Dems may drop IMF from Ukraine bill

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Senate Democrats are considering abandoning their attempt to include controversial International Monetary Fund reforms in a Ukraine aid and Russia sanctions bill.

House Republicans have put up firm resistance to approving the 2010 IMF reform, which may prove successful in getting the language dropped.

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"It is being discussed," a senior Democratic aide said.

The Senate advanced the Ukraine bill on a 78 to 17 vote on Monday, setting up a final passage vote as early as Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Tuesday approved in a bipartisan voice vote legislation that does not contain the IMF language that the White House is pushing for. That bill could see a floor vote in the House later this week.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Tuesday urged Senate Democrats to abandon the IMF provisions, noting the opposition in the House.

"[T]his bill cannot pass the House or become law in its current form — it must be amended," McConnell said.

Republicans have signaled in the past they could be open to trading the IMF reforms for a one-year delay in Internal Revenue Service regulations on tax-exempt political groups.

The proposed trade prompted Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Monday to accuse Republicans of holding up the Ukraine bill to help the wealthy Koch brothers use their money to sway elections.

— This story was updated at 1:53 p.m.

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