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Pelosi Predicts No Democratic Votes for Boehner Bill

Douglas Graham/Roll Call

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Thursday the debt limit proposal heading to the floor will not win with Democratic votes.

Im not speaking for every Member in my Caucus, but I feel confident if theyre going to have 217 votes, whatever it is, theyre going to have to be Republican votes, the California Democrat said at a briefing.

Democratic leaders are whipping against Speaker John Boehners proposal. Some Members quietly maintain that no Democrat will vote for the plan, although Pelosi would not go that far when asked. Even if the Ohio Republicans measure passes the House, Pelosi maintained there is absolutely no way it will pass the Senate and become law.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said on the Senate floor he will take up the Boehner bill after House passage and vote it down a move that is expected Thursday evening.

Pelosi also noted the pressure that Boehner is facing from his right flank to push stringent cuts in order to increase the debt ceiling, which some in the GOP staunchly oppose. She suggested that Congressional leaders go back to the table and negotiate an agreement that is truly about reducing the deficit, not undermining the middle class in our country.

Whether that is the proud product of the leadership of the Republican Party or something theyre dragged kicking and screaming to do, I cant tell you, Pelosi told reporters. All I know is whatever way it gets to the floor is a grave disservice to the American people, the middle class and to Americas future.

Pelosi also said she wasnt surprised that Rep. David Wu (D-Ore.) announced he was stepping down amid allegations that he forced an unwanted sexual encounter with a teenage woman. Pelosi and other Democratic leaders talked privately with Wu after news of the allegations broke last week and were hoping to avoid another scandalous distraction like the one involving former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) that rocked the Caucus earlier this summer. Weiner stepped down three weeks after revelations of his sexually charged online communications were revealed, and Pelosi told reporters Thursday, I wouldve had it much sooner.

Wu announced his resignation on Tuesday and said he will officially vacate his seat once the debt limit issue is resolved. Asked about her colleagues announcement, Pelosi responded tersely, Its the least thing on my list.

Let me see how much lower I can fit, she added. Hes resigning from office. So, what were trying to do is save the world from the Republican budget. Were trying to save life on this planet as we know it today. And Ive said what Im going to say about that; hes resigned.

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