House votes to head off Senate debt bill in retaliatory strike

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The measure also includes no tax increases, but earns new debt space by counting on war-spending cuts all sides already agree were going to happen — something the GOP said amounts to “smoke and mirrors.”

The House, under its simply majority rules, has passed two different debt increases, one long-term and the other, on Friday, that would have raised the debt limit by $900 billion, which would last through early next year.

But the Senate, where 60 votes are required for most controversial legislation, has yet to pass any legislation.

Senate Democrats and Mr. Obama, though, want to ensure debt increases through the 2012 election.

Late Friday they voted 59-41 to table the House proposal, which would have cut $917 billion from discretionary spending while boosting debt authority by $900 billion. Six Republicans joined all Democrats in voting against the House proposal.

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