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    ‘Spain’



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, April 23, 2014

    Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

    A Philadelphia high school drug ring is busted; violence escalates in South Sudan; and a man dealing fake art is arrested. Meanwhile, Lupita Nyong’o is named “Most Beautiful”; Drew Barrymore has her second child; and Justin Bieber gets in trouble for a seemingly honest mistake.

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Drug ring targeting top suburban Philly schools busted: http://rtvote.com/1lEO7Jd
    18-year-old Timothy Brooks and 25-year-old Neil Scott were caught Tuesday by the police along with eight other people. The business: selling drugs to students at some of the best high schools and colleges in the area. Brooks and Scott were the two at the center of the drug ring; Brooks supervised the eight “sub-dealers” who sold the drugs at school while Scott was in charge of shipping the drugs from California to Pennsylvania. The drug ring, allegedly dubbed the “Main Line Take-Over Project” (after affluent towns near Philadelphia, where the ring targeted), was responsible for selling marijuana, hash oil, cocaine, and ecstasy (or MDMA). The schools targeted included the Haverford School, Conestoga High School, Radnor High School, Harriton High School, and Lower Merion High School: all prestigious, wealthy schools with some of the highest standardized test scores in Pennsylvania.

    UN: South Sudan rebels separate residents by ethnicity, kill hundreds: http://rtvote.com/1iL2dsZ
    Rebels stormed the oil town Bentiu last week in South Sudan, separated the terrified citizens by ethnicity, and then killed at least 400 people. 200 were killed and 400 were wounded at one mosque alone. The attackers warned certain ethnic groups to leave town and that they should no longer stay in Bentiu. Men, women, and children were killed when they did not cheer and offer support for the rebel attackers. The conflict stems from an overarching power struggle between two South Sudanese ethnic groups: the Nuers and the Dinkas. The rebel leader, Riek Machar (Nuer) was accused by the existing President, Salva Kiir (Dinka), of trying to kick him out of power through a coup. Since the coup allegations, violence between military and civilians has dominated the nation.

    Indicted art dealer, painter were ‘masters of forgery and deceit’: http://rtvote.com/1tCgv3Y
    Jose Carlos Bergatiños Diaz, his brother, and other associates are accused of making $30 million by selling fake artwork for almost 20 years. Diaz and his associates convinced wealthy people and New York art galleries that he was selling real Rothkos and Pollocks paintings. In reality, the paintings sold were made by Pei Shen Qian, a Chinese painter found by Diaz on the Manhattan streets. The brothers were arrested in Spain and have been charged with conspiracy and money laundering. Qian, who authorities believe fled to China as the scheme began to fall apart, has been charged with lying to FBI agents and other conspiracy charges.

    Gun checks miss millions of fugitives: http://rtvote.com/1l1QiYH
    Law enforcement agencies who fail to provide the FBI and national fugitive databases with information on felons could enable those felons to access, purchase, and use guns. In 5 states alone, police forces failed to give the FBI information on more than 2.5 million people with arrest warrants. A large number of those unreported people are wanted for violent offences.  A possible reason for the lack of reporting is that most states do not want to spend the money to track fugitives across state lines. Most agencies therefore see no reason to report with the FBI (a national tracking database) because they have no intention of tracking the fugitives who have left the state.

    CULTURAL

    Lupita Nyong’o named People’s “Most Beautiful”: http://rtvote.com/Qy51zv

    Daniel Franzese (Damian from Mean Girls) comes out: http://rtvote.com/Ptxcym

    Drew Barrymore has her baby! Find out her adorable name! http://rtvote.com/1noPuQa

    Rehearsals for Pitch Perfect 2 have begun! http://rtvote.com/1hj8yvl

    Justin Bieber in hot water again- although this might have been an honest mistake: http://rtvote.com/1jB3QGv

    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: October 29, 2013

    Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

    Hawaii is up next to legalize gay marriage; an official review on NSA programs is underway; and social media sites criticize tasteless blackface and Trayvon Martin costumes. Meanwhile, the Jonas Brothers break up, and Julianne Hough receives some intense criticism for her offensive Halloween costume.

