News Archive - February 5, 2013

McDonnell's Transportation Funding Plan Dies In Virginia Senate

Two Republican floor amendments were shot down in the Virginia Senate Tuesday evening, effectively killing the transportation funding plan endorsed by the governor.

Analysis: Cantor Makes Pitch To Rebrand GOP

After the House GOP focused almost exclusively on debt and deficit issues for the last two years, The Hill's Alex Bolton explains how Majority Leader Eric Cantor is trying to rebrand the party.

Maryland Lawmaker Warned For Gay Marriage Protest Letter

A Maryland lawmaker has been cautioned after writing a letter on official letterhead to Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti seeking to silence linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo for his stand for gay rights.

Coal-Burning Power Plant Targeted By D.C. CM Wells

A power plant operated by the federal government in the District still uses coal to generate some power  — something council member Tommy Wells wants to see changed.

District Summit Addresses Concussions Amongst Youth Athletes

Concussions continue to be a problem afficting the nation's young athletes, and a group of area health care professionals and advocates sought to shine some light Tuesday on the unreported injuries.

Fairfax Students Arrested For Child Pornography

The illicit taping of sexual acts by three Fairfax minors has landed them in trouble with the law, charged with the possession and distribution of child pornography.

Mayor Gray To Deliver State Of The District Tuesday Night

Mayor Vincent Gray will lay out his priorities for the year at the annual State of the District address tonight in downtown D.C.

VIDEO: In Israel, City Paints Car Into Handicap Spot, Then Tows It

The ordeal was caught by a security camera, and the owner of the car received an apology from the city.

D.C. Most Congested Area The Fourth Year Running

Anybody who drives in the D.C. area knows the roads are often jammed, but for the fourth year in a row, a report has identified commutes in the area as the nation's worst.

Survey: Republicans In Congress Own More Guns Than Democrats

The survey also reveals a geographic split, suggesting "cultural factors" are very much a part of the gun debate. Only 12 Northeastern lawmakers said they owned guns, while 77 Southerners said the same.

Viral Story About Free Wi-Fi Spotlights Mostly Hidden Policy War

You've heard of the war on women, the war on religion, and more recently even the war on the Second Amendment. Washington is full of so-called wars. But a war on Wi-Fi?

Virginia Senate Panel Backs Moratorium On Drones

A Virginia Senate panel approved a two-year moratorium on the use of drone aircraft on Monday, putting the issue up for a vote in the House and Senate today.

Aggressive Care Still Common For Dying Seniors, Despite Hospice Uptick

Even as deaths in acute-care hospitals declined in recent years, the use of intensive care units in the last month of life increased. There has been greater use of hospice care, but much of it was for three days or less at the very end of life, a study finds.

USO Opens Largest Wounded Warrior Center At Fort Belvoir

USO and military officials celebrated the opening of the USO's largest military support center today, the 20,000 square foot Warrior and Family Center at Fort Belvior. 

Did Ninjas Use Throwing Stars? A Conversation About Ninja Realities

A new book about ninjas paints a very different picture of these Japanese archetypes. No nunchucks, no throwing stars, and it was more about spycraft than fancy footwork.

Even When They Qualify For Citizenship, Few Mexican Immigrants Seek It

Mexican immigrants who are eligible for U.S. citizenship are much less likely to apply for naturalization than those from other immigrant groups, a study found.

White House Says Obama Will Visit Israel This Spring

The trip, Obama's first presidential visit to Israel, comes at a time when Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations have stalled.

Exercise Can Be Good For The Heart, And Maybe For Sperm, Too

A study finds that guys who watched a lot of TV had lower sperm counts than more active fellows. The effect held true even when other factors, such as body weight and diet, were taken into account.

Mixing Alcohol With Diet Soda May Make You Drunker

Turns out, the sugar in regular soda helps slow down your body's absorption of the alcohol in cocktails. So switching to diet in your rum and cola will save you calories but may leave you spinning.

5 Questions About Justice Department Memo On Targeted Killings

A confidential Justice Department white paper outlines legal theories the Obama administration has used to justify killing American citizens abroad.

ACLU To Testify Against Maryland Cell Phone Tracking Bill

ACLU officials plan to make their case today against a bill in Maryland that would allow police to use cell phone tracking data of suspects without obtaining a warrant.

