Boehner Rallies Conservatives

by Andrew Stiles

I write on the homepage about House leadership’s effort to win over conservatives in order to craft an agreeable debt-limit strategy. Members will vote later today on a measure to temporarily suspend the debt limit through mid-May, and withhold Senators’ pay if they fail to pass a budget this year. The idea originated in a conservative working group led by House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan (R., Wis.). Although the bill is expected to pass with limited defections, this conference has proven itself anything but predictable, so stay tuned.

The bill’s passage would spare House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) and his leadership team a repeat of the embarrassing “Plan B” debacle in December, when they had to cancel a vote on their preferred fiscal-cliff legislation because they lacked sufficient GOP support.

For Boehner, it would also be a significant reaffirmation of his leadership following a rough patch of several weeks that included a failed attempt to oust him as speaker. Since the failed coup, he has worked hard to return conservative members to the fold by listening to them and incorporating their ideas.

Representative Trent Franks (R., Ariz.), a prominent conservative member, told reporters he would support the bill, noting that House leaders had performed “admirably” under very difficult circumstances.

A key component of Boehner’s outreach effort was his commitment, announced Tuesday, to move forward on a House budget that would balance within 10 years.

Read the whole thing here.