Authors: Joshua Cohan
(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. House of Representatives on Friday rejected a move to amend the U.S. Constitution with a Balanced Budget Amendment. The 261-165 vote, which fell 29 votes short of passage, required a two-thirds majority since it would have amended the Constitution of the United States.
Four Republicans, Reps. Paul Ryan, David Dreier, Justin Amash, and Louie Gohmert, voted with the majority of Democrats to oppose the bill.
The last time the House voted on a balanced budget amendment, in 1995, the measure received more than 300 votes but fell one vote short in the Senate of becoming law. On Friday, it wasn’t even close, with just 25 Democrats supporting the GOP-favored measure.
House Speaker John Boehner issued a written statement after the vote blasting Democrats for passing up an opportunity to get the economy back in order.
“It’s unfortunate that Democrats still don’t recognize the urgency of stopping Washington’s job-crushing spending binge, and it’s disappointing that a president who says ‘we can’t wait’ to take action on jobs is doing just that: waiting, riding things out until the election, and skipping opportunities to work together with Republicans to create a better environment for job growth,” Boehner, R-Ohio, stated. “The American people are still asking the question, ‘where are the jobs?’ But the Democrats running Washington just aren’t listening.”
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., who is seeking the GOP nomination for president, returned to the Capitol to cast a vote in favor of the amendment. The other House lawmaker seeking the Republican nomination, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, missed Friday’s vote.
One element of the bipartisan deal to increase the debt limit last summer was to guarantee a vote in both chambers of Congress on the measure. The Senate has not yet announced when it might take up the amendment, although it is not expected to pass there either.
Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio