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News In Brief

THEY'RE IN FAVOR OF ... WHAT?

It was not, the folks at the Democratic National Committee conceded, their proudest hour. Through its Web site, the DNC asked Internet users to rate the importance to the next president of the following options: "Saving Social Security, strengthening Medicare, and paying down the national debt" or implementing the "risky" proposal by Republican front-runner George W. Bush to cut federal taxes by $1.7 billion. With the response approaching 80 percent in favor of the Bush plan, red-faced DNC officials called a halt to the voting. A spokeswoman for the party, which often has used ex-House Speaker Newt Gingrich as a foil in its campaign and fund-raising efforts, joked that he had little else to do and thus must have voted in the survey numerous times.

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Pro football's top passers for '99: Who are these guys?

Fans accustomed to finding such established stars as Dan Marino, Brett Favre, Troy Aikman, and Drew Bledsoe among the National Football League's leading passers were surprised this season. When the regular season ended Monday, these big-name quarterbacks were rated far below league MVP Kurt Warner of the St. Louis Rams, who led a group of lesser-knowns into the top 10. The rankings are calculated on a points system that factors in completion percentage and touchdown passes among other statistics.

1. Kurt Warner, St. Louis Rams 111.7

2. Jeff George, Minnesota Vikings 95.5

3. Steve Beuerlein, Carolina Panthers 92.6

4. Peyton Manning, Indianapolis Colts 91.5

5. Brad Johnson, Washington Redskins 90.1

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6. Ray Lucas, New York Jets 88.6

7. Rich Gannon, Oakland Raiders 87.3

8. Gus Frerotte, Detroit Lions 83.5

9. Charlie Batch, Detroit Lions 82.3

10. Tony Banks, Baltimore Ravens 82.2

- National Football League

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