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

    Thursday, February 6th, 2014

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

    - Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

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

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

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

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

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

    CULTURAL

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

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

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

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

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

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



    News Round-Up: Thursday, January 30, 2014

    Thursday, January 30th, 2014
    A 3-year-old boy falls victim to a Mafia hit in Italy; another congressman is set to retire; Amanda Knox is back on trial and awaiting a verdict; and the 8-year-old boy who saved six of his family members in a fire was laid to rest yesterday. Meanwhile, the Academy Awards committee revokes a nomination; Jerry Seinfeld might have hinted at a Seinfeld reunion; the men of Full House sing Jimmy Fallon a classic lullaby; and Justin Bieber is back in the news.

    Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Boy, 3, executed in alleged mob hit: http://rtvote.com/1loaari
    A 3-year-old boy was shot along with his grandfather and another person in an apparent Mafia hit. The grandfather, Giuseppe Innaicelli, was believed to be the intended target. One of the most powerful Mafia syndicates in the world – ‘Ndrangheta – is believed to be responsible for the crime. The killing shocked Italy and even drew the attention of the Pope, who asked people Sunday to pray for the boy (known as Coco) and call on the members responsible to ask forgiveness.

    Democratic Representative Henry Waxman to retire at end of term: http://rtvote.com/1eiWR69
    Representative Henry Waxman of California announced today that he will not seek reelection for a 21st Congressional term this election year. He is now one of the 7 House Democrats who have announced their refusal to run for reelection; 10 Republican House members have also announced their retirement. Although Waxman has vehemently chastised Tea Party Republicans in Congress, he has denied this as the reason for his departure. “After 40 years in Congress, it’s time for someone else to have the chance to make his or her mark…” Waxman said. 

    Verdict due in third murder trial of Amanda Knox: http://rtvote.com/1hRPcM7
    A verdict is due in the ongoing trial of Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito. The two were charged in the gruesome 2007 murder of student Meredith Kercher. Knox and Sollecito have been to court twice and were found guilty in one trial and innocent in the other. The Italian Supreme Court revoked the ‘innocent’ ruling, saying that key evidence had been left out of the trial. Prosecutors want Knox and Sollecito to serve 26 years in prison. 

    Doctors try to wake Schumacher from coma: http://rtvote.com/1n1mR6R
    Michael Schumacher, the German former Formula One champion, has been in a coma since December 29th, when he sustained serious head injuries at a ski resort in France. His condition has stabilized enough that doctors are trying to wake him out of his induced coma. The family has requested privacy throughout his ordeal, but Schumacher’s manager has spoken out to clear media leaks.

    Boy who saved 6 declared honorary firefighter at funeral: http://rtvote.com/Lt29RZ
    Tyler Doohan, the 8-year-old boy who saved six of his family members in a house fire before perishing, was buried yesterday. To honor his bravery, Penfield Fire Chief Chris Ebemeyer presented a fire helmet at the funeral and made Tyler an honorary firefighter. People from all over the country came to Fariport, New York to be at Tyler’s funeral to honor his heroism. 

    CULTURAL

    Oscar nomination for Best Original Song revoked: http://rtvote.com/1batGxU

    Full House cast sings a lullaby to Jimmy Fallon: http://rtvote.com/1aKtMl3

    Did Jerry Seinfeld kind of confirm a Seinfeld reunion? http://rtvote.com/1a467vr

    Justin Bieber’s horrendous 2014 start: http://rtvote.com/1hSakBN

    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, July 15, 2013

    Monday, July 15th, 2013

    ‘Glee’ star Cory Monteith found dead; George Zimmerman found not-guilty; people in LA protest in response to verdict in George Zimmerman murder trial; Snowden has docs that outline how the NSA works; U.S. embassy reopens in Cairo; and trial begins today over controversial PA voter ID law. Meanwhile, Kelly Osbourne gets engaged; Selena Gomez pays tribute to friend, Cory Monteith; and celebrities ‘tweet’ about Zimmerman not guilty verdict.

    -Maura

    CRUCIAL

    ‘Glee’ Star Cory Monteith Found Dead, http://rtvote.com/18Yb6Mi
    Saturday afternoon, Cory Monteith, star of the Fox show “Glee”, was found dead in his Vancouver, Canada hotel room. When Monteith didn’t check out at his scheduled time, staff went to his room and discovered his body. The cause of death is unknown, but police have ruled out foul play in the death of the 31-year old actor.  An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

    Zimmerman not-guilty verdict unlikely to be the end of Trayvon Martin saga in court, http://rtvote.com/18YbNVX
    On Saturday night, George Zimmerman was able to shed the GPS device that had monitored his movements before he was acquitted of manslaughter and second-degree murder charges in the death of teenager Trayvon Martin. But, drama over the case continues with demonstrations across the country, debate about wrongful-death lawsuits, and Web-site-crashing demands for filing of federal civil rights charges.

    Police declare unlawful assembly in Hollywood; make arrests, http://rtvote.com/18YdVNu
    In response to the verdict in the Trayvon Martin murder case, about 80 protestors gathered in front of the CNN building in Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard shortly after midnight Monday, chanting “No Justice, No Peace.” More than 100 LA police officers in riot gear converged on the crowd and began making arrests. Some of the protestors were carrying signs that said “We Are All Trayvon Martin.” Protestors also amassed in San Francisco, Oakland, and New York City.

