House GOP Fails To Find Enough Votes To Pass “Plan B”

The Republican leadership in the House suffered a big loss tonight:.

campaign-money-congress

The Republican leadership in the House suffered a big loss tonight:

In a crushing blow to Speaker John A. Boehner, GOP leaders were forced to pull his “plan B” tax measure from the floor at the eleventh hour as it became clear his conference would refuse to support it.

Unable to bring his fellow Republicans along on a measure that would allow tax rates to rise on millionaires, and with Democrats vowing to block the bill, the Ohio Republican issued a statement Thursday night pushing responsibility to find the way forward squarely on to President Barack Obama and Senate Majority LeaderHarry Reid of Nevada.

“The House did not take up the tax measure today because it did not have sufficient support from our members to pass. Now it is up to the president to work with Senator Reid on legislation to avert the fiscal cliff,” Boehner said in a statement. “The House has already passed legislation to stop all of the January 1 tax rate increases and replace the sequester with responsible spending cuts that will begin to address our nation’s crippling debt. The Senate must now act.”

Boehner called a last-minute Republican Conference meeting at 7:45 p.m. on Thursday, and by 8 p.m., the conference had broken. Some lawmakers were only just arriving when the meeting broke up. Republicans afterward said that the mood in the room was somber and the news was met with disbelief.

Boehner led the Pledge of Allegiance and a prayer, then simply said that there were not enough votes to pass the bill, there would be no further votes before Christmas and that he would give a statement to the press on Friday. A few lawmakers clapped in appreciation. Others were surprised.

And, thus, the House GOP Caucus has just completely destroyed the bargaining position of their chief negotiator in the “Fiscal Cliff” negotiations.

FILED UNDER: Congress, Deficit and Debt, Quick Takes, Taxes, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Argon says:

    “Now it is up to the president to work with Senator Reid on legislation to avert the fiscal cliff,” Boehner said in a statement.

    Why say anything? The House Republicans just made turd sandwich and nothing the Speaker says will make it tasty. They own it.

  2. michael reynolds says:

    If Boehner had any pride he’d quit. Squeaker of the House.

  3. bill says:

    wow, forcing the president to actually “preside” over something important?

  4. An Interested Party says:

    wow, forcing the president to actually “preside” over something important?

    Presiding doesn’t mean negotiating with zealots who use hostage-taking tactics…thus, standing by while his political opponents embarrass themselves isn’t a bad thing at all…

  5. legion says:

    It _almost_ makes me feel bad for Boehner – he’s actually one of the smarter pols the GOP has, but he has the terrible fortune to hit the top of his career at a moment when literally every single member of his party is either a child, an idiot, or a sociopath. There is absolutely zero chance of getting that collection of wastoids to work together on pretty much anything…

  6. Jc says:

    This is embarassing.

  7. legion says:

    @bill: I don’t think that word means what you think it means.

  8. lankyloo says:

    @legion: I don’t feel bad for him at all. A Speaker of the house should lead, and he has been completely unable to lead his own caucus, much less be able to make deals with democrats and run one half of the legislature. It is crazy how we’ve gone from one of the most effective speakers with Pelosi to one of the least effective in Boehner. Now I’m wondering what the chance is he’ll remain as speaker in the next term.

  9. michael reynolds says:

    James Joyner needs to use this as a teachable moment for himself and the other regrettably delusional Republicans who think there’s something to be salvaged in this party. The party is insane. They’ve just castrated the Speaker in the midst of a battle they are doomed to lose. In two weeks they will have no negotiating room whatsoever. They were getting concessions, and now they’ve got nothing and a neutered leadership.

    Do the math. Connect the dots. This is the GOP. This is all that’s left of it.

  10. al-Ameda says:

    It’s shocking to see that the re-election of Obama has changed NOTHING in Washington.

  11. Rafer Janders says:

    @legion:

    It _almost_ makes me feel bad for Boehner – he’s actually one of the smarter pols the GOP has,

    High praise indeed.

