With a party line 51-48 vote, Democrats, led by Majority Leader Harry Reid, forced a rule change limiting amendments to a bill once a filibuster is defeated.
It gets complicated, but in essence it reduces the power of the minority party to influence legislation.
It's a radical move for the Senate, which has traditionally devised procedures to protect the rights of the minority party.
As Politico reports, the move "infuriated Republicans and put an already bitterly divided chamber on edge as Senators from both sides of the aisle traded angry accusations over whether the fight would fundamentally limit the rights of the minority party."
- Gail Chaddock, Congressional correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor.
This segment aired on October 7, 2011.