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Texas BlogWire

LiveBlogging the Governor's Debate- Join us

by: Ryan Goodland

Wed Feb 08, 2006 at 09:38 PM CST


(This is going on right now, tune in to the link in the entry to watch. Join us in the comment thread for live conversation about the debate. - promoted by Karl-Thomas Musselman)

via Jason Stanford:

WFAA is hosting a Democratic gubernatorial debate on Thursday at 2 pm. No rules, no opening & closing statements, no time limits, just a conversation moderated by Wayne Slater of the Morning News and Brad Watson of WFAA that is live to tape. Don't know when it's going on TV yet, but we're told you will be able watch it live at WFAA's website.

Here's hoping Slater and Watson ask questions as sharp and as well-informed as Phillip Martin has asked here.


This is Karl-Thomas writing now...

2:15: The start of the debate is running behind.  I'm loving how it's always just about ready to start, though I could go for some more of that off handed commentary when they forgot to turn the mic off.  Chek the extended entry for liveblogging.

Ryan Goodland :: LiveBlogging the Governor's Debate- Join us
2:19 It's started!  Introducing Chris Bell and Bob Gammage.  Sadly Mr. Jafer is not there.  I'd like to know what he looks like at least.

2:21 Bell get's his Thank God for Mississippi zinger in within the first 30 seconds.  Speaking of releasing the greatness.

Gammage references the Dirty 30 within the first 5 seconds of his round.

2:23 Next question on Education. I'm willing to bet Gammage mentions he ruled on the adequacy  part when he was on the Texas Supreme Court.

2:24 And he does!  Now they are asking him how.  Bob: "Take the wealth of the state of a whole. Duty of state to provide the funding for education. Fund an excellent, not an adequate system.  Put it all on the table.  Robin Hood not an option.

2:26 Bell takes on education.  Will he mention a moonshot for education?  "Advocates for moving away from high stakes testing.  Put a price tag on existing things.  There's a Bell way and a Perry way.  Expand franchise tax / gross receipts tax (Bell way).  Things that reak (Perry way).

2:29 Questioning Bell on what exactly should be on there.  Bell talking about things being on or off the table.  Thinks state income tax should not be on the table.  (ed note: Sen. Shapleigh has a great presentation on why we should have a state income tax which I agree with. I wish people would start talking about it rather than keep re-enforcing the 'never have an income tax idea'.)

To Gammage, anyone who makes a profit should pay business tax. Not in favor of increasing any tax on middle income earners in Texas until all loopholes for high end closed to people can pay as fairly and evenly as possible.  All pay taxes, people vote to tax themselves as happens with every bond issue.  Should convince voters how new tax structure will benefit average voters.

2:23 Question to Gammage: What about new money?

Committment to Education Excellence Act.  Need to stop talking about adequate, and go for excellent.  To Bell.

Not a Democratic Issue or Republican Issue.  People agree we should support more funding for education.  Reduce class size, increase teacher pay, technology.  Calls for Bold Leadership (theme now).

Gammage: Don't think we need a statewide property tax.

2:35 Testing Question for Graduation: Should there be a final test?

Bell: Move away from High Stakes Testing.  Moved beyond teaching to the test, now teaching the test itself.  Wants to place accountability in hands of teachers and principals.  No, shouldn't be dependant on one final test.

Bob: Agrees, brings in cultural issues of South Texas.  (Apparently in school teachers wanted to double promote Gammage).


2:40 Ahhh, gay marraige and abortion!

Public Funding for Abortion issue to Gammage:

Gammage: Pro-choice 2 years before women had a choice.  Am Pro-Choice and always have been, there's no question on that.

Bell: Gets in FWST endorsement.  What can we do? Reduce teen pregnancy rate, abstinance plus programs.

Gammage: Agrees on programs such as above.  Kids are bright, have moral values, should still encourage abstinance, but should be teaching abstinance plus.

2:45

Opportunity to attach each other.

Bell: There will be a lot of information put out there to allow voters to see difference in records... Minumum wage is an area of difference.  Wants to have it indexed.

Gammage:  Mentions Bell campaigned against minimum wage increase while running for city council.  "I'm not running against Chris Bell or Jafar, I'm running against Rick Perry, DeLay, Bush, Cheney... it's a culture of corruption from DC to Austin... run to wake up the base, elect democrats down ballots, to be a messenger."

