News Day

Let’s jail all the lawyers? / LatAm volcanos / Pakistan battles

Minnesota lawyer Peter Erlinder has been jailed in Rwanda, where he went to represent opposition leader Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, who was accused of “promoting genocide ideology.” In 1994, genocide in Rwanda killed about 800,000 people, mostly Tutsis. Ms. Ingabire, a Hutu, has called for prosecution of people who killed Hutus during the genocide. According to BBC:

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News Day: Fast and cheap / Robyne Robinson / Operation Top Kill

What were they thinking? A misguided U.S. Wireless billboard campaign folded after a few hours of intense Facebook-organized protests yesterday.

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Jobless benefits running out / St. Cloud, Owatonna and Muslim students / Lori Berenson / Jamaica

Unemployment benefits are running out at the end of the month and extension is far from certain. A House vote could come as early as today, May 26.

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Robyne Robinson in MN, Drilling permits in DC, Wars and secret wars

Robyne Robinson moved from news anchor to news maker yesterday, with the disclosure that she has been asked by the Matt Entenza campaign to be his lieutenant governor candidate. The campaign stayed mum, while Robinson apparently confirmed the rumors – and MinnPost’s David Brauer critiqued the journalistic ethics and conflict of interest involved in Fox9′s reporting:

I realize this is the very definition of conflict of interest, but so many things were wrong here. As I’ve written, Robinson should be sidelined as long as she’s a political newsmaker in play. If not, Fox9 political reporter Jeff Goldberg should’ve grilled Robinson (and Entenza) for a report — her statements (that she’s been offered the gig) are being dodged by the campaign, which only says it has a list of folks whose identities won’t be revealed yet.

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From chicken politics to war stories to Elena Kagan’s wardrobe malfunction

Chicken politics, from Nevada to Minnesota You can’t wear a chicken suit to the polls in Nevada this year. The legislature banned chicken suits after a brouhaha involving Republican Senate candidate Sue Lowden, described by AP:

The millionaire casino executive and former beauty queen recently suggested that people barter with doctors for medical care, like when “our grandparents would bring a chicken to the doctor.”

Democrats responded by setting up a website, “Chickens for Checkups,” and by sending volunteers in chicken suits to her campaign events.

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One in seven / Kelliher picks Gunyou / MN mom in Iran, more

"Roughly one in seven of the 52 million households with mortgages" is in trouble, reports the New York Times. That includes homeowners who have missed a payment, as well as those in foreclosure or awaiting eviction.

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Thursday update: Carp alert, wars, nurses, more

Carp alert! The latest on the Asian carp fight comes from the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal, reporting a letter from MN, MI, OH, and PA attorneys general to the Army Corps of Engineers, demanding stronger action to keep the giant Asian carp out of the Great Lakes.  The feds start poisoning the Little Calumet River near Chicago today, but the AGs want them to also close two navigation locks. For more background, go to Carp Watch. [Photo from Great Lakes Echo

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The dying and the marching go on

As the U.S. death toll in Afghanistan reached the 1,000 mark, about 65 Minnesota anti-war activists demonstrated at Congressmember Betty McCollum's office May 18. The 1,000 mark was passed as a suicide bomber attacked a U.S. convoy in the heart of Kabul at 8 a.m. on Tuesday. The New York Times reported:

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Heading for a Twin Cities nurses' strike?

Nurses in the metro area will vote May 19 on whether to authorize a strike when their contract expires on May 31. After months of negotiations, the nurses and healthcare executives from Twin Cities hospitals seem to have reached an impasse. Now they are taking their cases to the public.

The Star Tribune published two versions of the broken-down negotiations. The two commentaries present diametrically different stories of the broken-down negotiations between 12,000 nurses and the six major metro-area hospital corporations. The nurses talk about quality of care and patient safety. The hospitals talk about the need to cut costs and say that nurses earn a lot of money.

[Photo by Barry Madore, outside RiverCentre in Saint Paul, 5/19/2010]

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Who are Minnesota's immigrants?

"Immigrants and their children represent an important component of the state’s current and future workforce, and are vital contributors to our state’s educational, cultural, and civic life," affirms the new Minnesota Compass research project on immigration in Minnesota. The continuing research collects information from multiple source

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