The U.S. Senate voted to overturn USDA’s rule to lift its 22-moth old ban on Canadian cattle. The Senate vote was 52 to 46 to keep the border closed.

The vote followed a Montana judge’s decision to grant a temporary injunction against USDA, which planned to reopen the border March 7.

The White House said President Bush would veto the Senate measure if it ever reaches his desk, warning that continuing to refuse Canadian beef will damage efforts to persuade other countries to buy U.S. beef. A similar measure has been introduced in the House but leaders have scheduled no vote on it.

Sen. Kent Conrad sponsored the resolution, saying he is concerned USDA has not taken the necessary precautions to protect U.S. markets and consumers from bovine spongiform encephalopathy.