Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is blocking the Senate from considering the defense authorization bill, delaying it until at least the week after Thanksgiving.

Paul put a hold on the legislation yesterday because he has not received an assurance his amendment about military detainees will be considered on the Senate floor, said his spokeswoman, Moira Bagley.

“He (placed) the hold because we are waiting for an agreement in principle to get a vote on his amendment affirming the Sixth Amendment of the Constitution and the indefinite detention of Americans,” she said. That measure would ensure U.S. citizens held in terrorism cases are granted jury trials. It most likely would generate heated debate and take up precious floor time on the bill that is slated to be debated in just three days–a shorter duration than in past years.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said yesterday afternoon on the Senate floor that, because of Republican objection to the bill, the chamber will have to “come back after the recess for Thanksgiving and look at (the defense authorization bill) again.”

Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and Ranking Member John McCain (R-Ariz.) have been trying to line up an agreement to limit floor debate to defense-related amendments, so that preliminary consideration of the bill could start late this week.

A clearly frustrated Reid said yesterday: “If we’re going to move to these bills and have amendments offered, that’s what they want, that’s what I said they could do. I don’t fully understand the problem.”

Reid had said on Wednesday night that the Senate was ready to take up the bill. He and Levin talked of prepping the bill this week for three days of debate on amendments that would start the week after Thanksgiving.

Now any such preparatory work cannot start before Nov. 26, at the earliest, and is contingent on Paul lifting his hold.

Reid said he won’t file cloture on the bill, a procedural move to force debate that requires the support of 60 of 100 senators.

“It’s an important bill, but I want the record to be very clear: I’m not the cause,” Reid said when explaining why he doesn’t want to file cloture. “We’re not the cause of this defense authorization bill not being brought to the floor. I’ve agreed to do it as I was requested to do by both Sen. Levin and Sen. McCain.”

Republican senators blocked the defense bill from being considered back in September because they didn’t want debate limited to relevant amendments.