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House delays vote on Boehner's debt ceiling bill

This post has been updated to reflect breaking news.

The House of Representatives did not vote on House Speaker John Boehner's bill at 6 p.m. Thursday, despite earlier plans that it would vote tonight - and strong signs that his bill would pass.

The National Journal writes that a vote could happen on Friday, "but the fate of the bill was uncertain."

House Speaker John Boehner directed his remarks at an afternoon press availability to the Senate, telling the other half of Congress, “Let’s pass this bill.” He was referring to his debt ceiling plan which is a two-step approach explained in detail by the Washington Post.

Boehner’s plan cleared a “preliminary” vote, setting the stage for a real vote sometime between 5:45 and 6:15 this evening. The plan would first cut and cap discretionary spending immediately, relieving pressure on the debt ceiling until early next year. Then, it calls for a second round of spending cuts to be enacted before the debt limit is raised again in early 2012.

However, the latest reporting from Politico maintains that Speaker Boehner and Republican leadership are “pulling out all the stops for the debt vote.” And one GOP staffer told Politico, “We’re calling governors, donors, former senators, anyone we can to talk to these guys.”  In other words, they’re not sure they votes.

As for what’s next?

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has already said he’ll “table” Boehner’s bill. NBC’s Mark Murry and Libby Leist explain that tabling a bill will allow the Leader to hold off a vote without killing a bill, so if/when there’s compromise, Reid could bring it back up.

White House Senior Adviser David Plouffe told MSNBC’S Daily Rundown that Boehner’s bill was “dead on arrival.” He did say though that the final bill will have to “reconcile what’s in Reid and Boehner”