With the clock ticking, House Republicans ditched their last attempt to tie a policy rider to the debt ceiling today. John Boehner told fellow Republicans that he would instead bring a "clean" bill to the floor, raising the debt ceiling without conditions, the Wall Street Journal reports. Yesterday, Boehner and Co. had been leaning toward a bill that would have tied the increase to a restoration of recently cut military pensions, but that plan has been scrapped due to lack of GOP support.
Boehner is essentially relying on Democrats to pass the clean bill. They'll need at least 18 Republicans to join them, and some GOP sources tell Politico even that might be a stretch. The speaker had tried tying several policy ideas to the limit to draw GOP support, and thought military pensions, offset by an extension of planned entitlement cuts, would do the trick, the Washington Post reports. But conservatives largely opposed the plan. "We should honor our commitment to our veterans," one rep said. "But let's do that in a separate bill and find savings elsewhere." A vote is expected later today, to avoid the incoming East Coast storm.