Politics & Opinion
By Steve Holland and Anna Yukhananov WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama escalated U.S. economic sanctions against Russia on Tuesday for its aggression against Ukraine but dismissed suggestions the growing chill in U.S.-Russian relations marked the start of a new Cold War. The United States and the European Union, in a carefully coordinated action, announced targeted new sanctions against Russian banks, energy and defense firms. It was the West's most serious response yet to what it calls Russian instigation of and continuing support for the separatist uprising in the east and the shootdown of a Malaysian passenger jet on July 17 over eastern Ukraine. Obama, speaking at the White House, said the sanctions would have a "greater impact on the Russian economy than we've seen so far" in a drive to force Moscow to stop backing the separatists.
By Doina Chiacu and Richard Cowan WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. border security will probably suffer if Congress fails to act on President Barack Obama's $3.7 billion request to cope with the explosion of child migrants into the U.S. Southwest, lawmakers and congressional aides warned on Tuesday. Those concerns came amid signs that a Republican bill in the House of Representatives and a Democratic measure in the Senate, both of which were more modest than Obama's request, faced challenges. The Democratic-controlled Senate has scheduled a procedural vote for Wednesday on a $2.7 billion border funding bill. Senator John Cornyn of Texas told reporters he did not know of any fellow Republicans who will support it, indicating it likely will fall short of the 60 votes needed to advance in the 100-member Senate.
A Connecticut lawmaker on Wednesday will launch the first national effort in years to tax soda drinks, the latest bid by regulators and politicians to stem rising obesity and diabetes rates by curbing the consumption of sugary drinks. While former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg's controversial effort to limit cola size was struck down by a court earlier this year, other cities such as San Francisco have taken up the cause, emboldening critics and causing growing concern among beverage makers. Democratic Representative Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut is under no illusion about the chances that her Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Tax Act will become law. It is in part related to the consumption of sugar and added sugars and sugary beverages.
The U.S. Senate on Tuesday unanimously confirmed Bob McDonald as the next Veterans Affairs secretary, pinning Washington's hopes on the former Procter & Gamble Co chief executive to launch a massive turnaround effort at the troubled agency. McDonald, 61, replaces retired Army general Eric Shinseki, who resigned in late May amid a scandal over cover-ups of long waiting times for health-care appointments at VA hospitals and clinics across the country. The 97-0 vote to confirm McDonald comes a week after he pledged to bring corporate-style discipline and accountability to the agency, refocusing its 341,000 employees on serving veterans. "In the wake of the biggest scandal in the history of the Department of Veterans Affairs, Bob McDonald certainly has his work cut out for him," House Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller said after the Senate vote.
Karl Penhaul was delivering a live report from the Gaza Strip on Tuesday and was forced to take cover when a blast from Israel's shelling of Gaza City rocked a building just 200 yards behind him.
Like other outside political groups, No Labels spends a large part of its budget maintaining and promoting its own organization. And though No Labels has positioned itself as a warrior against gridlock, in an internal document obtained by Yahoo News, the group is banking on more political dysfunction in an attempt to find ?opportunity? and relevance for itself. The confidential document, distributed at No Labels? May executive board meeting, outlines a ?break through strategy? for the group, which despite raising millions and a buzzy-for-cable-news-talk launch, has struggled to find a foothold on the campaign trail or in the halls of Congress. The first point in that ?break through strategy? is a ?balance of power shift in the U.S. Senate,? a precarious position to outline, if not advocate, given No Labels? aim of bipartisanship and that one of the group?s co-chairs, Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, currently sits in the majority caucus.
While the Obama administration and much of the global media focused on crises in Ukraine and the Gaza Strip in recent weeks, the centrifugal forces of a sectarian civil war continued to pull Iraq apart.
If a rematch of the 2012 presidential election were held today, Mitt Romney would win the popular vote over President Barack Obama, a new CNN/ORC International poll finds.
A doctor prescribed Montana Democratic Sen. John Walsh medication for symptoms of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder after he returned from an Army deployment in Iraq, but he was not formally diagnosed with PTSD, the senator confirmed to Yahoo News following revelations this week that he had plagiarized a paper to receive his masters degree at the Army War College in 2007.
He?s reportedly worth around $250 million, so you might think Mitt Romney would opt for an opulent, luxurious vacation now that he?s out of the spotlight. Instead, the former presidential nominee, his wife, Ann, and five of their grandkids roughed it out in the ?American...
