WASHINGTON — The House passed a bill that would increase retirement savings options by a vote of 407 to 24 on Wednesday.

The bill, sponsored Reps. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and Ben Cardin, D-Md., would gradually increase the limit on annual IRA contributions by 2004 to $5,000. The current limit is $2,000. It would also allow workers to consolidate accounts from multiple employers and increase contribution limits for pensions.

At a news conference Wednesday, Rep. Cardin said the bill would be “the building block for Social Security reform.”

By a vote of 223 to 207, the House defeated a Democratic amendment that would have created a refundable tax credit for lower-income workers on contributions of up to $1,000 to IRAs or employer-sponsored pension plans.

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