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WA Lege Day 48: ‘Retarded’ term struck from law books

OLYMPIA -- Rahm Emmanuel take note: You'll have to watch your language in this Washington.

The state Senate gave unanimous approval Saturday to a law that takes the term "mentally retarded" from state law, substituting it instead with the phrase "individuals with intellectual disabilities."

"We all know it's demeaning to refer to people as mentally retarded," Sen. Darlene Fairley, D-Lake Forest Park.

Well, maybe not quite everyone. White House Chief of Staff Emmanuel did recently call congressional Democrats "(bleeping) retards". But even he had to apologize, at least to people with intellectual disabilities.

House Bill 2490 already passed the House and is headed to the governor.

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The Spokesman-Review's political team keeps a critical eye on local, state and national politics.