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Abstract: In the fall of 2000, surprising momentum appeared to be growing behind the idea of forgiving the public debts owed by poor, developing nations, both to richer countries and to international institutions. The concept of "debt relief" had gained support both from liberal groups concerned about poverty and Christian conservatives inspired by the Biblical injunction of "jubilee" years--the periodic forgiveness of debts, a notion reinforced by the drama of the advent of the new millennium.
Learning Objective: This case uses the issue of debt relief to illuminate the processes, strategies, and tactics associated with the committee process in a legislative body--specifically, the U.S. Congress. In particular, it looks at the approach taken by debt relief advocates in the wake of an adverse early committee report, in order to salvage the possibility of debt relief legislation.