US Senate Republicans on Thursday blocked efforts to give bankruptcy courts more power to stave off home foreclosures, a move the chamber's Democratic leader called "a big mistake."
"The big banks just won again. The mortgage bankers won again. Oh, there are a few losers out there, like millions of consumers -- millions of people who are going into foreclosure or are about to go into foreclosure. They lost."
The banking industry and President Bush opposed the bill, which would have allowed bankruptcy judges to reduce a filer's mortgage debt to the home's current market value.
Bush's GOP allies filibustered the measure Thursday afternoon, invoking Senate rules to require 60 votes to cut off debate and bring it to the floor; Democrats came 12 votes short of that mark.