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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

"I, Sen. X, do solemnly swear to tell the truth..."



The Senate got into an interesting debate Thursday on a bill by Sen. Alex Villolobos that would require lawmakers to take an oath when testifying before any committee - and would subject them to felony prosecution for intentionally lying under oath.

Some lawmakers including Democrat Al Lawson urged members to vote against the requirement for legislators. "This is the biggest conspiracy that I have ever seen," Lawson said. "Why would you suggest a member is not telling the truth?"

Countered South Florida Democrat Jeremy Ring:  "This is the single most important bill the legislature will do. It's beyond me that we could vote against this and say, 'We're against truth.' This bill will change the way government in the state of Florida is essentially done forever."

The final vote: 36-3, with Democrats Gary Siplin, Al LAwson and Mandy Dawson opposed.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 1:45pm]


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