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    ‘Hamid Karzai’

    News Round-Up: November 21, 2013

    Thursday, November 21st, 2013

    Partisan gridlock continues as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid considers a ‘nuclear option’; Congressman Radel (R-Fla) is busted for cocaine purchase but doesn’t resign; and a volcanic eruption has led to the arrival of a tiny new island in Japan. Meanwhile, Miley is at it again! as she bleaches her eyebrows & posts to Instagram; an O.C. cast member and former Gossip Girl star are set to get hitched; and Jennifer Lawrence gets teased by her Catching Fire co-stars.
    - Maura + Veronica


    Harry Reid may go ‘nuclear’ Thursday, http://rtvote.com/1h50yii
    Tension and dysfunction in Washington, D.C. continues and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is poised to do something about it. After a slew of executive nominations to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals was thwarted by Republicans, Senator Reid may move toward a historic change to the Senate rules that would eliminate the filibuster on most nominations as soon as Thursday. If a second round of votes to choose from the nominees fails, the Senator may move to make a change of rules the Senate based on a majority vote.  Stay tuned for more as this develops.

    Rep. Trey Radel of Florida to take leave of absence after guilty plea to cocaine charge, http://rtvote.com/1ek5Anu
    On Wednesday, the 37-year-old lawmaker and freshman Congressman, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor drug-possession charge in D.C.  Superior Court.  He was arrested last month outside of a restaurant in Washington, D.C. after purchasing cocaine from an undercover officer. In a late night press conference Wednesday, the Congressman apologized to his constituents in Florida, but will not resign from his post.

    Karzai Says Security Pack With U.S. Should Be Signed Next Year, http://rtvote.com/1dkJWT1
    President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan signaled that a security deal with the U.S. may not be finalized until next year, even if it is ratified by a grand council of Afghan leaders this week. He asked the council to place the agreement on hold until after his successor is elected, but was unclear on what that timeline looks like. This would put a final agreement on hold and could keep American and NATO forces in Afghanistan beyond 2014.

    Volcano spawns new Japanese island, http://rtvote.com/1dkMlx3
    Japan is fired up! A recent undersea volcanic eruption has given Japan a tiny new patch of territory that currently measures about 660 feet in diameter and is located just off the coast of Nishinoshima. However, the country will put naming its newest addition on hold until they are sure that the sea will not engulf it.

    LRA leader Joseph Kony ‘in surrender talks’ with CAR, http://rtvote.com/1ixTmtZ
    A spokesperson of the Central African Republic (CAR) has said that it is in talks with Joseph Kony, the infamous Ugandan warlard. His rebellion in northern Uganda began more than 20 years ago and his fighters became known for abducting children to serve as sex slaves and fighters. Kony is wanted by the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes and the United States government has offered up $5million for any leads that result in his arrest.

    ‘Catching Fire’ stars joke about Jennifer Lawrence’s ego: ‘You can hardly talk to her’, http://rtvote.com/19KDrkq

    Lullaby time: Kelly Clarkson is expecting first baby, http://rtvote.com/1bUmY1U

    Miley Cyrus Bleaches Her Eyebrows, Parties With Miranda Kerr and Lily Allen—See the Pics!, http://rtvote.com/1aTKCab

    Leighton Meester, Adam Brody Are Engaged! Former Gossip Girl Star and O.C. Stud to Wed, http://rtvote.com/19KFepp

    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: Monday, Apri 29, 2013

    Monday, April 29th, 2013
    Up to 55 people are injured after a gas explosion at a Prague school; a student shoots himself in an Ohio classroom; The New York Times reports that the C.I.A. has been delivering millions of dollars to Afghan President Hamid Karzai; Russian officials reveal Tamerlan Tsarnaev and his mother discussed jihad in 2011; and the Syrian Prime Minister escapes an assassination attempt. Meanwhile, Jason Collins is the first professional athlete to come out as gay; the Jets release Tim Tebow; and Kristen Wiig will host SNL.
    Dozens hurt in Prague building blast, http://rtvote.com/187QNcR
    Close to 55 people were injured after a reported gas explosion at a film and TV school in Prague. Rescuers have started sifting through debris, looking for at least two people that are unaccounted for. The explosion caused the first floor of the school to collapse and shattered windows in nearby buildings.

