“The share of female politicians around the world reached a record of high of almost 17 percent in 2006 — up nearly 6 percentage points during the past decade.”
“Nearly 90 percent of Army National Guard units in the United States are rated “not ready” — largely as a result of shortfalls in billions of dollars’ worth of equipment — jeopardizing their capability to respond to crises at home and abroad,” according to a congressional commission’s preliminary report.
56 percent: Number of Americans who believe the federal government has a responsibility to provide health care for all. Eighty-four percent said they support expanding the Childrens’ Health Insurance Program to cover all uninsured children, even though President Bush has proposed cutting funding for the program.
Sources confirmed to McClatchy Newspapers that Sen. Pete Domenici (R-NM) and Rep. Heather Wilson (R-NM) “pressured the U.S. attorney in their state to speed up indictments in a federal corruption investigation that involved at least one former Democratic state senator.” The intervention came in mid-October, “when Wilson was in a competitive re-election campaign that she won by 875 votes out of nearly 211,000 cast.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) yesterday said he likely would support legislation by Sen. James Webb (D-VA) “barring a U.S. attack on Iran unless Congress explicitly gave President George W. Bush the green light to do so.”
Yesterday in a vote of 241–185, the House passed the Employee Free Choice Act, making it easier for workers to organize and establishing stronger penalties for employers who intimidate workers. Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA) will reintroduce an identical bill in the Senate soon.
“The danger posed by war to all of humanity and to our planet is at least matched by the climate crisis and global warming,” U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon yesterday warned in his first address on the issue.
Opium production in Afghanistan “hit record output” last year, rising 25 percent.
Jurors in the Scooter Libby trial “expect to deliberate into next week. They asked U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton for a dictionary and more office supplies and asked to leave early today for the weekend. Walton denied the request for the dictionary but told jurors they could take off at 2 p.m.”
And finally: www.HornballCouncilmembers.com. “A Town Council candidate admitted Wednesday that he owned an Internet pornography site but said it has no bearing on whether he should be elected March 13. ‘It’s registered to me, and I developed the page. … [But] this is a personal issue involving consenting adults. This campaign should be about issues.”