Financial Reform Bill Heading To Final Vote

Despite opposition from most Republicans and a couple of liberal Democrats, the Senate today reached the 60 votes needed to block a filibuster threat, clearing the way to bring the financial reform bill to a final vote. In the 60-to-40 vote, Democrats were joined by three Republicans, including freshman Senator Scott Brown of Massachusetts.

The New York Times calls the roll:

Senator Maria Cantwell, Democrat of Washington, who voted on Wednesday to block the effort to end debate, did not budge from her opposition as Democratic leaders refused to address her concern that the legislation contains a gaping loophole that would undermine efforts to regulate the $600 trillion derivatives market.

Senator Russ Feingold, Democrat of Wisconsin, who also voted “no” on Wednesday, persisted in his opposition as well, and repeated his warning that the legislation still was not aggressive enough in imposing rules that would curtail risky behavior by major financial companies that could lead to another catastrophic collapse.

In addition to Brown, Senators Susan Collins and Olympia J. Snowe of Maine joined the Democrats in today’s vote. A final vote on the bill could come as early as later today.

Bill to Overhaul Financial Rules Clears Hurdle in Senate Vote [NYTimes.com]