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An all-out a-salt: Fries liberated from French

Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published March 12, 2003

WASHINGTON -- The cafeterias of the House of Representatives will now be serving fries with a side order of patriotism.

Lawmakers struck a lunchtime blow against the French on Tuesday when they ordered that House office building cafeterias put "freedom fries" on the menu.

And for breakfast they now will have "freedom toast."

The name changes follow similar actions by restaurants around the country protesting French opposition to the administration's Iraq war plans.

"Update. Now Serving in All House Office Buildings, 'Freedom Fries,' " read a sign that Republican Reps. Bob Ney of Ohio and Walter Jones of North Carolina placed at the register in the Longworth Office Building food court.

Jones said he was inspired by Cubbie's restaurant in Beaufort, N.C., one of the first to put "freedom fries" on the menu instead of french fries.

"This action today is a small but symbolic effort to show the strong displeasure of many on Capitol Hill with the actions of our so-called ally, France," said Ney, chairman of the House Administration Committee, which oversees House operations.

The French Embassy in Washington had no immediate comment, except to say that french fries actually come from Belgium.

Ney said he was of French descent and "once the French government comes around we can get back to talking about french fries."

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