House advances Russia trade bill

While more than 140 Democrats voted against the rule, several Democrats spoke favorably about the underlying bill during debate earlier in the day, including top Democrats on the Rules and Ways and Means committees. Those remarks indicate that the bill will easily pass the House on Friday.

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Trade has split the two parties over the last decade, but the inclusion of language sanctioning Russian officials for human rights abuses is making it much easier for Democrats to support it.

The bill imposes visa restrictions on Russian officials linked to the death of Russian tax lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who died in 2009 after being beaten and held in prison, after investigating corruption charges.

The rule for the bill allows a 90-minute debate, which will happen on Friday and will be followed by passage.

Just before the rule vote, House Speaker John BoehnerJohn BoehnerGraham: 'Lucifer may be the only person Trump can beat in a general election' Obama mocks GOP, media and himself in final WHCA dinner address Obama pals around with Boehner in WHCA dinner video MORE (R-Ohio) swore Rep. Donald Payne Jr. (D-N.J.) into office. Payne replaces his father, who died last March.

After the rule vote, the House held a moment of silence for victims of Superstorm Sandy, and then quickly approved H.R. 2453, authorizing a Mark Twain commemorative coin, in a 370-19 vote.

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