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    News Round-Up: Wednesday, March 26, 2014

    Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

    POTUS’s Secret Service agents are sent home after a night of heavy drinking; the Copenhagen Zoo euthanizes more animals; a school board allows the girl who shaved her head to return to school; and a 19-year-old Naval Academy football player dies after collapsing in practice. Meanwhile, Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin split up; David Archuleta returns to the United States; and the cause of Paul Walker’s car crash is revealed.

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Secret Service agents on Obama detail sent home from Netherlands after night of drinking: http://rtvote.com/1l40NtD
    Three Secret Service agents who were supposed to be protecting President Obama this week on his trip to Amsterdam went out drinking and were sent home and put on administrative leave. One agent was found passed out drunk in the hallway of a hotel. The hotel contacted the US Embassy in the Netherlands after the passed out agent was found. They then alerted Secret Service leaders who were with the president. An investigation is pending.

    Copenhagen Zoo kills 4 lions, weeks after shooting giraffe: http://rtvote.com/1gXSuua
    The same zoo in Denmark responsible for euthanizing a healthy giraffe in February is under fire again for euthanizing four lions to make way for a new one. The lions killed were two young lions that were dubbed “too young” to live on their own and their parents. Tobias Stenbaek Bro, spokesman for the Copenhagen Zoo, said that they tried to send the four lions to another home, but no one was interested. The European Association of Zoos and Aquaria stated that the Copenhagen Zoo had not broken any laws or violated any conduct codes.

    Mississippi moves to execute its 1st female prisoner since 1944: http://rtvote.com/1j3uKtG
    A Mississippi woman accused of hiring someone to murder her husband in 1999 is set to be executed by lethal injection, becoming the first woman in 70 years to be executed in Mississippi. Michelle Byrom had been convicted of plotting to kill her abusive husband with her son and another man. However, some people believe that she deserves to live, especially because her son has confessed to murdering his father four different times. The execution is set to occur on Thursday.

    Board allows girl who shaved head for friend to return: http://rtvote.com/1p61TGQ
    Kamryn Renfro was told on Monday that she would not be allowed to go to school because her shaved head violated the school’s dress code. Renfro shaved her head to support her best friend Delaney Clemets, who is undergoing chemotherapy for neuroblastoma and lost her hair. The original story sparked tremendous outrage earlier this week, but Renfro’s mother is now asking all the negativity to stop. The board held a special meeting on Tuesday, voting 3-1 in favor of letting Renfro return to school with a shaved head.

    19-year-old Navy RB Will McKamey dies while in coma: http://rtvote.com/1gXWoTL
    Will McKamey passed away while in a coma Tuesday night after collapsing during a Naval Academy football practice on Saturday. He was taken to Baltimore Shock Trauma and underwent surgery on Sunday to relieve pressure from the brain. McKamey’s mother said that he had collapsed before in high school and had been seen by various neurosurgeons to be scanned and cleared for contact sports. McKamey passed away with his family present, and funeral arrangements are pending.

    CULTURAL

    Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin split: http://rtvote.com/1dNuSbC

    Police investigation reveals the cause of Paul Walker’s car crash: http://rtvote.com/1h9RxU1

    David Archuleta returns from a 2-year mission trip: http://rtvote.com/1iApm0s

    The white tiger that almost killed Siegfried & Roy’s Roy dies: http://rtvote.com/1rA4H1j

    Pharrell says Hillary Clinton will be the next President: http://rtvote.com/1juRfue

    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, March 12, 2014

    Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

    A building in Harlem collapses in an explosion; the White House continues to court Millennials in healthcare enrollment; the missing Malaysian Airline search continues; a Guantanamo Bay prisoner files a lawsuit against President Obama; and Jerry Sandusky’s wife defends her husband’s innocence. Meanwhile, Chris Pine gets arrested for a DUI; the Big Bang Theory is renewed for 3 seasons (Hurrah!); and two mash-up videos will help you giggle your way through Hump-day (they are NSFW though!).

    - Maura + Austin

    CRUCIAL

    1 dead, 15 Hurt Harlem Building Collapse, http://rtvote.com/1nM8hTg
    A deadly explosion Wednesday morning has caused the collapse of two five-story buildings in East Harlem, NY. There were 15 people injured and one person pronounced dead. A witness said that locals have been smelling gas for weeks and when the explosion occurred she saw people flying out of the building.  Con Edison, the NY utilities company, had been called to the area to check a possible gas leak at 9am ET this morning.

