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    News Round-Up: Tuesday, August 6, 2013

    Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

    George W. Bush recovers from surgery; tensions increase as people are told to evacuate Yemen; and the Washington Post gets sold to Jeff Bezos of Amazon.com. Meanwhile, ‘Glee’ begins Season 5 production; Lohan appears on Chelsea Lately; and Rihanna may soon top a Madonna record.

    -Ally + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    George W. Bush has heart surgeryhttp://rtvote.com/16rSuzs
    Former President George W. Bush is recovering from surgery Tuesday morning, after doctors found blockage in an artery on Monday. A stent has been placed to ease the blockage. The event came as a shock since the President was physically active and often seen biking or golfing regularly.

    U.S. and Britain Withdraw Personnel from Yemen, http://rtvote.com/19KYFDW
    Amidst a security and travel threat around the Middle East, many government personnel have been removed from Yemen, where Al Qaeda leaders are allegedly planning an attack. Travelers have also been advised to leave the country and reschedule travel plans to the area.

    Turkish Court Gives 19 Life Sentenceshttp://rtvote.com/16rSGif
    In a ruling decided Monday, 19 Turks were sentenced to life in prison for plotting to overthrow the government. All 19 have pleaded innocence. The case represents a broader conflict between “the Islamist-rooted government and the secularist-dominated opposition.”

    Washington Post Staffers ‘Stunned’ By Sale To Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Hopeful About Futurehttp://rtvote.com/16rSKys
    Staff and the public alike were shocked by the news on Monday that the Washington Post would be sold to Jeff Bezons, the owner of Amazon.com. The transition will be sentimental, as the Graham family has operated the Post for the past 80 years. However, Bezos’ $25 million net worth keeps staffers hopeful that he will maintain the paper’s integrity rather than “tinker the editorial product.”

    U.S., other envoys meet with detained Muslim Brotherhood official in Egypthttp://rtvote.com/16rSP5g
    U.S. government officials attempted, on Monday, to ease tensions between the interim Egyptian government and the ousted Muslim Brotherhood. While the U.S. aims to improve relations between the two groups, they also made clear that they would like to be distanced from Morsi. Meanwhile, Egyptians express anger over the lack of U.S. support during the crisis.

    CULTURAL

    Lindsay Lohan, Spectacular of ‘Chelsea Lately,’ Is Alive Again, http://rtvote.com/19KZtJ0

    Brawl outside Hamptons nightclub with Justin Bieber’s bodyguards stirs police probe, http://rtvote.com/19KZwV6

    Glee Starts Production on Season 5, http://rtvote.com/19KZBrP

    Kim Kardashian Makes First Post-Baby Appearance on Kris Jenner’s Talk Show, http://rtvote.com/16rTxzo

    Rihanna’s ‘Right Now’ Gives Her A Shot At Breaking Madonna’s Dance Chart Record, http://rtvote.com/19KZFYH

    Ally.f@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Ally Filler and I am a Field Intern at RTV this summer! I recently graduated from McGill University where I studied Linguistics. In addition to marveling at the linguistic hotspot that is Montreal and eating many croissants, I assisted hundreds of American students in their quest to vote from abroad. I'm excited to be a part of such an amazing team here at Rock the Vote!

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



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, June 26, 2013

    Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

    The Supreme Court deems DOMA unconstitutional and dismisses Prop 8; 20 bodies are found after a rescue helicopter crashes in India; Edward Markey wins Senate seat for Massachusetts; Al-Qaida and other terrorist groups are supposedly changing modes of communication after NSA leaks; Paula Deen appears on the ‘Today’ show to discuss racial slurs she has been accused of using; and Texas renders strict abortion bill moot. Meanwhile, Stacey Dash tweets support for Paula Deen, and Kim Kardashian claims she got baby name idea from brother Rob.