    Student shoots self in classroom at La Salle, http://rtvote.com/11wPYoP
    A student at La Salle High School in Hamilton County, Ohio shot himself in a classroom Monday morning. The student has not been identified and is currently hospitalized.

    With Bags of Cash, C.I.A. Seeks Influence in Afghanistan, http://rtvote.com/ZZ29IV
    According to The New York Times, the C.I.A. has been secretly delivering large sums of cash to Afghan President Hamid Karzai for over ten years. The tens of millions of dollars has been delivered in suitcases, backpacks, and plastic bags. The C.I.A. has been using the money to pay off warlords and politicians, many of whom are connected to the drug trade. The pay offs have not exactly worked, however, as corruption is still rampant. “The biggest source of corruption in Afghanistan,” an American official told the Times, “was the United States.”

    Russians to US: Boston bombing suspect, mother discussed jihad in 2011, http://rtvote.com/187RFhJ
    Russian authorities have told U.S. officials that they suspected Tamerlan Tsarnaev was linked to radical Islam after they recorded a telephone conversation between him and his mother where they discussed jihad and a trip to Palestine. Counterterrorism experts say that the phone call is suspicious but does not provide enough indication that the suspected Boston bomber was plotting an attack. Authorities are more concerned about Tamerlan’s trip to Dagestan in 2012, and whether he and his brother had any help in planning the Boston marathon attacks.

    Syrian Prime Minister Escapes Assassination Bid, http://rtvote.com/187RXW1
    Syria’s Prime Minister Wael Nader al-Halqi has evaded an assassination attempt that took place in a wealthy Damascus neighborhood.  The car bomb was detonated near the prime minister’s convoy, killing one of his bodyguards. As Syria’s civil war continues, there have been numerous assassination attempts on high-ranking officials. Last week, an official was killed with a silenced gun in a restaurant.

    Lawyers, public chant “hang him” as Bangladesh building owner led to court, http://rtvote.com/ZZ6iMS
    The death toll from the collapse of a Bangladeshi garment factory has risen to 381. There is little chance of finding more survivors after a fire erupted Sunday night at the building site. 3,000, mostly female, workers were employed at the factory which made clothing for Western brands. The building’s owner was arrested Sunday as he was trying to flee the country. Officials say the factory was structurally unsafe and built in a swampy area without the right permits.
    In a first, black voter turnout rate passes whites, http://rtvote.com/11wRx6l
    According to a new analysis from the Brookings Institution and the Associated Press, the rate of African-American voters surpassed that of whites for the first time ever in 2012. African-Americans also voted in larger margins than any other minority group.
    Jets waive Tim Tebow after one season, http://rtvote.com/11wSk7e

    Michael Jackson wrongful death trial to open, http://rtvote.com/187T8Vp

    Why NBA center Jason Collins is coming out now, http://rtvote.com/187WfwC

    Kristen Wiig coming back to host ‘SNL’: What we do and don’t want to see again!, http://rtvote.com/ZLrLP0

    ‘Jersey Shore’ star hospitalized in Florida, http://rtvote.com/ZLrVWr

    Caitlin Maguire
    Bio: Caitlin is the Marketing & Operations Manager for Rock the Vote
    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com

    News Round-Up: Friday, January 11th, 2013

    Friday, January 11th, 2013

    The U.S. orders a review of Boeing 787s;  the student that opened fire at CA’s Taft Union High Schol had intended targets; President Obama and President Hamid Karzai will meet to discuss troop levels in Afghanistan; campaign staffers report that Michele Bachmann still has not paid them; and the NYPD will review 800 rape cases due to mishandling of DNA evidence. Meanwhile, Iran will respond to ‘Argo’ with its own film; Justin Bieber’s former bodyguard sues him; and Justin Timberlake is ready to make new music.