Christie tries to rekindle the magic around his brash style, but some in the GOP doubt it can work.
They desperately need Michelle Obama's help, especially with fundraising for the midterms.
He will soon trade his grand second-floor Capitol suite for a smaller hideaway elsewhere.
Democrats may attach immigration reform to it.
The White House releases a report that says inaction on climate change could cost $150 billion.
He concedes he can't be confident they will prompt Russian President Vladimir Putin to change course.
Changes made to the Highway Trust Fund patch mean it now goes back to the House.
A House committee chairman says Jeh Johnson wants to raise an initial hurdle in the process.
The Rasmussen Employment Index which measures worker confidence fell another point in July. This is the second month in a row the index is down after reaching a six-year high in May. At 98.4, worker confidence is down from June?s 99.1. The index reached its highest finding in six years of regular tracking in May at 100.1. The index fell to a recent low of 81.2 last October but gained steadily after that. It stood at 83.1 in July of last year. (Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The survey of 9,299 working Americans was conducted in June 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 1 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
The number of voters who consider themselves fiscally conservative continues to climb, while one-in-three say they are social liberals. A new Rasmussen Reports national survey finds that 44% of Likely U.S. Voters now identify themselves as conservative on fiscal issues such as taxes, government spending and business regulation. That?s up from 41% in April and is the highest finding since last July. Just 14% are liberal in this area, while 37% view themselves as moderates. (To see survey question wording, click here.) (Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on July 23-24, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Americans are model voters when you ask them what motivates their voting decisions. Eighty-three percent (83%) of American Adults believe most of their fellow citizens are not informed voters, but most voters beg to differ in the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey. (To see survey question wording, click here.) (Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also availableon Twitter or Facebook. The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on July 27-28, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
The Rasmussen Consumer Index, which measures consumer confidence on a daily basis, jumped four points on Tuesday to 103.9. Consumer confidence is up three points from a week ago and three months ago and is unchanged from a month ago. The Rasmussen Investor Index climbed two points on Tuesday to 119.6. Investor confidence is up six points from a week ago but down three points from a month ago and even with its level from three months ago. Detailed supplemental information, including a daily history and month-by-month trend data, is available for Platinum Members. (Want afree daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. Detailed supplemental information, including a daily history and month-by-month trend data, is available for Platinum Members. (Want afree daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The Rasmussen Consumer Index and Investor Indexes are derived from nightly telephone surveys of 1,500 adults and reported on a three-day rolling average basis. The baseline for the Index was established at 100.0 in October 2001. Readings above 100.0 indicate that confidence is higher than in the baseline month. Detailed supplemental information is available for Platinum Members.Historical data for the Consumer and Investor indexes as well as attitudes about the economy and personal finances are also available to Platinum Members.
The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 47% of Likely U.S. Voters approve of President Obama's job performance. Fifty-two percent (52%) disapprove (see trends). The latest figures include 22% who Strongly Approve of the way Obama is performing as president and 42% who Strongly Disapprove. This gives him a Presidential Approval Index rating of -20. Results are updated daily at 9:30 a.m. Eastern (sign up for free daily e-mail update).
The numbers are small for a large country like this, but the alarm is big over the influx of Central American children coming over the southern border. People are merging this special case involving about 57,000 children with generalized anxiety about a broken immigration system that has resulted in an estimated 11 million illegal residents. At bottom are fears that the United States is incapable of managing an orderly immigration program The surge of solitary children is especially disturbing because the arrivals are so pitiful. The public knows that they are innocents escaping war-like conditions and grinding poverty. But the public also knows that vast stretches of this troubled planet are soaked in misery. If fleeing war, violence and destitution is reason enough to be granted the right to stay in the United States, distressed souls in the hundreds of millions would qualify.
