After passing the U.S. House in March, today the Employee Free Choice Act -- which guest blogger Tula Connell covered at Facing South last week) faltered in the Senate, with supporters failing to end a Republican-led filibuster:

Democrats were unable to get the 60 votes needed to force consideration of the Employee Free Choice Act, ending organized labor's chance to win its top legislative priority from Congress.

The final vote was 51-48.

The outcome was not a surprise, with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., saying for months that he would stop the legislation in the Senate. The White House also made it clear that if the bill passed Congress it would be vetoed.

Most notable fact: the vote was nearly party-line, which meant that even Southern Democrats like Sens. Landrieu (LA), Lincoln and Pryor (AR) -- sometimes skittish about lining up with labor, given anti-union hostility in the region -- voted for it.

Read more at the AFL-CIO blog.