Byrd's passing sends Dems shoring up Wall St. overhaul votes

Sen. Robert Byrd's (D-W.Va.) death Monday is pushing Senate Democrats to shore up votes on a wide-ranging Wall Street overhaul package they aim to pass by the weekend.



Early Friday, House and Senate lawmakers completed a conference report that cannot be amended. 


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House leaders are planning to hold a vote on the bill as early as Tuesday, while
Senate Democrats have vowed to hold a vote soon after the House acts. 


With Byrd's passing, Democrats have one fewer Democratic vote to rely on in the Senate. In May, the Senate voted on the narrowest of margins, 60-40, to cut off debate on the bill when it first came up for consideration. 


The Senate passed the overall bill 59-39, with four Republicans joining all but two Democrats in support. Democratic Sens. Russ Feingold (Wis.) and Maria Cantwell (Wash.) voted against ending debate on the bill and then against the overall legislation.


Feingold last week issued a statement saying that he does not feel the bill is strong enough. "During debate on the financial regulatory reform bill, I made it clear that I would only support a strong bill that can prevent another financial crisis," Feingold said. "Neither the House bill nor the Senate bill pass that test." 


Here is a look at how key Senate Republicans voted in May:



-Maine Republican Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe voted to end debate on the bill and then both voted in favor of the bill.



- Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) urged Democrats to alter provisions in the "Volcker rule" section of the bill. After receiving assurances that his concerns would be taken up in the conference process, he voted to end debate on the bill and also to support the bill in the end. The conference committee altered the bill to include a fee on large financial institutions to raise up to $19 billion. Brown warned on Friday that he could now vote against the bill.



"I’ve said repeatedly that I cannot support any bill that raises taxes," Brown said. "While I'm still reviewing the bill's details, these provisions were not in the Senate version of the bill which I previously supported," he said. "My fear is that these costs would be passed onto consumers in the form of higher bank, ATM and credit card fees and put a strain on lending at the worst possible time for our economy."



- Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) voted in the Senate Agriculture Committee to support the bill's section on new regulations of financial derivatives. He voted against ending debate on the broader bill in May, but later that day he voted in favor of the overall bill.