U.S. Senate votes 67-32 to begin debate on bank bill

FILE PHOTO: Chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee Mike Crapo (R-ID) hearing listens to testimony from Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen on the “Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress” on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 14, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate on Tuesday voted 67-32 in favor of beginning to debate a bipartisan bill that would ease rules for mid-sized and small lenders introduced following the 2007-2009 financial crisis.

The vote paves the way for the chamber to potentially pass the proposed legislation by the end of the week.

The bipartisan bill, authored by Senate Banking Committee chairman Mike Crapo, has the support of 13 moderate Democrats, which given broad Republican backing should be enough to assure passage in the 100-seat chamber.

Reporting by Michelle Price; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama