Financial reform moves to Senate vote


After a second procedural vote this afternoon, the Senate was able to shut down debate on S. 3217, Restoring American Financial Stability. Exactly three-fifths of the senate, including 3 Republicans, voted in favor of the motion, which passed 60-40. Two Democrats voted no.

It is likely that the final vote on the bill will be as early as tomorrow.

The newly elected senator from Massachusetts, Scott Brown, joined the two Republican Senators from Maine, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, in delivering yes votes. In a statement, Brown said he was assured by Sen. Reid, D-Nev., that “the issues related to Massachusetts in the financial reform bill will be fixed before it is signed into law.”

The final vote needed came from Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa. He was absent from yesterday’s vote after losing in the Democratic primary on Tuesday to Rep. Joe Sestak, but showed up today and voted with his party.

Now the Senate has 30 hours to talk about the bill on the floor and also vote on two key amendments to possibly be added to the bill.

Neither of the two dissenting Democrats from yesterday’s vote, Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash, and Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., was swayed for today’s vote. It’s hard to say what will happen during the final vote, in part because Feingold’s reasoning for voting no was not especially detailed. will be streaming some of the Senate speeches with more live blogging through the final vote.