09-27-2021  12:37 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Oregon Lawmakers Fail to Agree House Districts as Deadline Looms

Republicans failed to show up for a session to redraw the state's congressional districts Saturday, thwarting majority Democrats’ attempts to pass new political maps before a looming deadline

Oregon School Board Ban on Anti-Racist, LGBT Signs Draws Ire

An Oregon school board has banned educators from displaying Black Lives Matter and gay pride symbols, prompting a torrent of recriminations and threats to boycott the town and its businesses.

New, Long-Term Black Lives Matter Public Art Piece Installed at Seattle City Hall

Mayor Jenny A. Durkan and the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture today announced that a new, long-term Black Lives Matter public art piece has been installed at Seattle City Hall.

Black Man Fatally Shot Outside Bend Nightclub, Man Arrested

A Black man was shot and killed outside a bar by a white man in central Oregon

NEWS BRIEFS

5th Annual Yard Tree Giveaway Events to Begin

Free trees for all Portlanders continue Portland Parks & Recreation’s Urban Forestry division’s mission to grow, preserve, and...

House Passes Historic Abortion Rights Legislation With Support of Reps. Bonamici, Defazio, Blumenauer and Schrader

Today’s vote to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act comes three weeks after Texas’s radical 6-week abortion ban went into...

Oregon Announces Stabilization Grant Opportunity to Assist Child Care Providers

Oregon received approximately 4 million in grant funding from the federal American Rescue Plan Act to be paid directly to eligible...

TriMet Plans Weekend Construction Along MAX Red Line to Help Keep Trains Running Efficiently

Shuttle buses will replace MAX Sept. 25-26 between Gateway Transit Center and Portland International Airport ...

Larsen Chairs Hearing on Surge in Air Rage Incidents, Effects on Workers, Airlines, Airports

The hearing was an opportunity for the subcommittee to examine the alarming increase in disruptive and unruly airline passengers, the...

Greyhound Lines settles lawsuit over immigration sweeps

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Greyhound Lines Inc. will pay [scripts/homepage/home.php].2 million to settle a lawsuit over the bus line’s practice of allowing U.S. Customs & Border Protection agents to board its buses in Washington state to conduct warrantless immigration sweeps, the state attorney general said Monday. ...

Graves of 19th century migrants found on trail in Idaho

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (AP) — Cadaver dogs have found what are probably seven graves of mid-1880s migrants who died in south-central Idaho on the California Trail while crossing what is now the City of Rocks National Reserve. Experts with the Oregon-California Historic Trails and...

AP Top 25 Takeaways: Clemson falls during frenetic afternoon

For about 45 minutes late Saturday afternoon, college football was on overload. North Carolina State went from agony to ecstasy against No. 9 Clemson. Baylor stopped a 2-point conversion to upset No. 14 Iowa State. No. 16 Arkansas finished off No. 7 Texas A&M to claim a Lone...

BC beats Mizzou 41-34 in OT on Flowers catch, Sebastian INT

BOSTON (AP) — Denis Grosel threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Zay Flowers in overtime, and Brandon Sebastian’s interception sealed the victory on Saturday as Boston College recovered after blowing two fourth-quarter leads to beat Missouri 41-34. BC coach Jeff Hafley said he...

OPINION

Homelessness, Houselessness in the Richest Country in the World: An Uncommon Logic

When and why did the United States of America chose the wealth of a few over the health, wealth, and well-being of so many ...

American Business Leaders Step Up to Fight Inequities in the South

With COVID-19 still an omnipresent concern and the country’s recovery still very much in jeopardy, individuals, families, and communities are struggling to deal with issues that have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. ...

Waters Statement on 20th Anniversary of September 11 Attacks

Twenty years ago today, our nation suffered devastating terrorist attacks on our soil and against our people that wholly and completely changed the world as we knew it. ...

