Beyond the Books

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Saturday, March 27, 2010 8:12 a.m.

District Roundup-Week of March 22

The Big Deal

This week President Barack Obama signed the health care reform bill into law. The legislation is set to affect millions of uninsured Americans and was met with protests right up until the vote. Even after the signing and Vice President Joe Biden’s humorous take on the situation, Republicans and Democrats disagreed over the amount of civility in the debate. Also, on Thursday the Senate approved the legislation that will stop subsidies to banks for student loans. The change to a Direct Loan program is estimated to save billions of dollars in the next decade and increase student grants. Obama will sign the health care reform bill, which includes loan reform, on Tuesday at Northern Virginia Community College.

Money for Snowpocalypse

On Wednesday President Obama declared the District a disaster area due to the huge snowstorms that covered D.C. from Feb. 5 to Feb. 11. The funds will be available to the city and nonprofit groups through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The city surpassed its snow budget for the winter season  after the first storm fell in February.

Two gay Republicans now in D.C. Council race

D.C. Agenda has the details on Marc Morgan and Timothy Day, each challenging incumbents for ward Council seats. While the Council already has gay members, no Republican has won a ward Council seat since 1974 (at-Large seats have been held by Republicans though). Similar to the political views Meghan McCain expressed this week at GW, both Morgan and Day said they have progressive views on social issues, but more moderate or conservative views on economic ones.