Advancing the hope for an early Indo-US nuclear accord, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to approve the Bill by 19 to 2, sending it to the full Senate. The two law makers who voted against the deal were Senators Barbara Boxer (by proxy) and Russel Feingold, both Democrats. Democratic Presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama and the Vice Presidental candidate Senator Joseph Biden, currently the Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, voted by proxies to move the agreement to the Senate floor. The business sitting of the powerful Senate panel saw the Wisconsin Democrat Senator Feingold come out with his amendment. "The President may not exchange diplomatic notes pursuant to Article 16(1) of the 5 Agreement unless the President certifies to the appropriate congressional committees that the NSG has amended its guidelines to prohibit the transfer of technology related to the enrichment of uranium and reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel to any state that is not a party to the NPT," the amendment by Feingold said. The amendment was quickly rejected by 15 to 4 margin with two Senators not voting - Senators Obama and Robert Menendez, Democrat from New Jersey. The four Senators who voted for the Feingold Amendment were all Democrats-- Senators Feingold, Boxer, Robert Casey of Pennsylvania and James Webb of Virginia, the last three by proxies. "I am happy that the Committee voted to send this historic treaty by a vote of 19 to 2," Ranking Republican Senator and a major backer of the civil nuclear initiative Richard Lugar of Indiana told PTI after the Senate Panel's proceedings. "This was after good discussion and after an amendment by Senator Feingold, which was rejected. I would simply say that good work has come by with the State Department working with Democratic and Republican staff to fashion language that could pass today," Lugar added. "My point was that while we are trying to discuss the general issue we should not deny the specific merit of the India-US Agreement. And we would be pushing that into the background trying to resolve another general non-proliferation issue," Lugar said. "So that is why it was suggested that a letter might go to the Secretary of State and the President commending some of the virtues of non-proliferation without disturbing the specific vote we are having on India and the US," Lugar said. In the course of debating the amendment, Lugar maintained that the NSG has "already spoken" on the matter.