2:48 Question: Toll Roads

Bell: Change highway department.

Increase Gasoline Tax?

Bell: no direct answer, back to tolls in limited instances.

Gammage:  Not opposed to toll roads as a tool, some areas like Dallas have integrated it appropriatly.  Should look at rail like has been effectivly developed in other cities.

Don't favor increase in gasoline tax: "Not at this time".

2:52  The HMS PERRY GETS MENTIONED!  Taxing Bottled drinking water!  No taxes on beer!  Gammage shocks the crowd with highlighting Republican corruption.

Bell: There is the same cash and carry system in Austin.  Ok, totally killed the buzz Gammage had going.  NOOOOOOOO... mentions website www.ChrisBell.com  Wait, did he just say Trans-sexist corridor? "Oh come on, there can be some very effective lobbyists."  (Ray Allen and Todd Baxter are sitting there going: "me! me!")

2:55Highest Home Insurance Rates Question

Gammage: After some 'excitable Bob' moments, boils it down to accountability.  We are privitizing everything, and we are getting gouged.

Bell: Appoint an insurance commisioner!  (No, not another Commission related idea! j/k)  Perry appointed a pawn of the industry.

2:57

Gammage gets second mention of Dirty 30 in, in saying we need to throw the rascals out to make change in the rates.

Q: How do you get more children on CHIP?

Bell: Budgets are moral documents...I might have missed his solution.

Gammage: We're #1 in nation with kids without healthcare. It's a national issue, I'm still an advocate of getting a national plan, but, there are things to do locally.  Need to ensure, make sacrifices, to get every child coverage so they don't have to go to emergency.

3:01

Q: What about Carol's extra $4.3 billion?

Bell: Well that could just about solve the education gap. State isn't meeting it's obligations in any programs.  Thank God for Mississippi committee gets second mention.  (someone want to make a website, could be like a counter to the Proud of Texas theme, maybe Team Bell could have a Proud of Mississippi ad)

3:04 Q: Illegal immigration issue, should law be repealed that allows illigal immigrants who graduate from Texas high school, are counted as in state tuition.

Bell: I think they should qualify for the program.

Gammage: They are residents of the state, they graduated from our high schoools. "If Rick Perry slipped up and did something decent, I don't want to over turn it."  Haha, one of the better lines so far that's actually original

Gammage's tuition when he went to the UT school of law his tuition was $75 a semester???  What the hell, I feel so ripped off....

"We ought to be lowing the barriers to opportunity rather than erecting walls to accesss."

Bell: We ought to have more Tier One Universities.

HOURSE RACE QUESTION:

Bell: Get Democrats to vote for Democratic candidate.  Baseline D vote of 38-42 percent.  Carol is trying to be all things to all people.  Ok, we know this already, heck, we're a blog.

Gammage: Perry will take right wing of Party, Carol will get those that don't believe in that.  They are ashamed and embarassed about what happened to party.  Now controlled by right wing ideolouges.

Q: Kinky, (never held public office, but many a cigar). What about his money?

Bell: People get excited about candidates when they know they can when.

(ed. note: Those flowers on the table are really distracting.  I keep thinking Bell's leg is in them.)

What about values voters, you call them right wing ideologues Gammage?

Gammage: Yeah, they are, they control the Republican party by the throat.

A touching story from Bell coming up...watch the debate when it's archived to get it.

3:15

Do you belong to churches?

Gammage grabs it: I was raised a Southern Baptist.
Bell: Didn't catch it, I don't want to get it wrong by guessing, there was cross chatter.

Message for Democrats?

Gammage:  Wake up, wake up.  You can win.  Let's get energized and we can win.

Bell: I'll talk about the New Mainstream like I've been talking about for a year.  Rick Perry couldn't lead a silent prayer. 

Q: If the other wins the nomination, say a nice thing about them.

Bell says, "Bob Gammage is a nice guy and he has a lot of positions similar to Chris Bell."

Gammage says, "Chris Bell has a good message, and it needs to be delivered dynamically."

Oooo, snap.  And that's a wrap.

