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Wasserman Schultz and West mind meld? Not so much

The Broward Democrat -- who this morning said she backed President Obama's Afghanistan policy and that her constituents are "willing to give his plan an opportunity to work" -- voted this afternoon along with other top House Democrats to send Obama a strong message: speed up U.S. troop withdrawals from Afghanistan.

Though the House's bid to require Obama to expedite the U.S. exit failed, it lost by a surprisingly close 215 to 204 vote. The outcome, and the fiery debate that preceded it, made it clear that the president's party, as well as a growing number of Republican, is growing restless as 2012 approaches.

The tally: 178 Democrats and 26 Republicans voted to pressure Obama. Eight Democrats, most from more conservative districts, and 207 Republicans were opposed. Leading the charge to prod the president were the House's top Democratic leaders.

Allen West, who cautions that the Taliban is still active in Afghanistan, voted against. A spokesman for Wasserman Schultz said her vote was not inconsistent with her remarks, noting that the administration had not opposed (or supported) the measure and that it gives the president time to send a plan with a timeframe to Congress.

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