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    News Round-Up: Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

    Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

    A Ukrainian naval base is taken over in Crimea; data has been deleted from the pilot of the missing Flight 370’s flight simulator; the results of the Illinois primary election are in; and an Icelandic volcano might be close to erupting. Meanwhile, it was a big night for TV on Tuesday: get the scoop on the season finale of Pretty Little Liars and some inside information on Glee’s final season; plus, Mick Jagger talks about the suicide of L’Wren Scott; and celebrities react to L.A.’s earthquake on Twitter- see what they had to say!

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Data deleted from pilot’s simulator, official says: http://rtvote.com/1qUkx6B
    Hishammuddin Hussein, an official looking into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, noticed that some of the data from the pilot of the flight’s (Captain Zahaire Ahmad Shah) flight simulator had been deleted. This has raised suspicions because the files saved from the flight simulator are not that large and do not take up a lot of room once saved and stored. Also, pilots use the data to track their progress, so to delete parts of it would be unusual. Flight 370 is nearing the 13th day of its disappearance, and the search area spans nearly 3 million square miles. United States officials believe, however, that the plane is probably in the southern part of the search area or at the bottom of the Indian Ocean.

    Pro-Russians storm Ukrainian navy base in Crimea: http://rtvote.com/1mhaeso
    Tensions between Russians and Ukrainians in Crimea are readily increasing. On Wednesday, 300 pro-Russian supporters took over the Ukrainian naval post in Sevastopol, Crimea, just a day after Crimea voted to become part of Russia. No shots were fired between the pro-Russian supporters and the Ukrainian naval personnel, but the Ukrainian flags on the naval headquarters were replaced with Russian ones. This occurred one day after a Ukrainian military member was killed, another was injured, and others were captured when gunmen attacked the base in Simferopol, Crimea.

    Bruce Rauner wins close GOP primary in Illinois: http://rtvote.com/1eRGfj2
    Bruce Rauner, the 57-year-old billionaire businessman who set a state campaign finance record by funneling $6 million of his own money into his campaign, defeated state Senator Kirk Dillard in the GOP primary by a pretty close margin. He will contest incumbent governor Pat Quinn in November, who is regarded as one of the most vulnerable Democratic governors in the United States. For Senate, the GOP nominee is Jim Oberweis; however, his chance of winning against Democratic Senator Dick Durbin in November is slim. For election result numbers, click here.

    Iceland’s Hekla volcano could blow soon, claims scientist: http://rtvote.com/1j3DSRF
    A geoscientist from the University of Iceland claims that one of Iceland’s most active volcanoes, dubbed “Hekla,” could erupt in the near future. A sign of a coming eruption is bulging rock and ground on the volcano’s northern side; this means the amount of magma under the volcano is increasing. Apparently, there is more magma under Hekla today than there was in 2000, when it last erupted. Hekla has a reputation for erupting with little or short notice, so geoscientists are keeping a close watch on the volcano for signs of eruption.

    CULTURAL

    Rock legend Mick Jagger talks about the suicide of L’Wren Scotthttp://rtvote.com/1l3TnZT

    The Giver Trailer Premiers: Watch Katie Holmes, Jeff Bridges, and Meryl Streep in Action: http://rtvote.com/Nu7Xe8 

    Read celebrity reactions to the L.A. earthquake: http://rtvote.com/1p472xm

    Pretty Little Liars season 4 episode recap- talk about intense! http://rtvote.com/OwVqI5

    Which beloved characters will remain for Glee’s final season? http://rtvote.com/1fF5Hb3

    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 26, 2014

    Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

    Arizona’s governor has yet to make a decision on the latest controversial bill; secession fears emerge in Ukraine; and a California couple finds $10 million worth of Gold Rush-era coins. Meanwhile, another celebrity couple splits; more controversy emerges for Justin Bieber; and Kanye West talks music.

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Arizona governor takes time on anti-gay bill: http://rtvote.com/1mHkU4T
    Governor Jan Brewer of Arizona has been pressured for days to take a stance on bill SB1062, that would allow businesses and restaurants to refuse to serve gays based on religious beliefs. People from all professions and belief systems have called on Brewer to veto the bill including: the LGBT community, former presidential candidate Mitt Romney, religious leaders, business giants like Apple, and Arizona’s two senators, John McCain and Jeff Flake. The NFL is also watching the bill’s progress; if it passes, the 2015 Super Bowl’s Arizona location might be challenged. Brewer has until Saturday at 11:59pm to make her decision, but her inaction so far has drawn criticism.

