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A Pleasant Surprise

US legislators have given President Barack Obama a pleasant dilemma to deal with, says ScienceInsider's Jeffrey Mervis. Some preliminary 2013 budget plans are calling for more money to some science programs than the president had requested, leaving the White House to decide whether the proposals are fiscally feasible. In particular, the House Appropriations Committee recently agreed to increase funding to the Department of Energy for fusion research, as well as to NASA, beyond what the president had already requested, Mervis says. Further, the Senate Appropriations Committee has voted to give the National Science Foundation a $299 million increase over its current budget, though under the condition that NSF ease back on its new inter-agency programs and focus more on its core initiatives, Mervis adds.