    Dreamliner investigation: U.S. orders review of Boeing 787s, http://trib.in/VrJlV3
    The FAA will conduct an investigation of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner after two separate incidents on aircrafts in Japan. The Dreamliner gained a great deal of attention when it was first introduced for its sophistication and technology; however, it has been plagued with mishaps and production delays.

    Taft Union school shooting: Boy had ‘intended targets,’ police say, http://lat.ms/XSPDQ3
    Kern County, CA police say the 16-year-old student who fired a shotgun in a Taft Union High School classroom Thursday had “intended targets.” The suspect burst into the class he was supposed to be attending and shot one student two to four times before trying to shoot another. A teacher and school supervisor talked the student into putting the gun down and evacuated the rest of the classroom safely. “They did a great job of protecting the kids,” said Ed Whiting, the chief of the Taft Police Department. “We can’t thank them enough for what they did today.” One victim is in critical condition while the teacher suffered a minor pellet wound to his head.

    Plea decision looms in James Holmes’ Aurora theater shooting case, http://bit.ly/VSApVM
    Colorado Judge William B. Sylvester ruled Thursday that there is enough evidence to try James Holmes for the shooting that killed 12 people and wounded 70 in an Aurora, CO movie theater.  The ruling ties Homes to 166 counts of murder, attempted murder, and other weapons charges. As a result, Holmes will be held without bail and arraigned Friday. Defense lawyers have said that they are not ready to plea and will most likely ask for a delay. Holmes’ lawyers have said that he is mentally ill, causing some to believe that he will plead not guilty by reason of insanity.

    Afghan troop levels top agenda for Obama-Karzai talks, http://reut.rs/VqqsBH
    President Obama will meet with Afghan President Hamid Karzai Friday to discuss withdrawing U.S. troops from the country by 2014. The White House has been considering removing all troops with some suggesting that this “zero option” will be an important bargaining chip in Obama’s discussion with Karzai. White House aides say that it’s not likely any decisions will be made during Friday’s talk, and that it could be months before Obama decides how many troops to remove from Afghanistan. Chuck Hagel, Obama’s nomination for Defense Secretary, will most likely support removing as many troops as possible.

    Bachmann still hasn’t paid presidential campaign staffers, http://bit.ly/WxBn8N
    Peter Waldon, the former national field coordinator for Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign, has said that Bachmann has refused to pay five staffers. Waldon claims that the staffers are owed $5,000 and that Bachmann has $2,000,000 towards her campaign. Bachmann allegedly will not pay the owed funds until the staffers sign a nondisclosure agreement saying they will not tell members of the media about any “unethical, immoral, or criminal activity” witnessed on the campaign trail.

    New York Examines Over 800 Rape Cases for Possible Mishandling of Evidence, http://nyti.ms/USKQgr
    The NYPD said Friday that it will review 843 cases of rape where a lab technician overlooked or mishandled DNA evidence. According to the medical examiner’s office, supervisors have found 26 cases where the technician did not find biological evidence when it did actually exist. The director of forensic biology at the examiner’s office said that these errors are false negatives instead of false positives and that “nobody was wrongfully convicted” due to the mistakes. The cases in review span from 2001 to 2011, when the technician worked in the examiner’s office.

    Vice President Biden will meet with representatives from the videogame industry Friday to gauge videogames’ influence on violent behavior. On Thursday, Biden and his gun control task force met with heads of the NRA for more than 90 minutes. The meeting has been described as an open and frank discussion, but neither side came out of it showing signs of negotiating. Biden is set to present his ideas regarding gun laws to President Obama early next week.


