Tuesday, June 10, 2008

NATIONAL & WORLD NEWS - June 10, 2008

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New York Times
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-Baptists Reluctantly Embrace "Liberal" McCain
Some Southern Baptists feel they have no choice but to vote for a "liberal"in the November U.S. presidential election: presumptive Republican nomineeJohn McCain. "It's basically a choice between a liberal and anultra-liberal," Jodie Sanders, a Southern Baptist church-goer fromFairfield, Texas, said about the choice between McCain and his Democraticrival Barack Obama.

-Justices Reject 'Class of One' Argument
Government employees who are singled out for arbitrary, irrational or evenvindictive treatment by their supervisors will find no relief in theConstitution's guarantee of equal protection, the Supreme Court ruled onMonday, unless the mistreatment is due to discrimination on the basis ofrace, sex or another protected category.

-Well: Gay Unions Shed Light on Gender in Marriage
For insights into healthy marriages, social scientists are looking in an unexpected place. A growing body of evidence shows that same-sex couples have a great deal to teach everyone else about marriage and relationships.
Most studies show surprisingly few differences between committed gay couples
and committed straight couples, but the differences that do emerge have shed light on the kinds of conflicts that can endanger heterosexual relationships.

-Threatening Iran
Saber-rattling at Iran is not a strategy and an attack on it by either theUnited States or Israel would be disastrous.

-Chinese Stocks Plunge 8.1 Percent
The Shanghai and Shenzhen markets fell after an increase in Chinese bankreserve requirements, increased worries about high food and oil prices, andfears about exports to the United States.

-S. Korean Cabinet Offers to Quit After Beef Protests
Fears that allowing imports of American beef could expose the public to madcow disease has ignited a political crisis.

-European Leaders Support Bush on Iran Sanctions
Opening a farewell tour of Europe, President Bush won European support onTuesday for a proposal to consider expanded sanctions on Iran, includingrestrictions on its banks, as a means of restraining Tehran's nuclearprogram.

-Trade Deficit Widened in April
The U.S. trade deficit widened more than expected in April as the averageprice for imported oil jumped to a record $96.81 per barrel and U.S. exportsand imports also set records, a Commerce Department report showed onTuesday.

Washington Post
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-Virginia's GOP, Crumbling Before Our Eyes
As attention focuses today on Virginia Democrats voting to choosecongressional candidates, the commonwealth's Republican Party appears to befraying--or worse--at both edges. The razor-thin margin by which formerGov. Jim Gilmore 10 days ago won the GOP nomination to face fellowex-governor Mark Warner in this fall's U.S. Senate race demonstrated thatmany in Virginia's Republican party are more focused on proving the purityof their conservative positions than in finding a message that might appealto independent voters.

-Israel's Syria Card
Talks with Damascus about a peace deal are worth trying, but a breakthroughis probably a long way off.
AS THE CHALLENGE from Iran has grown, the United States and its allies haverepeatedly been tantalized by the possibility of driving a wedge betweenTehran and its chief Arab ally, Syria. The two countries work together tosponsor the Hezbollah movement in Lebanon and Hamas in the Gaza Strip; removing Syria from the equation could cripple Iran's bid to become thedominant power in the Middle East. The problem is how to move the murderousand corrupt regime of Bashar al-Assad, which hosts Hamas's leadership and isunder investigation by the United Nations for assassinating Lebanesepoliticians. Sanctions against Syria have been too weak to be effective, andmost of the political bribes that might interest Mr. Assad would beself-defeating -- such as allowing him to restore Syria's political hegemonyover Lebanon.

-McClellan To Testify About CIA Leak
Former White House press secretary Scott McClellan has agreed to testifynext week before the House Judiciary Committee about his assertions that topBush administration officials misled him about their role in the leak of theidentity of CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson.

From MoveOn.Org
Amazing news: We smashed our goal and have given away over half a million Obama bumper stickers!
Since folks are so enthusiastic about showing their support for Obama, we're going to open this up to everybody. That's right: We'll give a free bumper sticker to every American who wants one. Can you take a moment to forward this email to your friends, family, and colleagues and let them know that they can order a FREE Obama bumper sticker? (If you haven't ordered yours yet, you can do so at the link below, too.)

Fort Report
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-Michelle Obama, Cindy McCain are study in contrast
Michelle Obama and Cindy McCain share a dislike of rough-edged U.S.politics. Each tried to talk her spouse out of running for the White House.
Obama, wife of Democratic candidate Barack Obama, and McCain, who is marriedto Republican John McCain, are both known for an elegant sense of style,lending glamour to their husbands' campaigns.

-Why It's Worse Than You Think
For months, economic Pollyannas have looked beyond the dismal headlines andpromised a quick recovery in the second half. They're dead wrong. Theforgettable first half of 2008 is stumbling to a close. On Friday, the LaborDepartment reported that American employers axed 49,000 jobs in May, thefifth straight month of job losses-an event that signals a recession sure asthe glittery ball dropping on Times Square augurs a New Year. The report,which inspired a 394-point decline in the Dow Jones Industrial AverageFriday, was the latest in a run of bad news. Auto sales, the largestretailing sector in the U.S., were off 10.7 percent in May from the yearbefore. And housing? Ugh. Nationwide, according to the Case-Shiller Index,home prices in the first quarter fell 14 percent.

-High oil prices? Weak dollar? Blame Bush
Few issues focus the public's attention on politics like the price ofgasoline. It keeps going up, the public wants relief, and politicians areheld accountable for not fixing the situation. Yet to solve the problem, youfirst need to know the cause of the illness.

-Barack Obama is $100M man
Leading Democratic fundraisers predict that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) willraise hundreds of millions of dollars over the next few months if he optsout of public financing and begins raising money for the general election.

-Getting to know African-American church is overdue
The controversy surrounding certain sermons and speeches made by particularmembers of Chicago's clergy has put a spotlight on the African-Americanchurch. These unfortunate events have spawned characterizations by the mediaand political pundits that often reflect an incomplete, incorrect andnegative image of one of the most vital, influential and positiveinstitutions in America.

-Obama doesn't shrink on affirmative action bans
Shortly after Hillary Rodham Clinton suspended her presidential campaign andurged her supporters - especially women - to embrace Barack Obama's WhiteHouse bid, the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee gave them anotherreason to rally to his side.


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