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The Takeaway

Reaction from Phoenix to Restraints on Arizona Law

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Judge Susan Bolton blocked sections of the controversial law, S.B. 1070, that would have required police officers to check a person's immigration status while enforcing other laws, and that would have required immigrants to carry their papers with them at all times or face detention. For reaction from Phoenix, we hear from Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez, KJZZ Phoenix Public Radio news reporter for the Latino Affairs desk. 

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The Takeaway

Civil Rights Groups Turn a Critical Eye on Obama's Education Policies

Thursday, July 29, 2010

President Obama is scheduled to speak today on education reform, just days after a team of civil rights groups joined forces to release a policy framework criticizing his education policies. Obama's speech is part of the program for the National Urban League's Centennial Conference this week.

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The Takeaway

Rep. Charlie Rangel to Face House Ethics Panel

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) may face the biggest fight of his long political career when he faces a public ethics hearing on Capitol Hill later this afternoon. At the heart of the hearing are allegations that Rangel underreported his rental income on a villa in the Dominican Republic, held multiple rent-stabilized apartments in New York City, and misused congressional stationery to solicit private donations for a City College center that bore his name.

Representative Charles Rangel (D-NY) may be facing the biggest fight of his long political career when he faces a public ethics hearing on Capitol Hill later this afternoon.  At the heart of this hearing are allegations that the Congressman underreported his rental income on a villa in the Domincan Republic, held multiple rent stabilized apartments in New York City, and misused Congressional stationary to solicit private donations for a City College center that bore his name.  

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The Takeaway

Countdown to Arizona's Immigration Law

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Arizona's controversial immigration law will come into effect tomorrow, unless a federal judge says otherwise. We take a look across the border to Loma Buenavista, Mexico. Sixty percent of the town's population is thought to have crossed the border into Arizona. The 800-person town depends on residents' relatives in the U.S. to send money back home; if their relatives leave, the town stands to be significantly affected by this new law. 

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The Takeaway

Commission Considers How to Reduce Burgeoning National Debt

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

There's growing concern about the national debt: currently a gulp-inducing $13 trillion... and counting. President Obama's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform is tasked with coming up with proposals to begin solving the problem later this year. We speak with Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee, and a member of the bipartisan deficit-reduction commission.

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The Takeaway

Valerie Plame Wilson on Nuclear Weapons and 'Countdown to Zero'

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

In 2003, Valerie Plame Wilson went from being an undercover CIA officer specializing in nuclear proliferation to a reluctant celebrity when members of the Bush administration outed her to the press. She has stayed mostly out of the public eye since, but now she’s lending her expertise and her voice to "Countdown to Zero," a new documentary about nuclear weapons by many of the same people who made "An Inconvenient Truth."

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The Takeaway

HBO Documentary Underscores the Battle Over Abortion

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A new HBO documentary attempts to offer an inside look at the battle over abortion being waged in our country. The film doesn't focus on courtrooms, legislative halls or debates, but on Main Streets all over America.The documentary is called “12th and Delaware,” referring to a street corner in Fort Pierce, Fla. The film tells the story of an abortion clinic on that corner and the pro-life counseling center which opened up directly across the street from its facilities.

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The Takeaway

Twenty Years of The Americans with Disabilities Act

Monday, July 26, 2010

President George H. W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law 20 years ago, today. Since then, we’ve almost come to take for granted many of the things it required: accessible public transportation, reserved parking, more frequent curb cuts, equal access to employment and education opportunities, and much more.

 

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The Takeaway

New Recommendation: Allow Kids with Head Lice in School

Monday, July 26, 2010

Today, the American Academy of Pediatrics is releasing a new clinical report suggesting that parents let their head lice infested children stay in school.

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The Takeaway

Michelle Rhee Fires 165 Washington DC Teachers for Poor Performance

Monday, July 26, 2010

Michelle Rhee, the chancellor of the D.C. Public Schools, is a polarizing figure. People either love her or hate her for the way she’s tackling education reform in D.C., which ranks as one of the nation’s worst school systems.