What's with that purple tie one of the moderators is wearing?  Oh, he's not Blue or Red, he's in the middle.  Oh, and our analysis and reporting is waaay more interesting than this analysis guy.  Plus my glasses are cooler.  Who wears round glasses like that anymore?

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A Possible Question (2.33 / 3)
I posted this under "Interview with Chris Bell" and thought I would post it here as well.  Maybe Wayne Slater and Brad Watson will catch it and ask the question. Domestic violence and stalking affects millions of women across this country every year. Quite a few end up being murdered because prosecutors for one reason or another didn't feel the situation warranted intervention by the courts and dismissed the victim and advised them to pursue the matter through the civil courts.  Often there are other victims when the abuser or stalker shows up at an office and also murders co-workers of the victim.

And it's not just women. Men are often victims of domestic violence and stalking.  And both domestic violence and stalking affects the gay and lesbian community as well.

It is a subject not brought up by either candidate until Chris Bell brought it up while defending his vote for the bankruptcy law.  Given the number of Texans affected by domestic violence and stalking, I think it is a subject that should be on the "checklists" for interviews with political candidates. 

If nothing else, I would like to know how Chris Bell believes the new bankruptcy law protects victims.  I personally believe it will only worsen the situation for victims.

"...allowing debtors filing bankruptcy under Chapter 13 to keep themselves and their families safe from domestic violence..."

This has bothered me all evening.  Just how does the new bankruptcy law protect victims of domestic violence? How does it protect victims of harassment by an abuser from being  further harassed by creditors once they've been forced into bankruptcy? It seems to me it ensures the very harassment that bankruptcy is supposed to stop.

Since Chris Bell brought up the subject in the interview, which is the first time I've seen him bring it up, and since the Dirty Dozen are all "women's advocates" I would like to know Chris Bell's position, and actually Bob Gammage's as well, on not only the domestic violence laws but the stalking laws which are rarely enforced in Texas.

What will they do to strengthen the existing laws to encourage early intervention through enforcement of the laws by prosecutors to prevent the violence that often could be prevented by allowing courts to intervene before the violence occurred or escalated?

All too often victims are forced to hire attorneys and pursue the matter through civil action because of prosecutors who are unwilling to enforce the laws. Most victims cannot afford an attorney.  Certainly not the ones who have been forced into bankruptcy.

There is also a growing phenomenon called participatory stalking in which friends of the stalker engage in harassment of the victim and often make false accusations against the victim, usually accusing the victim of stalking the stalker, in order to discredit the victim after they've filed complaints.

Should people who engage in participatory stalking be charged as well?  Would either move to see that the law was changed to allow them to be charged? 

 


k (0.00 / 0)
Anyone excited about this debate?  Feel free to chat it up if you are watching.  I'll try to put some play by play in here on key points where it's new information.

Excited (2.33 / 3)
Why, exactly, must we be "excited" about our Democratic candidates and their campaigns?  What we need is competence in the Governor's office and a candidate who has outlined priorities and a course of action that will make Texas a better place for everyone.
Maybe it's a generational thing. What are people looking for, a toy with his/her happy meal? Maybe it's a sign of the times that the public must be entertained or else no one pays attention. I think we need to give voters some credit. We're not all looking for a song & dance man, because that's who we already have.
The Republicans are great at marketing - but that facade has crumbled and now we all see the corruption and the lying that their messaging machines have been good at hiding.
I don't want to be entertained. I don't need showmanship or zany one-liners or great marketing. What I need, what we all need, is a better Texas. By putting education first, closing business tax loopholes and passing ethics reform bills, we would have a really good start at changing the direction of our state. That is what excites me.

[ Parent ]
hmm (3.00 / 2)
clearly, sandra is not excited.

[ Parent ]
touchy... (3.00 / 2)
maybe she's a deaniac

[ Parent ]
The Rest of the Interviews... (3.00 / 1)
I had a class assignment do this morning I had forgot about, and in turn didn't have time to post the rest of the Bell/Gammage interviews before I went to class/work. Part II of each interview will be up as soon as my friend stops by my place and uploads them for me. In the mean time, enjoy the real debate.

And yes, somehow I think Wayne Slater will be able to ask questions far above and beyond what I asked...but thanks for the compliment.

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.


