HOUSE PASSES DEBT CEILING BILL

House vote

Photo: C-SPAN

The House overwhelmingly voted in favour of a bill to suspend the debt ceiling through May 18. The bill won bipartisan support, and passed with a final vote of 285-144.The bill now heads to the Senate, where Democrats have indicated it will pass. The White House has also indicated that President Barack Obama would sign the bill.

The legislation also attaches a provision aimed at forcing Senate Democrats to take up a budget for the first time in four years. If they do not, a “no budget, no pay” provision would withhold pay for members. 

The GOP plan is something of a retreat from previous positions, as Republicans found themselves in a virtual no-win situation by attempting to use the debt ceiling as leverage to force spending cuts from President Barack Obama and other Democrats. During the 2011 debt-ceiling debate, Boehner established the rule in his namesake that said every dollar increase in the debt ceiling had to be accompanied by a corresponding amount of spending cuts.

Take a look back through our live blog for various developments throughout the day.

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