    Obamacare Enrollment Hits 4 Million, Including 25% Youth http://rtvote.com/1esr7s9
    According to the Department of Health and Human Services, enrollment in the federal healthcare exchange has reached more than 4.2 million. Of those enrollees, only 25% are between the ages of 18-34, a key demographic that the administration has been targeting. Most recently, the President appeared on comedian Zach Galifianakis’ show “Between Two Ferns” to plug the healthcare site to Millennials. If the administration fails to hit its goal of 40% youth enrollment, it fears that insurance costs will increase for the millions of other enrollees. 

    Malaysia Airlines MH370: Last Communication Revealed,http://rtvote.com/1iArRi5
    New information released to the public shows that the last moments of communication from Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, showed that everything was normal. The China bound plane went missing on Saturday with 239 people on board. As the plane reached the boundary between Malaysian and Vietnamese airspace, the Malaysian air control announced it was handing over to Ho Chi Minh City Control. Minutes later, all contact was lost. The search continues for new information on what happened…

    Sandusky’s Wife Says He’s Innocent, Victims Manipulated,http://rtvote.com/1i6g8Zt
    The wife of former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, insists that her husband “did not do the horrible crimes” that sent him to prison. Dottie Sandusky, who has been married to her husband for 47 years, claims that he is innocent, the victims were manipulated, and that the case against him was built on lies. Jerry Sandusky, 70, is serving a 30 to 60-year prison sentence for his 2012 conviction on 45 charges of child sexual abuse of young boys for over a period of 15 years.

    Guantanamo Bay Prisoner Files Historic Lawsuit Against Obama Over Force-Feedinghttp://rtvote.com/1hcoCfH
    On Tuesday, a historic lawsuit was introduced against the U.S. military prison’s force-feeding of detainees on hunger strikes, by an inmate of Guantanamo Bay. The Yemeni inmate, Emad Abdullah Hassan, contends that he has been “abusively force-fed” more than 5,000 times in the past seven years in an effort to end his hunger strikes, causing him severe internal injuries. The case marks the first legal challenge requiring a federal judge to oversee an inmate’s testimony on Guantanamo prison conditions. 

    CULTURAL 

    Chris Pine Arrested for DUI in New Zealand, http://rtvote.com/1gpXHLL

    Angelina Jolie Plans to Have More Preventative Cancer Surgery,http://rtvote.com/1idBx3u

    The Big Bang Theory Renewed! CBS Orders 3 More Seasons of the Smash Comedy, http://rtvote.com/1iANVZW

    Here is the Wolf of Sesame Street Mashup You’ve Been Waiting For,http://rtvote.com/1iANVZW

    Justin Bieber’s Bratty Deposition Video Gets Remixed by Seth Meyers,http://rtvote.com/1i6ANwA

     

    Maura
    Bio: Maura graduated from the University of Dayton in 2011 with a BA in International Studies and French. During the course of her studies she was elected Student Body Vice President where she worked to make student activity funding more affordable & fair to the campus community. Following graduation, Maura joined the 2012 Obama Campaign as grassroots Field Organizer in Ohio (the battleground of all battleground states). She now continues her passion of engaging and building political power for young people with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, February 19, 2014

    Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

    Protests in Ukraine reach a new peak; Confederate flag-bearing license plates cause controversy; bald Barbie dolls cheer cancer patients; soldiers posing around an empty casket spark outrage; and an Arkansas teen is dead after a simple prank goes wrong. Meanwhile, a Gossip Girl star has a secret wedding; a pop music diva might be engaged; one of the hosts of The Voice calls it quits; and Harry Styles makes a “guest appearance” on The Tonight Show. 

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    After 25 die, Ukrainian protesters dig in: http://rtvote.com/1fgElvD
    25 people died Tuesday after political protests turned violent in Kiev, Ukraine. Today, the protesters are willing to continue to fight against their government. Protests began in November 2013 when Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych declined to trade with the European Union and chose Russia instead. The situation became more grave when the Ukrainian government passed a law prohibiting protesting, driving more people to protest violently. Western leaders are prepared to impose sanctions on the Ukrainian government until the violence ceases.