"Pare down the parasitic fringe" of government. "Favor a gospel of work" instead of aristocratic entitlement. "Rationalize finance" and "reverse the Parkinson's law of bureaucracy." All that sounds like rhetoric from the Tea Party or reform conservatives who assail what they call crony capitalism. But it's not a contemporary criticism. Those are phrases from a long essay, written more than half a century ago, by the British historian H. R. Trevor-Roper, titled "The General Crisis of the Seventeenth Century." Michael Barone, senior political analyst at the Washington Examiner, (www.washingtonexaminer.com), where this article first appeared, is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a Fox News Channel contributor and a co-author of The Almanac of American Politics. To find out more about Michael Barone, and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com. COPYRIGHT 2014 THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS.COM
Most Americans still consider marriage important, and those who are married rate it even more importantly. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 78% of American Adults think the institution of marriage is important to U.S. society, including 54% who view it as Very Important. These findings have generally held steady in surveys since May 2011. Just 18% think marriage is not very or Not At All Important to society. (To see survey question wording, click here.) (Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The national survey of 1,000 American Adults was conducted on July 24-25, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Democrats have taken the lead over Republicans again on the latest Generic Congressional Ballot. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey for the week ending July 27 finds that 41% of Likely U.S. Voters would vote for the Democrat in their district?s congressional race if the election were held today, while 39% would choose the Republican instead. (Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The national telephone survey of 3,500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports from July 21-27, 2014. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 2 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Unlike his cousin in Colorado, Democratic incumbent Tom Udall is comfortably ahead of his Republican challenger in New Mexico?s U.S. Senate race. A new Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of Likely New Mexico Voters finds Udall with 54% support versus Republican Allen Weh?s 33%. Three percent (3%) like some other candidate in the race, and 10% are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.) (Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook. The survey of 860 Likely Voters in New Mexico was conducted on July 21-22, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Fox News Politics
President Obama is considering executive actions to reduce the number of illegal immigrant deportations, including issuing work permits to some of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants currently in the U.S., according to a published report.
The top negotiators, Sen. Bernie Sanders, the Vermont independent, and Rep. Jeff Miller, a Florida Republican, have struck a deal that would provide $17 billion to the department to hire more doctors and nurses and build new facilities, and to make it easier to fire bumbling officials.
As a part of its controversial proposed rule to limit carbon emissions from existing power plants, the EPA held simultaneous public comment sessions in Washington, Atlanta and Denver Tuesday. The comments, designed to help shape the formulation of the final rule, may have complicated that task, given the often diametrically opposed opinions expressed.
Fiscal conservatives are expressing doubts over the bill?s steep cost.
The Pennsylvania State Police, one of the nation's largest forces, is faced with ending the physical fitness tests it gives to applicants for state trooper positions or defending in court a practice that the federal government says illegally discriminates against women.
A federal magistrate judge ruled Tuesday that U.S. Marshals will not be able to able to carry out her earlier order to seize a million barrels of Kurdish crude oil unless the tanker carrying the cargo comes closer to the Texas shore.
The House could accept the Senate's changes or reject them and send the bill back to the Senate.
Krauthammer, a syndicated columnist and a Fox News contributor, said he believes the Democrats are doing so to help their party in the upcoming midterm elections.
The Republican head of the Benghazi Select Committee warned Tuesday that no witnesses would be off limits in its upcoming probe and that he would consider going to court, if necessary, to compel testimony.
The rise of ISIS militants in Syria and Iraq, and the unwillingness of Americans to see their military involved in another foreign conflict, appear to have cooled President Obama's once-strident rhetoric demanding Syrian President Bashar al-Assad "must go" -- even as the death toll in the three-year-old civil war tops 170,000.
White House Dossier
11:05 am CT || Delivers remarks on the economy; Uptown Theatre, Kansas City 1:15 pm CT || Departs Kansas City 4:40 pm || Arrives White House All times Eastern except as noted
Okay, that’s a trick headline. Because there is no winner to yesterday’s caption contest. It’s the era of Obama, and liberalism, and so EVERYBODY is a winner! Because you know these days, everybody wins, everybody gets a trophy, and everybody gets a handout. Really, thanks for your great contributions. There were many seriously funny headline […]
As you may be aware, the White House has been talking up the possibility that President Obama is going to be impeached – IMPEACHED, I TELL YA – by Republicans. Well, Democratic fundraisers, including the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, or DCCC, have been talking it up too and raising tons of cash on the possibility. Nothing […]
The event has concluded.
Barack Obama’s presidency has been marked by one overseas catastrophe after another. The screw ups are so legion, the incompetence so prolific, that, understandably, it gets confusing. So White House Dossier has helpfully compiled for you a list of the top foreign policy disasters wrought by the unrivaled fecklessness of our president. We think you’ll […]
The briefing has concluded.
