WASHINGTON — Republicans controlling the House have gone on record against President Barack Obama's decision to raise the government's borrowing cap by $1.2 trillion under powers Congress granted him in last year's bipartisan debt agreement.

But Wednesday's 239-176 vote was more political theater than a real attempt to prevent the increase in the so-called debt limit. The debt limit will be raised automatically next week unless Congress votes to deny the borrowing increase.

The Senate is likely to kill the measure, and Obama's veto power serves as a final guarantee that the increase will go through as intended and that the nation won't face another debt crisis like it did last summer.

The vote followed an almost three-hour debate in which Republicans cast blame on Obama for the nation's fiscal problems.