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House descends into federal budget-cutting chaos, just as planned

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In a sampling of amendments passed Friday and earlier this week, the House voted to:

  • Cut salaries for employees or contractors charged with implementing the new health-care law.
  • Ban the Internal Revenue Service from enforcing individual mandates to purchase health insurance.
  • End federal subsidies for Planned Parenthood, a women's reproductive-health service provider that also performs about 300,000 abortions a year.
  • Bar the US Department of Education from regulating private career-oriented colleges.
  • Ban funding to implement the Presidential Election Campaign Fund.
  • Cut funding that would help the Federal Communications Commission police the broadband industry to enforce "net neutrality" – the notion that Internet service providers should not favor certain content (like their own) over other content.

Democrats expressed their anger at the pace of the votes. "It's running government off the back of a galloping horse," said Rep. James McDermott (D) of Washington.

Democratic whip Steny Hoyer of Maryland dubbed Friday's health-care amendments “a significant step backwards” that would "put insurance companies back in charge of Americans’ health-care choices."

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