    Film to Present Iran’s View of ‘Argo’ Events, http://nyti.ms/VMPqbY

    JUSTIN BIEBER Sued By Ex-Bodyguard: He Punched & Berated Me!, http://tmz.me/10iQhrE

    Inside the Critics Choice Movie Awards: What You Didn’t See on TV, http://bit.ly/WJ8kPi

    Sharon Osbourne Slams Lady Gaga After Kelly Critique, Calls Her “Hypocrite” and “Bully”, http://eonli.ne/ZQ6qn0

    Justin Timberlake is “ready” for new project, http://bit.ly/ZCfN55

    Caitlin Maguire
    Bio: Caitlin is the Marketing & Operations Manager for Rock the Vote
    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com

    News Round-Up: Monday, January 7th, 2013

    Monday, January 7th, 2013

    President Obama will nominate John Brennan for CIA Director and Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense; the State Department dismisses Syrian President Assad’s public speech; and the Chinese government announces it will end labor-camp sentences. Meanwhile, “Texas Chainsaw” was number one at the box office this weekend; Justin Bieber is photographed smoking pot; and Lindsay Lohan heads to court again.



    Who Is John Brennan, the Man Touted to Be the Next CIA Director?, http://thebea.st/TdJo2s
    President Obama will reportedly nominate counterterrorism advisor John Brennan for CIA Director on Monday. Brennan has been a proponent of the U.S. drone program, which could lead anti-drone advocates to dispute the nomination. Obama will also nominate former Republican senator Chuck Hagel to replace Leon Panetta as Secretary of Defense. Hagel, who went against his party to oppose the Iraq war, may prove a controversial choice.

    Five accused of rape in India appear in court for charges, http://reut.rs/UC3aqm
    The five men accused of gang-raping and fatally beating a 23-year-old woman in New Dehli arrived in court today. Their charges include rape, murder, and abduction. The incident has caused public outrage in India, causing women to call for more protection due to India’s high number of sexual assaults. Because the case is so high-profile, the judge ordered that today’s court appearance be closed to the media in order to protect the suspects’ safety. The five men do not have lawyers as those admitted to the bar in India’s Saket district have refused to represent them. Police say they have recorded confessions from the suspects, two of which have offered evidence against the others in exchange for a lesser sentence. A prosecutor for the case has said that “The five accused persons deserve not less than the death penalty.”

    Bank of America to Pay $10 Billion in Settlement With Fannie Mae, http://nyti.ms/XDga3J
    Bank of America has agreed to pay Fannie Mae $10 billion in unsettled claims stemming from the housing market crash. Bank of America will pay Fannie Mae $3.6 billion and then buy $6.75 billion of discounted mortgages. In 2011, Bank of America paid Freddie Mac for the housing market crash. Its payment to Fannie Mae signals that it’s steering away from home-lending.

    In Rare Damascus Speech, Assad Acknowledges Suffering, http://thebea.st/VttAdv
    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad made a rare public address Sunday. Assad, speaking in front of a photo collage of Syria’s war victims, proposed peace in the form of a national reconciliation conference as well as a new government and constitution. The State Department, which has urged Assad to resign, has dismissed the speech as “meaningless.” “His initiative is detached from reality, undermines the efforts of Joint Special Representative Lakhdar Brahimi, and would only allow the regime to further perpetuate its bloody oppression of the Syrian people,” said State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland.

    Clinton Scheduled to Return to Work Monday, http://nyti.ms/13dPPZq
    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will return to work Monday. Clinton was admitted to NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital on December 30th after doctors found a blood clot in her head. The State Department has released Clinton’s schedule, which shows her meeting with assistant secretaries Monday morning and Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Washington on Wednesday.

    Sen. Rand Paul’s son arrested at North Carolina airport, charged with underage drinking, http://bit.ly/VxgDzd
    Senator Rand Paul’s 19-year-old son, William Hilton Paul, was arrested Saturday at North Carolina’s Charlotte Douglas International Airport for disorderly conduct at an airport, being intoxicated and disruptive, and consuming alcohol underage. The Senator’s office said in a statement, “Sen. Paul is a national public figure and subject to scrutiny in the public arena, however, as many parents with teenagers would understand, his family should be afforded the privacy and respect they deserve in a situation such as this.”