British House Of Commons Passes Bill Legalizing Gay Marriage

While a tough fight is almost certain in the House of Lords, the bill is expected to become law because it has the support of Prime Minister David Cameron.

Why Prostate Cancer Screening Is So Tricky

Testing for prostate cancer won't get any less confusing anytime soon. But researchers say the much-maligned PSA screening test is worthwhile if it's used for the right men at the right time.

Economy To Slow This Year As The Government Tightens, CBO Says

The Congressional Budget Office expects 1.4 percent growth this year, down from 2.3 percent in 2012. The nation's unemployment rate will likely stay near 8 percent this year.

First, Personalized Pez Dispensers. Next, Printed Food?

Making a candy dispenser head that looks just like you is pretty cool in its own right. But some people are taking 3-D printers much further, using the new technology to spit out actual food, like chocolate — and maybe one day, raw meat.

Maryland Lawmakers Begin Gun Debate This Week

Maryland lawmakers will debate a variety of gun control bills this week, including a proposal from Gov. Martin O'Malley that would implement some of the strictest gun licensing laws in the U.S.

Welfare Drug Testing Bill Fails By One Vote In Virginia Senate

A Virginia bill that would have required drug testing of welfare applicants failed by one vote in the Virginia Senate this week.

Reg Presley, Who Sang 'Wild Thing' With The Troggs, Dies

The 71-year-old singer died at his home in England. If you can play three chords, you can pay him some musical respect.

D.C. Council Member Tommy Wells Eyes Mayoral Run

D.C. Council member Tommy Wells is considering a run for mayor in 2013, and he launched an exploratory committee and website this week to begin testing the waters for his campaign.

Japan Says China Locked Weapons Firing Radar On One Of Its Ships

Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera said the incident could have "led to a dangerous situation in case of a misstep."

Where In The U.S. Should You Leave 3 Hours Early For A 30-Minute Drive?

Researchers at Texas A&M have crunched travel times in cities across the nation and they've got some startling advice for drivers. If you're hoping to get to parent-teacher night on time in some places, get in the car now.

Obama Calls For Small Package Of Cuts, Tax Changes To Head Off 'Sequester'

A March 1 deadline looms. That's when deep, automatic federal spending cuts are set to kick in. The president is asking for a small package that the White House says would give Congress more time to reach a permanent solution to budget problems.

U.S. Olympic Skier Lindsey Vonn Injured In Austria; Out For Season

The American skier was taken by helicopter to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Why Health Officials Want You To Eat More Potassium

The latest nutrition guidelines from the World Health Organization are urging people to amp up their potassium intake. It can cut the risk of high blood pressure — which may, in turn, lower the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Will Your Long-Term Care Coverage Keep Up With Changing Times?

Many long-term care policies sold 30 years ago didn't specifically cover assisted living facilities. Policyholders rely on clauses that say new kinds of care will be covered when it becomes available, but the ultimate decision rests with insurers.

Dell Seals $24.2 Billion Buyout Deal; Founder Among Buyers

Michael Dell is in the group buying the computer maker. Analysts say the debt the company is taking on will be another challenge for Dell.

Lonely And Frustrated: These May Be The Worst Jobs In Politics

There are always losers in politics. But even some of the winners wind up so badly outnumbered that accomplishing anything is a rare treat. On the surface, their jobs might seem so hopeless that you wonder why anyone took them on.

Broader Justification Emerges Of When U.S. Can Kill Americans Who Join Al-Qaida

A justice department memo obtained by NBC News says the president can order drone strikes on Americans overseas if they take on leadership posts in al-Qaida or affiliated organizations and are "imminent" threats to Americans. But there's no need for proof of "specific" plans aimed at the U.S.

Book News: Mary Ingalls May Not Have Gone Blind From Scarlet Fever

Also: Scandal-mongering author Kitty Kelley turns her gaze on women in Congress; Goodreads makes some unexpected new rules; and Mark Athitakis explains why Barnes & Noble brought literary culture to the suburbs.

Dramatic End To Alabama Hostage Standoff Took Careful Planning

According to news reports, rescuers were able to insert a camera into the underground bunker where gunman Jimmy Lee Dykes held a boy for nearly a week. When they feared he might hurt little Ethan, authorities distracted Dykes with an explosion. Then they shot and killed Dykes. Ethan is safe.