- House Speaker John Boehner disagrees with the Congressional Budget Office which estimates that repeal of the healthcare bill would add $230 billion to the deficit by 2021. “CBO is entitled to their opinion. When you look at it dollar by dollar, you can tell that the numbers just don’t add up,” said Boehner.
- One of the first bills proposed by the new Republican House was to do away with the Presidential designation of “czars” for people appointed to positions which might normally require Senate confirmation.
- The Pentagon plans to slash $78 billion from its budget over the next five years.
- A federal judge in Virginia ruled that the Stolen Valor Act, which makes it a federal crime to make false statements about military medals, does not violate the First Amendment.
- In efforts at reducing its ongoing embarrassment over information in leaked or published documents by WikiLeaks, the Obama administration has issued a memo to senior officials recommending an “insider threat” program that will rein in whistleblowers.
- Supporters of a former Lima mayor, who is among the front-runners in Peru’s presidential race, fended off allegations that one of his party’s two vice presidential candidates paid to get the nomination.
- Dmitry Medvedev and Vladimir Putin are the good cop/bad cop of Russian politics.
- Venezuela’s new parliament was sworn in Wednesday in an acrimonious session that featured bitter opposition complaints about unconstitutional behavior, shouts of “murderers” and chants of “Uh, ah, Chávez isn’t leaving!”
- A former U.K. Labour lawmaker became the first Member of Parliament to be jailed for his part in an expenses scandal that rocked the British Parliament in 2009.
- Prior to World War II, the Nazis were obsessed with a Finnish dog that could do the Nazi salute.
- Saturday is the 28th birthday of the North Korea’s future leader Kim Jong-Un.
- Mixed-sex handshakes are forbidden in the Somali province controlled by the Muslim fundamentalist group al-Shabab.
- California Rep. Mary Bono-Mack, the widow of Sonny Bono, was photographed letting another woman lick her breast. The woman is also under investigation by the FBI for financial misrepresentation.
- New York Rep. Peter King, the new chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, believes Julian Assange is a terrorist and wants hearings on “Muslim radicalization” in the United States. He was also a longtime supporter and fundraiser for the IRA, another terrorist organization, which he broke with only in 2005.
- The Canadian province of Alberta continues to list homosexuality as a “mental disorder” along with bestiality and pedophilia, and doctors used the diagnostic code for the “disorder” to bill the province for treating gays and lesbians more than 1,750 times between 1995 and 2004.
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