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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Good Morning, News!

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Tue, Jul 8, 2014 at 8:57 AM

Most of the unaccompanied children—tens of thousands of them in makeshift detention centers—caught trying to cross the American border after long treks from Central America will likely be deported back home. The White House, under pressure with President Obama looking to attempt at least limited immigration reform, has enraged traditional allies in calling for a strict, legalistic handling of the crisis. And he's still not winning any points from immigration hawks.

Why are more children coming across the border? They're flooding in from Central American countries covered by a George W. Bush anti-human-trafficking law—a law that affords extra legal protections against deportations. Central America has also seen a spike in drug violence. Confusion—about the DREAM Act and bureaucratic delays in deportation proceedings—has also fed the frenzy.

The relaxation of voting rights oversight in the American South is already paying dividends for the Republican Party and ongoing efforts to keep poor, minority, and Democratic voters away from the polls. A town in North Carolina wants to consolidate voting precincts, in African American neighborhoods, forcing people to travel farther to vote on Election Day.

A man died in the middle of a hot dog eating contest in South Dakota last week. He choked to death—which seems like an obvious risk of speed gluttony for sport. And yet, somehow, the event's organizers say they're "at a loss for words."

Israeli air strikes, and the massing of soldiers around its borders, suggest the answer to a new barrage of Palestinian rocket attacks might be another invasion of the Gaza Strip.

Awkward! First, there were leaks suggesting Americans were listening to the German chancellor's phone calls. And now the CIA has pointedly not denied claims that it worked to recruit a German intelligence official arrested on suspicion of helping the United States spy on his homeland.

The Afghan presidential election isn't going so smoothly, unsurprisingly. The fellow who lost the runoff—the current president's designated successor won—has decided he's been the victim of election fraud. And he could be planning a parallel government.

Twenty-two rollercoaster riders were left hanging upside down for three hours in Southern California last night. One of the coaster cars—on a ride much-hyped for its loops and whorls through a woodsy glade—predictably hit a tree branch.

Cuban agents have been accused of cooking up apparently false allegations that a US senator from New Jersey, Bob Menendez, had "cavorted with underage prostitutes." Menendez has been one of Congress' most influential voices against normalizing relations with Cuba.

North Korea's leader is walking with some kind of a limp. And nuclear tests. Something about those, too.

It gets hot outside. Especially in the places we've been sending our soldiers as of late. So can't we all agree it's fair and humane and decent to let 'em roll up their sleeves every once in a while without risking punishment.

A would-be robber in Alabama, cops say, rode a horse to the store she'd targeted. Also the horse was stolen. Also she was pretty drunk. The cops found beer in a shopping bag tied to the horse's saddle.



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