LOUISIANA: Liz Cheney attacks health plan
Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, opened a conference of Southern Republicans on Thursday by calling President Barack Obama's health care campaign an arrogant power play. The first speaker at the three-day Southern Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans, Cheney accused Obama of peddling "phony numbers" to get his health care bill passed by Congress. She predicted that Republicans would repeal the law. The audience at times booed the mere mention of Obama's name.
WASHINGTON: Next on agenda? Climate change
Lawmakers will soon begin considering major climate-change legislation that the White House wants passed this year. But with a little more than seven months to go until Election Day, some are asking: Can they do it? "The Democratic members, especially newly elected members, are going to be pretty reluctant to pursue an aggressive agenda," said pollster Scott Rasmussen, especially those in districts carried by John McCain in 2008. Democrats are expected to lose seats in November, and the White House and environmentalists are pushing for action while the numbers are on their side. A bill authored by Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) is to be rolled out the week of April 19, calling for reducing carbon emissions by 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020.
Space agency may be adding jobs
NASA may not be going to the moon anytime soon and its space shuttles are about to be retired, but it could conceivably increase the number of agency jobs under a reorganization, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said Thursday. He said that because NASA has more money overall, it should have more jobs, compared with the previous administration's plans for a moon mission. More of those jobs will be on research into airplanes and climate change. NASA also plans to spend billions more over the next five years on developing new rocket technology and helping private firms build their own ships to take people to the International Space Station.
UTAH: Stray Shih Tzu hit by train twice
A stray dog is recovering after getting run over by a freight train - twice. Fred Krause of Utah Railway Co. said he spotted the cream-colored Shih Tzu on the tracks Sunday in Clinton, a suburb of Salt Lake City. Krause, who was operating a train, said there was no way to stop before it ran over the dog, which was small enough to avoid being hit. On his return trip the pup wasn't so lucky. It was running on the tracks and got whacked by the train's snowplow. Krause found it dazed and lying on the tracks. He and his family are nursing it back to health