    Maura + Alexis

    CRUCIAL:

    Supreme Court DOMA Decision Rules Federal Same-Sex Marriage Ban Unconstitutional, http://rtvote.com/14xjMDH
    DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act that once barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages legalized by state, was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court this morning. The act was deemed a “violation of the Fifth Amendment” according to Justice Anthony Kennedy who delivered the court’s opinion.

    Prop. 8: Supreme Court clears way for gay marriage in California, http://rtvote.com/18gehOU
    In another ruling today, the Supreme Court dismissed Proposition 8, allowing for same-sex marriages to resume in California. The ruling will send the case back to California.

    20 Bodies Found in India Rescue Helicopter Crash, http://rtvote.com/18geJwS
    20 bodies were recovered today in northern India after a helicopter crashed on a rescue mission to save people stranded in monsoon floods. The helicopter crashed late Tuesday after its rotor blades hit the side of a hill. Using ropes, soldiers pulled 20 bodies, including five air force crew members, from the wreckage.

    Markey looks to build ‘bold and bright future’, http://rtvote.com/14xngGl
    Democratic U.S. Representative ,Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts, won a seat in the U.S. Senate today. Markey beat out competitor Gabriel E. Gomez, claiming 55 percent of the votes. He will fill the seat John F. Kerry left when President Obama appointed him Secretary of State.

    Al-Qaida Said to be Changing its Ways After Leaks, http://rtvote.com/11IfbzP
    Al-Qaida claims to be changing its methods of communication after finding out about NSA spying programs. U.S. intelligence officials are trying to figure out a way to maintain surveillance of Al-Qaida and other terrorist groups.

    Paula Deen on “Today”: I’m not a racist, http://rtvote.com/18ggNVz
    Paula Deen sat down with co-host of the “Today” show Matt Lauer this morning to talk about racial slurs she threw over the past week. When Lauer asked her “Are you a racist?” Deen replied, “No, I am not [...] the day I used that word was a world ago [...] it was 30 years ago.” After a little prying, Deen opened up that she had once uttered the word when a customer entered her office and held a gun to her head.

    Texas Vote Passing Abortion Bill Is Rendered Moot, http://rtvote.com/14xlepx
    An abortion bill, one of the strictest presented in the country, was voted on last night by the State Senate of Texas. The vote came shortly after midnight Tuesday, but at 3 a.m. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, the presiding officer of the Senate and a supporter of the bill, claimed that although the bill passed on a 19-to-10 vote, the bill was unable to be signed and was thus “dead,” blaming the unruly mob in the gallery.

    CULTURAL:

    Celebrities On DOMA & Prop 8: Stars Tweet Reactions During Final Ruling, http://rtvote.com/18ghUV8

    Jennifer Lawrence In ‘Devil You Know’: Lost 2007 Movie Resurrected After Oscar Win, http://rtvote.com/14xqyta

    Stacey Dash Tweets Support For Paula Deen: ‘Only God Can Judge’, http://rtvote.com/14xqF89

    Kim Kardashian and Kanye West Got Baby-Naming Advice From Rob Kardashian, http://rtvote.com/18giGS5

    Prince Jackson “Ready and Confident” to Take the Stand in Michael Jackson Wrongful Death Trial, http://rtvote.com/14xrA8r

    alexis.m@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Alexis Macdermott and I will be starting my third year at Duke University this fall. I am currently pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in economics. I am a native of Southwest Florida and am an avid runner and film enthusiast. I look forward to joining the Marketing and Communications team for the summer here at RTV!

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



    News Round-Up: Friday, June 21, 2013

    Friday, June 21st, 2013

    Protests in Brazil grow; the Miami Heat wins game 7;  the firm that completed a background check on Edward Snowden is being investigated; rain floods southern Alberta, Canada; 3 midshipmen from the Naval Academy are being charged with sexual assault; North Carolina repeals the ‘Racial Justice Act’; and Ken Mehlman is trying to convince Republicans that gay marriage is consistent with conservative values. Meanwhile, Kim Kardashian reveals her baby girl’s name, and Angelina Jolie stands up for refugees on World Refugee Day.

