Congressman Waits Until Last Minute To Write New Law

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Issue 3518

Clinton Hurls Feces At Detractors

WASHINGTON, DC—Angered by criticism of his military strategy in Kosovo, President Clinton flung clods of his own excrement at White House reporters Monday. "I am the alpha male!" Clinton shouted to Sam Donaldson of ABC News. "None shall usurp my dominance of the social hierarchy!" The outburst was the first of its kind since Clinton's March 19 urination on Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji at a Beijing arms summit.

Roof Of Mouth In Serious Condition Following Cap'n Crunch Consumption

SPRINGFIELD, MA—The roof of area resident Meredith Kjell's mouth is in serious condition Tuesday following her consumption of three bowls of Cap'n Crunch cereal. "We believe most of the roof can be salvaged," Dr. David Kim told reporters. "But grafts may be necessary to replace many of the ribbons of flesh gouged from Miss Kjell's palate by this brutally crunchy pre-sweetened breakfast food."

Crazed Loiterer Strikes Again

DOVER, DE—Crazed fugitive loiterer Bob Puhl continued his six-month around-standing spree Tuesday, loitering in the Dover Public Library for more than three hours before escaping. "This is a man who is intent on loitering as much as possible, with no regard for society or the laws that govern it," Dover police chief James Fry said. "But mark my words, we will find him. And he will have plenty of time to stand around and do nothing where he's going." Delaware has already spent $600,000 on efforts to catch the immobile offender, as well as on counseling for victims of his unrepentant standing.

Hot Girl Mentions Boyfriend Three Hours Into Conversation

PORTLAND, OR—After a stimulating three-hour conversation about personal philosophies, career aspirations and their shared passion for Thai food, tennis and Billy Joel, Portland State junior Bryan Holtzman was caught off guard by sophomore Jenny Lowe's off-handed mention of her boyfriend of three years. "Well, that's just fuckin' great," Holtzman said after the conversation. "I dropped every hint in the book. You'd think she'd have picked up on it. I even asked her about her bracelet: Gift from her father, she says. Smooth sailing, I figure. Shit."

Area Man Can't Remember Whether He Rented Mimic Or The Relic

PETOSKEY, MI—Less than five hours after viewing one film or the other, area resident Chris Olle was unable to recall whether he rented Mimic or The Relic Monday night. "It's the one where they're underground, and everything's dripping, and the thing is trying to get them," Olle said of the unspecifically recalled film. "You know, the one with the tunnels. With the blonde? They're running with flashlights, trying to get away from the huge monster. They're either under this museum or under New York. I'm not sure."

Report: U.S. Children Lead World In Hand-Mouth Coordination

UNITED NATIONS—A U.N. study released Monday reported that U.S. children rank first in the world in hand-mouth coordination. "American children can move items from their hands into their mouths faster, better and more efficiently than anyone," the report read. "The children of no other nation can claim such hand-mouth prowess." The four-year study of the physical abilities of children in 157 countries also found that U.S. children finish an Oscar Mayer Lunchables Fun Pack in just under two minutes, nearly twice as fast as the world average.

Standish's Revelation

Back safe and secure in my estate, I was anxious to be reunited with my seven sons, U. Fairfax, V. Lucius, J. Phineas, R. Buckminster, G. Talmadge, M. Prescott and D. Manfred. As I wandered about the wild frontier with my man-servant Standish, I grew to miss them greatly, even D. Manfred, the bastard off-spring of the late Mrs. Zweibel and the coal-hauler. After all, they are my children and heirs, and must have suffered from the theft of my fortune as much as I.

Tha Autobiography Of Herbert K

What tha dilly yo, mah homies? Tha H-Dog be keepin' it real at Midstate Office Supply, still kickin' it hardcore as tha Mack Daddy Enforca of tha Accountz Reeceevable Department. Jus' got my annual evaluation, and shit if I ain't tha baddest stone-cold supastar in tha whole third-floor administrative office. Tha comptrolla, Gerald Luckenbill, not only be approvin' me for a raise, he gonna nominate my ass for Employee Of Tha Month for April, 'cause I not only balanced tha shit out of tha Midstate ledga this month; my department led tha whole goddamn company in tha numba of cans collected foe tha muthafuckin' 1999 Kiwanis Club Food Drive. Tha future be looking SUH-WEET for tha H-Dog, Gs.
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Special Coverage


  • Man’s Body Running Out Of Ideas To Convince Him He Full

    BAYTOWN, TX—Having repeatedly ratcheted up the 34-year-old’s level of discomfort with no noticeable effect on his behavior, the body of local man Kent Dugan confirmed Wednesday that it was starting to run out of ideas to convince him that he was full.

