Stateline Story

Fla. history in the re-making

  • June 15, 2007
  • By Eric Kelderman
"History will be kind to me for I intend to write it," said legendary British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. In the Internet age, that could explain the surprising admission by Florida Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp (R), elected second-in-command in November, that he personally did some favorable editing of an online biography. Kottkamp deleted news stories about an age-discrimination lawsuit filed against him from the Florida Progressive Coalition's political Web site, according to the Miami Herald .

On the same day he retired as host of the TV game show, "The Price Is Right," Bob Barker got the call to "Come on down!" to the California Statehouse. The celebrity animal lover was enlisted to rescue a bill requiring most cat and dog owners to spay or neuter their pets. The bill passed with a bare majority, according to the Sacramento Bee .

Seemed like a good idea at the time. Earlier this year, Arizona lawmakers passed one of the nation's strictest laws against drunken driving, requiring first-time DUI offenders to install an ignition device that tests the driver's breath for alcohol. But the Arizona House had a change of heart this week and voted to rescind the new law. Explaining her vote, state Rep. Olivia Cajero Bedford (D) claimed the stricter law discriminates against women because they get drunk more easily than men. "With all due respect, you guys have more fat than I do," she is quoted in the Arizona Daily Star .

Pot calls kettle black? Former Illinois Gov. Dan Walker, 84, who spent 18 months in a federal prison, admonished Land of Lincoln lawmakers for being lax on ethics. Walker was convicted on federal bank fraud and perjury charges in 1988 for crimes he committed after serving a single term in the governor's office from 1973-1977. Pointing to his executive order barring state employees from raising political funds, Walker is quoted by The Southern Illinoisan as saying: "No governor since then has had the guts to repeat that executive order."

Former New Jersey Gov. James McGreevey (D), who resigned from office in 2004 after admitting to a gay affair, said his ex-wife's tell-all memoir is tanking because she made an "awful appearance on the Oprah Show ... appearing in an inappropriate and ill-fitting ball gown with a plunging neckline," according to the Associated Press .

Religious opponents of gambling may see more than luck at work in this week's Texas Lottery. The winning number for a June 13 drawing was 666 - sometimes referred to as the number of the Antichrist. Despite the nefarious association, 3,177 people each won $250 for putting their money on the devil's digits, reports the San Antonio Express-News .