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North Carolina Gov. Beverly Purdue will not seek re-election: report

North Carolina Gov. Beverly Purdue (D) will not run for a second term, reports said Thursday. At least two sources told The Washington Post that Purdue would release a statement later in the afternoon confirming her intentions. North Carolina’s first woman governor faced an uphill battle after being elected amid…

Brewer, Obama speak ‘intensely’ on airport tarmac

When President Barack Obama landed at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport on Wednesday he probably didn’t expect Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer to welcome him by sticking her finger in his face. According to a White House pool report, the two “spoke intensely for a few minutes” after the president walked onto the…

Texas girl’s plea for justice rides balloon all the way to Florida

When El Paso first-grader Marcella Ornelas wrote her “dream” for a more secure future for all on a notepad and taped the message to a single blue balloon, she couldn’t have guessed it would be recovered by two little girls all the way in Florida. The note was part of…

Hecklers shout ‘liar’ as Wisconsin’s Walker touts job creation

MADISON (Reuters) – Wisconsin’s Republican Governor Scott Walker, whose tumultuous first year in office saw partisan budget battles, massive street protests and a statewide recall effort against him, focused on job creation and ridding government of wasteful spending in a ‘state of the state’ speech on Wednesday disrupted by heckling.…

Lawsuit challenges ‘work-activity programs’ for Oregon’s disabled

PORTLAND, Ore (Reuters) – Thousands of disabled Oregonians are stuck segregated in dead-end jobs at “sheltered workshops,” in violation of federal law, because of failed state programs that should help them find mainstream employment, according to a landmark lawsuit filed on Wednesday. Sheltered workshops, sometimes called “work-activity programs,” are facilities…

Hinckley is a ‘danger’ if released: psychiatrist

John Hinckley’s tendency to lie and his isolation increase the risk that he presents a new danger to society after 30 years of confinement for shooting president Ronald Reagan, a psychiatrist told a federal judge. The judge is reviewing Hinckley’s case to decide whether to expand the conditional release rights…

Is the American Dream still achievable in 2012?

President Barack Obama’s populist vision of a fairer US society comes at a time when the American Dream is becoming tougher to achieve after three decades of rising inequality, experts said. With a US election in his sights, Obama used his State of the Union speech to urge large tax…

Cross-hair stickers placed outside Missouri lawmakers’ offices

Missouri Capitol Police are searching for who placed orange cross-hair stickers outside the Capitol offices of five Democratic senators and one Republican lawmaker, according to the Columbia Daily Tribune. “We don’t have any explanation,” Democratic state Sen. Jolie Justus said on the Senate floor. “Many of us when we came…

Gingrich promises moon base that could become 51st state

Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich on Wednesday vowed to build a lunar colony that he said could eventually become the 51st state. Speaking to Republicans on Florida’s Space Coast, the former House Speaker explained that the “grandiose” idea would be possible because the government would fuel innovation by awarding prizes…

Indiana state House approves right-to-work bill

INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) – Indiana’s Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed right-to-work legislation on Wednesday, sending on to Governor Mitch Daniels a controversial measure that could hit organized labor in the pocketbook. Once signed into law by Daniels, who gave the Republican response to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech…

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