Cut, Cap And Balance: House Passes Tea Party-Backed Debt Ceiling Plan
House Republicans easily passed their "Cut, Cap and Balance" fiscal plan on Tuesday, a proposal that boosts their standing among Tea Party supporters but has no chance of becoming law.
The bill passed, 234 to 190, on a largely partisan vote.
Five Democrats, including Reps. Jim Cooper (Tenn.), Health Shuler (N.C.) and Dan Boren (Okla.), sided with Republicans in passing the measure. Nine Republicans opposed the bill, including Tea Party favorite and GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.). In a statement issued after the vote, Bachmann said the bill "does not go far enough" and should have included provisions to defund health care reform.
Other Republican defectors included Reps. Walter Jones (N.C.), Francisco Canseco (Texas), Scott DesJarlais (Tenn.), Connie Mack (Fla.) and Ron Paul (Texas). Paul said he has never voted for a debt ceiling increase and never will. In addition, he took issue with Republicans for not including defense cuts in the mix of discretionary cuts.
"All spending must be deemed discretionary and reexamined by Congress each year," Paul said in a statement. "To allow otherwise is pure cowardice."