06-19-2018  1:24 am      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

CareOregon Awards $250,000 for Housing Projects

Recipients include Rogue Retreat, Bridges to Change, Luke Dorf, Transition Projects and Bridge Meadows ...

The Honorable Willie L. Brown to Receive NAACP Spingarn Medal

The award recognizes Brown’s lifelong commitment to the community, equality and civil rights ...

Watching Oprah: The Oprah Winfrey Show and American Culture

New Smithsonian exhibit looks at how Oprah Winfrey shaped American culture and vice versa ...

Prosecutor: Oregon man justified in shooting near hotel

BEND, Ore. (AP) — A heavy equipment operator was legally justified when he shot and wounded a knife-wielding man last month outside an Oregon hotel, a prosecutor said Monday.However, Robert Garris was foolish to appoint himself "sheriff of the Days Inn" and initiate a confrontation with the...

Some forest trails remain closed long after 2017 wildfire

IDANHA, Ore. (AP) — Some trails in Oregon's Willamette National Forest remain closed because of damage from a wildfire that scorched the area last year.The Whitewater Trail into the Jefferson Park area remains closed. Other trails, including some in the Fall Creek area near Eugene, also are...

Spokane man convicted in 2015 deadly shooting

MOSES LAKE, Wash. (AP) — A Spokane man has been convicted of killing a Moses Lake teenager during a 2015 robbery attempt.The Columbia Basin Herald reports Jeremiah Smith was found guilty of first-degree murder, first-degree burglary, first-degree assault and first-degree unlawful possession...

Police seize 2,500 marijuana plants from 6 Tacoma homes

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — Authorities say eight people have been arrested after police searched six Tacoma houses connected to an illegal marijuana growing operation.The News Tribune reports authorities seized at least 2,500 marijuana plants from the properties that police searched Monday...

OPINION

What Happened? Assessing the Singapore Summit

For all its weaknesses, we are better off having had the summit than not ...

Redlining Settlement Fails to Provide Strong Penalties

A recent settlement of a federal redlining lawsuit is yet another sign that justice is still being denied ...

5 Lessons on Peace I Learned from My Cat Soleil

Dr. Jasmine Streeter takes some cues on comfort from her cat ...

Research Suggests Suicides By Racial and Ethnic Minorities are Undercounted

Sociologist Dr. Kimya Dennis describes barriers to culturally-specific suicide research and treatment ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Border separations ripple through midterm campaigns

Wrenching scenes of migrant children being separated from their parents at the southern border are roiling campaigns ahead of midterm elections, emboldening Democrats on the often-fraught issue of immigration while forcing an increasing number of Republicans to break from President Donald Trump on...

City where many slaves entered US to apologize for slavery

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina city where almost half of all the slaves brought to the United States first set foot on American soil is ready to apologize for its role in the slave trade.The resolution expected to be passed by the Charleston City Council on Tuesday offers a...

School honoring Confederate general to be renamed for Obama

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Virginia city is rebranding its only school named after a Confederate general to honor the United States' first black president.The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports the Richmond School Board voted 6-1 Monday to rename J.E.B. Stuart Elementary School to Barack Obama...

ENTERTAINMENT

List of winners from the 2018 MTV Movie & TV Awards

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — Winners of the MTV Movie & TV Awards, presented Saturday at Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California:Movie of the year: "Black Panther"Actor in a Movie: Chadwick Boseman, "Black Panther"Show of the Year: "Stranger Things"Actor in a Show: Millie Bobby Brown,...

In 'Jurassic World,' a dino-sized animal-rights parable

NEW YORK (AP) — The dinosaurs of "Jurassic Park" are many things. They are special-effects wonders. They are unruly house guests. And they are some of the biggest, most foot-stomping metaphors around.Since Steven Spielberg's 1993 original, the dinos of "Jurassic Park" — many of them...

Immigration detention policy becomes major issue in media

NEW YORK (AP) — In a phone conversation with her executive producer over the weekend, "CBS This Morning" anchor Gayle King wondered if there wasn't more the network could do on the story of children being separated from parents through the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" immigration...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

On a big night for 'Panther,' Boseman honors real-life hero

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — The MTV Movie & TV Awards gave "Black Panther" its first taste of awards...

US could back 1st pot-derived medicine, and some are worried

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A British pharmaceutical company is getting closer to a decision on whether...

Looking for signs of global warming? It's all around you

GOTHIC, Colo. (AP) — David Inouye is an accidental climate scientist.More than 40 years ago, the University...

Engine catches fire on plane with Saudi WCup team, none hurt

MOSCOW (AP) — Officials say an engine of a Russian plane carrying the Saudi Arabian soccer team to a World...