    ‘Guardian’ journalist: Snowden docs contain NSA ‘blueprint’, http://rtvote.com/15fIDwg
    Edward Snowden has highly sensitive documents on how the National Security Agency (NSA) is structured and operates that could harm the U.S. government, but has insisted they not be made public. Glenn Greenwald, a columnist with The Guardian newspaper who first reported on the leaks, said the disclosure would allow “somebody who read them to know exactly how the NSA does what it does.”

    U.S. reopens Egypt embassy as envoy arrives in Cairo, http://rtvote.com/15fJuwY
    The U.S. Embassy in Cairo reopened Monday as a senior Washington official was due to hold talks with the nation’s military-supported leaders. The embassy was closed to the public for two weeks amid widespread unrest and mass protests in Tahrir Square, which is very close to the embassy.

    Trial to measure lawfulness of PA voter ID law, http://rtvote.com/15fHlRV

    A trial is set to begin Monday on the constitutionality of Pennsylvania’s voter identification law. The case represents a major step toward a judicial ruling on whether the photo requirement should be enforced at polling places statewide or thrown out as unconstitutional. Officials on both sides say that they expect the state Supreme Court to ultimately decide the case.

    CULTURAL

    Dina Lohan: Oprah Winfrey Will Be Lindsay Lohan’s “Mentor”, http://rtvote.com/12AyWK5

    Kelly Osbourne Is Engaged to Matthew Mosshart, http://rtvote.com/18YcA9i

    Selena Gomez Pays Tribute to Cory Monteith, Posts Affectionate Photo on Twitter, http://rtvote.com/15fGwZf

    David Beckham to Kate Middleton and Prince William: Name the Royal Baby David!, http://rtvote.com/15fGEb2

    Celebrities React To George Zimmerman Not Guilty Verdict, http://rtvote.com/15fH1T8

    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: July 11, 2013

    Thursday, July 11th, 2013

    Judge in the Zimmerman case holds hearing to decide if jurors should consider lesser charges; Mohamed Morsi is still in an unknown location; Pope Francis responds to UN on child abuse; Dzhokhar Tsarnaev pleads not guilty in Boston Marathon bombings; missing people presumed dead in Canada train crash; and House Republicans are resistant to immigrating reform legislation. Meanwhile, the media is already setting up for Kate Middleton to give birth; Randy Travis is out of surgery; Adam Lambert does Glee; and John Mayer buys guitar for a fan.

    -Maura

    CRUCIAL
    Judge Considers lesser charges in Zimmerman case
    , http://rtvote.com/12oNnB7
    This Thursday morning, state prosecutors are asking the judge in the Trayvon Martin murder case to instruct jurors to consider lesser charges, like aggravated assault or manslaughter, when they begin deliberations. Zimmerman is currently being tried for second-degree murder.  Zimmerman’s attorneys have objected and the judge is holding a hearing to decide.

    A week after the coup, Egyptians ask: ‘Where is Morsi?’, http://rtvote.com/18PImp4
    It has been one week and nobody knows where former Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi is located. Authorities promise he is in a “safe place” and have also issued warrants for hundreds of other Muslim Brotherhood members and supporters. The warrants target Senior Islamist officials accused of provoking the violence that led to the fatal shooting of more than 50 pro-Morsi demonstrators on Monday.
    Pope Expands Sex Abuse Laws in Response to U.N. Criticisms, http://rtvote.com/155qgKd
    Pope Francis is finally complying with the United Nation’s Commission for the Rights of the Child about the Vatican’s poor record on child abuse.  The Holy See was given until January to submit a detailed report to the United Nations that answers specific questions and hands over confidential files about the movement of “predatory priests” between dioceses.

    Boston bomb suspect pleads not guilty, http://rtvote.com/12oYzxB
    Boston Marathon bombings suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev faced more than 2 dozen survivors of that attack Wednesday as he pleaded not guilty to killing four people and wounding more than 200. He is charged with 30 federal counts stemming from the April 15 attack.

    Body count rises in Canada train crash, http://rtvote.com/155um53

    The official death toll from Saturday’s train crash in Quebec has reached 50. On Wednesday evening officials said that 20 bodies were found in the area following a crash of a runway oil train in Canada’s deadliest railway tragedy in almost 150 years. Authorities informed grieving families that the dozens of people still missing are now presumed dead.

    ISSUES
    Immigration

    Republicans in House Resist Overhaul for Immigration, http://rtvote.com/18PIrc6

    On Wednesday, House Republicans came down overwhelmingly against a comprehensive overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws, putting in jeopardy the future of sweeping legislation that includes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.  Speaker Boehner warned about the consequences if they do nothing to answer the immigration measure passed by the Senate last month.
    CULTURAL

    Cameras Line Up Weeks Early at Kate Middleton’s Hospital, http://rtvote.com/155wiKV

    Randy Travis Out of Surgery, Remains in Critical Condition, http://rtvote.com/12p0zpx

    ‘Glee’: Adam Lambert to Appear in Season 5, http://rtvote.com/12p0O3S

    John Mayer Buys Guitar for Girl, Makes Her Biggest Fan Ever, http://rtvote.com/155xfmo

    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