    Tensions rise in Ukraine’s pro-Russian Crimea amid secession fears: http://rtvote.com/1fHdjOg
    Pro-Russian protesters faced off with pro-Ukrainian protesters in Simferopol, a city within Ukraine’s Crimea region. Some fear that Crimea, due to its extreme loyalty to Russia, will secede from Ukraine, although parliament speaker Volodimir Konstantinov has denied that there are secession plans in the works. Currently, eastern and southern Ukraine has a heavier Russian influence, while Western Ukraine favors the majority of Europe. Currently, Ukraine is trying to create a new government in the midst of the continuing political instability throughout the country.

    No bluff: US planning possible withdrawal of all troops from Afghanistan: http://rtvote.com/1gCjscp
    If no security agreement is signed, the Obama administration told Afghanistan that they would withdrawal all of the United States troops that remain by the end of the year. This comes after Afghanistan’s President, Hamid Karzai, refused to sign the security agreement, which would keep American troops in Afghanistan after combat operations end this year. A Pakistani official believes that if the United States leaves Afghanistan completely, a civil war will ensue. Presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah said he would sign the deal if elected.

    UAE Islamic affairs authority warns Muslims against a mission to Mars: http://rtvote.com/1ewcRhg
    The General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments (GAIAE) has issued a ruling telling Muslims not to travel to Mars, despite supporting space travel in general. The GAIAE is against travel to Mars because they believe people won’t come back: that they’ll die in space. This, they say, is similar to committing suicide because the traveler willingly went to Mars knowing he or she may not return. Suicide is strictly against Islamic principles. Mars One, the Dutch nonprofit planning the first tourist mission to outer space (through Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic) this year, issued a statement saying that human lives would not be at risk for tourism-based space travel and that the GAIAE should revoke the ruling.

    California couple unearths Gold Rush coins worth $10 million: http://rtvote.com/1jAakb3
    Two Californians stumbled upon 1,427 gold coins buried by a tree on their property while walking their dog. The discovery is believed to be “one of the greatest buried treasures ever unearthed in the United States” says the trade journal Coin Update. The coins worth $5, $10, and $20 were in mint condition and had never been circulated, though they have been dated from 1897 to 1894. Most of the coins are $20 coins minted between 1855 and 1894. Some experts say some coins could be auctioned for $1 million. No one has any idea who might have buried them. The couple plans to sell the majority of the coins on Amazon and plan on using the proceeds to help their community.

    CULTURAL

    Katy Perry and John Mayer hit splitsville: http://rtvote.com/1pthPUZ

    Justin Bieber’s security guard and driver arrested: http://rtvote.com/1llFOoy

    Kanye West to make “kid-friendly” music? http://rtvote.com/1khb5pg

    Miley Cyrus debunks some rumors: http://rtvote.com/N3mGgH

    Paul Rudd vs. Jimmy Fallon…at lip syncing: http://rtvote.com/1bM4aEN

    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 16, 2013

    Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

    An L.A. airport employee is arrested for the dry ice blasts at LAX; two minors are arrested for bullying a 14-year-old into suicide; and Senate resumes control of negotiations with one day to go before the debt deadline hits. Meanwhile, Ke$ha confesses that ghosts haunted her body, and Rihanna’s tweets get a string of people arrested in Thailand.

    -Sandy + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    L.A. airport employee arrested in dry ice blastshttp://rtvote.com/1er3DFr
    Dicarlo Bennett, a 28-year-old employee for the ground handling company Servisair, has been taken into custody for allegedly planting plastic bottles of dry ice on a tarmac and in one of the airport’s employee restrooms last week. Nobody was hurt in either incidents, but the blasts could have seriously injured anyone who was in close proximity. Bennett’s motives are unknown.

    Police chief: 64 Cleveland officers broke rules in shootinghttp://rtvote.com/1gklnGU
    More than 60 police officers will be disciplined for a 23-minute police chase that happened November 29, 2012. Police pursued a speeding car and opened fire after they thought they heard a gunshot and saw a gun in the car, although no weapon was ever found. Two unarmed people were shot and killed in the officers’ hailstorm of 137 bullets.

    Thefts from nursing home trust funds target the elderlyhttp://rtvote.com/1gknkmK
    The problem of resident trust funds being stolen or mismanaged is a growing problem. Employees or administrators at U.S. nursing homes or other long-term care institutions have taken large sums of money from trust funds. However, these crimes of trust fund theft are not easy to detect, and they are relatively easy to carry out because of the lack of safeguards in the system.

