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WASHINGTON, April 9--In a closed session today, the House Armed Services Committee decided to back down from its original stand on Universal Military Service and Training. It voted to amend the Administration bill now on the House floor so that any U.M.S.T. plans will have to be passed by Congress after they are prepared by the President's Commissioners.
The Committee also reportedly decided to accept an amendment which will be proposed by Representative Paul A. Kilday (D-Tex.); it would take the test out of the recent student deferment order and make certain that the program can not be made mandatory for local boards.
Under the revised House draft bill both the Senate and House Armed Services Committee would have a say on what type of U.M.S.T. program is put into effect. The President would have to submit his plan within six months. Until Congress passes them, the draft would follow the lines of the old Selective Service act and whatever deferment system the President chooses to use.
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Both of the amendments the Committee passed on today are calculated to smooth the draft bill's way through the House. It has already met a great deal of opposition, much more than had been expected.
Debate on the floor opens again tomorrow when Carl Vinson (D.-Ga.) will take his re-written measure back to the House. In the meantime, Selective Service is going ahead with its plans for deferment tests, though the Kilday amendment may makes them unusable.
So far the rest of President Truman's order appears safe: graduate students are all deferred on are freshmen in the top half of their class, sophomores in the top two-thirds, and juniors in the top 75 percent.
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