    -Sandy + Maura
     

    CRUCIAL

    Hawaii governor expects gay marriage bill to pass ‘within week’,http://rtvote.com/1f1FWUw
    Hawaii’s legislature is expected to pass a bill legalizing gay marriage “within a week or so.” The state’s House of Representatives will pass the bill on Thursday if it passes Senate; both chambers have Democratic majorities. Governor Neil Abercrombie stated that he hopes the bill will pass before January, at the very latest.

    White House: Review will address global NSA concernshttp://rtvote.com/1gXYp8Q
    As more nations become enraged by NSA’s spying programs, the White House has assured the public that the collection of data on allies will not continue. A review of these programs is currently in the works, and a report on the review will be due by the end of the year. Spain is the latest country that has joined in on protests against the U.S.’s surveillance tactics; others include Germany, France, Brazil, and Mexico.

    Trick-or-treating takes a tasteless turnhttp://rtvote.com/1g9uU2E
    Halloween is right around the corner, and so are some of the most offensive costumes in Halloween history. Some of the more tasteless trick-or-treaters are donning Ariel Castro costumes, blackface costumes, and even Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman costumes. There has been a backlash on social media sites (rightfully so) against such getups, and the Utah Jazz and Julianne Hough have received such criticism.

    5 killed in Dallas-area shootings; suspect arrestedhttp://rtvote.com/1f1LVZx
    Police have arrested Charles Everett Brownlow, Jr., 36, for killing five people in a shooting spree in the small town of Terrell, Texas. The murders started at 5 PM Monday, and Brownlow was captured and arrested early Tuesday. The victims have not been officially identified.

    Report: White House knew plans would be canceled under ACA,http://rtvote.com/1gY57eY
    About 50%-75% of 14 million consumers who buy health insurance individually will have their plans cancelled in the next year because their current policies fail to meet the standards of the Affordable Care Act. Initially, the White House said that policies in effect as of March 23, 2010, could be kept even if they did not meet the requirements of the new healthcare law. The Department of Health and Human Services later narrowed that provision. NBC News reports that the Obama administration has known for three years that people’s insurance would be canceled. The White House has responded that those whose policies are voided will be automatically shifted to plans with better protections. Additionally, they claim that nothing in the Affordable Care Act forces people out of their plans, but the failure of some plans to meet the new minimum standards should be expected.
     

    PUNDITS

    George Clooney and John Prendergast discuss what should be done to stop the chaos in Sudan in “Sudan could become a second Syria,” http://rtvote.com/1f1Puij

    Errol Louis talks about Banksy’s insensitive slam against New Yorkers and Americans in “Banksy’s insult shows he’s clueless about New York,” http://rtvote.com/19PKcV9

    CULTURAL

    Julianne Hough Goes Blackface as Orange is the New Black Character for Halloween Costume, http://rtvote.com/1gY8ouS

    Jonas Brothers Break Up: “It was a Unanimous Decision,” http://rtvote.com/1gY8H8U

    Dax Shepard Doesn’t Have a Wedding Ring, Says It Cost Him $142 to Marry Kristen Bell,http://rtvote.com/1gY9t63

    Adam Levine Says Fiancée Behati Prinsloo Made Him Believe in Marriage,http://rtvote.com/1gY9R4i

    sandywu
    Bio:

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



    News Round-Up: Friday, July 26, 2013

    Friday, July 26th, 2013

    Halliburton Energy Services admits to destroying evidence; Judge refuses to acquit Manning; Senate threatens Snowden-aiding countries with sanctions; pesticides kill America’s honeybees; Weiner’s favorability drops 20 percent; and Spanish train crash driver flaunts his need for speed. Meanwhile, Shia LaBeouf debuts his inner nympho; Frank Ocean has a tear in his vocal cords; and Selena protects Bieber from the haters.