    Maura + Alexis

    CRUCIAL:

    Brazil Leaders to Meet as Protests, Violence Grow, http://apne.ws/12ZhBgp
    Thursday night, 1 million protestors filled the streets all over Brazil. Over 300,000 people protested in Rio de Janeiro, at least 40 of them injured, and at least one protestor was killed in Sao Paulo. President Dilma Rousseff who has not said much about the protests, called for a meeting with top Cabinet members. It is still unclear what action she and her government will take.

    Miami Heat beat Spurs in Game 7, http://bit.ly/16lP0Pm
    The Miami Heat took home another NBA Championship title last night. What was a close game for the first three quarters and majority of the fourth began to turn in favor of the Heat with three minutes to go. The Heat have arrived at three consecutive finals, two of which they have now won.

    Firm that checked NSA leaker’s background under investigation, http://cbsn.ws/14lLhQw
    A background investigation was performed on Edward Snowden, the man who disclosed NSA surveillance programs. The USIS will not answer any questions regarding the background check at the moment, because according to Michelle Schmitz, it is against policy to answer questions about ongoing investigations.

    Flooding hits Alberta province, forces 75,000 people from their homes in Calgary, http://bit.ly/16RLj4R
    Rain has flooded southern Alberta, Canada. In Calgary alone, 75,000 people have been forced out of their homes. Officials have asked people to limit telephone use as not to overwhelm the system and get in the way of emergency respondence.

    Academy: 3 Midshipmen Charged with Sexual Assault, http://apne.ws/12W9n8F
    Wednesday, the U.S. Naval Academy charged three midshipmen with sexually assaulting a female student at an off-campus house about a year ago. The former football players are being charged with two violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, one involving rape, sexual assault, or sexual misconduct, and the other for making a false statement. The boys have not been named and it is unclear whether or not they have an attorney.

    ‘Racial Justice Act’ repealed in North Carolina, http://bit.ly/13Wxd0W
    The Governor of North Carolina has agreed to repeal a law that allowed inmates to challenge their death sentences on racial grounds. The Racial Justice Act previously allowed convicts to argue that race was a determining factor in their sentencing. Governor Pat McCrory signed the repeal Wednesday.

    Bush aide now promotes gay marriage, http://usat.ly/16iDqV3
    Prominent Republican strategist Ken Mehlman, who ran President George W. Bush’s 2004 re-election campaign, is using his sexual orientation to try to change the minds of Republicans nation-wide. As the New York Times reported, Mehlman, a once-closeted gay man “is waging what could be his final campaign: to convince fellow Republicans that gay marriage is consistent with conservative values and good for their party.”

    CULTURAL:

    Kim Kardashian Hinted at Baby Girl North’s Name to E! News, http://eonli.ne/16lzOBW

    Johnny Depp Opens Up About Turning 50: “It’s Great!”, http://eonli.ne/1azvdPK

    Angelina Jolie Stands Up for the Downtrodden on World Refugee Day, http://eonli.ne/16krQc2

    Nigella Lawson Steps Out Without Her Wedding Ring After Alleged Choking Incident, http://eonli.ne/16k9U1n

    Helena Bonham Carter In ‘Cinderella’: Actress’s Casting As Fairy Godmother Recalls Her Oddest Roles, http://huff.to/19ntADh

    alexis.m@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Alexis Macdermott and I will be starting my third year at Duke University this fall. I am currently pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in economics. I am a native of Southwest Florida and am an avid runner and film enthusiast. I look forward to joining the Marketing and Communications team for the summer here at RTV!