C'mon (0.00 / 0)
I wish they'd start to, you know, do this instead of saying "It's about to start"

[ Parent ]
Thank god for Mississippi (3.67 / 3)
Dude, if we raise $1.00 for everytime Bell makes the "Thank God For Mississippi" joke we can buy Audis for the entire staff.

Studies (0.00 / 0)
Okay, everyone jumps on the "commission" idea and I have to give Gammage credit for wanting to create a comission without using the word. He'll just "put it on a table."

[ Parent ]
lol (0.00 / 0)
great point.  but it sounds so much better.  at least it's not under the table.

[ Parent ]
it reeks (0.00 / 0)
No, under the table reeks of Perry.

[ Parent ]
PDiddie (1.00 / 1)
What are you doing with all the 1s?  Come on, that was most certainly funny.

[ Parent ]
You guys need to hook up offline (1.00 / 1)
The flirting is like, tiresome.

"The Bushite arctic freeze is thawing nationally, but in Texas we're still iced in. Fight 'em on the ice." -- DVO

[ Parent ]
ok (0.00 / 0)
Obviously missing the point of this comment thread.  Or you don't spend any time at In the Pink.

[ Parent ]
Is it the Camera? (0.00 / 0)
Or does Gammage have a huge freaking head?

it;s the camera... (0.00 / 0)
His head is proportional... he's just a big guy:)

[ Parent ]
Gammage has a HUGE head... (0.00 / 0)
....kinda like Rosie O'Donnell.

MtClint


[ Parent ]
Brains :) (2.00 / 1)
Double promoted?  2 law degrees?

Hmmmmm.


[ Parent ]
of course (0.00 / 0)
of course he got 2 law degrees. It only cost him $75 a semester.

[ Parent ]
crap crap crap (0.00 / 0)
That soooo steams me.  But I'm Proud of Texas.

[ Parent ]
At least you all paid Public school rates... (0.00 / 0)
Just imagine how bad it is at Baylor!  When I started it was $250 a credit hour, now it's around $650 (they changed to a one price per semester format, but that's what it adds up to...). 

[ Parent ]
Yeah, paying tuition myself (for my son) (0.00 / 0)
it's pretty steep and getting steeper.

Holding Universities hostage while Leinieger, Norquist and Nau party with Perry.

Screwing publc education, screwing public universities, screwing the public in general.


[ Parent ]
take the special interests out (0.00 / 0)
THIS is why I'm supporting Bob! Everyone IS willing to sacrifice and make an investment in the future. It's the one argument we WIN against the R's.

Where is the rearrenging dech chairs? (0.00 / 0)
on the H.M.S. Perry

From a purely technique standpoint (0.00 / 0)
Gammage isn't getting out on front quickly enough. Bell's ideas seem clearer and more suscinct. Gammage is a little more relatable and fun to watch, though. Bell needs to put the helium tank down.

This is fun... (0.00 / 0)
I've been able to successfully predict every answer so far...right up to Bell was going to dismiss those "numbers" and point out the absurdity of drop-out rates.

I sooooooo could run for Governor.

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.


Way to kick it up a notch DMN (0.00 / 0)
Now it's getting interesting.

Interesting is a relative term... (0.00 / 0)
"Hey, did I mention I was endorsed?" Ahem.

never meant anyone pro abortion? (0.00 / 0)
obviously hasn't met ali.

lol (0.00 / 0)
Damn, another point to you.

[ Parent ]
Wow, a difference (0.00 / 0)
Well - KT, Phillip, Trey and I are watching.

Bell fumbled on the difference question. Gammage picks up a baseball.

HOLY SHIT - they mentioned Jafar.

Gammage running against Tom Delay. I've got money on him.


Cheap question (3.00 / 1)
First of all, asking what's "bad" about the other is a question not meant to raise issues but to promote their own interview and get a quote people will look at. I'm not crazy about separating the two that way.

In my interviews (which will be posted after this debate) I asked what separated the candidates from each other, and why each was the better choice for Democrats. I got a much, much better answer from that then Bell and Gammage just gave right now...

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.


Bad question... (0.00 / 0)
I agree, it's tacky.

[ Parent ]
Gammage (0.00 / 0)
he's gotta answer a question first. having the last word is good but he's being to polite.