    Meron + Maura

     

    CRUCIAL

    Halliburton to pay $200k fine for destroying evidence in 2010 Gulf oil spill, http://rtvote.com/15QzjiE
    Halliburton Energy Services is to pay a maximum $200,000 fine for destroying evidence related to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, in addition to agreeing to donate $55 million towards wildlife protection. This has become the third guilty plea by a company over the spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

    Judge refuses to acquit Manning on theft charges, http://rtvote.com/13ag0SP
    A military judge said early Thursday that she would not dismiss charges of theft against Army Private first class Bradley Manning. The soldier is expected to be sentenced next week for the largest intelligence leak in US history.

    Senate threatens to sanction countries that aid Snowden, http://rtvote.com/13aho82
    A hearing held by the 30 member, bi-partisan Senate committee Thursday afternoon in Washington ended with a unanimous decision to move towards sanctioning countries coming to the aid of the former intelligence analyst.

    Scientists confirm: Pesticides kill America’s honey bees, http://rtvote.com/19mxcIo
    New research shows that bees exposed to common agricultural chemicals while pollinating US crops are less likely to resist a parasitic infection.

    Weiner’s lead disappears in NYC mayor’s race, http://rtvote.com/13ajqoG
    Anthony Weiner has lost his lead in the New York City mayor’s race after it was revealed last week that he continued sending lewd messages to women even following his 2011 resignation from Congress.

    Spanish train crash driver wrote on Facebook about high speed, http://rtvote.com/19myeEu
    The driver of the Spanish train that crashed at high speed had previously posted on Facebook about going so fast that he was on the brink of getting a fine.

     

    CULTURAL

    New ‘Nymphomaniac’ clip features Shia LaBeouf far removed from the ‘Transformers’ world, http://rtvote.com/13albCr

    Frank Ocean cancels shows after tear in vocal cords, http://rtvote.com/13alkFO

    Sir Mick Jagger turns 70: We say ‘Happy Birthday’ and ask, what’s this rolling stone’s secret?, http://rtvote.com/13alrkB

    Selena: I’ll ‘always protect’ Bieber from haters, http://rtvote.com/13alQ6R

     

     

    meron.w@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Meron Werkneh and I am a rising senior at Duke University. I study English and Political Science, and plan to go into entertainment law as my career. I'm from Washington D.C. and love books, oldies soul music, and getting closer to God every day! I'm excited to become a part of the Rock the Vote team.

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



    News Round-Up: Thursday, July 25, 2013

    Thursday, July 25th, 2013

    Former Chinese Communist Party leader indicted on bribery charges; federal charges brought against SAC hedge fund; details emerge about the fatal train crash in Spain; Eric Holder protects Texas voters; and the House votes ‘No’ on defunding domestic NSA wiretapping program. Meanwhile, President George H.W. Bush shaves head to honor cancer patient; Jason Sudeikis announces departure from ‘SNL’; and new Elijah Wood film is banned in New Zealand.

    - Ally + Maura

    CRUCIAL
    Fallen Leader Is Indicted in China, 
    http://rtvote.com/15MKZD3

    Former Chinese Communist Party leader, Bo Xilai, has been indicted for charges of bribery, corruption and abuse of power. This comes over a year after Mr. Bo was removed from office after accusations “of taking about $3.3 million in bribes, [and] embezzling almost $1 million.” His wife also murdered British business executive Neil Heywood in 2011, for which she was given a suspended death sentence.

    U.S. files criminal charges against famed hedge fund, SAC, http://rtvote.com/13808QN

    Federal prosecutors Thursday, announced criminal charges against SAC Capital, citing “institutional practices” that allowed employee insider-trading to take place. The government charged the famed hedge fund with wire fraud and four counts of securities fraud. Charges against the firm could mark the end of SAC, which has already seen investors steadily pull out their money after previous legal troubles.

    AP analysis of video shows Spanish train was speeding when it derailed, killing dozens, http://rtvote.com/15MIbFT

    After a train derailment in Spain on Wednesday killed 80 passengers, analysis of video footage shows that the train was travelling between 40 and 70 mph above the 50mph speed limit.