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



    News Round-Up Monday, June 3, 2013

    Monday, June 3rd, 2013

    A fire in a Chinese slaughterhouse kills 119; Senator Lautenberg dies at 89; a suicide bomber kills 13 people in Afghanistan; Al-Qaeda sets up complaint departments; Turkey’s Prime Minister blames Twitter for protests; Central Europe experiences major flooding; and a wildfire in southern California destroys six homes. Meanwhile, Angelina Jolie makes her first appearance since her mastectomy announcement, and Kim Kardashian announces she is having a baby girl.

    Maura + Alexis

    CRUCIAL:

    Blaze at locked Chinese poultry slaughterhouse kills 119: state media, http://reut.rs/18IoSjh
    A fire in a poultry slaughterhouse in northeast China killed at least 119 people on Monday. More than 500 firefighters and 270 doctors and nurses were sent to the scene who evacuated 3,000 nearby residents. There are still many more unaccounted for. This tragedy has brought the issue of fire safety to the forefront of domestic concern for China.

    Frank Lautenberg Dead: New Jersey Senator Dies At 89, http://huff.to/15xXcfw
    Senator Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey died Monday of viral pneumonia. He was 89 years old and had been battling health issues most of this year, missing more than six weeks in the Senate. He was the last remaining World War II veteran serving in the Senate. He left behind his wife along with his six children and 13 grandchildren. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will fill the vacant Senate seat.

    Afghan children die as suicide bomber targets soldiers, http://bbc.in/ZGu4DN
    A suicide bomber detonated explosives at a market in eastern Afghanistan killing 13 people, 10 of whom were children. About 20 other people were injured as a result of the bombings. It is still unclear exactly how old the school children were, but a witness claims they were under the age of 12. Recently Nato and Afghan forces have been battling the Taliban and other militants, and this attack is thought to be associated with this larger resistance. Another attack on Monday left seven dead by a roadside bomb in the eastern province of Laghman.

    Al-Qaeda sets up complaints department, http://bit.ly/12Z0iXC
    Al-Qaeda has posted a new notice his week stating that it is open to receiving complaints from members of the public. Written in the notice were instructions that “anyone who might have a complaint against any element of the Islamic state, whether the Emir or an ordinary solider, can come and submit there complain in any headquarters building of the Islamic state. Also, “the complaint should be in writing provide details and give evidence.”

    Social media and opposition to blame for protests, says Turkish PM, http://bit.ly/13dPPsX
    Thousands of protestors have taken over Istanbul’s main square yet again after two days of violent clashes with riot police. Meanwhile Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, vowed to press on with the controversial redevelopment that provoked the clashes in the first place. Erdogan blames Twitter for the protests, claiming the social media site to be the “worst menace to society.” What started last Monday as a small, peaceful protest to save an Istanbul park from being destroyed to build a shopping center, soon became the largest and most violent anti-government protest Turkey has seen in years.

    Central Europe on alert for flooding, http://bbc.in/11b0u3i
    Four people are dead and at least eight more missing due to torrential rains in central Europe. Emergency action is being taken in Austria, Germany, and the Czech Republic. Thousands of homes have been evacuated and even animals from Prague’s zoo were evacuated. Czech Prime Minister Petr Necas called a special cabinet session on Sunday to coordinate emergency response. In Germany, the cities of Passau and Rosenheim have both declared a state of emergency.

    California wildfire explodes in size as it burns down homes, threatens widespread damage, http://fxn.ws/19y7HSN
    A wildfire that burnt six homes to the ground and threatened hundreds of people in the mountains north of Los Angeles grew quickly Sundayand inspired yet 3,000 more evacuations. The fire burned about 40 square miles of dry brush in the Angeles National Forest mountains and canyons.

    Student Loan Debt Is a Beast. Here Are Elizabeth Warren’s, President Obama’s, and the GOP’s Plans to Fix It, http://bit.ly/15vyQmQ
    On July 1, interest rates on federal student loans are set to rise to 6.8 percent – double the current rate. The fast-approaching deadline has lawmakers grappling to find a alternative solution to this scary imminent decision. Since 2004, student loan debt in the U.S. has tripled. Student loan debt recently surpassed both credit card and auto loan debt. It looks like the final plan will be a compromise between Obama’s plan and the House Republican proposal, but we will have to wait and see.

