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TheChat: Pat Roberts once was feared as the Bill Laimbeer of the congressional b-ball league

Roberts
Roberts AP

Good morning.

▪ “Yes. I got banned from the court. I set blindside picks on Democrats. That’s what I did. You gotta do what you gotta do. I was too old to shoot and too old to do stuff, but I could set a blindside pick.” — Kansas. Sen. Pat Roberts recalling the days when Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill played basketball together.

Turns out that Roberts, a Republican who was then a congressman from western Kansas, was known as the league’s Bill Laimbeer, the former Detroit Piston who was known for his, shall we say, aggressive style of play.

▪ “Too often, when Republicans have won, we’ve squandered our victory by becoming part of the Washington machine.” — Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul on Tuesday announcing his campaign for the White House.

Paul, a Republican, took the unusual step of railing against his own party, which he had said had become too beholden to special interests.

▪ “They have a lot of money that they have built into these lines that they just don't need. They're not going to tell us where to find it. It just doesn't work that way.” — Missouri Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Kurt Schaefer on what he calls all the “fluff” built into the budgets of various state departments.

Schaefer said too many departments have budgets that are tantamount to unsustainable growth and need to be reined in. One way to combat that is to appropriate lump sums for the departments of social services, mental health and senior services.

▪ “SB 95 bans a particularly gruesome abortion method in which a living unborn child in her mother’s womb is ripped apart into pieces by an abortionist using sharp metal tools.” — Kathy Ostrowski, legislative director for Kansans for Life, on a bill that Gov. Sam Brownback signed Tuesday that will ban so-called dismemberment abortions.

The governor’s signing of this measure was never in doubt. He signed it in a private ceremony, but public events are in the works.

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