    Plan to defund NSA phone collection program defeated, http://rtvote.com/137MNbc

    In a 217-205 vote on Wednesday, the House of Representatives decided against a plan to end the wiretapping program leaked by Edward Snowden. The plan would have allowed the NSA to collect phone records only for individuals connected to ongoing investigations.

    Eric Holder Wants Texas Voting Law Changes To Be Cleared By U.S., http://rtvote.com/137GqEN

    In light of last month’s Supreme Court decision on the Voting Rights Act, Attorney General Eric Holder takes steps to protect voters in Texas against voting discrimination. Holder announced to the Urban League in Philadelphia that the Justice department will ask a federal court in San Antonio to mandate the state to obtain pre-approval before making changes to voting laws.

    CULTURAL

    Paula Deen’s Cook Tells of Slights, Steeped in History, http://rtvote.com/15MQoK9

    George H.W. Bush Shaves His Head in Honor of 2-year-old Cancer Patient, http://rtvote.com/137YyOY

    Elijah Wood’s Slasher Film Maniac Banned in New Zealand, http://rtvote.com/15N8hbN

    See Jason Sudeikis announce he’s leaving ‘SNL’ on ‘Late Show,’ http://rtvote.com/137YVc4

    Anthony Weiner’s Wife, Huma Abedin, Gives Props to Him in Harper’s Bazaar Days Before New Sexting Scandal, http://rtvote.com/137ZeE0

     

    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: Tuesday, June 12, 2012

    Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

    Arizona voters will vote on Gifford’s old seat; Italy is yet another EU country on the brink of economic disaster; and the DOJ will sue Florida over its voter purge. In other news, Siri is coming to the iPad, and the Los Angeles Kings win their first Stanley Cup.

    Maureen + Caitlin

    CRUCIAL:

    Gabrielle Giffords’ House seat: Final scramble underway, http://politi.co/LQinyl
    Arizona voters head to the polls today in a special election to succeed former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ seat. Giffords resigned in January, one year after being shot and nearly killed in a shooting spree. The shooting killed six and injured 13, including Democratic hopeful Ron Barber. According to an independent poll, Barber holds a 12-point lead over Tea Party-backed Jesse Kelly.

    Worry for Italy Quickly Replaces Relief for Spain, http://nyti.ms/KlrytS
    The euro zone isn’t out of hot water yet. Yesterday, Italian officials expressed concern that the recent $125 billion Spanish bailout would not be enough to stop the crisis from spreading—and that Italy could not support such a huge burden. Yesterday, Italy’s main stock index was the worst performing in Europe. Tension continues to build as Cyprus is reportedly considering a bailout, inspired by Spain’s.

    DOJ Plans To Sue Over Florida’s Voter Purge, http://bit.ly/KOSovT
    The Justice Department is planning to sue the state of Florida for purging voters from its rolls in violation of federal law. This process is illegal because it has not been cleared by either the Justice Department or a federal court, and because the purge is too close to Florida’s August primary. Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) still defends the purge and wil sue the government over it.

    CULTURAL:

    In iOS 6, Siri Gets a Whole Lot Smarter — and Comes to the iPad, http://yhoo.it/LGiO27
    New updates will be available to Siri in iOS, with improvements in several categories like sports, dining, movies, and apps. Apple is also working with car manufacturers to include Eyes Free, a button that would allow drivers to use Siri but still keep hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. Siri and these updates will also be available on the new iPad.

    Kings Rule! Los Angeles Powers Way to First Cup, http://bit.ly/LhDpa1

    Carrie Underwood Supports Gay Marriage, http://yhoo.it/Kqa1SB

    ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’: Philip Seymour Hoffman offered the role of Plutarch Heavensbee, http://bit.ly/KyhOJx

    Charlize Theron Shaves Her Head for ‘Mad Max,’ http://bit.ly/N8AwwK

    Maureen Dolan
    Bio: Maureen is the Marketing & Communications intern for Rock the Vote.

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