    CULTURAL:

    Angelina Jolie: First Appearance Since Mastectomy Announcement, http://tmz.me/19zDJxC

    Bynes booted from apt., http://bit.ly/15uvLTb

    ‘Game of Thrones’ showrunners interview: The Red Wedding — EXCLUSIVE, http://bit.ly/11cluqF

    Kim Kardashian’s Baby Girl: Reality Star, Kanye West Reveal Baby’s Sex, http://huff.to/18LsRy7

    Sharon Jones Tour & Album Canceled After Cancer Diagnosis, http://huff.to/15ymkTr

    alexis.m@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Alexis Macdermott and I will be starting my third year at Duke University this fall. I am currently pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in economics. I am a native of Southwest Florida and am an avid runner and film enthusiast. I look forward to joining the Marketing and Communications team for the summer here at RTV!

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



    News Round-Up: Friday, April 19th, 2013

    Friday, April 19th, 2013

    More information about Chechen brothers Dzokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev surfaces as they’re named the Boston marathon bombers; Boston is on lockdown after Tamerlan dies in a shootout and Dzokhar is still at large; Anzor Tsarnaev claims his sons are innocent; Chechnya’s president blames the suspects’ American upbringing for the Boston bombings; at least 35 are killed and 60 unaccounted for after the fertilizer-plant explosion in West, TX; The Boy Scouts may lift their ban on gay youth members; Pakistan police arrest ex-President Musharraf; and the United Nations calls Syria’s civil war a “humanitarian catastrophe.” Meanwhile, Dunkin’ Donuts defies the lockdown and stays open in Watertown, MA; “Time” names its 100 most influential people; and Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries reach a divorce settlement.

    Caitlin
    CRUCIAL:
    Boston Bombing Suspects: What We Know About the Tsarnaev Brothers, http://rtvote.com/11LeGDk
    A plethora of new information about the Boston marathon bombers, brothers named Dzokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, has surfaced after a police shootout with the suspects took place early this morning. Dzokhar is 19-years-old and attended Cambridge Rindge and Latin School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he had received scholarship money, was on the wrestling team, and was described as a nice, normal guy with an active social life; many of his classmates told the media they couldn’t believe he would be a terrorist. The brothers, who are Chechen, may have been living in the U.S. for ten years, coming to the states from Kyrgyzstan. Reports show that Tamerlan, who was 26 and an avid boxer, had recently flown from JFK to Russia, where he stayed for six months. Both identified with Islam on their social media, with their uncle speculating that somebody may have radicalized them.

    Terror manhunt shuts down parts of Boston after shootings, chase, http://rtvote.com/11L9vTX
    After an early morning shootout between police and the Boston marathon bombers, parts of Boston is on complete lockdown. Tamerlan, the elder Tsarnaev brother, was killed in the shootout while officials believe Dzokhar is at large in the Watertown area of Boston. Before the shootout, the suspects shot and killed an MIT campus police officer, robbed a 7-11, and carjacked a Mercedes SUV before letting the driver go free. Tamerlan was found dead with an explosive device attached to him. There has been a no-fly zone issued over Watertown, and mass transit has been shutdown throughout the entire city. Residents have been strongly encouraged to stay indoors as officials continue to search for Dzokhar and potentially a third suspect.

    Boston Bomb Suspect’s Dad Tells Him to Surrender, Warns ‘ Hell Will Break Loose’ if Son Dies, http://rtvote.com/117LxRb
    Anzor Tsarnaev, the father of the Boston marathon bombers, urged his younger son, Dzokhar, to “give up” and surrender himself to authorities.  He also maintained his sons’ innocence and threatened that if Dzokhar is killed by police, then “all hell will break loose.” Anzor said that he spoke to his sons on the phone this week after the bombings because he was worried about their safety.