    Confederate flag to appear on new Ga. car plates: http://rtvote.com/1fyTPrt
    Officials in Georgia have allowed a specialty license plate that includes the Confederate flag, causing conflict between those who view the flag as a symbol of racial oppression and by those who view the flag as a symbol of their Southern heritage. Georgia Governor Nathan Deal said he was surprised by the new plates and said, “I had no information in advance about it.” North Carolina, Alabama, and Mississippi are the only three states that joined the Confederacy that have specialty plates containing the Confederate flag.

    Bald Barbie cheers up cancer patients, families: http://rtvote.com/1fdAOzI
    Valerie Paul’s best friend’s cancer inspired her to make bald Barbie dolls for girls and women fighting cancer. She gained national attention when 13 year-old Talia Joy Castellano, a young girl with terminal cancer who became a viral sensation, received one of the bald Barbie dolls and was on Ellen. So far, she and her business partner Wanda Shultz have handed out over 300 Barbie’s and 75 baby dolls and send them to whoever requests one.

    Soldiers posing around empty casket spark rage: http://rtvote.com/1cZUYrf
    A group photo showing around twelve soldiers making non-serious faces and motions around an empty, flag-draped casket has sparked outrage amongst the public. The Wisconsin National Guard has suspended the woman responsible for posting the photo on Instagram and captioning it with this: “We put the FUN in funeral—your fearless honor guard from various states.” People across the country have found the photo incredibly disrespectful, especially those who lost loved ones in war.

    Prank turns deadly for Arkansas teen: http://rtvote.com/1blH1J0
    15-year-old Adrian Broadway from Little Rock, Arkansas, was shot in the head and killed on Saturday after a prank went horribly wrong. Broadway and a few friends went to a house to pull a “retaliation prank” on another teen who had pulled a prank on them previously. After peppering a vehicle parked at the house with toilet paper, eggs, and mayonnaise, a man came out of the house and opened fire, killing Broadway and injuring another. The shooter, 48-year-old Willie Noble, has been charged with first-degree murder, committing a terroristic act, and aggravated assault. 

    CULTURAL

    Secret wedding bells for this Gossip Girl star: http://rtvote.com/1ghC8y4

    See Simon Cowell’s newborn: http://rtvote.com/1gFZwH

    Harry Styles on The Tonight Show… kind of: http://rtvote.com/Oa45QP

    CeeLo Green quits The Voice: http://rtvote.com/1c2P2h4

    Is Katy Perry engaged? http://rtvote.com/1gVDmRB

     

    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

    Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

    Another massive snowstorm hammers the East; a package bomb kills a former lawyer; Tom Brokaw reveals some shocking news; and a sinkhole opens up at a museum. Meanwhile, Eva Mendes talks Ryan Gosling; Taylor Swift goes through some major hair changes; Shia LaBeouf makes headlines; and a special dinner was held at the White House last night: see the pics! 

    -Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Ice hits South, Northeast is next: http://rtvote.com/1bMy1ro
    Thousands of people are without power as a massive ice and snow storm moves up the East Coast. States including Georgia and Alabama have been pelted by ice. The storm is supposed to drop 4 to 8 inches of snow on Washington, DC and 6 to 10 inches expected in New York City. Transportation has been greatly affected; Amtrak suspended some rail services on Wednesday and more than 2,600 flights have been cancelled. Five people have reportedly been killed due to weather-related accidents.

    Package bomb kills lawyer: http://rtvote.com/1ntYVcO
    John Setzer of Lebanon, Tennessee was killed on Monday after a package exploded in his face. His wife was seriously injured. Setzer was a retired lawyer and pastor, according to his law partner. Neighbors were shocked and are now terrified to look in their mailboxes, even though police officers checked everyone’s during the investigation of the Setzer case. An $8,000 reward will be given to anyone with information about this attack.

    Tom Brokaw says he has cancer: http://rtvote.com/1cwdd7x
    Tom Brokhaw, the former NBC Nightly News anchor is being treated for cancer. Brokhaw, 74, has been diagnosed with “multiple myeloma, a cancer affecting blood cells in the bone marrow” back in August. Doctors are optimistic due to the progress he is making, even though the cancer is serious.

    November trial date set in Boston bombing: http://rtvote.com/1cwf3oO
    The trial date for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the only living suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings, has been set for November 3rd. Prosecutors have proposed that Tsarnaev face the death penalty if he is found guilty. The trial is expected to last twelve weeks, and is being done a year earlier than what defense lawyers wanted. Tsarnaev, 20, has been accused (along with his now-deceased older brother) of setting up the bombs at the 2013 Boston Marathon that killed three and injured more than 260 others.

