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House approves federal debt bill, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords arrives to vote

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WASHINGTON -- Emergency legislation to avoid an economy-rattling government default sped through the House tonight, a scant day before the deadline for action -- the dramatic vote made all the more memorable by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' first appearance in Congress since suffering a head wound in a shooting six months ago.

The vote was 269-161, but all eyes were on Giffords, who drew thunderous applause as she walked into the House chamber and cast her vote in favor of the bill.

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