House Passes Conflict Diamonds Bill

The House of Representatives recently passed a modified version of the Clean Diamonds Act, and backers hope Senate approval is next. The bill, aimed at preventing conflict diamonds from entering the United States, passed as a freestanding measure 408 to 6. At press time, backers were uncertain whether the Senate could tackle the legislation before the clock ran out on its 2001 session. Matthew A. Runci, president of Jewelers of America and head of the World Diamond Council's legislative committee, said Senate supporters were exploring some options, including subjecting it to unanimous consent or tacking it onto an existing measure. The Senate version is sponsored by Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Mike Dewine (R-Ohio), and Russell Feingold (D-Wis.) The bill's passage was initially uncertain because the Bush administration objected to some provisions. But just prior to the House vote, support

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