Mention of the 35 Freeway (0.00 / 0)
THERE'S a real damn issue! THANK YOU BOB!


The Yacht (3.00 / 1)
Hey, the Yacht showed up. BTW, this sounded like the gayest Yacht trip ever.

ew... (0.00 / 0)
Matt... that was WRONG. You've seen these people, right? Norquist is FAR from what I would call f*ckable.

Ugh. I need to have my mind dry-cleaned. Thanks for the unpleasent mental image.


[ Parent ]
Ugly people can't be gay? (0.00 / 0)
You've obviously never met the trolls that run this site.

Oh, no he didn't.


[ Parent ]
no, they can.... (0.00 / 0)
I just don't want to picture them being screwing, especially James Leininger.

[ Parent ]
matt (0.00 / 0)
I'll get you later.  I'm sending the gay mafia after you.

[ Parent ]
Oh, I'm shaking (0.00 / 0)
I'm shaking in my ugly blue shoes.

[ Parent ]
well... (0.00 / 0)
you're wearing them, so they must be ugly.

[ Parent ]
byron (5.00 / 1)
Stop it Byron, your flirting is like, tiresome.

You do remember that Elton John is the head of the Gay Mafia.


[ Parent ]
Gammage is pro top 10% (0.00 / 0)
oh geeze.

Bell should be more critical of top 10% (0.00 / 0)
But it's probably politicaly untenable. I agree with having another top-tier university.

Gammage should save that (0.00 / 0)
Democrats are, democrats are... speech. if he wins the primary he needs that and he needs to start yellin a la Network.

Check back (0.00 / 0)
Come look at the interview and you'll get to see an even better of all that...

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.

[ Parent ]
Democrats are... (0.00 / 0)
Bob's list was getting me all excited, I was just about ready to give out a Dean Scream.

[ Parent ]
You're right (0.00 / 0)
About the Dean scream. Now Democrats just have to decide if that's good or if that's bad...

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.

[ Parent ]
Gammage people agree (0.00 / 0)
Apparently the Gammage people agree that THAT was the important message.

gammageforgov.com

I really love that website.  Makes me feel good just to look at it.


[ Parent ]
Bob as Howard Beale (0.00 / 0)
He'd love that!

[ Parent ]
The Winner? (3.00 / 1)
Bell seemed better prepared, started off with more susinct answers (that got loooonger as the debate went on).

Gammage started off slow, comes off to uncertain on what we want to do. However, he had a more "dynamic" style that was stronger by the end.

It's a debate that could be cut down to thirty minutes and you'd probably get a different winner depending on how you cut it.

MESSAGE - Bell
STYLE - Gammage
RELATBILITY - Gammage
DIFFERENCES - few


I agree (2.50 / 2)
Bell certainly has his message more refined in terms of content.  In terms of how it's recieved though, Gammage's strength in being relatable gives a bit of a counter.

How do you think it would be if they were debating Perry and Carol and Kinky? Perry will come across as confident, Carol, I dunno, Kinky as the Al Sharpton.  I'm concerned that Bell would be too stiff or be tagged as "Liberal" (which he's not).  Gammage seems to have a bit of old school appeal that can knock out any Liberal tags.

But on policy yeah, it's not a lot of difference.


[ Parent ]
thank God for Al Gore inventing the internet.... (1.00 / 1)
I just watched it on the internet, thanks Al. Bell did well on the questions he had done his research on, Gammage helped him with the answer on allowing ALL kids who graduate from a Texas high school to be allowed in-state tuition if they go to a Texas college.

Overall I would say Chris gets a B or maybe B- since he did well on most questions but wasnt well prepared for a few. Gammage gets a solid A for preparation and a A+++++++++++++ for enthusiasm, WOW!

I did like the format and BOTH Bell and Gammage made me proud to be be a LIFELONG DEMOCRAT!

MtClint


[ Parent ]
Rehearsed (0.00 / 0)
Bell seems better rehearsed.  He should be after campaigning for a year.

Gammage seems to believe what he's saying down to his very toes.


[ Parent ]
Gross (3.00 / 1)
Don't want to think about Gammage's toes.

[ Parent ]
Yeah (0.00 / 0)
I'm gonna have to agree with you on that Sandra.

