A number of members involved in the intense whipping operation that took place over the past two days told The Hill that entrenched no votes were more concerned with perception than principle.

“I think that there were members that are so gun shy about primaries that they weren’t willing to take a risk … some members told me that it was just too hard to explain how it wasn’t a tax increase,” Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.) said shortly following Thursday night’s abrupt conference meeting where Boehner told his colleagues they wouldn’t vote on the bill…

“There was a perception created that that vote last night was going to increase taxes. Now I disagree with … that characterization of the bill, but that impression was out there. Now, we had a number of our members who just really didn’t [want] to be perceived as having raised taxes,” the Speaker said at a Friday morning press conference in the U.S. Capitol.