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Enough With The Paul Simon Lyrics!

Here's what the SCHIP debate has become: The politicians are quoting the songwriter, and the songwriter sounds like a politician.

Musician Paul Simon came to town on Tuesday and joined Democrats and health care advocates at a Capitol Hill podium to push for House Republicans to change their mind and override President Bush's veto of and expansion of the State Children Health Insurance Program.

It was inevitable that the Simon and Garfunkel lyrics would start flowing, and the politicians didn't disappoint.

"Thank you very much, Paul Simon, for not letting any of American's children go slip slidin' away," 
said Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), also tried to be cool. "I feel like today, I have diamonds on the soles of my shoes."

And Sen. Orrin G. Hatch of Utah, the token Republican participant at the SCHIP rally, couldn't resist as he introduced Simon to the crowd in the Cannon Caucus Room.

"Here's to you, Mr. Simon, we're glad to have you here," Hatch said.

Simon, for his part, did not quote himself or any of his songs. In fact, he sounded a lot like Reid or Pelosi.

"The president's veto ... appears to be a heartless act," Simon said.

Yet after all the SCHIP rhetoric this week, the effort is likely to be met with the sound of silence among House Republicans, who appear unified in their push to sustain the president's veto.

Sorry, couldn't resist.


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