Efforts of 2 Respected Elders Bring Senate Back From Brink - New York Times: "After weeks of seemingly fruitless negotiations between the two sides, Mr. Byrd, 87, a West Virginia Democrat who has spent more than half a century in Congress, and Mr. Warner, 78, a Virginia Republican who regards himself as an 'institutionalist,' met privately twice on Thursday. They parsed the language of Alexander Hamilton's Federalist Paper No. 66 in an effort to divine what the founding fathers intended when they gave the Senate the power to advise and consent on nominees. After trading telephone calls over the weekend, they drafted three crucial paragraphs.
The agreement contends that the word 'advice' in the paper 'speaks to consultation between the Senate and the president with regard to the use of the president's power to make nominations.' It goes on to state, 'Such a return to the early practices of our government may well serve to reduce the rancor that unfortunately accompanies the advice and consent process in the Senate.'"