November 30, 2006 The immigration service today releases more than 140 draft questions for a new citizenship test. The questions will be given to new citizenship applicants in the the exam's civics portion, beginning in January. The government, which hopes to make the test more meaningful, has been working for several years to redesign the test.
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November 27, 2006 New York's Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly meet with community leaders upset by an the shooting death of an unarmed African-American man by police over the weekend. Police fired more than 50 shots into the vehicle driven by Sean Bell after it crashed into an unmarked police car.
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November 24, 2006 It's "Black Friday," when retail stores are said to move into profit for the year. This year, retailers are trying new gimmicks like opening even earlier to try to get consumers to part with their money.
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November 23, 2006 Feeling sorry for the turkey? Instead of eating one, you can adopt one. Since 1986, the Farm Sanctuary in upstate New York has placed hundreds of turkeys in appropriate vegetarian homes and persuaded others to help care for turkeys at the shelter.
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November 23, 2006 Gigantic helium-filled balloons are a tradition at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. Last year, one of the giant signature balloons got blown off course and injured two people. Unfortunately, the Thanksgiving forecast isn't promising.
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November 21, 2006 New public bathrooms have opened in Times Square, to the relief of New Yorkers and holiday tourists. They're free, they have waiting rooms with a TV and a fireplace and they have 30 workers on clean-up detail. The rest rooms are sponsored by the toilet-paper company Charmin and will stay open until New Year's Eve.
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November 8, 2006 Well, it's finally closing time for Closing Time. You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here. I can call a cab for all of you who backed a losing candidate. You really shouldn't be driving in that condition. For the victors, I know an after-hours joint that will keep you partying 'til dawn. And if there are any politicians or consultants in the house, do try to get some beauty sleep tonight. The 2008 campaign starts in just a couple of hours, and we want all of you to look your best.
November 8, 2006 It's been a long night for those of us here at election central (and it will probably be a long week for our Virginia reporting team), but we've been entertained, chastened and prodded by our good listeners and readers via email. We've responded to some of the complaints and questions on the air and posted many of them already. But because some of the comments don't fit neatly anywhere else, we'll post them here...
November 8, 2006 Conservative bloggers have seemed to move through the stages of grief tonight: Denial (in early posts from the National Review): There is a big, clear wave breaking the Republicans' way in just about every competitive race coast to coast, and it could mean results very, very different from what the Washington crowd expected. Anger (from RightAngle): What else caused the GOP's downfall? Speaker Dennis Hastert (R.-Ill.), Majority Leader John Boehner (R.-Ohio) and Roy Blunt (R.-Mo.)...
November 8, 2006 Here's a round-up of how the U.S. election is playing in a few places in the international media: The Guardian: "Whatever the final tally of seats in Congress after the midterm elections, President Bush faces growing pressure on all sides to adapt both the style and substance of his presidency in its final two years. Part of the pressure arises from the lessons of the campaign..."
November 8, 2006 Something like this seems to happen in every election: HOUSTON (AP) -- Republican state Rep. Glenda Dawson is dead, but she's not gone. She easily defeated her living Democratic opponent Tuesday night, two months after dying from a brief illness. Dawson's campaign ensured the traditionally GOP 29th District would stay that way after her September death, handing out yard signs, printed fliers listing Dawson's accomplishments and sent out letters to voters...
November 8, 2006 Track and field legend Jim Ryun, a Kansas Republican, lost his race for a sixth House term. Super Bowl star Lynn Swann, also a Republican, got tackled by incumbent Gov. Ed Rendell in Pennsylvania. Former quarterback Heath Shuler did better at the polls than he did on the NFL gridiron. He won a seat in the U.S. House from North Carolina. Boom goes the dynamite.
November 8, 2006 How are President Bush and Karl Rove taking all this? The Hotline blog has a few tidbits: "From White House spokesperson Emily Lawrimore: 'Karl has informed the president that they've lost the majority in the House. He's obviously disappointed, but he's eager to work with Congress on his priorities and issues important to Americans." The president called NRCC chair Tom Reynolds tonight, but that was his only call. He's not talked to Hastert or Pelosi. He'll make those calls in the a.m.'"
November 8, 2006 With the Virginia Senate race so close, expect a traffic jam of lawyers on I-95, headed into Richmond this morning. Time to bone up on the recount rules from Virginia's State Board of Elections.
November 8, 2006 NPR reporters across the country are sending in their lists of ironic music choices at election parties. I like the dispatches from Tennessee best: NPR's Scott Horsley writes from the Republican festivities: The band at the Bob Corker party just got done playing Wild Cherry's "Play that Funky Music White Boy." Maybe not the best choice in a race tainted by racial issues. Or maybe it was. And NPR's Audie Cornish responds from the party for Democrat Harold Ford: The opening band here has kicked off with what they described as contemporary R&B classics...
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