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White House Denies BRAC Threat: Making the Internet rounds is a rumor that a senior White House official threatened Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) with putting Offutt Air Force Base on a new base cut list if he doesn't back the Administration's health care plan. (Michael Goldfarb first reported the story Dec. 15 on The Weekly Standard blog.) Despite an almost immediate denial from White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer, who called it "baseless and false" and "an absurd rumor," 20 Republican Senators, led by Sen. John Ensign of Nevada, protested the "news" in a Dec. 16 letter to leaders of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Mud-slinging aside, maybe the real news is that fear of yet another round of base closures is never dead.