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NORTHWEST NEWS

Merkley Introduces Legislation that Protects Access to Health Care for Those Who Cannot Afford Bail

Under current law, individuals in custody who have not been convicted of a crime are denied Medicare, Medicaid, and veterans’ benefits

New County Hire Aims to Build Trust, Transparency Between Community and Public Safety Officials

Leneice Rice will serve as a liaison focused on documenting and reporting feedback from a community whose faith in law enforcement has been tested

Hank Willis Thomas Exhibit Opens at Portland Art Museum

One of the most important conceptual artists of our time, his works examine the representation of race and the politics of visual culture

Grocery Workers Union Ratifies Contract with Stores

The United Food and Commercial Workers Union has agreed a three-year contract for stores in Oregon and Southwest Washington

NEWS BRIEFS

GFO Offers African Americans Help in Solving Family Mysteries

The Genealogical Forum of Oregon is holding an African American Special Interest Group Saturday, Oct. 19 ...

Third Annual NAMC-WA Gala Features Leader on Minority Business Development

The topic of the Washington Chapter of the National Association of Minority Contractors' event was 'Community and Collaboration' ...

Building Bridges Event Aims to Strengthen Trust Between Communities

The 4th Annual Building Bridges of Understanding in Our Communities: Confronting Hate will be held in Tigard on...

The Black Man Project Kicks Off National Tour in Seattle

The first in a series of interactive conversations focused on Black men and vulnerability takes place in Seattle on October 25 ...

Protesters Rally in Ashland to Demand 'Impeach Trump Now'

Activists are rallying in Ashland Sunday Oct, 13 to demand impeachment proceedings ...

Person with measles passed through Portland airport

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Multnomah County Health Department says a person who passed through the Portland International Airport on Saturday has become sick with measles.The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the health department said people who were in the airport during that time may have been...

Court issues temporary stay on flavored vaping ban in Oregon

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon's Court of Appeals on Thursday put a halt to the state's ban on flavored vaping products two days after it took effect.The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the temporary stay issued appears to apply only to tobacco-based vaping products, sold under the oversight of...

No. 22 Missouri ready to test road skills at Vanderbilt

No. 22 Missouri (5-1, 2-0 SEC) at Vanderbilt (1-5, 0-3), Saturday at 4 p.m. EDT (SEC Network).Line: Missouri by 20 1/2.Series record: Missouri 7-3-1.WHAT'S AT STAKE?Missouri can show they play as well on the road as at home coming off a five-game home stand. A win keeps them atop the SEC East....

Bryant bounces back to lead Missouri over Mississippi

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Last week, when he heard a pop in his left knee after being hit low, Missouri quarterback Kelly Bryant briefly saw his college football career pass before his eyes. The injury wasn't as bad as it looked, and Bryant played like his old self in a 38-27 victory over...

OPINION

Atatiana Jefferson, Killed by Police Officer in Her Own Home

Atatiana Jefferson, a biology graduate who worked in the pharmaceutical industry and was contemplating becoming a doctor, lived a life of purpose that mattered ...

“Hell No!” That Is My Message to Those Who Would Divide Us 

Upon release from the South African jail, Nelson Mandela told UAW Local 600 members “It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world" ...

Rep. Janelle Bynum Issues Response to the Latest Statement from Clackamas Town Center

State legislator questions official response after daughter questioned for ‘loitering’ in parking lot ...

Why Would HUD Gut Its Own Disparate Impact Rule?

"You can’t expand housing rights by limiting civil protections. The ’D’ in HUD doesn’t stand for ‘Discrimination’" ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Kessel scores twice, leads Coyotes past Predators 5-2

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — The way Phil Kessel had been playing for the Arizona Coyotes at the start of the season, scoring a goal was just a matter of time.The veteran forward put it all together Thursday night, scoring his first two goals for Arizona, and Christian Dvorak scored his third goal...

Cummings recalled as powerful orator who took on White House

BALTIMORE (AP) — Maryland Rep. Elijah E. Cumming, who died Thursday at age 68, was remembered as a moral voice of conscience in a divisive era — a leader who fought for civil rights and took on the White House as a prominent figure in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald...

Kobach fires Kansas Senate campaign aide over hateful posts

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republican Kris Kobach's campaign for the Senate in Kansas says it has fired an aide after learning he regularly posted hateful comments about Jews and racial minorities on a white nationalist website.The latest campaign finance report filed by Kobach's campaign shows it...

ENTERTAINMENT

Country artists bring tears, prayers to CMT awards show

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Country music artists cried together and prayed together at an emotional CMT Artists of the Year awards show that reflected the tight-knit community of artists who supported each other through success and loss.Country singer Kane Brown, who was one of several artists...

'Spirited Away,' other Studio Ghibli films head to HBO Max

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The vast catalog of storied Japanese animation house Studio Ghibli is heading to the new HBO Max streaming service.Films such as "Princess Mononoke," ''My Neighbor Totoro" and Oscar-winner "Spirited Away" will be among the titles available to stream when HBO Max launches...

For Springsteen, 'Western Stars' made sense after book, play

NEW YORK (AP) — "Western Stars" was just the change of pace that Bruce Springsteen needed after baring his soul over the past few years.First, he shared his darkest secrets in his memoir, "Born to Run." Then he spent more than a year telling his story five nights a week in Springsteen on...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Country artists bring tears, prayers to CMT awards show

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Country music artists cried together and prayed together at an emotional CMT...

