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UPDATE 1-US Senate leader sets first financial reform vote

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WASHINGTON, April 22 (Reuters) - U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday set a 5 p.m. (2100 GMT) vote for next Monday that could clear the way for the Senate to begin debating a financial regulatory overhaul bill.

Reid tried to bring the bill to the Senate floor immediately, but Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell objected.

So the Democratic leader took steps that set up a vote for Monday that would require 60 votes of support for the Senate to begin debating the financial reform bill.

In an effort to reach a bipartisan agreement, senators were continuing to negotiate on aspects of the bill, which aims to curb Wall Street excesses and protect taxpayers from future bailouts.

“If they can come to an agreement, more power to them,” Reid said on the Senate floor.

McConnell said, “It is still my hope that we would be able to go forward on a bipartisan basis.”

Reporting by Richard Cowan and Donna Smith; Editing by Will Dunham

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