(CNN)–On the same day Senate Republicans will vote whether to voluntarily give up earmarks in the next Congress, Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri said she wants the full Senate to vote on a binding moratorium that would include Democrats too.
"The arguments against this, every single one of them, I just don't think pass the smell test," she said about senators who oppose a ban and want to retain the ability to direct spending to home state projects.
McCaskill's push puts pressure on Senate Democrats, many of whom don't want to give up earmarks, to get behind a ban which has taken on increased political significance in light of Tea Party gains in the last election.
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, who just Monday reversed his longstanding support for earmarks, told CNN he would vote for the measure.
McCaskill is working with Republican earmark opponent Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma on an amendment they might offer to a food safety bill that's expected to be on the floor later this week. She is working with Democratic leaders to schedule a vote.
The ban would come in the form of a change in Senate rules, an aide to Coburn explained. Senators would be allowed to raise points of order against bills with earmarks, which would be binding.
"If these things (earmarks) are so good, will someone tell me how they're decided," a spirited McCaskill asked reporters. "Little cards getting handed around in caucus. There is not an open process. Who decides who gets the most money and on what basis is that decided?"