Cheney Fails to Rally Troops Around Bailout

GOP House meeting was 'a bloodbath', as doubters dominate
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 24, 2008 8:12 AM CDT
Vice President Dick Cheney is seen departing the weekly House Republican conference meeting, Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2008, on Capitol Hill in Washington.    (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)
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(Newser) – Dick Cheney held court on Capitol Hill yesterday, hoping to convince House Republicans to support the Treasury’s $700-billion bailout plan. But the VP's once-considerable clout in Congress has dissipated, Politico reports; Republicans emerged from the two-hour, closed-door meeting calling it “a bloodbath” and “an unmitigated disaster.”

One lawmaker present told Politico that Cheney and his team “were the wrong guys” to send to the Hill. “The problem is that they’ve used up a lot of goodwill.” The last time Cheney made such a legislative pitch it was to get Congress behind the Iraq war, the Los Angeles Times notes. Still, it’s unclear if House Republicans are unhappy enough to take responsibility for scuttling the bill; many hope Democrats will load it with enough unrelated measures to justify a “no” vote.