[ Parent ]
You're not from here are you? (0.00 / 0)


[ Parent ]
Four generations (0.00 / 0)
I am a descedant of Tejanos, Mexican Texans who settled in the Rio Grande Valley. Why do you ask?

[ Parent ]
Still waiting... (1.00 / 1)
Bell is very good with one-liners and generalities.  But doesn't know his stuff as indicated by his "knee-jerk" response to the word "immigration" without waiting for the question to be fully asked and instead just launching into another diatribe against Perry.

What was interesting was he then stated Perry had done the right thing with regard to in-state tuition rates for illegal immigrants and danced around it but obviously didn't know anything about the law that grants that tuition rate to illegal immigrants. Immigration is probably the second biggest concern among Democrats and Republicans alike in this state.  And most probably didn't like the answers of either Bell or Gammage. But liked Bell's less because he knew nothing about the law.

Didn't know about the law.  Didn't read the bankruptcy bill he voted for.

I'm still waiting for him to explain how that bankruptcy law protects victims of domestic violence.  As with all the other questions raised, obviously no answer will be given.

 


Baby Snooks....be fair..ok (2.00 / 2)
Dont pick on Chris just because he wasnt prepared for the questions or didnt read the bankruptcy bill he voted on......its not like he wants to be Governor of Texas....wait....I meant he.....uhhhhh.....nevermind.

MtClint


[ Parent ]
Policy Wonk vs Advocate (0.00 / 0)
Bell's seems to want to be Mr. Policy Wonk.

Gammage is an Advocate.

Democrats already have good answers to problems that the state has.  The problem that Democrats have is convincing other Texans that our answers are their answers too.

Gammage was much better at delivering that message. 

I think the Advocate is what we're going to need in November if we have any chance of being more than an also-ran.

Maybe Gammage could hire Bell .... well, never mind, the Dems have Hochberg.


Or if Gammage has any ideas (2.00 / 2)
He should advocate those and not count on other people to do the dirty work for him.

[ Parent ]
Were you talking to me (1.00 / 1)
or to the ether?

[ Parent ]
Were we watching the same thing? (1.00 / 1)
Gammage wasn't the one who wanted to pawn everything off on a committee.

[ Parent ]
Who won? (0.00 / 0)
According to both their websites, they both won. According to whom? If they both won, who lost?

If I was scoring this for High School Debate (0.00 / 0)
By both TFA and UIL rules I'd say Bell edged out Gammage with the more concrete ideas (lets throw it on a table!). Hopefully, we can do 20 more of these and get them up to were we need them.

[ Parent ]
LOL... TFA and UIL! (1.00 / 1)
Are you thinking CX or LD?

If we're evaluating LD, it was Gammage.

You were one of those CX nerds, weren't you:)?


[ Parent ]
I was an Interper (0.00 / 0)
But I judge/d CX more than LD. Gammage is an awful spreader.

[ Parent ]
me too (0.00 / 0)
I judged, and did CX for a year.  God I hated people who just stood up there and talked a mile a minute.  That's not debate, that's attempting to win on technicality. Sadly, this has become the way to win and is becoming a larger problem within the organizations.  Hopefully some new rule will come into play.

[ Parent ]
You two don't KNOW from pain... (0.00 / 0)
until you've had to judge 3A district extemp (pers) in East Texas. You think spreading is bad, try sitting through 8-10 high school kids, all of whom clearly know NOTHING about the issue but are hell bent on using all the time.

Then deal with the questions when they don't place. Ugh.

If you don't like the spreaders, don't flow what they say and give them 0 speaks. They catch on quick:)


[ Parent ]
Flow? Speaks? (0.00 / 0)
I never did debate. I did JSA. We had debated in JSA, but after a 6 minute "opening" from each side, the room opened up for questions (more panel-debates). Then a 3 minute close, and the room voted on best speaker.

One time, I filled in for the speaker that never showed up, and (totally unprepared) managed to convince a room full of public school kids that they should all be required to wear uniforms.

Needless to say, I won best speaker something like 87,000 times. I think they have my jacket retired, hanging in the rafters at some hotel in Dallas. Or maybe the lost and found.

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.


[ Parent ]
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