She speaks for both of us

Try imagining a debate between candidates for president in which one was so persuasive that the other promptly quit the race. No way, right? But that's exactly what happened earlier this month when the campaigners for a seat on City Council in Pocatello, Idaho, squared off. When it was all over, Brian Spencer decided that since he and rival Barbara Roberts "have the same platforms" - essentially their opposition to a controversial new monthly fee that residents and businesses must pay to keep storm drainage from polluting the Portneuf River - he'd better withdraw rather than risk splitting the vote against an incumbent who's up for reelection. And, besides, he admitted, her support base was stronger than his.

States where English is least likely to be spoken at home

While claiming they speak English "very well," 47 million US residents, or almost 1 in 5,use a different language in their own homes, according to a new report by the Census Bureau. Based on data from the 2000 Census, 28.1 million residents reported that Spanish is their first language - a 62 percent rise from 1990. The 10 states with the largest percentages of residents five years and older who speak a language other than English at home:

1. California 39%
2. New Mexico 37%
3. Texas 31%
4. New York 28%
5. Hawaii 27%
6. Arizona 26%
7. New Jersey 25%
8. Florida (tie) Nevada 23%
10. Rhode Island 20%

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