The Senate's incredible, disappearing immigration debate

A much-anticipated Senate debate on immigration this week seemed to stutter even before it began Tuesday, as negotiations devolved into a fight about process and a healthy round of finger pointing, with time to reach a deal before the end of the week evaporating with each passing hour.

At the core of the debate was the realization dawning on both sides that even after weeks of lead-up, no proposal seemed to have the key number of 60 senators supporting it -- the threshold to advance that proposal in the Senate, if it is ever able to kick off. In the Capitol on Tuesday, no one could say exactly how things were going to go, with everyone banking on a last-minute deal being stru...