    Sinkhole swallows 8 cars at museum: http://rtvote.com/1eQe4pt
    The National Corvette Museum in Kentucky lost eight of its vintage cars to a sinkhole Wednesday morning. When the police arrived, they found a sinkhole measuring 40 feet wide and 25-30 feet deep. Employees are trying to document which cars fell into the hole to assess the cost of damage. The museum will be open Wednesday, but the Sky Dome (the site of the sinkhole) will be off-limits to visitors.

    CULTURAL

    Sorry everyone: Ryan Gosling is still off the market: http://rtvote.com/ML8Zm2

    Taylor Swift chops off her hair: http://rtvote.com/1kBXDiE

    Julia Roberts’ half-sister found dead: http://rtvote.com/1nu42JK

    What is up with Shia LaBeouf? http://rtvote.com/1eU9STU 

    See the best pics from last night’s State Dinner: http://rtvote.com/1bMGeeU

    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Thursday, February 6th, 2014

    Thursday, February 6th, 2014

    An All-Star pitcher is diagnosed with cancer; NYC schools undergo some holiday changes; outrage erupts after a trial’s conclusion; another murder trial begins; and Sochi officials fire back at critics. Meanwhile, Justin Bieber makes headlines yet again; Kevin Jonas posts an adorable picture of his daughter; Jon Gosselin has some serious things to say; and Emma Watson’s Wonderland interview is out!

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Curt Schilling diagnosed with cancer: http://rtvote.com/1fKY2vI
    47-year-old pitching legend Curt Schilling shocked the sports community yesterday when he revealed he had been diagnosed with cancer. He had pitched for the Baltimore Orioles, Houston Astros, Philadelphia Phillies, Arizona Diamondbacks, and the Boston Red Sox, winning three World Series Championships. Schilling was due to join ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball broadcast team this MLB season.

    NYC Schools to Get Islamic, Lunar Holidays Off: http://rtvote.com/1jiuyIO
    New York City’s Mayor Bill De Blasio has begun instigating some new schooling policies. Soon, NYC public schools will close for various Muslim holidays (including Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, two Islamic holy days) and the Chinese New Year. De Blasio says he wants to take time to adjust school calendars to make these new changes.

    No jail for ‘affluenza’ teen in fatal car crash draws outrage: http://rtvote.com/1byx3SA
    The Texas boy responsible for hitting a group of people (killing four and injuring nine) due to driving under the influence will not receive jail time. Instead, 17-year-old Ethan Couch will be on probation for ten years and will attend rehab for an unspecified amount of time. His defense team used the ‘affluenza’ defense; this stated that Couch had been spoiled by his wealthy family and felt entitled and lacked good judgment. Psychologists believe that the future use of the affluenza defense could almost reinforce recklessness and bad judgment.

    ‘Loud music’ murder trial begins: http://rtvote.com/1eBp5t2
    The trial for the Florida man accused of shooting and killing a 17-year-old in late 2012 is being put on trial. The man, Michael Dunn, noticed an SUV was playing loud music at a gas station and asked the people inside to turn it down. Allegedly, one occupant withdrew a shotgun, prompting Dunn to grab his own gun and shoot eight times into the car, killing 17-year-old Jordan Davis. Dunn waited before calling police, who did not find a weapon in the SUV. He has pleaded not guilty to one count of first-degree murder and three counts of attempted murder. The trial should not last until February 14th.

    Russian Officials Fire Back at Olympic Critics: http://rtvote.com/1ndDX1C
    Dmitry Kozak, the top person responsible for the Sochi Olympic preparations, has been firing back at critics, saying they have surveillance video of people purposely trying to sabotage their hotel rooms. Kozak also said they’ve only received 103 complaints after housing over 100,000 guests. Olympic athletes like American speed skater Sugar Todd say that their hotel rooms do not have any problems. President Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson says that Sochi’s organizers are almost definitely working to solve the problems.

    CULTURAL

    The truth behind Justin Bieber’s “Pot Plane” scandal: http://rtvote.com/1fWnDRK

    Cute pic of Kevin Jonas’s daughter! http://rtvote.com/1fL6dYS 

    Jon Gosselin spouts off some serious stuff about Kate: http://rtvote.com/1khikAc

    See parts of Emma Watson’s Wonderland interview: http://rtvote.com/N8WRfD    

    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com