06-22-2024  11:20 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather

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NORTHWEST NEWS

Seattle Police Officer Fired for off-Duty Racist Comments

The termination stemmed from an altercation with his neighbor, Zhen Jin, over the disposal of dog bones at the condominium complex where they lived in Kenmore. The Seattle Office of Police Accountability had recommended a range of disciplinary actions, from a 30-day suspension to termination of employment.

New Holgate Library to Open in July

Grand opening celebration begins July 13 with ribbon cutting, food, music, fun

Nurses in Oregon Take to the Picket Lines to Demand Better Staffing, Higher Pay

The Oregon Nurses Association says they're seeking a contract that includes competitive wages and sufficient staffing levels. The CEO of Providence Oregon says they’ve been preparing for the strike for months and have contracted with replacement workers to ensure patient care does not suffer. 

Black Leaders Urge County to Continue Funding Multnomah Mothers Trust

The program has been entirely funded by American Rescue Plan grants, which run out after this year.

NEWS BRIEFS

Tiffani Penson to Kick Off Her Campaign for Portland City Council, District 2

Host Committee Includes Former State Senators Margaret Carter and Avel Gordly ...

Calling All Nonfiction Media Makers: Real to Reel is June 29

Join Open Signal for a day of collaboration and opportunity with Portland's community of nonfiction media makers. ...

Governor Kotek Observes Juneteenth

Governor Kotek joins Oregon Black Pioneers, Just Walk Salem Keizer and the Willamette Heritage Center for In Freedom’s Footsteps...

University of Portland Honored with Carnegie Leadership for Public Purpose Classification

UP recognized as one of 25 institutions nationwide committed to advancing leadership in pursuit of justice, equity, diversity and...

The National Civil Rights Museum Announces 33rd Freedom Award Honorees

This is the museum's signature event, which pays tribute to individuals who have shown unwavering commitment to promoting equity and...

Parts of Washington state parental rights law criticized as a ‘forced outing’ placed on hold

SEATTLE (AP) — A judge has paused parts of a new Washington state parental rights law derided by critics as a “forced outing” measure. King County Superior Court Judge Michael Scott on Friday paused portions of the law while a lawsuit brought by civil liberties groups and...

Seattle police officer fired for off-duty racist comments

SEATTLE (AP) — A Seattle police officer was fired for calling his Chinese American neighbor racist and sexist slurs while off duty in 2022, according to a news report. Officer Burton Hill was fired in May, The Seattle Times reported. The termination stemmed from an...

Kansas governor signs bills enabling effort to entice Chiefs and Royals with new stadiums

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' governor signed legislation Friday enabling the state to lure the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and Major League Baseball's Royals away from neighboring Missouri by helping the teams pay for new stadiums. Gov. Laura Kelly's action came three days...

A Missouri mayor says a fight over jobs is back on. Things to know about Kansas wooing the Chiefs

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A plan in Kansas for luring the Kansas City's two major league sports franchises from Missouri has prompted their hometown's mayor to declare that the move ends a 5-year-old agreement by the states not to poach each other's jobs. The Kansas Legislature has...

OPINION

State of the Nation’s Housing 2024: The Cost of the American Dream Jumped 47 Percent Since 2020

Only 1 in 7 renters can afford homeownership, homelessness at an all-time high ...

Juneteenth is a Sacred American Holiday

Today, when our history is threatened by erasure, our communities are being dismantled by systemic disinvestment, Juneteenth can serve as a rallying cry for communal healing and collective action. ...

Supreme Court Says 'Yes” to Consumer Protection, "No" to Payday Lenders 7-2 Decision Upholds CFPB’s Funding

A recent 7-2 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court gave consumers a long-sought victory that ended more than a decade of challenges over the constitutionality of the agency created to be the nation’s financial cop on the beat. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

South Africa's new government brings Black and white together. It's also reviving racial tensions

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — In a country where racial segregation was once brutally enforced, South Africa's new coalition government has brought a Black president and a white opposition leader together in an image of unity. Yet the power-sharing agreement sealed a week ago...

Buttigieg tours Mississippi civil rights site and says transportation is key to equity in the US

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Friday toured the home of assassinated civil rights leader Medgar Evers in Mississippi's capital city, saying afterward that transportation is important to securing equity and justice in the United States. ...

Celebrations honor Willie Mays and Negro League players ahead of MLB game at Rickwood Field

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — As Ajay Stone strolled around historic Rickwood Field and gazed at tributes displayed in honor of Willie Mays and other Negro Leaguers, he clutched a cherished memory under his arm. It was a picture from 2004 of Mays holding Stone's then-10-month-old daughter...

ENTERTAINMENT

Book Review: 'Swole' explores what masculinity could be in a hyperconnected, TikTok-imaged world

Author Michael Brodeur takes the gym too seriously, and not seriously at all at the same time, in his book “Swole: The Making of Men and the Meaning of Muscles” in an effort to show the readers that the overly online world of hypermasculinity is an illusion and what a man can be is what you...

List of winners at the 2024 Tony Awards

NEW YORK (AP) — Winners at the 2024 Tony Awards, announced Sunday. Best Musical: “The Outsiders” Best Play: “Stereophonic” Best Revival of a Musical: “Merrily We Roll Along” Best Revival of a Play: “Appropriate” ...

