Idaho state capitolFollowing several earlier failed attempts, the Idaho Senate, in the closing hours of the legislative session, passed a bill aimed at limiting the state's "discretionary" participation in the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA, commonly known as ObamaCare). HB 298 passed the state Senate on April 5 by a vote of 24-11, before the legislature adjourned for the year on April 7. The bill, which had earlier passed the House on March 30 by a vote of 50-17, is being called "nullification lite" or "grandson of nullification" by some pundits. But Senator Monty Pearce, the original sponsor of the effort to stop implementation of ObamaCare in Idaho, calls it a "one-toed bill."

Real estate magnate Donald Trump’s likely candidacy for President in 2012 surfaced last September with an anonymous telephone poll of voters in New Hampshire. Denying any involvement in the poll, Trump claimed, “I never heard of this poll but I’m anxious to find out what it says.” He obviously found out what it said about his chances, and, in October, began tip-toeing into the presidential race. On CNN’s American Morning, he commented that running for President is “not something I talked about or considered, but somebody has to do something or this country is not going to be a great country for long.”

moneyCongressional and White House negotiators reached a deal in the early morning hours of April 9 to keep the federal government open one more week until Congress can pass a year-end appropriations compromise that would increase — yes, increase! — the annual deficit from last year's $1.29 trillion to $1.58 trillion for fiscal 2011. Republican and Democratic leaders touted the "cuts" in the bill because the proposed $1.58 trillion deficit in the compromise is lower than the $1.65 trillion deficit that would have resulted from passage of the White House budget proposal.

Government documents show that more than a few major media organizations including the Washington Post, NBC, Reuters, newspaper giant Gannett, and CBS are all raking in cash from a $5 billion slush fund set up under ObamaCare, causing outrage among critics and lawmakers who say the news providers should disclose the subsidies when reporting on health-care issues.

The finger of Speaker of the House John Boehner is hovering over the power button of the federal government. Despite his posturing, those in the know report that he does not want to push it.