  12. anjin-san says:

    Apparently Republicans have not gotten tired of being bitch slapped by Obama…

  13. Ben says:

    When I think of the GOP, all I can think of is:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ytCEuuW2_A

  14. Latino_in_Boston says:

    This is what’s left of the Republican Party:

    a bunch of politicians that live in such an alternative reality that they don’t even attempt to put themselves in the best position to advance their own ideological goals.

    If this were a football game, it would be Obama at the 10 yard line about to score, and the Republicans insisting that by not putting enough players on the field and getting penalties, they were running up the score.

    I thought Nov. 2012 was rock bottom, but I think we’re a long way yet. The problem is that they can still seriously damage the country.

  15. michael reynolds says:

    Newt Gingrich endorses gay marriage.

    We’re seeing the disintegration of the Money, Bombs and Jesus coalition that formed the modern GOP. Boehner’s castrated, Gingrich is going all rainbow coalition, Scott Brown backs gun control measures, Murdoch breaks with his own network on gun control, millionaires are backing tax increases on the wealthy, fire and brimstone coming down from the skies, rivers and seas boiling, forty years of darkness, earthquakes, volcanoes,the dead rising from the grave, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria!

    Hah! I love it.

  16. David says:

    It’s going to be a suck fest for the Speaker next year. He’ll have to cut a deal where Pelosi can deliver the democrats and the speaker can deliver just enough republicans to get it passed. If he can’t do that the republicans get to own the fallout from this.

  17. David says:

    And, oh yeah, the republicans are now the sole reason for their own sound bite they were using against Obama, the anti-tax party is no responsible for the “largest tax hike” in history.

    Mr. Reynolds, what brand of popcorn do you eat, I need a good stock pick.

  18. superdestroyer says:

    @legion:

    Boehner is a hack who would be very happy to fill his day with earmarks, set asides, and pork barrel spending. Boehner is a good example of what happens to Republicans who have been in DC too long. Any Republicans who agrees to higher taxes today with the promise of spending cuts in the future is a fool. The spending cuts should either come before the tax increases or at the same time.

  19. superdestroyer says:

    @lankyloo:

    It is hard to call Pelosi effective when the House never passed a house while see what Speaker. If Congress has any specific job, it is passing the budget each year, yet Pelosi refused to pass a budget. Being a partisan does not mean that you would excuse incompetence.

  20. superdestroyer says:

    @anjin-san:

    And how much leadership has the president shown on the budget and on spending. All President Obama is saying is that he was higher taxes now for the false promise of spending cuts in the future. What should any Republicans agree to that lousy deal. At leeast under the current path, there will be actual spending cuts in 2013 instead of the false promise of spending cuts after President Obama leaves office.

  21. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Any Republicans who agrees to higher taxes today with the promise of spending cuts in the future is a fool. The spending cuts should either come before the tax increases or at the same time.

    So you are in agreement with Obama’s position?

  22. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @superdestroyer:

    And how much leadership has the president shown on the budget and on spending. All President Obama is saying is that he was higher taxes now for the false promise of spending cuts in the future. What should any Republicans agree to that lousy deal. At leeast under the current path, there will be actual spending cuts in 2013 instead of the false promise of spending cuts after President Obama leaves office.

    Oooops, no you don’t. You just have the reading comprehension of a 3rd grader. The only person proposing “higher taxes now for the false promise of spending cuts in the future.” was Boehner with his plan “B”.

  23. Tsar Nicholas says:

    And, thus, the House GOP Caucus has just completely destroyed the bargaining position of their chief negotiator in the “Fiscal Cliff” negotiations.

    We’re talking here about 20-25 out of more than 230. Members of the putative “Tea Party.” But ultimately the point is correct in that in their blind adherence to dogma and orthodoxy they’ve defeated their own causes. And ironically enough the irony will be lost on them.

    Not to get too far off topic but this actually is a Protestant thing. It’s not really about taxes. It’s not about tea or coffee. It’s not really about the deficit. It goes all the way back to the John Birch Society fiasco. It’s about Protestantism. And it’s about the inability to compromise. There are small cadres of WASPs who simply have to get entirely their own way. And if not they break apart and form smaller groups. That’s why there are so many Protestant denominations. And without even realizing it often they juxtapose that approach to politics and to political issues.