3 men die of 6 wounded in southern Sweden drive-by shooting

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Three of the six men who were injured in a drive-by shooting in the center of...

In Mexico, longtime foes 'AMLO' and elite getting pragmatic

MEXICO CITY (AP) — On the campaign trail, presidential front-runner Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has railed...

By Charles Babington the Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The supercommittee's failure reflects the nation's divide: Americans crave both the Republicans' demand for low taxes and the Democrats' insistence on protecting social programs. So far, no group or leader has persuaded them they can't have both and there's no quick solution in sight.

It's possible the stalemate won't be broken by the time of the 2012 elections, nearly a year away. Some GOP strategists think Republicans can oust President Barack Obama and win control of both chambers of Congress. That would enable them to enact much of their agenda, and Americans could render a judgment on its results.

Or, perhaps, Democrats will score big victories that will force Republicans to yield some ground.

The bipartisan supercommittee's collapse stems from an all-too-familiar reality of modern politics. Republican lawmakers respond to activists who overwhelmingly oppose higher taxes. And Democrats answer to activists who will tolerate no nicks in Medicare, Social Security and other programs without steeper taxes on the wealthy.

The same differences pushed the nation to the brink of default last summer, prompting the first-ever downgrade of the government's creditworthiness.

Yet no leader or group has convinced enough Americans that everyone must accept some pain to bring taxes and government services more closely in line. So the federal debt hit $15 trillion last week. And the government suffered another embarrassment Monday, immediately spooking U.S. markets and possibly unsettling foreign markets in the days ahead.

Nineteenth Century Americans venerated Henry Clay as "the Great Compromiser" for helping resolve knotty national problems. Today, that title would almost surely be hurled as an insult, especially at a rally or caucus to nominate someone for Congress.

The supercommittee's six Democrats and six Republicans knew they would be criticized for failing to reach an accord. But they saw a worse fate in straying too far from their respective parties' uncompromising stands on taxes and social programs.

Many veteran politicians expect more versions of recent elections, which were heavily influenced by partisan activists who put a scare into lawmakers threatening to veer from party orthodoxy.

"Compromise is not where the incentives are in the political process right now," said former Rep. Tom Davis of Virginia, who once headed the GOP's House campaign committee. Because so many House districts are solidly Republican or solidly Democratic, he said, "members are judged by what their primary electorate thinks of them."

Eventually, Davis said, repeated failures to tame the deficit might inflict so much pain on Americans -- possibly through a severe recession or even depression -- that today's primary-dominated voting patterns will change.

Some lawmakers doubtlessly see this coming, Davis said. "But the incentives in the system do not reward you for being ahead of the curve."

Congress reflects the public divide over tax and spending priorities. A new Quinnipiac poll found that 73 percent of Republicans want to address the deficit with spending cuts only, while only a third of Democrats hold that view.

More than half of Democrats favor a mix of tax hikes and spending cuts. Only one Republican in five agrees.

Independent voters, as usual, occupy a middle ground. Slightly more independents favor a spending-cuts-only approach to a strategy that includes some new taxes. But neither option hit 50 percent in the poll.

In 2006, independent voters broke heavily for Democrats, helping that party regain the House majority. In 2008, independents again favored Democrats for Congress, and they helped elect Obama.

But last year, independent voters swung strongly to Republicans, who regained control of the House. Strategists in both parties are angling for independents' support next year.

One possible way to break Washington's cycle of logjams is for independent voters to increase in number and to insist on systemic changes in practices such as congressional redistricting and Senate filibuster powers.

Nathan Daschle, who heads a political networking firm called Ruck.Us, and whose father was a Democratic Senate leader, said the only way he can envision "really changing the incentives of our political system" is to have huge numbers of Republican and Democratic voters switch their affiliation to independent.

William Galston, a Brookings Institution scholar who worked in Bill Clinton's White House, sees two possible turning points before the 2012 elections. Pro-military lawmakers from both parties might succeed where the supercommittee failed, he said, by crafting a tax-and-spending compromise that would avert the cuts scheduled at the Defense Department.

Or, Galston said, Europe's financial problems and the United States' political gridlock might lead to so much economic damage that even devout liberals and solid conservatives will have to rethink their intransigence.

"If people decide there's no difference between the United States and the Eurozone," Galston said, "we may discover the hit we took in global esteem in the summer was just the beginning of the decline."

Peter G. Peterson, a former Commerce secretary and leading critic of deficit spending, said in a statement Monday: "Meaningful deficit reduction requires both parties to vote for a plan that does not reflect their partisan litmus tests."

For now, many lawmakers see that idea as a one-way ticket out of Congress in their next primary elections. Such thinking points to more gridlock ahead.

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EDITOR'S NOTE - Charles Babington covers politics for The Associated Press.

© 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

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