    Chinese official says country will end labor camp sentences in move toward judicial reform, http://wapo.st/13aAxW7
    During a press conference, China’s Meng Jianzhu, the head of the Communist Party Politics and Law Commission, said that the Chinese government will no longer give out labor-camp sentences. China allegedly has 310 labor camps holding 310,000 prisoners and employing 100,000 staff. It’s unclear what the proclamation means for current labor-camp prisoners. One activist said, “This announcement is a very good thing, but we’d still like to hear them say that they’re getting rid of reeducation through labor entirely.”

    American Delegation Arrives in North Korea on Controversial Private Trip, http://nyti.ms/RBEoIm
    Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt and former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson arrived in North Korea Monday for what Richardson has described as a four-day private humanitarian mission. During the trip, Richardson is hoping to meet with an American citizen detained by North Korean officials for “hostile acts.” Richardson has said that Schmidt is joining him because he is “interested in some of the economic issues there, the social-media aspect.” The State Department is against the trip calling it “unhelpful.”


    ”Texas Chainsaw” movie kills rivals at North America box office, http://reut.rs/UBZt44

    Justin Bieber Gets Caught Smoking Pot Post Selena Gomez Breakup, http://bit.ly/VKjLaP

    Lindsay Lohan heads to court again, this time over New York nightclub fight, http://bit.ly/UBiNC6

    Star Trek Fan Granted Dying Wish By J.J. Abrams Passes Away, http://bit.ly/ZxGRag

    Eliot Spitzer quits Current TV following sale to Al Jazeera, http://fxn.ws/VKedgy

    Caitlin Maguire
    Bio: Caitlin is the Marketing & Operations Manager for Rock the Vote
    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com


    Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

    The Taliban attacks eastern Afghanistan and announces its “spring offensive;” Chen Guangcheng safely retreats to a medical facility in China; April’s U.S. job growth does not meet expectations; vandals violently disrupt May Day protests in Seattle; and Newt Gingrich will announce the end of his campaign at 3 pm today; Meanwhile, Tyler Perry’s studio catches fire in Atlanta;  Demi Lovato, Miley Cyrus Rumored For ‘X Factor’ Judge Spot; and Jessica Simpson welcomes a new baby girl.

    Kelly H. + Caitlin


    Violence mars May Day protests in Seattle, http://bit.ly/IuX6tX
    Violence erupted during Seattle May Day social-justice rallies that were supposed to be peaceful. 75 vandals created havoc by shattering glass, attacking police and vandalizing financial institutions in the area. Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn issued an emergency order that gave police the power to seize anything that could be used as a  weapon. So far eight people have been arrested, with at least one dozen businesses and government buildings damaged. Most of the vandals, who wielded long black poles, have disappeared.

    Blind Chinese Dissident Leaves U.S. Embassy for Medical Treatment, http://nyti.ms/Imee4c
    Chen Guangcheng has left the American Embassy in Beijing after confirmation from the Chinese government that he would be safe. He left the embassy to seek treatment at a medical facility. According to American officials, negotiations will allow Guangcheng the opportunity to pursue higher education in a safe environment. Guangcheng suffered an injury to his foot while escaping from his house last week. He was able to reunite with his wife and family at the hospital.

    ADP: U.S. Added Only 119,000 New Jobs In April; Stocks Double Early Losses, http://onforb.es/IT5IJp
    The labor market is rumored to weaken for a second straight month after companies hired far less people than anticipated. Employment only increased by 119,000 after a 183,000 gain was expected. Small and medium-sized businesses contributed to the majority of new jobs, whereas large companies had only a 3.3% increase. Analysts theorize that job growth from March will lead to cut-backs later this year.

