A group of disaffected conservatives had agreed to vote against the Ohio lawmaker if they could get at least 25 members to join the effort. But one member, whose identity could not be verified, rescinded his or her participation the morning of the vote, leaving the group one person short of its self-imposed 25-member threshold. Only 17 votes against Boehner were required to force a second ballot, but the group wanted to have insurance.

Even with 24 members, the group would easily have been able to force a second ballot round, but the effort was aborted in frenetic discussions on the House floor.

“There was an effort to get to a particular number,” said one Republican member who voted for Boehner but was familiar with the effort to oust him…

The called-off plot suggests Boehner’s opponents were more organized than previously thought, however loosely. Notably, the attempt was plotted independently from, and without the knowledge of, a public effort led by a young conservative activist and former GOP Rep. Jeff Landry, which created buzz about Boehner’s possible ouster in conservative media. Landry lost re-election to Boehner ally Rep. Charles Boustany Jr., R-La., in a member-vs.-member contest brought about by redistricting.