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The "Schiavo Nine" become the Ultrasound Seven

The Republican state senators who banded together in 2005 to help defeat legislation in the Terri Schiavo affair largely stuck together Wednesday in voting down an ultrasound abortion measure on a 20-20 vote that they said was too much government.

Of the Schiavo Nine, only Sen. J.D. Alexander of Lake Wales voted for the legislation. Sen. Nancy Argenziano is gone. The rest of the Schiavo Nine: Lisa Carlton of Osprey; Mike Bennett of Bradenton; Paula Dockery of Lakeland; Evelyn Lynn of Ormond Beach; Sen. Dennis Jones, R-Seminole; Sen. Jim King, R-Jacksonville; and Burt Saunders, R-Naples.

The reward for the Schiavo vote: An Old-West style flier activists circulated that said "Wanted the Republican 9." As then, the de facto leader was former Senate President King as we told you about here.

Other votes of note: Sen. Gary Siplin or Orlando was the only D in favor. Sen. Mandy Dawson actually made it for a vote. And Sen. Jeff Atwater of North Palm Beach voted yes, despite much chatter that he couldn't afford a hardline conservative vote while running for re-election in his D-leaning district.

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Between this vote and Atwater's failure to get the extra funds (district cost differential) for Broward schools that Dade got, I think he's got some things to answer for in November.

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