WASHINGTON Rep. Stephen L. Neal wiped out big time while surfing in ocean waters churned by incoming Hurricane Emily, but he came back strong two weeks later to steer the Resolution Trust Corp. funding bill through even trickier waters.

WIth one arm still in a sling to protect a shoulder dislocated in the surfing accident, the North Carolina Democrat pushed the the controversial $26.3 billion funding measure to a narrow 214-208 victory on the House floor Sept. 14

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