If you want to understand what a joke the rule of law has become under President Obama, you might want to take note of why the illegal immigrants outside the White House are there: They want to be included in future White House meetings about immigration. No more meetings about us without us, they are […]
Netanyahu: Be ready for long war . . . Associated Press Rebuffing ceasefire demands, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israelis Monday to be ready for a “prolonged” war. Israelis heap criticism on Kerry . . . Washington Post The secretary of state has been lambasted by all sides for his apparent failure in attempts to negotiate […]
The Senate is racing to approve three must-pass bills this week.
Republicans say land protections are hampering efforts to stop the flow of immigrants.
Reid?s remark could hamper Boehner?s efforts to win conservative support.
GOP leaders, however, have given no indication they intend to push an impeachment measure.
OPINION | The GOP?s obstructionism now stands in the way.
A top military official said North Korea would "fire our nuclear-armed rockets" if provoked.
Republicans say they aren't sure the measure has the votes to pass the House.
The bill sets aside $10 billion for veterans to seek care at non-VA facilities.
New York Times Columnists
Madagascar is an example of a combination of global pressures coming to the fore.
As the clock ticks down on union negotiations, the Met plays out its most painful opera.
Israel's new war in Gaza and the failures behind it are a betrayal of the Zionism in which I still believe.
Teachers shouldn?t be learning on the job as they go.
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is largely a proxy war rooted in broader rivalries throughout the Arab world.
A loophole so big whole companies can slip through.
As politics, House Republicans? threat to sue the president may work best for Democrats.
Madagascar, one of the world?s greatest ecosystems, is on the edge.
From Babe to Jeter, Roger Angell has taken his readers out to the old ballgame.
Can the G.O.P. stop being the party of the rich?
Wall Street Journal Opinion
The left has a strange affection for Federal Reserve policy that has turbocharged inequality.
Sam Brownback's tax cuts must be discredited before they succeed.
Time for a reality check as New York prepares to award the defendants $40 million.
The U.S. and Europe impose serious sanctions on Russia. At last.
Home schoolers sue the regulators who want to shut them up.
Governments want the right to see email stored anywhere in the world. Microsoft says not so fast.
The 'Gaza generation' seems worried about Arab deaths only when Jews are involved.
Charles Glass reviews a new biography of the legendary actor.
People talk about the dinner they had last week and the dinner they'll have next week as they photograph the dinner they're having now.
Their customers might love them, but shareholders not so much.
Special Report with Bret Baier
By: Bridget Creel?Special Report Summer Associate Flying to and from West Africa introduces new concerns for travelers as the Ebola epidemic continues to fester throughout Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea. Although the CDC announced that there is little risk for Americans, people cancelled their travel plans when Liberian government official Patrick Sawyer died from the virus after travelling from Liberia to Nigeria last week. Worry among the people intensifies in Minnesota, where Sawyer?s family lives. The outbreak first emerged in March, with a report from the World Health Organization (WHO) announcing 86 suspected cases and 59 deaths. According to a report released on Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Ebola virus disease (EVD) has killed 660 people. Even though the virus has not been spotted in the United States, the consequences of Ebola in Africa have quickly startled the attention of Americans. Ebola is first transmitted from infected animals to humans. Then, the virus is spread between humans through contact with blood or bodily fluids. The symptoms of the virus may include muscle pain, headache, vomiting, diarrhea and internal/external bleeding. Interestingly enough, it can take up to 21 days after exposure for symptoms to surface. With fatality rates up to 90%, there is timely pressure to find a cure for this illness. So, why is obtaining a resolution so difficult? First and foremost, Ebola is caused by a virus, not bacteria. This means that the Ebola virus found in the body consists of small molecules, which are difficult for doctors to target for treatment. Due to the high mortality rate, the tests conducted are limited and can only be carried out in a safe and secure environment. Currently, there have been no signs of controlling the disease because doctors are more focused on instantly treating patients, instead of long term prevention. Treatment for patients who have contracted Ebola typically consists of general remedies, meaning hydration and maintenance of proper blood and oxygen levels. In order to keep Ebola from further dispersing, it is required that patients be isolated from others. Still, that does not stop concerned families from taking care of their sick relatives, or burying contaminated bodies, which enhances disease spread and mortality rate. Proper precautions must be taken in West Africa to guarantee that the disease can be confined, treated and not transmitted to any other countries. Health workers who are treating the disease are extensively trained and taking cautious measures such as wearing several layers of protective clothing and masks. However, that has not stopped two American health workers from catching the virus, and several doctors from dying.
