[Updated at 1:44 p.m. ET] House Speaker John Boehner said at a news conference Friday morning that his Republican colleagues refused to back his Plan B fiscal cliff bill because of what he called unfounded fears of being blamed for a tax increase.
"They weren't taking it out on me," he told reporters. "They were dealing with the perception that somebody might accuse them of raising taxes."
Boehner on Thursday dropped plans to bring the bill to a vote after it became clear that it didn't have enough support from members of his party. This leaves negotiations in limbo Friday – 11 days before automatic tax increases on everyone.
[Initial post, 8:43 a.m. ET] House Speaker John Boehner will hold a news conference in Washington Friday morning, a day after fellow Republicans effectively scuttled his proposal to avert the looming fiscal cliff's automatic tax increases.
Boehner wanted to pass his Plan B fiscal cliff bill – which would have extended tax cuts that are set to expire at year's end for most people while allowing rates to increase to 1990s levels on income over $1 million – this week, before members of Congress went home for the holiday.
But it didn't come up for a vote, because House GOP leaders learned that they couldn't get enough of their fellow Republicans to sign on.
What this means next in the fiscal cliff talks is unclear. From here, scenarios range from intensified and ultimately successful talks in the coming days or entrenchment as the fiscal cliff becomes a reality next year, when a new Congress could enter negotiations with Obama.FULL STORY