Plan B = Plan-Ex = Cliff, on the GPS

Photograph by Karen Bleier/AFP via Getty Images

Speaker of the House of Representatives, John Boehner, with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor on Dec. 18, 2012 on Capitol Hill.

The House was supposed to vote tonight on Plan B.

The House Republicans summoned a conference instead, and out came members saying:

No vote.

This was House Speaker John Boehner’s fall-back — the alternative to the fiscal cliff talks, his chance to demonstrate that he could rally enough votes of his own caucus to support his own negotiating stance with the White House: Raise taxes on household income over $1 million and protect the rest. It was a ploy from the start.

Instead, it has become Boehner’s setback.

“The House did not take up the tax measure today because it did not have sufficient support from our members to pass,’ Boehner said in a statement.

Earlier today, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said the plan had the votes needed to pass.

Coming out of their conference tonight, Rep. Fred Upton said that’s it, they’re out of here until after Christmas.

Which is when the Senate will come back.

With six days left before a collision of automatic tax increases and spending cuts is scheduled.

That’s called the fiscal cliff.

Tonight, it looked a lot closer.

“The odds go up that we go over the fiscal cliff,” said Rep. Rob Bishop, a Utah Republican.

Richard Rubin and Derek Wallbank contributed to this report. 

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