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Mon., April 7, 2008, midnight

In their words

“If I was a fairy godmother and not a county commissioner, I would grant them their wish.”

— Spokane County Commissioner Bonnie Mager, saying she has reservations about whether the county should try to buy Spokane Raceway Park at auction, but was impressed by racing enthusiasts’ support for the idea.

“We’re not a bunch of hysterical wackos. This guy has been completely off base since he took office.”

— Hauser, Idaho, resident Ben Nelson, leader of a recall effort against Hauser Mayor Don Werst, who took office at the beginning of the year.

“They keep bringing me garbage. Every time they find squat, they bring it out and open their trunk and say, ‘Is that it?’ and I say, ‘Nope, go away.’ Then a few years later they come back.”

Earl Cossey, the Woodinville, Wash., man who packed the parachutes demanded by fabled airplane hijacker D.B. Cooper, after telling authorities that the chute found recently in southwestern Washington was not used in Cooper’s 1971 crime.

“This is what’s motivating people who otherwise would not commit crimes to commit some very serious crimes, armed robbery in particular.”

— Deputy Police Chief Jim Barber of Mobile, Ala., blaming a rash of robberies on the hoodie, a zipper-hooded sweat shirt that can conceal the wearer’s face.

“I guess we did not want to give the impression to the public as a whole that we liked business $12,000 more than we liked individuals.”

— Idaho state Sen. Brent Hill, R-Rexburg, chairman of the Senate Tax Committee, explaining why senators settled on $75,000 as the amount of property tax exemption to approve on business equipment.

“This is a wild pitch. It is not even close to the strike zone.”

— U.S. Sen. Christopher J. Dodd, D-Conn., chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, acknowledging the opening of the baseball season as he reacted to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulsen’s proposal for revisions in the way the federal government regulates investment.

“You have fought the fight. You are a man’s man. You have maintained independence from corporate elite and from politicians. I guess what I’m saying is you are your own man. You are our man. You are God’s man.”

— City Colleges of Chicago Chancellor Wayne Watson during a tribute to Jeremiah Wright, controversial former pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ where Barrack Obama is a member.

“If a government defendant were to harm an enemy combatant during an interrogation in a manner that might arguably violate a criminal prohibition, he would be doing so in order to prevent further attacks on the United States by the al Qaeda terrorist network. In that case, we believe that he could argue that the executive branch’s constitutional authority to protect the nation from attack justified his actions.”

John C. Yoo, former deputy in the U.S. Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, in a newly released 2003 memo to the Defense Department saying the president’s wartime powers trumped any laws that might have forbidden certain interrogation techniques.

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