    Eleven killed in Egypt clashes over army rule, http://reut.rs/JMTpPx
    Eleven were killed and more than 160 wounded in Egypt after armed men assaulted protesters demanding an end to army rule. The protesters included ultraconservative Salafi Islamists who gathered near Egypt’s Defense Ministry. The demonstrators were angry at the exclusion of their candidate from the upcoming vote. Two Islamist candidates have also now suspended their presidential election campaigns. The election set for May 23 and 24 is causing high tensions and is evidence of a fragile transition to democracy in Egypt.

    Taliban announces start of annual Afghan offensive, http://usat.ly/ITBshk
    The Taliban announced today that it will begin its annual “spring offensive” in Afghanistan this week, calling it “Al-Farouk,” which is the name of the second Muslim caliph. The offensive is targeting “all those people who work against the Mujahedeen, toil to pave ground for the occupation of Afghanistan and become the cause for the strength of the invaders.” The announcement came after a car bomb attack in a private compound in eastern Afghanistan that killed seven and injured seventeen; the attack took place hours after President Obama’s surprise visit to the country. During his visit, Obama and President Hamid Karzai signed a strategic partnership agreement that will serve for future relations between the two nations.

    (via NBC Montana) Justice Department Unveils New Details In Missoula Civil Rights Investigation: The US Department of Justice has unveiled new details about its civil rights investigation into Missoula police, prosecutors and the University of Montana. The two-prong investigation is focused on allegations of a pattern of gender discrimination in relation to reported sex assaults. NBC Montana reporters attended a news conference with top-level US Attorneys from the department’s civil rights department, Montana’s US Attorney, Missoula’s Mayor, Police Chief and the President of the University of Montana. The Justice Department reports over 80 alleged rapes in Missoula over the last three years, with at least 11 in an 18 month period involving University of Montana students. Officials say the federal investigation will look at sexual assaults alleged by all women in Missoula, not just students. The Justice Department also says its Civil Rights team has uncovered patterns of gender discrimination in the New Orleans Police Department as well as two others, http://bit.ly/IpND7h

    PA Voter ID Law Would Keep 93-Year-Old Who Marched With Martin Luther King From Voting, http://bit.ly/JoUATa
    Pennsylvania’s Viviette Applewhite is one of the star plaintiffs in a new lawsuit that opposes PA’s voter ID law. Applewhite has voted in almost every election since 1960 and is an activist who marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the civil rights movement. Under PAs voter ID law, Applewhite will not be able to vote because she does not have an identification card that would be required at the polls. She does not drive and her purse containing her identification card was stolen; she is also unable to register for a card because the 93-year-old cannot locate her birth certificate. Applewhite is the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit filed Tuesday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, the Advancement Project, the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia (PILCOP) and the law firm of Arnold & Porter LLP. The suit is seeking injunction to stop the law’s enforcement before the November election.

    Gingrich poised to embrace bitter rival Romney, http://cbsn.ws/ImGnYN
    Newt Gingrich is planning to suspend his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination later today. In an interview with USA Today, he said he will endorse Romney’s candidacy. Gingrich’s campaign, despite winning two primary contests, has become saddled in massive debt. The announcement is set for 3 p.m. EST in Arlington, Virginia. Neither Mitt Romney nor Rick Santorum is scheduled to be there. Santorum has not yet decided if he will endorse a candidate.


    Tyler Perry’s studio catches fire in Atlanta, http://cbsn.ws/Jp3Kio

    ‘Hunger Games,’ ‘Bridesmaids’ top MTV Movie Awards, http://bit.ly/JNvlvG

    Demi Lovato, Miley Cyrus Rumored For ‘X Factor’ Judge Spot, http://on.mtv.com/IA7mVc

    Jessica Simpson’s Dad Joe Says New Granddaughter Is a ‘Miracle,’ http://bit.ly/IAERa1

    Rosario Dawson On Election 2012, The Latino Vote And Endorsing Presidential Candidates, http://huff.to/ITENwR

    Kelly Holleran

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