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Politics

Congressman Voting His Conscience, or Whatever That’s Called

Washington – Representative Jason Armon, Democrat of Virginia, announced Saturday he is changing his vote on health care reform legislation from ‘no’ to ‘yes.’ In a brief session with reporters at the Capitol, Armon explained why he is now voting in favor of the bill, after opposing it previously.

“I am voting yes on this bill because on an issue such as this, I felt I must vote my conscience. Or whatever that thing’s called. The thing that tells you what’s right and wrong. Your, your moral center. Whatever they call doing what that thing tells them to do when they vote, that’s what I’m doing.”

Mr. Armon denied that he is now voting for the bill because he has been promised a spot on the House Ethics Committee.

“My vote has nothing whatsoever to do with promises or deals or anything of that nature,” he said. “Unless you count the promise I made to the American people, and the people of Virginia’s 12th district. And my conscience. Then it is about promises. Because when I promise my conscience something, boy, I deliver. I don’t disappoint my conscience. Because, you know, when you disappoint your conscience… you… um… Look, all I know is I’m voting my conscience. Unless that doesn’t mean what I think it means, in which case I’m not doing that.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would neither confirm or deny that Armon has been offered a spot on the Ethics Committee. She would only say that he was voting for the bill because he thought he was doing the right thing.

“Representative Armon is voting for health care reform because he believes in health care reform,” Pelosi said. “He believes in health care reform in his heart. Or wherever people believe in things.”

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National

Death Panel Rules Palin be Tweeted to Death

Washington – A death panel convened by the Obama Administration to judge which Americans are allowed to live or die has ruled that former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin must be tweeted, or twittered, to death.

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Politics

Olympia Snowe Leaving ‘Gang of Six’ to Pursue Solo Career

Washington – A publicist for Senator Olympia Snowe of Maine has confirmed that the senator is leaving the so-called ‘Gang of Six’ senators to pursue a career forming legislation outside the group.

“The time has come for Senator Snowe to move on,” Jeffrey Amle, the publicist, said. “She has nothing but the utmost respect for the rest of the ‘Gang,’ but there comes a point where you have to look at yourself and be honest with yourself, and when the senator did that, she realized that if she was going to grow, she needed to pursue opportunities on her own. If she didn’t honor that desire, she’d just wind up resenting herself and the group down the road anyway.”

Sen. Snowe had become the unquestioned breakout star of the bipartisan group of centrist and conservative senators on the Senate Finance Committee. She made headlines when she cast the only Republican vote in favor of a health care reform plan favored by Democrats, and she has emerged as one of the key players in the overall debate.

Senator Max Baucus, Democrat of Montana and a member of the Gang of Six, said he would miss Sen. Snowe, but he understood her decision.

“Look, we all kind of saw that she had reached that point where was bigger than the rest of the group,” Baucus said. “It’s time for her to spread her wings. I wish her the best.”

The remaining members of the Gang of Six are considering several options for changing their name, according to people familiar with the discussions. One option under consideration is the “Gang of Five.” Another is “Five Guys in the Middle,” since now the group consists solely of men.

Mr. Amle said Sen. Snowe will not be leaving the Finance Committee, and she will “certainly stay a senator.”

“Senator Snowe is more committed than ever to working on behalf of the people of Maine in the Senate Finance Committee, and in the Senate generally,” Mr. Amle said. “Nothing’s changed, except that now she’s Senator Olympia Snowe, instead of One of the Senators From That Group.”

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National

Study: Most Sick Americans Will be Dead by the Time Health Care Bill Passes

Bethesda, MD – A study released Wednesday by the National Institutes of Health finds that an overwhelming majority of sick Americans will be dead by the time a health care bill passes

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Politics

Democrats, Republicans Confident They Can Get Something Awful to the President Soon

Washington – Showing true bipartisan spirit, Democrats and Republicans from both the House and the Senate say they’re ratcheting up a joint effort to deliver to President Barack Obama “some terrible, God-awful legislation” in a timely manner.