    Shutdown, Day 16: Can nation avert default?http://rtvote.com/1fCAslM
    Just ONE day away from the debt deadline! So, what’s going on in DC right now? Here are some top highlights: the Senate has resumed control of negotiations after the House GOP pulled their bill yesterday; Fitch Ratings, one of the largest debt-rating companies, has threatened to possibly downgrade the U.S.’s AAA bond rating; the Pew Research Center has released a new poll that says 51% of Americans think that raising the debt limit by tomorrow is essential to avoid economic crisis. Will Congress reach an agreement before it’s too late? Guess we’ll have to wait and see…

    Sheriff: Taunting post leads to arrests in Rebecca Sedwick bullying deathhttp://rtvote.com/1erd0oI
    12-year-old Rebecca Sedwick committed suicide last month by jumping off the top of an abandoned concrete plant. The bullying Sedwick endured by a 14-year-old girl and another 12-year-old girl allegedly prompted her to end her life. The girls were charged with stalking for allegedly harassing Sedwick at school and online. The 14-year-old posted a taunting Facebook message after Sedwick’s death, prompting police to arrest her.

    PUNDITS

    Bruce Schneier discusses privacy in an information age being fostered by the government and private companies in “Your life, under constant surveillance,” http://rtvote.com/1gktGTb

    LZ Granderson reminds us that before we call the men and women of Congress “idiots”, we should remember we put them there in “We Created – and Deserve – the Idiots in Washington,” http://rtvote.com/1fCPpEB

    CULTURAL

    Ke$ha Reveals Ghosts Haunted Her Body, http://rtvote.com/1erhg7A

    Was Britney Spears’ Body Airbrushed in the “Work Bitch” Music Video? See the Before and After,http://rtvote.com/197kL13

    Ivanka Trump Gives Birth to a Baby Boy, http://rtvote.com/1fCQLis

    Rihanna’s Tweets Leave Trail of Arrests After Thailand Visit, http://rtvote.com/1gkwtMb

    sandywu
    Bio:

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



    News Round-Up: October 14, 2013

    Monday, October 14th, 2013

    Protestors rallied against the shutdown and Obama yesterday; two popular sports supplements are strung with meth-like chemicals; and a U.S. citizen is found dead in an Egyptian prison. Meanwhile, Lauren Conrad is engaged, and Macaulay Culkin makes a rare public appearance, looking like a new man.

    -Sandy + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Spending Dispute Leaves a Senate Deal Elusivehttp://rtvote.com/192gSdv
    With just three days to go until we hit the debt deadline, there is still no deal to end the shutdown. Senate went into talks yesterday, and although Senate Majority leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell described the meeting as “cordial”, there was still no agreement between the two parties. The main issues center on spending and how long a stopgap measure that would reopen the government should last. Democrats want sequestration to last only through mid-November, while Republicans want them for as long as possible. Negotiations continue, as the rest of the world cringes in fear at the possibility of a disastrous debt default.

    D.C. protestors wave Confederate flag, tell Obama to “put the Quran down”http://rtvote.com/1gePVd2
    Approximately 200 people gathered Sunday morning at D.C.’s World War II memorial to protest a number of grievances, ranging from the closing of the memorial to veterans, an extreme impeachment of President Obama, and the plight of the truckers. The protestors, amongst them Senator Ted Cruz, former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin, and Republican Senator Mike Lee, participated in rally speeches, the waving of a Confederate flag, calling Obama a Muslim, and encouraging a peaceful uprising against the administration.

    Popular sports supplements contain meth-like compoundhttp://rtvote.com/1geRU1b
    Scientific tests in the U.S. and South Korea reveal that two popular sports supplements, Craze and Detonate, contain a methamphetamine-like compound that could cause health risks. Craze is a pre-workout powder made by Driven Sports. The company has issued repeated statements, protesting this accusation, but a top Driven Sports official, Matt Cahill, is a convicted felon with a long history of selling risky dietary supplements. Detonate, an “all-natural” weight loss supplement, is sold by Gaspari Nutrition.

    As Police Chased Leads About ‘Baby Hope,’ Those Who Knew Her Kept Quiethttp://rtvote.com/1elJpgg
    After 22 years, Baby Hope’s cold case seems to be coming to a close. The young girl’s real name is Anjelica Castillo, and the NYPD have arrested her cousin, Conrado Juarez, for sexually abusing and murdering Anjelica. At the time of the incident, she was living in a Queens apartment with seven other family members – none of whom ever spoke up about what had happened. Mr. Juarez’s lawyer, Michael J. Croce, said his client denied the charges and disputed his previous confession. Police are looking further into other sexual abuse allegations made against Juarez.

