to a deal with President Obama
The Republicans' rightly-maligned Cut, Cap, and Balance plan was set up to fail in the U.S. Senate. But it wasn't meant to happen at the exact same time as the House GOP held a press conference to rally in support of the bill, with the deadline for raising the debt limit now just over a week away.
But that's exactly what happened Friday, when House Republicans cut short a press conference, and beat the gavel on a vote to table Cut, Cap, and Balance -- a vote which was playing out right in front of their faces on closed circuit TV.
The House plan lost on a 51-46 vote, leaving conservatives to claim that it had fallen just 4 votes shy of having the majority it needs to pass. Yeah, I know 46+4 is 50, but one Republican, John McCain, didn't vote, so presumably they are counting his vote. Anyway, the point is that it's pretty funny that when you're talking about Republican legislation, it suddenly only needs 50+1 to pass.
Now that the House debt plan is dead, lawmakers need to come up with another path for raising the debt limit. And at today's press conference, John Boehner continued his denial that he'd reached a plan with Obama:
But before departing, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), ever sensitive to the needs of his conservative caucus, told reporters, there was "never an agreement," with President Obama to raise the debt limit. "Frankly," he said, "[we're] not close to an agreement."
So the White House says there isn't a deal. John Boehner says there isn't a deal. There must not be a deal, right? Unless somebody is fibbing, that is.