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Posted at 03:14 PM ET, 08/01/2011

Can debt deal pass House if Dem leaders don’t whip votes?

According to two Democratic leadership aides, Hoouse Dem leaders are not whipping Dems to get them to vote for the debt deal announced yesterday, raising questions as to whether it can pass the House.

Nancy Pelosi, who met with her caucus today to gauge support for the deal, has not announced yet whether she’s in favor of it. More specifically, the question of whether Dem leaders will actively press members is key to gauging the proposal’s prospects for success. And it looks like they aren’t.

“We are not whipping,” one leadership aide tells me. “We are doing a leadership survey to see where members are.”

MoveOn came out against the deal today, and Paul Krugman and some liberal bloggers are calling on House Dems to vote No on the plan. People are scrambling right now to gauge how many Dems and Republicans are currently supporting it.

ABC’s Jonathan Karl reported this morning that some 80-100 House Republicans could vote No, meaning that the proposal would need at least 70 House Dems to pass. Steny Hoyer said this morning that he expected the bill would need 150 or so Republicans to pass.

The Hill’s whip count has 39 House members pledging to vote Yes or leaning towards Yes, versus 20 who are No or leaning that way.

If House Dem leaders stick with their current course and don’t whip for the proposal, it could complicate its chances of passage.

UPDATE: Two quick things. First of all, Hoyer actually said this morning that he thought the bill would need the support of 150 or more Republicans to pass the House. Also, Nate Silver’s most recent calculation has it that the bill will pass, 258-173.

I’ve edited the above to fix.

By  |  03:14 PM ET, 08/01/2011

 
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