1:17 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Jobs Bill Falters Despite Presidential Push

President Obama speaks about job creation and the economy at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local No. 5 Training Center in Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Ever since President Obama proposed his $447 billion jobs bill in a joint address to Congress last month, he has been campaigning for it nonstop. He has whipped up crowds all across America who chant: "Pass this bill!"

It contains a variety of measures to fight unemployment — everything from tax breaks for businesses to extended benefits for the jobless. But despite the campaigning, the Senate is expected to kill the proposal Tuesday on a procedural vote.

Jonathan Cowan of the centrist Democratic group Third Way says that's no big deal — it was always a long shot.

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12:55 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

No Child Left Behind Waivers Worry Some Advocates

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Mill Creek Middle School Principal Rebecca Bowen says her school is "by no way, shape or form a failing school." But it is according to federal and state standards because its low-income, special education students were about 10 points behind the goals set on standardized tests.

Larry Abramson NPR

Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 5:02 pm

The Obama administration wants states to focus more of their attention on the lowest-performing schools, where large numbers of students are failing state tests year after year.

So the Department of Education is inviting all states to apply for waivers from the No Child Left Behind law.

The waivers could win relief for schools where a small number of students are falling short of federal requirements.

But advocates for minority and special education students worry their students will be ignored.

The 'Failing School' Stigma

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Shots - Health Blog
12:33 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Global Tuberculosis Cases Drop For First Time

A woman, left, cuts the hair of a fellow tuberculosis patient at a clinic in the township of Khayelitsha, on the outskirts of Cape Town, South Africa, in March.

Schalk van Zuydam AP

Worldwide tuberculosis cases are declining annually for the first time, according to a report just out from the World Health Organization. Deaths from the disease have also sunk to the lowest level in a decade.

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The Two-Way
12:33 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Israel, Hamas Reach Prisoner-Swap Deal, Freeing Israeli Soldier Gilad Schalit

In this file image taken from a video released by Hamas in 2009, Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit is seen holding a newspaper in an unknown location.

Anonymous AP

Originally published on Tue October 18, 2011 9:46 am

The AP, along with several other news sources including Al Arabiya and Haaretz, are reporting that Israel and Hamas have reached a prisoner-swap deal that will free Israeli Sgt. Gilad Schalit and hundreds of Palestinian prisoners.

Schalit, if you remember, was captured by Palestinian militants in 2006 and his father, Noam, has led a popular effort to free him.

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It's All Politics
12:13 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Mitt Romney Gets Chris Christie's Endorsement

Back in 2009 when he campaigned to be New Jersey's chief executive, then former U.S. prosecutor Chris Christie got help from Mitt Romney who visited the Garden State to endorse his fellow Republican in that state's GOP primary.

So it wasn't particularly surprising that on Tuesday, now-Gov. Christie would return the favor by endorsing Romney's bid to be the Republican Party presidential nominee in an afternoon news conference.

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The Two-Way
12:10 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Report: 2004 Overseas Tax Break Was A 'Failed' Policy

Senate Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin (D-MI), looks at his papers while talking about U.S. companies recieving large tax breaks, during a news conference on Capitol Hill.

Mark Wilson Getty Images

A report (pdf) from the Senate's Governmental Affair's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations found that a 2004 tax break that was given to corporations repatriating profits made in foreign countries "did not produce any of the promised benefits of new jobs or increased research expenditures to spur economic growth." In fact, the report found that the corporations receiving the break cut 20,000 net jobs and cost the U.S.

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The Two-Way
11:59 am
Tue October 11, 2011

Reports: Terrorist Plot Tied To Iran Disrupted

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder (right) and FBI Director Robert Mueller announce a plot had been foiled involving men allegedly linked to the Iranian government to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. and bomb the embassies of Saudi Arabia and Israel in Washington at a news conference October 11, 2011 in Washington, DC.

Win McNamee Getty Images
We're following this breaking news as it comes in. Scroll down for updates.

An Iranian-directed plan to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. and possibly attack the Saudi and Israeli embassies in Washington has been disrupted, Justice Department officials announced this afternoon.

Saying that the alleged "deadly plot ... [was] directed by factions of the Iranian government" and involved an attempt to hire killers from a Mexican drug cartel, Attorney General Eric Holder also said Iran will be held to account.

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National Security
11:49 am
Tue October 11, 2011

Prosecutor: Christmas Bomb Suspect Prepared To Die

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian suspect in a failed Christmas Day 2009 attack of a U.S.-bound airliner, prayed and perfumed himself in the plane's restroom moments before trying to detonate a bomb sewn into his underwear, a federal prosecutor said Tuesday.

"He was engaging in rituals. He was preparing to die and enter heaven," Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Tukel told a court in Detroit as Abdulmutallab's trial opened. "He purified himself. He washed. He brushed his teeth. He put on perfume. He was praying and perfuming himself to get ready to die."

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The Two-Way
11:35 am
Tue October 11, 2011

For Those Who Aren't Fans Of The '99 Percent,' There's The '53 Percent'

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Erick Erickson with his photo that started the "53 percent" countermeme.


The Occupy Wall Street movement, as we noted last week, has latched on to the idea that its supporters are the "99 percent" of Americans who aren't superrich and have been falling behind in recent years.

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The Two-Way
11:26 am
Tue October 11, 2011

UFO-Like Drone Makes First Cruise-Mode Flight

This was the first gear-up flight for the X47B.

Christian Turner Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman announced, yesterday, that the X-47B drone it is developing for the U.S. Navy had flown in cruise mode — with its landing gear retracted — for the first time during a test flight from Edwards Air Force Base.

The aerospace company called it a "major milestone," but what caught our attention were simply the pictures of this tail-less plane that looks like hybrid UFO and a B-2 bomber:

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