'Spirited Away,' other Studio Ghibli films head to HBO Max

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The vast catalog of storied Japanese animation house Studio Ghibli is heading to the new...

For Springsteen, 'Western Stars' made sense after book, play

NEW YORK (AP) — "Western Stars" was just the change of pace that Bruce Springsteen needed after baring his...

Protesters bar Haiti's president from visiting historic site

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti's embattled president was forced on Thursday to hold a private ceremony...

Pakistan blacklists, expels global journalists' group leader

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan blacklisted and expelled the Asia coordinator of global press freedom group the...

Silver: China asked for Rockets GM Daryl Morey to be fired

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said Chinese officials wanted Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey to be fired...

McMenamins
Andrew Taylor the Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- As a top House Republican signaled new flexibility on White House demands to close wasteful or ineffective tax loopholes, President Barack Obama responded with some of his harshest political rhetoric to date in advance of a Thursday negotiating session on the budget.

Wednesday's salvo came hours after House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., opened the door to closing wasteful or unfair tax loopholes in the battle over a must-pass proposal to increase the government's borrowing authority. Obama suggested that Republicans are using the debt limit measure "as a gun against the heads" of Americans to retain breaks for corporate jet owners or oil and gas companies.

"If the president wants to talk loopholes, we'll be glad to talk loopholes," Cantor said, adding that revenues raised from those revisions "should be coupled with offsetting tax cuts somewhere else."

Shortly thereafter, at a White House Twitter town hall, Obama fired a sharp response. It was far more partisan than the language he used Tuesday to invite top lawmakers in both parties to the White House to move the budget talks forward. They've been stalled since a bipartisan group led by Vice President Joe Biden broke up last month after Republicans declared an impasse on taxes.

"The debt ceiling should not be something that is used as a gun against the heads of the American people to extract tax breaks for corporate jet owners or oil and gas companies that are making billions of dollars," Obama said. "I'm happy to have those debates. I think the American people are on my side on this."

Obama is seeking to reduce the deficit, in part, through new tax revenue raised by closing loopholes and tax subsidies. Among the examples the White House cites are tax benefits for companies that buy corporate jets. He also has called for ending subsidies to oil and gas companies, a proposal that would generate about $40 billion in revenue over 10 years.

At the same time, Cantor's comments reflected important, if nuanced, flexibility for Republicans. His earlier position was that closing loopholes should wait for a comprehensive overhaul of the tax code.

Cantor declined to specify what tax cuts should be financed by any new loophole-related revenues. He declined to rule out using them to extend expiring tax cuts, such as a credit for new research and development that's popular with businesses.

The show of flexibility comes in advance of Thursday's meeting between Obama and top congressional leaders to raise the debt limit and avoid a historic default.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday that Obama is confident he has enough lawmakers behind him to reduce the debt by more than $2 trillion over the next 10 years.

"The president believes, we believe, that there are enough members of both parties in both houses who support the idea that a big deal has to be balanced and therefore include spending cuts in the tax code," Carney said.

The assertion reinforced and expanded on Obama's comments Tuesday that back-channel talks with congressional leaders last weekend made progress in advance of Thursday's talks. But Carney cautioned that no final deal should be expected.

The president is siding with House Speaker John Boehner in insisting that negotiators resist the temptation to "kick the can down the road" and settle for a makeshift, short-term solution to stave off the U.S.' first default next month.

At issue is the need to raise the government's so-called debt limit to avoid a default on its obligations to bondholders and Social Security beneficiaries. Republicans want deficit cuts in the range of at least $2.4 trillion over 10 years to offset the amount of new government borrowing needed simply to avoid another vote before 2013.

Obama, answering questions Thursday posed through the Twitter online social network, pushed aside a question over whether he would use the 14th Amendment to raise the debt ceiling by executive order, a suggestion floated by some Democrats.

The amendment states: "The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned."

Obama said: "I don't think we should even get to the constitutional issue. Congress has a responsibility to make sure we pay our bills. We've always paid them in the past. The notion that the United States would default on its debt is just irresponsible."

Obama met with Boehner on Sunday for the first time since Republicans last month abandoned the Biden-led negotiations. Carney on Wednesday declined to discuss Sunday's meeting, refusing even to acknowledge that it had occurred. He said the talks had a better chance of success if Sunday's details were kept under wraps.

The administration says that if the government's borrowing authority is not increased by Aug. 2, the U.S. will face a historic first default, potentially throwing financial markets into turmoil.

Obama isn't calling for increases in tax rates. On Tuesday, the president urged Republicans to agree to eliminate "certain tax breaks and deductions for the wealthiest of Americans", those in the 35 percent tax bracket.

Boehner attacked the proposal that day as an assault on small businesses but was subdued on questions like oil and gas subsidies or a much-publicized tax provision that gives favorable treatment to companies that buy corporate jets.

"We're not dealing just with talking points about corporate jets or other `loopholes,'" Boehner, R-Ohio, said. "The legislation the president has asked for, which would increase taxes on small businesses and destroy more American jobs, cannot pass the House, as I have stated repeatedly."

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Associated Press writer Jim Kuhnhenn contributed to this report.

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