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Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnel’s education agenda took a hit last week when two Republican senators helped derail his proposal that would make it easier to fire teachers in the state.

But it was Senate Democratic Leader Richard L. Saslaw, Fairfax Democrat, who was threatening to throw himself off the state Capitol building over another one of the governor’s major education proposals.

The GOP eked out a big win Friday when Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling broke a 20-20 tie on a measure that would grant tax credits to corporations that provide scholarships for low-income children to attend private schools.

Republicans argue that it helps the state move out of a “one-size-fits-all” educational system in which children without sufficient means have to attend schools that may not be tailored to their needs, and that the measure could save taxpayer dollars in the long-term.

Democrats, meanwhile, decried the notion of using general fund money to pay kids to go to private school when it could be going to improve the state’s public education system.

The bill contains a “sunset clause” of 2017. So the state, in theory, could examine whether the measure has worked before deciding whether to continue it past that date.

The House version of the bill has no sunset clause. And Mr. Saslaw, in his typically blunt fashion, expressed his skepticism that anything was going to be reversed or ended. “If this expires in 2017, I’ll parachute off the roof of this building,” he said.

Late-night fodder

As the Virginia legislature debated a measure that would require drug testing for some welfare recipients in the state, Democrats cautioned they didn’t want to end up as the butt of late-night television jokes.

Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” had skewered Florida’s version of the measure, which a federal judge blocked last fall.

Well, it’s already too late, though that’s not the bill that’s become the target. On Saturday Night Live, Amy Poehler brought up a bill that has passed both the House of Delegates and the state Senate that would require women to undergo ultrasound imaging before having an abortion.

The bill is part of the state’s informed consent law to determine the gestational age of the baby. Because many women have abortions very early on in their pregnancies, though, it’s quite possible that a rather invasive transvaginal ultrasound procedure would have to be used.

“Now don’t get me wrong, I love transvaginal — it’s my favorite airline,” Ms. Poehler said. “I got so many miles on transvaginal that I always get upgraded to lady business.”

Seth Meyers, who headlined last year’s White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, then went after Delegate Robert G. Marshall’s “personhood” bill that defines life as beginning at conception.”

What’s next? Life begins at ‘last call?’” he asked. “Life begins when you click ‘send’ on your match.com profile? I mean, really.”

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