Letter to the Editor: Reform the Recall

Any completely unqualified attention seeker with ,000 for the candidate‘s filing fee can be the largest state in the Union’s next governor ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Greyhound Lines settles lawsuit over immigration sweeps

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Greyhound Lines Inc. will pay [scripts/homepage/home.php].2 million to settle a lawsuit over the bus line’s practice of allowing U.S. Customs & Border Protection agents to board its buses in Washington state to conduct warrantless immigration sweeps, the state attorney general said Monday. ...

Lower death rates for Black moms is goal of California bill

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California has among the lowest death rates nationally among pregnant women and new mothers, but the numbers for Black mothers tell a different story. They were six times more likely to die within a year of pregnancy than white women from 2014 to 2016...

US Rep. Karen Bass enters race for Los Angeles mayor

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Democratic U.S. Rep. Karen Bass entered the 2022 race for Los Angeles mayor Monday, shaking up an already crowded field hoping to replace outgoing Mayor Eric Garcetti. Bass made the announcement online, saying on her website that she planned to focus on...

ENTERTAINMENT

Select list of winners at the Tony Awards

NEW YORK (AP) — Select winners at the Tony Awards, presented Sunday night in New York City: Best Musical: “Moulin Rouge! The Musical” Best Play: “The Inheritance” Best Play Revival: “A Soldier's Play” Best...

Autopsy: Actor Michael K. Williams died of drug intoxication

NEW YORK (AP) — Actor Michael K. Williams died of acute drug intoxication in what New York City's medical examiner said Friday was an accidental death. Williams, known for playing Omar Little on “The Wire” and an Emmy Award nominee this year, had fentanyl,...

Tonys Latest: ‘Moulin Rouge!’ wins best new musical crown

The Latest on the Tony Awards (all times local): ___ 10:45 p.m. “Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” a jukebox adaptation of Baz Luhrmann’s hyperactive 2001 movie, has danced away with the best new musical Tony Award. ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

UK mulls calling in army to help ease gas shortages at pumps

LONDON (AP) — Lines of cars formed at British gas stations for a fourth day on Monday, as the government mulled...

Gen. Milley: Whisperer to presidents, target of intrigue

WASHINGTON (AP) — Gen. Mark Milley has been the target of more political intrigue and debate in two years as...

Beyond, Impossible join crowded plant-based chicken market

Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods found success with realistic plant-based burgers. Now, they're hoping to...

Strong quake hits Greek island of Crete; 1 dead, 20 injured

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — A strong, prolonged earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of at least 5.8 struck the...

San Marino legalizes abortion; Pope, women's groups disagree

SAN MARINO (AP) — Pope Francis repeated Monday that abortion is “murder," a day after the tiny republic of San...

China: 2 Canadians in prisoner swap freed for health reasons

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — China’s Foreign Ministry said Monday that two Canadians detained in late 2019 who were...

By The Skanner News | The Skanner News

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (AP) -- More than half the nation disapproves of President Barack Obama's policies to reduce stubbornly high unemployment, a new Associated Press-GfK poll said Friday as Obama refocused his job-creation efforts on a business-friendly vision emphasizing innovation and exports to other countries.

Marking the halfway point in his four-year term, the president used a visit to Schenectady, birthplace of the General Electric Co., to declare that his job is "putting our economy into overdrive" and to announce a restructured presidential advisory board stressing increased employment and greater business opportunities abroad.

"America's home to inventors and dreamers and builders and creators," Obama told workers at G.E.'s 23-acre turbine and generator plant. "You guys are a model of what's possible."

The trip came as a new AP-GfK poll showed more than half the nation disapproving the way Obama is handling the economy, 53 percent to 47 percent. That's actually a bit more favorable than two months ago, but those who say they see economic improvement has dropped to just 35 percent from 38 percent in August and 40 percent a year ago.

Lack of hope is greatest with lower-income people and those in the Northeast and the West, signaling potential political trouble spots for Obama's 2012 re-election campaign.

