News In Brief
Eager to turn legislative defeat into political gain, President Clinton blamed the failed nomination of Dr. Henry Foster for surgeon general on right-wing extremists who will "stop at nothing" to outlaw abortion. Sharing the stage with Foster as he broadcast his weekly radio address, Clinton said GOP senators killed the doctor's nomination "to showcase their desire to take away a woman's right to choose." Senator Gramm countered that Clinton lost because Americans "have rejected his brand of radical Democratic politics." Foster said he would gladly accept if Clinton offered him another job allowing him "to make inroads against the problem of teen pregnancy."
Clinton's reelection committee got a jump on the campaign season by spending nearly $2 million for TV ads criticizing GOP efforts to repeal last year's crime bill. The ads, scheduled to begin airing this week in a dozen states, denounce Republican efforts to repeal an assault-weapons ban and a community policing program. Clinton advisers said the president hoped to sway public opinion in his favor before Senate Republicans begin debating their crime legislation.
Republican members of Congress say they intend to dismantle a federal program that distributes free vaccine to children following a new report from congressional auditors that said the program was misconceived and mismanaged, the New York Times reported. Even congressional Democrats say the Vaccines for Children program must be radically changed or it will not survive, the Times said.
In his first interview since his arrest, Oklahoma City bombing suspect Timothy McVeigh told Newsweek magazine that he will plead innocent and that he didn't know about the bombing until a state trooper who stopped his car told him about it. McVeigh denied published reports suggesting he attended meetings of antigovernment militia groups or was angry over the federal siege of the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas.
The federal government is too slow to enforce civil-rights laws and has failed to devote enough resources to agencies that are overwhelmed by antidiscrimination claims, the US Civil Rights Commission said in a report. The bipartisan commission urged Clinton and Congress to devote more money and staff to civil-rights enforcement. Four of the six GOP appointees to the panel protested the report's release, saying they questioned its findings and it was improperly approved while three members were absent.
Webster Hubbell, who is to be sentenced Wednesday for his role in the Whitewater case, asked for leniency because of his cooperation with government prosecutors and lengthy public-service career. Hubbell has admitted stealing $400,000 from clients and former partners at Little Rock's Rose law firm and faces a possible 10-year prison sentence.
Senator Packwood will begin his fight for political survival tomorrow when he appears before the Ethics Committee to defend himself against charges of sexual misconduct. Packwood has already reviewed the record of evidence against him detailed by the Senate panel.
Uncooperative weather forced another delay of the first shuttle mission to dock with the Russian space station Mir. Shuttle flight planners hope to try again tomorrow.
Citing a "trail of broken promises," ABC and NBC said they are through with Major League Baseball for at least five years after this season, and FOX or CBS can have it next year. Their decision will dissolve The Baseball Network, a three-way partnership among baseball and the two broadcast networks, after only its second season.
Retired Chief Justice Warren Burger, who died yesterday, presided over the Supreme Court from 1969 to 1986, the longest tenure this century. While on the bench, Burger was a politically conservative judge who rarely showed sympathy for criminal defendants or their asserted rights. But he also wrote numerous opinions praised by liberals.
James Batten, who died last weekend, was chairman of Knight-Ridder Inc. and one of the country's leading news executives.
Government soldiers fighting to break the choke hold on their capital battled Serbs with mortars, artillery, and rockets on the outskirts of Sarajevo yesterday. Serbs fired on a UN convoy bringing food into the city, and French peacekeepers responded with a smoke shell. On Saturday, Serbs entered the government-held enclave of Srebrenica, killing at least three civilians. NATO reportedly is set to approve a plan to send up to 60,000 troops - up to half of them Americans - to aid in the withdrawal of UN peacekeepers if their mission fails.
As Auto trade talks between the US and Japan resumed in Geneva yesterday, the US maintained it will impose 100 percent tariffs on Japanese luxury cars if there is no agreement by Wednesday. US trade representative Kantor and Japan's trade minister Hashimoto will join the talks today.
Russian forces attacked rebels in southern Chechnya Saturday, but Russian commanders said the action did not violate the week-old truce because it targeted fighters loyal to Shamil Basayev, who led the recent assault and hostage-taking in a Russian city. Chechen negotiators earlier agreed to turn over Basayev.
Israeli troops killed an Arab demonstrator and wounded at least 50 people yesterday in continuing protests in the West Bank over the release of Palestinian prisoners. After talks with PLO leader Arafat, Israeli Foreign Minister Peres said they had narrowed differences over Palestinian self-rule. They face a July 1 target date for an agreement on Palestinian elections and an Israeli troop redeployment. Bahrain's government, meanwhile, submitted its resignation, paving the way for a major cabinet reshuffle.
UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali said the UN is almost bankrupt and will find it hard to achieve its goals without financial support from member nations. The UN is now $2 billion in arrears, Boutros-Ghali said. He was in San Francisco to lead celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the signing of the UN charter.
EU leaders meet for a summit in Cannes, France, today, but the resort setting belies the clouds from British Prime Minister Major's struggle to survive and uncertainty over the Bosnian war. Heads of the 11 East European and Mediterranean nations that are candidates for membership join EU leaders for lunch tomorrow. Mediator Bildt was to brief the European powers on his recent swing through Bosnia. Major joins the group with a new bullet-biting image after quitting as leader of the Conservative Party last week and inviting his right-wing critics to back him or sack him in a party vote July 4.
Haitians went to the polls in their first democratic elections in five years. Supporters of President Aristide are expected to win the vote for nearly all of the country's elected posts. Only sporadic violence was reported.
Eleven people were killed in a second day of violence in Karachi, Pakistan. The opposition Mojahir National Movement, has been locked in confrontation with Prime Minister Bhutto.
An Iraqi humanitarian team went to former enemy Iran last week seeking urgently needed medicines, an Iranian diplomat said. He noted a new period of negotiations between the nations. An Iraqi official said Iran agreed to provide the supplies.
South Korea marked the 45th anniversary of the start of the Korean War. North Korea reiterated demands for a peace treaty to replace the 1953 armistice, but still wants to negotiate it only with the US.
Between now and the Republican convention, Dole is going to stumble, and the question is, is anybody going to be close enough to take advantage of it, to shoot the gap?"
-- Political analyst Charlie Cook
The first Seawolf nuclear sub, hailed as the "finest submarine in the world," was christened over the weekend in Connecticut. It will undergo a year of sea trials before delivery to the Navy next year. The $2 billion vessel is the first completely new design for a US attack submarine in more than 30 years.
It wasn't Major League Baseball, and it wasn't opening day, but President Clinton finally had a chance to throw out the first pitch on Saturday. Clinton did the honors with a looping toss over the plate at the championship game of the National Amateur All-Star Baseball Tournament in Arkansas.
Most Livable States
7. South Dakota
8. New Hampshire
41. New Mexico
42. South Carolina
43. New York
47. West Virginia
- Morgan Quitno Press, annual listing