    The two dozen or so Reps. who are bedeviling the GOP House leadership are of the mind that they’d rather starve that to accept anything less than a full loaf of bread. So rather than try to work towards a deal where taxes stay the same for around 98% of taxpayers they rather would have taxes get increased for 100% of the people who pay taxes. Rather than try to compromise and to work towards getting around 2/3 of their agenda points implemented, albeit in smaller doses in certain quarters than preferred, they’d rather not compromise and get less than 1/3 of their agenda points implemented. To “send their messages” and to “prove their points.” Again, at a core level that’s a religious thing and the irony of it all would be lost on them.

  24. superdestroyer says:

    @michael reynolds:

    In case who have not notices, Gingrich and Brown were losers. Brown tried to appease the left and it did not help him at all. Since it is virtually impossible for a conservative to win in Mass., Brown should either switch to being a Democrat or move to a state where he would not feel compelled to appease people who will never vote for him.

  25. superdestroyer says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    President Obama keeps talking about 10 years worth of spending cuts. Tax increases today with the promise of spending cuts over 10 years is a fool’s deal for the Republicans. The tax increases should be limited to last for one year and the spending cuts should come in the same year. President Obama has not promised anything such a thing.

  26. superdestroyer says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    All of the President Obama’s spending cuts are promised over 10 years. Since President Obama will not be in office for the last six years of his promise and since congress can make no obiligation on future legislatures, there is no real deal. The only way to evaluate a deal is how much will taxes go up in 2013 and how much will spending be cut in 2013. President Obama is promising spending cuts in the future (10 year cuts are not cuts) for real tax increases today.

    Republicans should remember Bush I and what happens when Republicans sign on to tax increases today for spending cuts in the future.

  27. superdestroyer says:

    @Tsar Nicholas:

    tax increases today for the promise of spending cuts in the future is a 100% win for the Democrats. It makes the Democrats stronger and weakens all conservatives.

    The problems for the Republicans is less than 50% of the voters are willing to accept any spending cuts and the Repubicans know that is the Democrats regain control of the House, there will be no spending cuts outside of defense.

    The Republicans have been stabbed in the back many times by the Democrats and would be fools to make any deal that gives the Democrats an opportunity to stab them in the back.

  28. MarkedMan says:

    Is it just my imagination or are there two people posting under “Tsar Nicholas”?

  29. bill says:

    @An Interested Party: they were all elected for a reason, and obama said he couldn’t work with congress so what did they expect – aside from 4 more years of nothing? even clinton was able to work with a divided house, reagan too.
    on a side note- are $trillion dollar deficits still “un-patriotic”?
    don’t get your panties in a bunch, the “fiscal cliff” is highly overrated.

  30. bill says:

    @superdestroyer: really, “promises”? like the “promises” these hacks run on and never accomplish (and are rarely reminded of it)?

  31. grumpy realist says:

    This isn’t like herding cats; this is trying to herd a bunch of 3 year olds who are having a meltdown in a grocery store because Mommy won’t buy them CAAANDY!

  32. Jen says:

    On the heels of Mitch McConnell’s epic collapse of threatening to filibuster a bill he introduced, I’d say these guys are having an interesting December. There’s a Plan B contraception joke in there somewhere, I’m just too tired to look for it.

  33. legion says:

    @Tsar Nicholas: That’s actually a very interesting point about WASPs. I don’t know enough of them to rate the correctness, but as a hypothesis, it certainly conforms with observed data.

  34. legion says:

    @superdestroyer: Oh, I don’t _like_ Boehner one bit. But as I said, he truly is the best they’ve got. I think the only reason he kept the Speaker’s job after last year was because even the House GOP caucus realizes Cantor – the most likely replacement – would be an even more colossal disaster.

  35. An Interested Party says:

    they were all elected for a reason, and obama said he couldn’t work with congress so what did they expect – aside from 4 more years of nothing? even clinton was able to work with a divided house, reagan too.

    Please…even though Clinton was impeached, neither he nor Reagan had to deal with the ridiculous opposition that the President does with these Teabaggers in Congress…

    don’t get your panties in a bunch, the “fiscal cliff” is highly overrated.

    That’s amusing coming from you–someone who seems to get his panties in a bunch on a daily basis…