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California glitch-ridden nuclear plant shut down for good

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A California nuclear power plant shut down last year after a radiation leak will be permanently closed, its owners said Friday.

Southern California Edison (SCE) has been trying to fix problems which came to light last year after a minor leak in one reactor at the San Onofre plant, north of San Diego in southern California.

But SCE parent company Edison International’s chairman Ted Craver said experts had finally concluded that they cannot resolve the problems quickly or comprehensively enough.

“We have concluded that the continuing uncertainty about when or if (San Onofre) might return to service was not good for our customers, our investors, or the need to plan for our region’s long-term electricity needs,” he said.

The shutdown will mean the loss of some 1,100 jobs, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Anti-nuclear activists hailed the announcement. “It has great national implications and is a real strong message that this nation does not need nuclear power,” Shaun Burnie, of Friends of the Earth, told the newspaper.

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Democratic US Senator Barbara Boxer said she was “greatly relieved that the San Onofre nuclear plant will be closed permanently… This nuclear plant had a defective redesign and could no longer operate as intended.”

A first reactor at San Onofre was shut down in January last year after a radiation leak, although the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) said there was no danger to the public.

But experts found unexpected erosion on tubes that carry radioactive water, and the entire plant was shut down, forcing Californian authorities to fire up alternative power generation facilities.

Subsequent investigation showed that more than 3,400 tubes in new steam generators at San Onofre were damaged.

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San Onofre produced enough energy to power 1.4 million homes, according to SCE. California’s only other nuclear reactor, at Diablo Canyon between Los Angeles and San Francisco, is run by Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

Dan Dominguez of the Utility Workers Union of America lamented the job losses, and believed the plant could be salvaged. “But the decision’s been made, so we’ll have to deal with the consequences,” he told the LA Times.

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Progressive reformer claims victory in fiercely-contested Queens DA race

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Progressive reformer Tiffany Cabán has declared victory in her campaign versus Melinda Katz in the Queens District Attorney race.

With 99% of precincts reporting, Cabán held a lead of 1,090 votes, The New York Times reports.

Cabán was backed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).

Katz was backed by Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), who chairs the Queens Democratic Party, and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY)

https://twitter.com/CabanForQueens/status/1143721257353076737

https://twitter.com/CabanForQueens/status/1143721448168710151

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2020 Election

New 2020 poll shows Trump trailing all Democrats — some by double-digits

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President Donald Trump trails all of his Democratic rivals in hypothetical matchups of the 2020 presidential race, according to the result of a new poll released Tuesday.

This article originally appeared on Salon.

The survey, conducted by Emerson Polling, found that the president lags behind former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., by 10 points nationally — 45 percent to 55 percent. He also trails Sen. Elizabeth Warren by six points — 47 percent to 53 percent —and Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg by four points — 48 percent to 52 percent.

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Beto O’Rourke’s ‘war tax’ policy proposal is straight out of ‘Starship Troopers’

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Amid an overcrowded Democratic presidential candidate field, it's hard to distinguish yourself from the pack if you don't slot easily into the scale that runs from "pro-corporate centrist" to "left-populist." If you're former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke —  who falls somewhere in the middle, politically, and somewhere towards the top, looks-wise — you pull a militaristic policy proposal out of your hat that recalls some of the most campy pseudo-fascist sci-fi ever written.

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 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH 

Trump endorses killing journalists, like Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Online ad networks are now targeting sites that cover acts of violence against dissidents, LGBTQ people and people of color.

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