The House voted 213-210 to reject an effort to block the Bush administration's
proposal to overhaul rules governing overtime.
The measure, backed by labor groups and House Democrats, would have prevented
any regulations that would strip workers of the overtime compensation they receive
under the current rules, the Associated Press reports.
The Bush administration has proposed regulations it says would require employers
to pay an additional 1.3 million lower-income workers the overtime premium if
they work more than 40 hours per week. Democrats did not object to the changes
making more workers eligible for overtime, according to the news agency.
However, they opposed new rules that would not guarantee overtime compensation
to some white-collar workers. The two sides disagree on the number of individuals
who would lose their eligibility for overtime under the proposal. The Bush administration
says 644,000 white-collar workers would lose overtime. Labor groups and Democrats
say that more than 8 million workers would lose their overtime under the proposed
The news agency notes that Democrats in the Senate have considered a measure
similar to their House counterparts' to block the new rules. Any move now by
the Senate would most likely be a political statement, given the outcome of
the House vote, according to the AP.
The Labor Department praised the House's vote.