By: Bridget Creel, Special Report Summer Associate In response to a deadly ultimatum delivered by ISIS, thousands of Iraqi Christians have left their homes to seek safety from religious persecution. Mosul, Iraq?s second largest city, was captured by ISIS in June and the extremists have threatened and even harmed all inhabitants who do not practice Islam. This weekend, the Islamic State terror group (ISIS/IS) delivered a statement to Christians that gave them the choice between converting to Islam, paying a tax or fleeing their ancient homeland. The offer was time sensitive and if they failed to choose by Saturday, July 19, ISIS said there would be ?nothing for them but the sword.? Christians who were not willing to compromise with the militants fled Mosul. Before they were able to officially depart, ISIS demanded that they be stripped of all valuable belongings, leaving most Christians with nothing but remnants of their clothing. Christians are not the only ones affected by the acts of ISIS. ISIS is responsible for the destruction of mosques and shrines, causing other religious minorities to flee Mosul as well. Iraqi Prime Minister, Nuri Al-Maliki, called for governmental support for the homeless Iraqis who were forced to leave Mosul. He said that this specific event demonstrates "the extreme criminality and terrorist nature of this group.? Although many have moved away, some Iraqi Christians are facing the alternatives. Several Christians have converted to Islam and those that choose to stay, refuse to abandon their religious beliefs. Syrian Catholic Archbishop of Mosul, Yohanna Petros Mouche told the Washington Post, ?If we all leave, it sends the message that there is nowhere safe for Christians to live in Iraq ? and this worries me. I?m not a vagabond. This is my home, and I will die here if necessary.?
By: Bridget Creel, Special Report Summer Associate Right in between the surge of rockets from Islamic extremist group Hamas and ground offensives from Israeli forces, innocent inhabitants of Gaza City turn to other options for shelter and safety. The Gazans run into one problem: they are literally trapped. The rectangular geography of the Gaza Strip poses implications for those wishing to relocate. The Gaza Strip, which is 25 miles long and between three and seven miles wide, has concrete walls and fences along the perimeter of the eastern and northern boundaries. Israel and Egypt can be found at the southern end of the strip and the western side of the strip borders the Mediterranean Sea, leaving the Gazans immovable. Due to the travel restrictions on Gazans from Egypt and Israel, Gazans are forced to seek out new living situations within the unsafe area. Those along the border have fled to relatives? homes and those with nowhere else to turn have looked to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency?s (UNRWA) emergency shelters for accommodation. Beginning on July 7, UNRWA issued a state of emergency in all areas within the Gaza Strip. Early this morning, UNRWA tweeted, ?More than 83,000 people are now taking refuge in UNRWA schools in #Gaza. Numbers are growing.? Despite consistent efforts to keep up with the rising number of inhabitants, the UNRWA has run into several difficulties, some more unexpected than others. Last week, 20 rockets were found in one of the agency?s abandoned schools. Following the discovery, the agency issued a statement that prohibited the storage of the Gaza militants? harmful rockets in their facilities. UNRWA continues to distribute food and water to the shelters but the combat has disrupted the delivery of the supplies. The agency runs into numerous other problems, such as the destruction of schools, as the conflict escalates. In the past 24 hours, numbers released by the UNRWA revealed a devastating loss for both sides. Innocent Palestinian and Israeli citizens are facing the repercussions of the battle. This morning, President Obama said Israel has the right to defend itself against Hamas but that the United States has ?serious concerns about the rising number of Palestinian civilian deaths and the loss of Israeli lives.? He went on to say that the focus should be ?a cease-fire that ends the fighting and that can stop the deaths of innocent civilians, both in Gaza and in Israel.? Inside United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) on July 18, 2014 in Gaza City. Israel launched a Gaza ground campaign after 10 days of bombardments from the air and sea failed to stop militants' rocket attacks, stepping up an offensive that already has taken a heavy toll in civilian lives.(Photo by Momen Faiz/NurPhoto/Sipa USA) (Sipa via AP Images)
I am wrapping up the 'Special Heart' book tour, but I wanted to share these photos taken at Politics and Prose
in Washington, DC. Children's Nationa
l helped with this signing and it was a huge success--Paul even came with us to sign a few books. He was a little shy at first, but he really got into it and even started to sign his name with a heart and a scar next to it. Thank you to photographer Cassidy DuHon