Healthy Living

Congressman Waits Until Last Minute To Write New Law

WASHINGTON, DC—Amid charges of slipshod writing, convoluted logic and questionable constitutionality, U.S. Rep. Jim Leach (R-IA) admitted Monday to waiting until the last minute to write a new law.

Rep. Leach

Though Leach met the House-imposed deadline for his bill, H.R. 1422—The Federal Hydroelectric Power Reform Act, Capitol Hill insiders say the embattled legislator's proposed legislation was "obviously slapped together at the last possible second."

"I really tried to work ahead on it," Leach said of H.R. 1422, which would provide for a transition to market-based rates for power sold by the Federal Power Marketing Administrations and the Tennessee Valley Authority. "But I just kept getting distracted by other stuff. Like last Friday, I was all ready to sit down and really crank out a bunch of provisions. But then that guy from my district was in that helicopter crash in Albania, and I had to console his family and release a statement. Then, Saturday, I had Eagle Scouts in my office the whole afternoon, so there goes that day. And you're nothing on the Hill if you don't spend Sunday in church with your family. Before you know it, the whole weekend's shot. I honestly did the best I could."

"At least I got it in on time," Leach added. "I could have begged Mr. Hastert for an extension, but I didn't."

Despite Leach's defense of his last-minute bill authorship, other legislators said the procrastination shows in his work, claiming that the bill "gets derailed from any sound legal basis by the third page" and looks suspiciously like a "pad job."

"It's really obvious that he barely worked on it, and that he was trying to stretch it out," Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) said. "He double-spaced the whole thing, set his tabs really narrow, and used the biggest font he could find. Then there are all these huge charts that, as far as I can tell, have nothing to do with anything."

Rep. Leach holds a press conference to explain his failure to work ahead on H.R. 1422.

Kanjorski also noted that Leach counted his cover page and bibliography toward the bill's required 10-page length.

Though Leach was given weeks to work on the bill, congressional insiders said he wasted most of the time talking on the phone with agriculture lobbyists, watching C-SPAN, and "pretending to do the reading" on H.R. 656—The Florida Wetlands Preservation Act.

"Come on," said Leach, who acknowledged that he "probably could have worked harder" on the bill. "There's still some really good ideas in there. I outlined a really good rate-scale ramping program that would let corporate customers adjust private billing over an 18-month window without negatively affecting profits. President Clinton himself said he liked the idea. But does anyone talk about that? No, all they ever talk about is how, instead of working on my bill, I took a weekend trip to Florida to survey flood damage."

"That ramping stuff's fine," Rep. John Baldacci (D-ME) said. "But what about the part where he goes off on that whole thing about establishing strict federal guidelines for long-term power-consumption forecasting, an idea that sounds an awful lot like the one outlined last year in H.R. 679 by his best friend in Congress, Rep. Doug Bereuter (R-NE). Seems a little too close to be coincidental, if you ask me."

"I wanted to survey flood damage in Florida, too, you know. But instead, I stayed inside and worked on my bill," Baldacci added. "You know what? If he's gonna keep taking trips and handing in rush-jobs, I'm not gonna vote for any of his legislation."

Among the flaws that have been found in H.R. 1422: a provision that would enable industrial hydroelectric providers to round up their billing to the nearest thousand dollars; a loophole that would permit the TVA to build up to 20 new dams without filing an environmental-impact statement; and 27 instances of improper use of the word "fiscal."

"It's a shame. Jim is so bright that if he'd just apply himself, he'd shine," House Majority Leader Dick Armey (R-TX) said. "I think he just has a problem motivating himself. And it probably wouldn't hurt if he stopped hanging around those House Veterans' Affairs Committee creeps."

Leach said he has learned his lesson.

"Man, I'll show those guys next session," he said. "No more procrastinating. No more wasting time with proclamations, public appearances and fundraiser dinners. I'm gonna totally buckle down and put my bill-writing first."

Though not demanded by House leaders, Leach said he is quitting his job as Saturday-night bartender at The Quorum, a popular Beltway nightspot.