WASHINGTON — Over the objections of several key lawmakers, including Sen. Richard Shelby, the Senate Banking Committee approved Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke's nomination on Thursday to lead the central bank for another four years.

The panel vote, which was 16 to 7, sends the nomination to the Senate floor. Bernanke is expected to win approval from the full Senate, but Thursday's committee vote foreshadows a tough fight on the floor.

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