House leaders have delayed a scheduled vote on the debt ceiling plan offered by House Speaker John A. Boehner, a possible acknowledgement that Republicans lacked the votes to ensure passage.
The postponement was announced just minutes before the planned 6 p.m. vote. The House instead moved to consider a far less controversial measure -- to rename a post office in Peoria, Ill.
Republicans had been working throughout the day Thursday to lock down support for their plan to raise the nation's debt ceiling, even as Senate Democrats vowed to swiftly kill it if passed.
"We're not there yet; we don't have the votes yet. But today is the day," Boehner had told members at a morning meeting, according to a GOP source who was not authorized to publicly discuss the private conversation.