Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's plan to push the chamber toward a final vote on John Brennan's nomination to head the Central Intelligence Agency was blocked, at least temporarily, by a filibuster.
Mr. Reid, a Nevada Democrat, moved to end debate on the nomination earlier in the day, but Sen. Rand Paul (R., Ky.) stalled the chamber as he expressed anger with the Obama administration after Attorney General Eric Holder said in a letter Tuesday that the U.S. has authority to carry out drone strikes on American soil.
The filibuster caught Senate leaders by surprise. Mr. Reid had thought he could reach an agreement with Senate Republicans to vote on Mr. Brennan on Wednesday, early enough to allow lawmakers to adjourn before a winter storm was poised to hit. But Mr. Paul took to the Senate floor shortly before noon, promising to speak "for as long as I can hold up."