This evening is looking pretty dramatic for Congress. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), who has been working hard to shore up the 217 votes he needs to get his budget bill through the House, delayed a vote on the legislation just before the expected vote at 6 p.m. ET.
The delay suggests that the speaker does not have the votes he needs to pass his plan. Boehner may bring the bill back for a vote later tonight. Or he may pull the bill from consideration by the House.
Either way, the delay adds another question mark to the question of how the debt ceiling deadlock in Washington will be resolved.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said that if it passes, the Senate will take action on the measure immediately after it passes the House.
“As soon as the House completes its vote tonight, the Senate will move to take up that bill. It will be defeated,” Reid said on the Senate floor.
Frank James at It’s All Politics has a post that counts votes in the House and if you want every detail, The Hill is keeping a running tally on where Republican House members stand on the Boehner bill. So far The Hill counts 21 Republicans with a “No” vote. If Boehner gets no Democratic votes, he can’t afford to lose more than 23 in his party.
This post was updated at 5:50 p.m. ET to reflect the delay to the House vote.