08-13-2022  4:41 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Lottery Misses Mark on Minorities’ Fair Share

The Oregon Lottery’s most recent advertising slogan is “Together, we do good things”. But when we look at where the profits are coming from and where any potential benefit from lottery profits flow to, is this really true? 

Court Sides With Governor Kate Brown Over Early Prison Releases

Two attorneys took particular issue with Brown’s decision to allow 73 people convicted of murder, assault, rape and manslaughter while they were younger than 18 to apply for early release.

Ballot Measure to Overhaul City Government Promises Minority Representation While Facing Controversy

The Portland Charter Commission aims to bring city in line with how other major U.S. cities do local governance. 

White Woman Calls Police on Black Man Standing at His Home

“If you guys have a lease, I’d just like to see the lease,”

NEWS BRIEFS

Seattle Hospital to Refuse Some Patients Due to Capacity

The hospital is caring for some 560 inpatients, more than 130% of its licensed capacity of 413 patients. ...

West Seattle Bridge to Reopen After Yearslong Closure

The 40-year-old bridge is among the city’s most important, previously allowing 100,000 drivers and 20,000 transit users to move...

Jefferson Alumni Invites Community to Block Party

This inaugural event is open to the public and will have tons of entertainment in tow, including a live DJ and music, a rib contest,...

Oregon Approved to Issue an Additional $46 Million in Pandemic EBT Food Assistance to 80,000 Young Children

The additional food benefits will be issued to families’ existing EBT cards in Fall 2022, with the exact dates yet to be...

Free Vaccination Events Provide Required Back-to-School Immunizations

On or before the first day of instruction, all K-12 students in Washington state must be up to date on vaccinations required for...

Cold spring means lighter cherry and peach crop

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — The same factors that produced a later and lighter cherry crop are affecting many Yakima Valley peach growers as well. Cold spring weather, a late April frost and their impact on pollination has delayed the peach harvesting season, usually at its peak by now,...

2 radiation incidents investigated at Salem Health

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has issued two “event notifications” for incidents involving Salem Hospital’s radiation oncology department earlier this year. One incident involved hospital employees, while the other involved patients. Investigations...

OPINION

No One Ever Told You About Black August?

Black America lives in a series of deserts. Many of us live in food deserts, financial deserts, employment deserts, and most of us live in information deserts. ...

Betsy Johnson Fails to Condemn Confederate Flags at Her Rally

The majority of Oregonians, including our rural communities, value inclusion and unity, not racism and bigotry. ...

Monkeypox, Covid, and Your Vote

We must start a voter registration drive right here where we live. This effort must become as important to us as putting food on the table and a roof over our heads. ...

Speaking of Reparations

To many Americans, “reparations” is a dirty word when applied to Black folks. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Developer finds human remains near Nashville Civil War fort

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A developer has unearthed human remains that could be two centuries old while digging to lay the foundation of a new Nashville project not far from a Civil War fort and a cemetery dating back to 1822. For Nashville, the discovery marks the latest intersection...

Kansas district rejects strategic plan urging diversity

DERBY, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas school district's board rejected a proposed strategic plan after some members questioned its emphasis on diversity and students' mental health. The Derby Board of Education voted 4-3 this week to reject a plan presented after months of work by parents,...

Two years on, foundations stand by issuing bonds in pandemic

NEW YORK (AP) — When the Ford Foundation took the unprecedented step in June 2020 of issuing jumi billion in debt to help stabilize other nonprofits, it delighted investors and inspired several other large foundations to follow suit. Two years later, the foundations all stand by...

ENTERTAINMENT

Review: Jamie Foxx hunts vampires in comedy 'Day Shift'

This year marks the centennial anniversary of F. W. Murnau's “Nosferatu,” a long time for us humans but only a blip for vampires. If you were looking to celebrate the birthday of that silent classic, which still casts a long and ominous shadow over all vampires films that have...

Oscar winner Troy Kotsur awarded key to Arizona hometown

MESA, Ariz. (AP) — Troy Kotsur, who made history as the first deaf man to win an Academy Award, has been honored with a key to his Arizona hometown. Kotsur, who won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in March, was given the key Thursday in the Phoenix suburb of Mesa, the city said...

Jon Batiste leaves Stephen Colbert's 'The Late Show'

NEW YORK (AP) — Jon Batiste, his career soaring after winning multiple Grammys this year, is leaving his perch as bandleader of “The Late Show” after a seven-year run backing up host Stephen Colbert. “We’ve been so lucky to have a front row seat to Jon’s incredible talent...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Montenegro mourns after 10 are killed in street attack

CETINJE, Montenegro (AP) — Montenegro declared three days of national mourning Saturday, a day after 10 people,...

Monkeypox? Climate? Deciding what's a national emergency

WASHINGTON (AP) — In November 1979, a little over a week after student militants seized control of the U.S....

