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Mrs. Pelosi, who called the comment “unfortunate,” predicted that Democrats will retain control of the House.

“We fully intend to win,” she said. “The comment can be interpreted many ways, I think it was a Rorschach test, but from our standpoint, we’re very pleased with what the White House has been doing and what they will continue to do.”

The speaker, while going to great lengths Thursday to portray harmony between her caucus and the White House, took a veiled shot at the Senate for delaying or neglecting action on a growing stack of bills passed by the House but awaiting action in the upper chamber.

“If we had health care sooner, if we had energy sooner, if we had the education bill sooner, they were all three pillars of job creation and that would have resulted in more jobs created by now,” she said.

The speaker’s office said that since January 2009 the Senate has failed to act on 345 House-passed bills, including many that deal with jobs and small businesses.

House Minority Leader John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, said Thursday that the reported Democratic tussle reflects a party in “panic” and engaged in a “full-scale civil war.”

“With all the trouble that House Democrats are in right now, there was really only a matter of time before the gloves came off. I just didn’t know that the targets would be each other,” Mr. Boehner said. “I understand that House Democrats are angry because they see the White House throwing them under the bus.”

Republicans slowly have been laying out a vision of what they might do if voters give them more power. In the House, Mr. Boehner has said the health care bill and the financial regulation bill, which passed the Senate on Thursday, should be repealed.

Mr. McConnell said a key part of Republicans’ pitch to voters is that they will bring limits back to what the government promises to do.

“We’re not going to tell you that if you vote Republican you’re going to wake up in your dream home with a brand new Corvette outside ready to take you to the best job in the world. You know why? Because government can’t deliver that promise,” Mr. McConnell said.