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The Takeaway

This Week's Agenda: Wikileaks, BP, Arizona, GDP

Monday, July 26, 2010

This week will mark 100 days since the Deepwater Horizon exploded, sending millions of barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico. BP's second quarter earnings are expected tomorrow, and the results will be telling about the oil company's future. What we do know: BP's future will not include Tony Hayward. The embattled chief executive officer agreed to step down yesterday, and will be replaced by Robert Dudley, BP's most senior American executive, who has been in charge of operations in the Gulf. We'll look ahead to the future of BP with Marcus Mabry, associate national editor for The New York Times; and Fernando Pizarro, a Washington correspondent for Univision.

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The Takeaway

Gold Star Families Convene in Arlington

Monday, July 26, 2010

As many as two thousand members of Gold Star families – families who lost members while serving our country – convened at Arlington cemetery's “Tomb of the Unknowns” this weekend, to pay tribute to military men and women killed in action. This weekend’s events mark the largest gathering of such families in the country’s history.

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The Takeaway

Once Again, Congress Doesn't Fund Black Farmers' Settlement

Friday, July 23, 2010

Black farmers were once again passed over by the government. They have been waiting for millions promised to them in a settlement following a discrimination lawsuit. Last night, when Congress passed an emergency funding bill to supplement the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, it removed funding allocated to pay the farmers from the bill. Gary Grant, president of the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association says that the lack of action is keeping them in poverty. "We have to get Congress to understand that they are acting very inappropraitely and causing a festering sore in this country not to heal," says Grant.

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The Takeaway

Living Race: Reflections on Shirley Sherrod, a Supreme Court Nomination, and LeBron James

Friday, July 23, 2010

White people used to own black people in the United States. And it was profitable to own black people because they performed labor that white people couldn’t or didn’t want to perform. And it was legal to own black people in the same way that it is now legal to own a cow, or a horse, or a dog.

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The Takeaway

Congress Approves Legislation to Extend Unemployment Benefits

Friday, July 23, 2010

This week, Democrats in Congress broke a Republican filibuster and passed legislation to extend unemployment benefits. 2.5 million unemployed people will get payments retroactive to the time they stopped receiving benefits. One of those is Michelle Ives, who got her last check in June, and has resorted to desperate measures while she waited for her check (including taking out a 35 percent loan on her car).

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The Takeaway

Financial Regulation Becomes Law; Bernanke Calls Outlook 'Unusually Uncertain'

Thursday, July 22, 2010

President Obama made it official yesterday: the financial overhaul bill has been signed into law. So who are the winners as this new law takes effect? Takeaway contributor Beth Kobliner believes the consumer is the real winner in financial reform, with new rules about mortgages, credit cards and student loans. However, she reminds us that car dealers are not included in the law, so it's important to stay vigilant.

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The Takeaway

Does the Shirley Sherrod Firing Mean We Still Can't Talk About Race?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

In some ways, I am a broken record. I keep asking why we can't talk about race in a healthy, constructive way. And the question comes up again in relation to the resignation of Shirley Sherrod from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

In short, here's what happened: she spoke at a NAACP banquet in March about how she overcame her own racial prejudice to help a white farmer in Georgia [hear and read her interview on The Takeaway]. She says her experience with vicious racism against blacks in the South, and the murder of her father by a white farmer, made her hesitant to help the whites who applied to her at the USDA. Conservative commentator Andrew Breitbart posted a highly edited portion of the video on the website, biggovernment.com.

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The Takeaway

'English-only' Rules in the Workplace

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Tennessee became the first state to pass a law which allows businesses to require their employees to speak English at work. Tennessee is leading a trend seen by a number of cities throughout the country, which are implementing laws that allow English-only rules in one form or another.

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The Takeaway

One Sixth-Grader vs. The Invading Fish

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Great Lakes' ecosystem could soon be facing a major threat by the Asian carp, an invasive fish. But the carp have a determined opponent: 11-year-old Ellie Moskowitz.

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The Takeaway

Shirley Sherrod 'Not Sure' If She'd Take Job Back at USDA

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

By now you’ve probably heard the name Shirley Sherrod. She is the U.S. Department of Agriculture employee who was asked to resign Monday after a video was released by news aggregator Andrew Breitbart. The video shows Sherrod saying she was hesitant to help a white farmer as much as she could. This morning Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said that he will reconsider the abrupt firing, but Sherrod tells The Takeaway that she's "unsure" if she'd return to the job.

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