WASHINGTON The House and Senate are expected to begin debate on bankruptcy overhaul legislation as early as the last week of February, Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott and House sources said Thursday.
The House Judiciary Committee passed the bill Wednesday on a 19-to-8 vote, mostly along party lines. It drew the support of 18 Republicans and one Democrat, Rep. Rick Boucher of Virginia.
Republicans successfully fended off 16 amendments offered by Democrats, who said the measures would have given consumers more rights in dealing with creditors. But Republicans and financial services industry allies said the amendments would have bogged down compromise legislation that enjoys wide support.
Meanwhile, the Senate Judiciary Committee began debate on the bill Thursday, but Democrats asked that votes be postponed until Feb. 27.