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The House voted overwhelmingly Thursday to approve a long-awaited rescue package for Puerto Rico that could allow the fiscally troubled U.S. territory to restructure the $72 billion it owes bondholders in exchange for new federal oversight over its locally elected government.
The bipartisan 297-to-127 vote followed months of intense negotiations between House Republican leaders, Democratic lawmakers and the Obama administration. Those talks were punctuated by a high-dollar public relations campaign aimed at derailing any deal that could force bondholders to swallow significant losses.
Thursday’s House vote came ahead of a crucial July 1 deadline, when the territory is poised to default on $2 billion in bond payments. The Senate, however, has yet to act.
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