Senate Democrats survived a Republican filibuster aimed to prevent bringing financial regulation for a full floor vote.
By a 60-38 tally, the vote effectively ends debate on a bill that would make sweeping changes on the ways banks and Wall Street do business.
Three Republicans — Sens. Olympia Snowe & Susan Collins (both from Maine) and Scott Brown (Mass.) — joined 55 Democrats and two Dem-leaning independents to arrive at the magic number of 60. Sen. Russ Feingold of Wisconsin was the lone Democrat to vote no.
A final vote on the measure, expected later this afternoon, is all but assured of passing. It would give President Obama a second major legislative victory, on the heels of Congress overhauling the health care system.
UPDATE (3 p.m.): The Senate votes, 60-39, to pass the bill. It now goes to Obama for his signature.