WASHINGTON (AP) – Maine’s two congressmen voted in the majority as the House approved measures to curb speculation in oil and other commodity markets, ignoring a White House veto threat.

Supporters said federal regulators don’t currently have the necessary tools or manpower to track trading abuses. The bill passed Thursday 283-133.

Rep. Tom Allen also said the legislation closes a loophole that allows international speculators to evade regulation and drive up prices on commodities, including oil.

Rep. Mike Michaud, Maine’s other House member, said that without effective oversight, there’s no way of knowing whether energy speculators are basing trades on market realities, or are playing the system to profit at the expense of consumers.

The White House says President Bush likely would veto the bill if it gets to his desk. The bill now goes to the Senate.

AP-ES-09-19-08 0605EDT


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