House GOP leaders say they are optimistic that enough of their Members will now back the $700 billion financial bailout today after a meeting of their Conference this morning. “We’re not going to take anything for granted…but it’s time to act,” Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said.
Boehner said the bill has improved this week as a result of resistance from House Republicans who defied their leaders Monday to vote the bill down.
“The House Republicans have stood on principle, and we’ve made this better. Is it perfect? No. But it’s better than it was a week ago,” he said.
Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said they were moving forward with the vote — something Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday she would only do if she was confident they had the votes.
Blunt said constituents are starting to realize the impact of the credit crunch on their pension plans and the broader economy, and are calling Members urging support. Also, he said, changes to the bill to increase Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. insurance and add tax breaks appealed to Members.
“We are moving forward with the bill,” he said, although he noted that they continue to talk to their Members.