High-profile lawmakers largely steered clear of the airwaves on Friday morning after a late-night battle that forced House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, to delay a vote on his debt-ceiling bill when he realized he could not garner enough support.
As the sun rose over the Capitol on Friday, the House GOP prepared for a 10 a.m. conference meeting, and only a few representatives appeared on the morning shows.
Although he plans to not back Boehner's bill, Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., praised his party for offering a plan on CNN’s American Morning. “If the Senate has a plan, they certainly haven’t shared it with us. If the president has a plan, he certainly hasn't shared it with us. What we’ll do today -- and I’ll predict it will be done today -- is for the third time send a plan that raises the debt ceiling in a responsible way.” He said he did not plan to vote for Boehner’s plan because he is seeking a more transformative remedy.
Weighing in on MSNBC, Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Fla., said that many Republicans still favor Boehner’s two-step process to raise the debt ceiling, because “we want to make sure the cuts get delivered.” But it was unclear what could be added to the current deal to make it more attractive to tea party freshman.
Indeed, even though tea party favorite Allen West, R-Fla., is supporting Boehner’s plan, he encouraged his colleagues who oppose it to stand firm. “Every person, every man, woman has to search their own heart,” he said.
On the Senate side, Budget Committee ranking member Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., hammered away at Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., for what he sees as not having a proper budget process and at President Obama, for what he said was a failure to put forth a plan. Sessions predicted “complex legislation and wheeling and dealing” at the last minute -- and also lauded the freshmen in the House who were holding out for a different deal. However, he urged them to try to come to terms with Boehner’s plan, because of the need to move forward.
Even Democrats in the Senate didn’t know how things would proceed. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., thought Senate leaders could work out a deal -- even though he has pledged to support neither Boehner nor Reid’s plans. And Sen. Michael Bennett, D-Colo., lamented that a bigger deal seemed no longer possible.