What killed tons of fish in European river? Mystery deepens

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Laboratory tests following a mass die-off of fish in the Oder River detected high levels...

Praise, worry in Iran after Rushdie attack; government quiet

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranians reacted with praise and worry Saturday over the attack on novelist Salman Rushdie,...

At 75, India’s democracy is under pressure like never before

NEW DELHI (AP) — The Aug. 5 demonstrations by India’s main opposition Congress party against soaring food...

Libya officials: 15 migrants found dead on border with Sudan

CAIRO (AP) — Libyan authorities said Saturday they found at least 15 migrants dead in the desert on the borders...

Laurie Kellman Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The nation's bills are being paid and Congress has bolted the hothouse of Washington, one debt limit deadline beaten and another ahead for a dozen yet-to-be-named lawmakers.

They might want to hold off making Thanksgiving and Christmas plans.

For the six Republicans and six Democrats, the toughest-to-swallow items on the deficit-cutting menu await. This group, to be named from the House and Senate in two weeks, must find at least $1.2 trillion in budget cuts by Thanksgiving and Congress must approve them by year's end - or take the blame for deep and broad spending cuts that would strike GOP priorities like defense and Democratic favorites like programs for the poor.

And then lawmakers would have to explain the cuts to their constituents - up close and personally, on the campaign trail next year.

Facing the select group are a lot of the same "peas" that a frustrated President Barack Obama suggested Congress eat earlier in the difficult debate. Then as now, Democrats insist on balancing tax revenues with spending cuts. Republicans say taxes are off the table. That alone is a recipe for the same sort of staring contest that kept the sides from agreeing to raise the nation's $14.3 trillion borrowing limit until hours before the money was to run out Tuesday.

On Sunday night, the combatants agreed to raise the debt ceiling in exchange for $2.1 trillion in deficit cuts over a decade. The House overcame objections from conservatives Monday and passed the agreement with bipartisan support, 269-161. The Senate followed on Tuesday, 74-26. Obama signed the bill less than two hours later.

Talk immediately turned to the 12 House and Senate lawmakers and how the task awaiting them looks much like the ideological divide that was bridged only by the debt ceiling deadline and the threat of economic disaster.

The new panel's target is to find $1.2 trillion to $1.5 trillion in budget cuts over the next decade, including interest savings. Congress will have until Christmas to vote on the recommendations.

As an incentive for Congress to act, failure to do so would trigger $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts, affecting the Pentagon as well as domestic programs.

"If that happens, it could trigger a round of dangerous across-the-board defense cuts that would do real damage to our security, our troops and their families, and our ability to protect the nation," Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Wednesday in a letter to troops and staff.

In the afterglow of the deal's passage Tuesday, Senate leaders were optimistic about the chances of compromise.

"Hanging over the head of the joint committee is this trigger that is pretty drastic," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said.

"The joint committee is not going to gridlock," said the Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. The panel is "designed to function and to tackle some of the very difficult problems that we have been unwilling or unable to deal with."

The agreement enacted Tuesday calls for $917 billion in discretionary spending to be cut over a decade from Cabinet-level agencies and the thousands of programs they administer.

The new committee will scour the so-called mandatory side of the budget - programs whose spending levels run on autopilot. They include Medicare and Medicaid, the government's health care for seniors and the poor, as well as Social Security and veterans' retirement benefits.

This panel could proceed from the work of others. A group led by Vice President Joe Biden that tried to find savings for the debt limit bill broke apart over Democratic demands on taxes but had made some progress in developing a consensus package of cuts to programs like farm subsidies, federal pensions and military health benefits. Cuts to Medicare providers like skilled nursing facilities and home health care also were discussed.

There's no doubt presidential politics will loom over the new negotiations.

Even before the president signed the legislation, he and Republicans were maneuvering for political position on the next stage.

"We can't balance the budget on the backs of people who have borne the biggest brunt of this recession," the president said, renewing his call for higher taxes on the wealthy. "Everyone is going to have to chip in. It's only fair."

Senate Republicans said it won't happen.

"I'm comfortable we aren't going to raise taxes coming out of this joint committee," McConnell said in an interview with Fox on Monday.

In a speech shortly before the vote, he predicted instead a renewal of the most recent struggle over spending cuts.

The debt limit will have to be raised shortly after the 2012 election, he said, predicting that no president of either party will be "allowed to raise the debt ceiling without ... having to engage in the kind of debate we've just been through."

He conceded that Republicans got only part of what they wanted in the deal, and he pointed to next year's elections - with control of the White House and Congress at stake - as a chance to gain greater clout.

"Republicans only control one half of one third of the federal government, but the American people agree with us," he said.

Reid said the period immediately ahead "is going to be painful."

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