some interesting analysis by Rich Lowry:
The Bargainers had been running through the clay pigeon, tabling amendments to get them out of the way so they could get to the Graham-Kyl-Martinez "apprehend and deport" amendment. Then, the plan was, that amendment wouldn't be tabled, signaling that it would pass and giving some cat-nip to on-the-fence Republicans to vote for cloture. But Baucus wasn't tabled, stopping the process before it got to Lindsey "Deportation" Graham's creation. That helped blow away a big piece of the political strategy of the Bargainers.Reid couldn't move on to other amendments because he needed unanimous consent and the conservatives wouldn't cooperate.
Procedurally, he had been check-mated; politically, the cover of the Graham-Kyl-Martinez amendment wouldn't be available; and it was downhill from there.Pretty smart of the conservatives and a demonstration to the leadership that they aren't going to roll over the rights of the minority.