Sony Pictures acquires Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the dine-in movie theater chain

Sony Pictures Entertainment is getting into the exhibition business. The studio behind recent films like “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” and “The Garfield Movie” has acquired the distinctive theater chain Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the companies said Wednesday. Included in the deal is the genre film...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Climate change makes India's monsoons erratic. Can farmers still find a way to prosper?

BENGALURU, India (AP) — Each year from June to September, a heavy band of rain makes its way from India's...

Nigel Farage, leader of Reform UK, criticized for saying West provoked Putin to invade Ukraine

LONDON (AP) — Nigel Farage, leader of the right-wing Reform U.K party, is facing wide-ranging criticism across...

US aircraft carrier arrives in South Korea as a show of force against nuclear-armed North Korea

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A nuclear-powered U.S. aircraft carrier arrived Saturday in South Korea for a...

Ivory Coast sets up mobile enrollment for a health coverage program criticized over glitches

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast (AP) — Health authorities in Ivory Coast launched mobile enrollment centers for the...

How does heat kill? It confuses your brain. It shuts down your organs. It overworks your heart.

As temperatures and humidity soar outside, what's happening inside the human body can become a life-or-death...

Italian coast guard recovers 14 more bodies of shipwreck victims off Calabria, dozens still missing

ROME (AP) — The Italian coast guard has recovered 14 more bodies from last week's shipwreck in the Ionian Sea...

Alan Fram and Laurie Kellman the Associated Press
 

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner predicted Thursday that the White House and Congress will avert a debt crisis, as a leading credit rating agency warned that a partisan impasse could cost the U.S. its sterling creditworthy status.

"I'm confident two things are going to happen this summer," Geithner told reporters after meeting with House freshmen from both parties. "One is we're going to avoid a default crisis, and we're going to reach agreement on our long term fiscal plan."

His optimism was a mystery to many of the 87 Republican freshmen who rode a populist wave to Congress last fall on a promise of smaller, more austere government. Some theorized that Geithner could not afford to say anything else.

"That's what he went in there wanting to come out with," said Rep. Jeff Landry, R-La., who attended the session. "They dream it, so they believe it."

GOP leaders are demanding that President Barack Obama agree to steep spending cuts in return for raising the government's debt ceiling, and there appeared no end to the partisan standoff by the time Geithner left the private meeting.

The government has reached its $14.3 trillion borrowing limit. Geithner has said Congress must extend the cap by Aug. 2 or there could be a first-ever federal default on its obligations.

Freshman Republicans emerging form the meeting said they told Geithner they want Obama to present a specific plan for curbing the government's debt.

Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., left the basement conference room with a shrug.

"Not enlightening," Brooks told reporters. Still, he and others said they were surprised that Geithner firmly reiterated that income should be generated by tax increases on the wealthy.

"He said that taxes were something that needed to be raised" on wealthy Americans, said Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala. During the question-and-answer period, he said, Republicans made clear "that tax increases were not an option that our group would consider."

Michigan Rep. Hansen Clarke, one of only 10 Democrats in the freshman class, said Geithner earned some goodwill by acknowledging that the nation borrows too much money.

"They were applauding him for accepting that," Clarke said.

Geithner's meeting with the freshmen, which lasted just under an hour, played out against dark warnings about the nation's fiscal health as it struggles to recover from recession.

The urgency was underscored Thursday as Moody's Investor Service said the government could lose its top-flight credit rating if Congress and the Obama administration don't agree to raise the limit and reduce deficits over the longer term.

Republicans are insisting on spending cuts topping $1 trillion as the price for their vote to increase the debt ceiling.

Earlier Thursday, House Democrats emerged from a meeting with Obama sounding as if they were at loggerheads with the GOP over how to reduce the deficit as the deadline for U.S. creditworthiness approaches.

Democratic leaders talking to reporters outside the White House emphasized the need for new revenues as part of any deficit-cutting deal, which generally means new taxes or fees adamantly opposed by Republicans.

They bashed GOP plans to remake Medicare and simultaneously insisted that compromise would be reached and acknowledged that the hardest work remains to be done.

"This is a thousand-mile journey that we're on here, and we are taking some first steps," Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., said.

"It has to be clear: We're not going to default," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said.

Negotiations on finding spending cuts to meet Republican demands are being led by Vice President Joe Biden, and Democratic leaders involved in the talks said there has been progress. Areas such as farm subsidies and federal pensions have been targeted for cuts. The Biden group next meets June 9.

The White House on Thursday pushed back against calls from Republicans for Obama to show more leadership on the deficit and offer more specifics.

"We are at a point now where we don't need new plans," said presidential spokesman Jay Carney, arguing that Obama has already offered one. "We need to find common ground around the shared goal of significant deficit reduction."

Obama's plan for reducing the deficit by $4 trillion over 12 years relies half on spending cuts but also eliminates tax breaks and loopholes, whereas Republicans say tax increases are off the table and also contend Obama's plan lacks specifics. The argument has been particularly fierce around Medicare, the giant health insurance program for Americans 65 and older. Democrats are gaining politically from public opposition to a GOP proposal to send future beneficiaries shopping for health insurance in the private market.

Republicans contend that they at least have a plan for Medicare. Republicans dismiss as insufficient Obama's proposals aimed at paring back the program, which include empowering an independent board to recommend policies to reduce the growth of Medicare spending.

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Associated Press writer Erica Werner contributed to this report.