    Egypt: U.S. citizen found dead in prisonhttp://rtvote.com/1geXEb9
    American citizen James Lunn was arrested in August by Egyptian authorities for violating curfew. Lunn was in northern Sinai at the time, which has become a dangerous area since the overthrow of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in a July 3rd military coup. Military and security forces have been fighting Islamist militants in this area on a daily basis, and Lunn was arrested on August 27th after a car bomb had gone off near a police station. Authorities suspected him because he had a “computer and maps of vital installations” with him. Lunn was found hanging from a prison door yesterday. There have been allegations from other foreigners of inhuman conditions in Egyptian jails, but the U.S. Embassy in Cairo stated Lunn seemed in good condition when they visited him. The Embassy has ruled it an apparent suicide.

    PUNDITS

    Andrew Hammond discusses the catastrophic consequences that could result if the U.S. defaults on its debt in three days in “U.S. be warned: Default would cause global crisis,” http://rtvote.com/192uS74

    USA Today readers weigh in on the Army’s development of a program that aims to identify soldiers who are at risk of suicide in “New tactic to stop Army suicides: Your Say,” http://rtvote.com/192wKgj

    CULTURAL

    Lauren Conrad Is Engaged to William Tell, http://rtvote.com/1fxsrhX

    Macaulay Culkin Looks Happy and Healthy During Rare Public Appearance at New York Comic Con,http://rtvote.com/1fxsCdm

    Pharrell Williams and Helen Lasichanh Are Married, http://rtvote.com/1gf3SaT

    Buckingham Palace Arrest: Man Carrying Knife Nabbed Outside Gates, http://rtvote.com/1gf4n50

    sandywu
    Bio:

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



    News Round-Up: September 9, 2013

    Monday, September 9th, 2013

    Tensions remain high in the U.S. over Syria crisis; YouTube confession case close to indictment; a new Van Gogh painting is discovered; and the owner of POLITICO buys Capital New York.  Meanwhile, One Direction star vomits on camera; Kate Winslet shows off her baby bump; and Wentworth Miller opens up about his thoughts of suicide.
    -Maura

    CRUCIAL 

    Bashar al-Assad: US will pay price for Syria strikehttp://rtvote.com/1e90D3X
    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has warned that the U.S. would “pay the price” for any strike against Syria. He told a U.S. broadcaster that strikes would increase instability and lead to the spread of terrorism in the region & that there is “no evidence” that government forces used chemical weapons again its own people.

    YouTube confession case going to grand juryhttp://rtvote.com/17Rw3EP
    Twenty-two year old Ohioan, Matthew Cordie will be indicted as early as today on charges of vehicular homicide after his YouTube confession that drew in 1.2 million views. In the video, Cordie admits to driving drunk, crashing into a jeep and killing its driver.

    Trail Life USA, The ‘Other’ Boy Scouts of Americahttp://rtvote.com/1e98j6e
    Three months after the Boy Scouts of America changed its policy to welcome openly gay scouts, a new faith-based organization has emerged as an alternative for young boys. The organization calls itself Trail Life USA, and aims to be the ” premier national character development organization for young men.” Although gay scouts will be allowed to participate, the organization bars youth who are open about their homosexuality.

    POLITICO publisher Buys Capital New York,http://rtvote.com/17REZtM
    POLITICO publisher Robert Allbritton purchased the online news site Capital New York in what he says is an attempt to “do in New York what we did in Washington with POLITICO.” His vision is to use this acquisition to build a space as an essential news source for and about the most powerful people in New York– much like POLITICO does in Washington, D.C.

    Museum Identifies New Van Gogh Painting in Amsterdamhttp://rtvote.com/1e98JcF
    The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam announced today that it has identified a major new painting by Vincent Van Gogh. The work is entitled “Sunset at Montmajour” and was painted in Arles in 1888. This is the first time in the history of the museum (40 years) that a completely unknown work by the artist has been discovered.

    CULTURAL

    Hemsworth Brothers Hit the Red Carpet for Rush Premiere in Toronto, http://rtvote.com/17RuKpm

    One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson Vomits After Being Tackled in Charity Soccer Game, http://rtvote.com/1e8Zfhw

    Wentworth Miller Tried to Commit Suicide Before Coming Out: “The First Time I Tried to Kill Myself I was 15”, http://rtvote.com/17Rvbjt

    Carrie Underwood Debuts Sunday Night Football Theme Song, http://rtvote.com/1e8ZUj5

    Kate Winslet Dresses Baby Bump in Curve-Hugging Gown at Toronto Film Festival, http://rtvote.com/17RvudT

    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