    Report: As many as 35 killed in Texas plant explosionhttp://rtvote.com/17LIjrS
    As many as 35 people have been killed from a fertilizer-plant explosion in West, TX. Officials refuse to give an exact death toll as they are still searching through rubble for survivors. More than 160 were injured in the blast. Doctors have been treating mostly blast injuries instead of chemical ones. Police warned that the scene is still dangerous as ammonium nitrate is present in the air.

    On Instagram, Chechnya’s president criticizes America’s handling of the Boston manhunt, http://rtvote.com/11L6MtP
    Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov took to Instagram today to proclaim that the Chechen ethnicity of the Boston marathon bombers did not motivate their killings.  “Any attempt to link Chechnya and the Tsarnaevs, if indeed they are guilty, are futile,” he wrote. “They grew up in the USA, their viewpoints and beliefs were formed there. You must look for the roots of [their] evil in American.” Evan Kohlmann, an American terrorism consultant, furthered Kadyrov’s sentiments tweeting, “The official media arm of the Chechen mujahideen has rejected allegations that two Chechen men were responsible for the Boston Bombing.”

    Boy Scouts to consider lifting ban on openly gay youths, http://rtvote.com/XLgCeO
    In May, the National Council of The Boy Scouts will vote on allowing gay members in the organization as long as none of the adult leaders are openly homosexual. “Scouting is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting,” a report says.

    Pakistan police arrest ex-President Musharraf, http://rtvote.com/11Li558
    Former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf was arrested and put under house arrest Thursday for his alleged dismissal of senior judges, including the chief justice of Pakistan’s Supreme Court. In two days, Musharraf will go to anti-terrorism court. “These allegations are politically motivated, and I will fight them in the trial court, where the truth will prevail,” Musharraf said.

    United Nations says Syria conflict a humanitarian catastrophe, http://rtvote.com/17LGKKp
    United Nations aid chief Valerie Amos has declared the civil war in Syria a “humanitarian catastrophe” as 22 million Syrians have been displaced from their homes and 1.3 million have fled to neighboring companies. The United Nations has not been able to take action in Syria as China and Russia, allies to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, have vetoed any plans that may jeopardize Assad’s government. “I do not have an answer for those Syrians I have spoken to who asked me why the world has abandoned them,” Amos said.

    POLL: PUBLIC PESSIMISM ON ECONOMY IS INCREASING, http://rtvote.com/XLjzvC
    According to a new Associated Press-GfK poll, only one in four Americans are optimistic about the future of their finances. 46% of those surveyed said they approve of how President Obama is handling the economy, while 52% said they disapprove. Only 7% said they trust Washington to do the right thing “just about always,” while 66% said they trust the federal government “some of the time;” 11% said they never trust the federal government.

    60 Oklahoma Dental Patients Test Positive for Hepatitis, HIV, http://rtvote.com/XLmHaV
    At least 60 patients of Oklahoma dentist W. Scott Harrington have tested positive for HIV or hepatitis after a surprise investigation of the dentist’s facilities found used needles, dirty tools, and other unsanitary conditions. Over 7,000 people who have been treated by Harrington were notified of potential infection. So far 3,122 have been tested for HIV and hepatitis with 57 testing positive for hepatitis C, 3 for hepatitis B, and at least 1 for HIV.

    CULTURAL:
    Time: The 100 Most Influential People in the World, http://time100.time.com/

    BOSTON BOMBING: THE MEANING OF DUNKIN’ DONUTS, http://rtvote.com/11LlwJa

    Kim Kardashian, Kris Humphries finally reach settlement in divorce case, http://rtvote.com/XLk6hg

    Fame may ‘lead to a shorter life,’  http://rtvote.com/XLk8FN

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