The language in Richardson’s ad—“He’ll uphold Oregon’s laws to protect my right to choose”—hews closely to the rhetoric used by Walker, Brown, and Beauprez. All of those Republicans have previously sought to restrict women’s reproductive rights (Walker supports eliminating all abortions). But during this election season, they have each tried to strike a moderate tone on the issue.
Richardson’s ad is particularly brazen given his long record of opposing abortion rights. He wrote a letter to the Oregonian in 1990 saying that “a woman relinquishes her unfettered right to control her own body when her actions cause the conception of a baby.” As a state legislator, he sponsored legislation to give unborn fetuses the rights of humans and to require parental notification for abortions. In 2007, he voted against mandating that hospitals offer emergency contraception to women who have been sexually assaulted.
What’s more, Richardson has the endorsement and full-throated support of Oregon Right to Life, the state’s main anti-abortion-rights group.
As pressure grows beween Israel and Palestine, a contested holy site for both Muslims and Jews has reopened. The compound was closed after clashes over the fatal shooting of a Palestinian.
The Temple Mount or al-Haram al-Sharif, a key holy site for Muslims and Jews in Jerusalem, Israel, was reopened on Friday in time for midday prayers. On a rare occassion, it was closed following clashes over the fatal shooting of a Palestinian by security forces on Wednesday. The man, Muataz Hijazi, was suspected of attempting to assassinate a hard-line Jewish activist, Yehuda Glick, who advocates giving Jews greater access to the site and is a member of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud.
But beneath the surface, the investigation found, many of these arrangements have problems. By looking at court records covering 600 H-1B visa abuse cases, the investigators found that contracts are often draconian, allowing the body shops to withhold wages and force workers to pay large fees if they quit. Some hold visas hostage to enforce these contracts, or threaten lawsuits.
Others bring in workers even though no jobs await. You can’t legally get an H1-B visa unless there’s a job to fill, so body shops purport to offer engineers open positions, and the engineers hired by a body shop should collect salaries from day one. But the body shops typically don’t pay workers until they place them at companies. And the body shops stockpile, or “bench,” workers so they have them on hand when jobs come up, sometimes sticking them in guesthouses and forbidding them to leave the property, the investigation determined.
That’s how the system hurts the workers. But it’s also hurting companies who want to bring in expert engineers and computer programmers the old-fashioned way—that is, by applying directly for an H-1B visa. Why? Because there’s a national cap of just 65,000 of these visas per year, and when the body shops scoop up visas to stockpile workers, the visas are not available for companies who really have tech jobs they can’t fill from within the U.S.
The local official introducing the candidate eventually got around to the point - Sen. Mark Begich, standing up for Alaskans, get out the vote - but first he lit into the Koch brothers and what he described as money’s power to warp politics.
“They’re literally spending hundreds of millions of dollars to defeat Sen. Begich,” fumed Bill Wielechowski, a state senator who represents a swath of Alaska’s biggest city. “Why do these billionaires want to defeat Sen. Begich? They want to fundamentally change our government. … Don’t be mistaken. The fate of the U.S. Senate is in your hands.”
When Begich took the microphone, he could only shake his head and smile. “That was my speech you just did,” said the Democrat, who is trying to keep his job in a tight and closely watched race against Republican Dan Sullivan.
State Department officials and Washington’s diplomatic community are pressing the Senate to address a backlog of ambassadorial nominations during Congress’ post-election lame-duck session.
They fear that if the Republicans win control of the Senate, the already sluggish pace of voting on President Barack Obama’s nominees will worsen over the next two years.
“We don’t know what’s going to happen in the elections,” said Kristen Fernekes, a spokeswoman for the 17,000-member American Foreign Service Association. “We don’t know what’s going to happen in the lame duck. We’re deeply concerned about this becoming the new normal, and we don’t want to see it take 400, 300, 200 days to get people to their posts.”
Most people do not realize that cable companies are more under the control of local bodies such as Public Utility and Cable commissions than they are under the control of Federal agencies. The reason for this is that the cable exists in public right of ways controlled by local authorities and not the FCC in Washington. So if you have sucky cable choices, it’s most likely locals politicians who control your options and cable fate.
Google Fiber told prospective customers in Leawood on Thursday that it won’t build its network in the prosperous Johnson County suburb.
“We’ve been working hard to figure out how to make a fiber (optic) construction project work in Leawood,” the company said in an email to people who had registered to be future customers. “But we’ve found that it would require a much more difficult construction effort and schedule than planned. So unfortunately we won’t be bringing Google Fiber to Leawood.”
A company spokeswoman issued a nearly identical statement. It didn’t elaborate on what prompted the seller of ultra-fast Internet and TV service to back out of one of the most prosperous — and potentially lucrative — cities in the Kansas City market.
Leawood City Administrator Scott Lambers said an agreement the city signed with Google in August 2013 prohibits him from talking publicly about any discussions with the California company. He did confirm, however, that it was Google’s decision to pull out of Leawood.
Iraqi forces remain on the defensive against the Islamic State in western Iraq, unable to protect the tribesmen who U.S. and Iraqi officials are betting will throw their weight behind the fight against the militant group, U.S. military leaders said Thursday.
“The Iraqi security forces in al-Anbar province are in defensive positions and would be unlikely to be able to respond to a request for assistance for the Albu Nimr tribe,” Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters at the Pentagon.
This week, Islamic State fighters publicly executed dozens of Sunni tribesmen, most of them from the Albu Nimr tribe, in the western Iraqi city of Hit. It was the militant group’s latest bloody signal to Sunni Muslims who may be considering taking up arms against them.
“It feels good to know there’s a guy like this off the streets,” said Gregory Kubasek, 19, of Marshalls Creek, who drove to the barracks Thursday night to catch a glimpse of Frein.
After being processed, Frein left the barracks in handcuffs around 1:30 a.m. Friday and was taken to the Pike County Correctional Facility. His nose looked swollen and he appeared slightly bloodied above one eye.
State police Commissioner Frank Noonan said Frein was in good health, despite what he described as a “scratch” on his nose that he said was already there when marshals arrested him.
“He looked fairly healthy, healthier than I would’ve expected,” he said.
A group of Ontario university students trying to prove that not all Canadians were Islamophobic following the shooting death of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo appear to have made their point, after one of them was attacked while pretending to harass a friend who was dressed in a traditional Muslim gown. Some of the remarks are quite thoughtful. Then one guy comes in over the top. Ouch.