Pills From Canada Backed

The senior citizens group AARP said yesterday it will endorse a bipartisan bill that would allow Americans to import cheaper drugs from Canada and other foreign countries.

"Our members want lower drug costs, and this is one of many measures that can help get them," said Steve Hahn, an AARP spokesman.

The bill would allow Americans to bring in cheaper drugs from Canada, and would phase in imports from other industrialized countries later.

The House has passed drug reimportation legislation, despite opposition from many senior Republican leaders and pharmaceutical companies.

A key Senate committee chairman, Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), has introduced another import bill, and his panel plans to take it up in July.

Complaint Accuses DeLay

A Texas Democrat filed multiple complaints with the House ethics committee, accusing House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) of "serious criminal acts."

DeLay said the charges levied by Rep. Chris Bell had no substance and were the product of a disgruntled lawmaker who "is very bitter about his losing the primary and he is using the ethics committee to express his bitterness."

Bell said he had been preparing his complaints long before his March defeat in the Democratic primary, a result mainly of redistricting brought about by DeLay and his GOP allies in the Texas Legislature.

Bell accused DeLay of soliciting campaign contributions in return for legislative favors; laundering illegal campaign contributions through a Texas political action committee; and improperly involving a federal agency in a Texas partisan matter.

Passport Delay Urged

Senior U.S. officials urged Congress to further delay the October deadline for 27 U.S. allies to introduce machine-readable passports with a computer chip containing a digital photo.

They called on Congress to approve a two-year delay in the deadline for the measure to keep tighter control on those entering the country.

The House approved a one-year extension on Monday and the Senate is considering legislation for a two-year extension. Officials said one additional year would not give the countries enough time to meet a U.S. requirement of adding computer chips containing a digital photo into machine-readable passports.

9/11 Testimony Canceled

The German prosecutor who investigated the al Qaeda cell in Hamburg has canceled his appearance before the commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, according to the panel. Matthias Krauss was scheduled to testify today before the 10-member panel as part of a hearing.

-- From News Services