Tonight’s vote on the Senate-brokered deal to avert the “fiscal cliff” may set the stage for a Leadership challenge when the new Congress convenes at noon on Thursday. Almost two-thirds of the House GOP caucus voted against the Senate plan which provided for steep tax hikes and increased spending. Just 85 Republicans went along with an overwhelming majority of the Democrat caucus to pass the plan out of the House. Among these were Speaker John Boehner and Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan. Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy broke with Leadership and voted against the plan.

The House voted to pass the Senate deal by a vote of 257-167. 85 Republicans voted for the plan as well as 172 Democrats. 65% if the GOP caucus rejected the package, while 90% of Democrats voted for it. Speaker Boehner had long promised that only a deal that had support of a “majority of the majority” would be brought to the floor. He broke that promise tonight. Boehner and Ryan chose, instead, to line up with the Democrat caucus to pass the tax-only deal.

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