The House Banking Committee voted 19-15 Thursday to require banks and private investors to write off bad debts or provide new credit to Asian countries before the United States provides more money to the International Monetary Fund.
The measure, introduced by Reps. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., would require the Treasury Department to certify that the IMF has changed its bylaws to require that private lenders make "a significant contribution" to debt relief efforts before taxpayer funds are used.
Their plan was an amendment to legislation that would provide the IMF with $18 billion in additional funds. The amendment was opposed by House Banking Committee Chairman Jim Leach and Rep. John LaFalce, the panel's ranking Democrat.
They argued that the measure would complicate efforts to pass the IMF funding bill.