Obama's New York visit was the first of many treks during the second half of his term that the president is expected to take to put a more hopeful countenance on the economy amid high unemployment - now at 9.4 percent. Yet, while the White House was eager to highlight economic successes such as General Electric, Obama took pains not to oversell an optimistic view to a skeptical public.

"It's a great thing that the economy is growing, but it's not growing fast enough yet to make up for the damage that was done by the recession," he said.

Overall, 53 percent of Americans approve of how Obama is governing, and that includes a narrow majority of all-important independent voters. The job approval numbers represent a slight uptick from November and come after Obama negotiated with Republicans on a tax package and sought to build bridges with the business community.

Displaying stepped-up outreach, Obama on Friday named GE's chief executive, Jeffrey Immelt, as the head of a Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. The panel replaces Obama's Economic Recovery Advisory Board, which had been chaired by former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker. Obama announced late Thursday that Volcker, as expected, was ending his tenure on the panel.

Immelt has been an advocate of alternative forms of energy, and the GE facility Obama visited, the company's largest energy plant, is the future site of GE's advanced battery manufacturing program. New battery technology has become something of an Obama pet project as a symbol of innovation, clean energy and job creation

The trip followed on the heels of a state visit by Chinese President Hu Jintao that featured announcement of new trade deals worth about $45 billion and vows to ease restrictions on U.S. investments in China.

"We want to open up their markets so we have two-way trade, not just one-way trade," the president said.

As Obama made his pitch Friday, the top-ranking African-American in Congress called on the president to make a more concerted effort to help hard-hit minority communities. Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., said the recession had left minorities with extraordinarily high unemployment rates, and he called on Obama to direct at least 10 percent of any recovery efforts into communities that have had 20 percent or higher poverty rates for 30 years.

In Immelt, Obama has a useful corporate ally. As chief executive of a multinational company, Immelt was one of 20 CEOs who met with the president during a daylong summit at Blair House last month. He was one of 14 U.S. business leaders invited to meet with Chinese President Hu this week at the White House and was among the guests for the state dinner that followed.

General Electric is a multinational conglomerate with interests than range from energy to finances to media. GE is also a huge federal government contractor, and is currently on tap to build an engine for a Joint Strike Fighter that the administration doesn't want but that Congress insists on financing. On Friday, the White House renewed the president's threat to veto spending bills that contain money for the engine.

The GE plant is benefiting from a power turbine contract with India announced during Obama's Southeast Asia trip in November.

GE reported 52 percent growth in earnings on Friday, a result of increased equipment orders and lending. GE stock gained 5.8 percent, leading the 30 stocks that make up the Dow Jones industrial average.

His appointment adds another corporate insider to the White House orbit, underscoring the administration's efforts to build stronger ties to the business community. Earlier this month, Obama named former Commerce Secretary and JPMorgan Chase executive William Daley as chief of staff.

The change also signals Obama's intention to shift from policies that were designed to stabilize the economy after the 2008 financial meltdown to a renewed focus on increasing employment, a vexing task that could affect his re-election efforts. The White House says the board's mission will be to help generate ideas from the private sector to speed up economic growth and promote American competitiveness.

The Chamber of Commerce approved of the appointment, calling it a "promising step" toward creating jobs and enhancing U.S. competitiveness. But the Alliance for American Manufacturing, which brings together manufacturers and the United Steelworkers union, dismissed Immelt as "an outsourcing CEO" whose appointment would "alienate working class voters."

Indeed, GE has increasingly relied on foreign workers, a point Immelt alluded to Friday.

"I know that despite the fact that 60 percent of GE revenues are outside the United States," he said, "I personally and this country share responsibility and accountability to make sure this is the most competitive and productive country in the world

Tom Buffenbarger, president of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, blamed Immelt for GE's decision to close plants in Virginia, Massachusetts and Ohio. Noting that two plants made incandescent bulbs, Buffenbarger said: "We are rewarding the guy who is turning off America's lights, literally."

 

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