Problem: You've been outmaneuvered by the administration and forced to debate a bill all your powerful friends don't like.
Solution: change the rules.
Clinton was justly famous for corralling a Republican-controlled Congress into endorsing legislation they didn't like, especially in his last years in office. I can't recall them ever pulling a stunt quite like this. Then again, since my own opinion of Congress would need to look up to see the proverbial snake's belly, I wouldn't be surprised if Republican congresses did actually try this and I just don't remember.