Senator says asked to gather House Republican votes for "Plan B"

WASHINGTON Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:48pm EST

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WASHINGTON Dec 20 (Reuters) - U.S. Senator Rob Portman said on Thursday he has been asked to urge fellow Republicans in the House of Representatives to back Speaker John Boehner's tax bill designed to help avert the "fiscal cliff."

Portman joined Boehner and other top Republicans in the speaker's office shortly after the House abruptly recessed while party leaders seek to muster the votes to pass the bill. The White House has threatened to veto the bill should it pass both the House and Senate.