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Smeed undergoing cancer treatment

Here's a news item from The Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A libertarian activist who once called Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter "obscenely handsome" is being treated for cancer at a Houston clinic. Ralph Smeed, from Caldwell, is tolerating his medication, according to an e-mail distributed by supporters including Elizabeth Hodge, a former Republican state lawmaker. Another e-mail, from a group that backs Ron Paul, says Smeed has pancreatic cancer. Smeed is at the Burzynski Clinic, which according to its website relies on the "natural biochemical defense system of our body, capable of combatting cancer without harming the healthy cells. Hodge says the 88-year-old Smeed's tumor hasn't spread. In addition to his gushing support for Otter, Smeed is known for his billboard in Caldwell with political commentaries, including, "It has been so bitter cold lately that some politicians have had their hands in their own pockets."

Idaho Statesman columnist Dan Popkey, who spoke with Smeed today, has more here, and here's a report critical of the treatment Smeed has chosen.

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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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