for these photos. A little shy at first-- Paul signs his name with a heart and a scar next to it--chicks dig scars ;) Gearing up for more books-- Pictured with Paul's Cardiologist Dr. Deneen Heath A very special moment-- Paul met Emma, who is also 7 years old and has had 2 open-heart surgeries. Emma is waiting on a third surgery. They compared scars and seemed to really enjoy meeting one another--
Paul and Daniel didn't mind my 2nd place trophy following the Washington Kastles Charity Classic-
By: Bridget Creel, Special Report Summer Associate Over the past ten years, four instances have occurred where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have sent active bacteria samples to outside labs. An anthrax scare took place last month, marking the fifth mishap for the CDC. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) insisted on further investigation and recently exposed new details of the incident. Backtracking to June 19, the CDC announced that scientists working at the lab in Atlanta had been unintentionally exposed to anthrax. The CDC quickly took action and provided antibiotics for those who were affected. Following the scare, there was no indication that any of the scientists were infected. It is expected that in every instance, the CDC takes cautionary measures and assesses all risks before encountering dangerous bacteria. With that being said, how could a slip up like this happen for the fifth time? On Friday, the CDC published a detailed report of the event, with everything from findings to action plans. According to the CDC?s report, ?The overriding factor contributing to this incident was the lack of an approved, written study plan reviewed by senior staff or scientific leadership to ensure that the research design was appropriate and met all laboratory safety requirements.? Additional aspects that contributed to the occurrence included the use of unwarranted sterilization methods, no confirmation for inactive materials and insufficient knowledge of the procedures. As officials further investigated the catastrophe, additional information was uncovered. A report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said that the CDC should have sterilized anthrax samples before the samples were sent to the other CDC labs. The report also found that there were several different factors that went against safety guidelines including use of expired disinfectants, use of defective security measures, lack of examination of exposed scientists and the transfer of the bacteria through Ziploc bags. A House hearing was held today that discussed recent reports of the problems caused by the CDC. The hearing addressed issues such as ways to improve biosafety, the broader implications of the event and whether or not Congressional action should take place. The CDC labs have been closed and will not reopen until safety guidelines are put in place, CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden said.
Christian Science Monitor
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If the midterm elections were held today, the Republican party could expect a three-seat majority in the Senate next year, according to the new poll from the New York Times, CBS News, and YouGov. The poll, which surveyed voters across the 34 states with Senate races via an online panel, finds GOP candidates leading in 8 races for seats currently held by Democrats.
In a surprising decision, a federal judge overturned
If you like going out in the sun or, perhaps, must do so because of your work and you don?t want to get burned, there is good news. Of a sort.
Ayatollah Seyed Hossein Kazemeyni Boroujerdi has been incarcerated, mainly in Tehran?s ignominious Evin Prison, since 2006. He is accused of ?combat against God? for his criticisms of the Iranian clerical dictatorship, and is serving an 11-year sentence. Now kept in the ?special clerical ward,? he has suffered numerous ailments, has accused his jailers of torture, and is among the most famous Iranian prisoners of conscience.
The U.S. has been at war for 13 years and according to General Michael Flynn, outgoing head of the Defense Intelligence Agency:
Jon Meacham on why Lamar Alexander should prevail against a hard-right challenger.
A U.S. Army War College official says the Department of Defense has taken the unusual step of overseeing a plagiarism investigation against Sen. John Walsh of Montana.
?I think it?s insensitive and I think that there?s no reason for it to continue as the name of a team in our nation?s capital,? she told Fusion TV.
President Obama announces a coordinated effort with the EU in response to Russian actions in Ukraine.
The Senate has confirmed Robert McDonald as the next leader of the embattled Department of Veterans Affairs.
President Obama delivers remarks on the situation in Ukraine.
Isolating Russia is "a choice that Russia and President Putin in particular has made," Obama says.
Isolating Russia is "a choice that Russia and President Putin in particular has made," Obama says.
White House schedules remarks at 2:50 pm ET
Lawyers for former Virginia first lady Maureen McDonnell said in court Tuesday that her marriage had broken down by the time a former CEO began to lavish gifts on her.
The Right Scoop
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