News Archive | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

News Archive - March 11, 2014

Bill That Would Encourage Microbreweries In Montgomery County Passes State House

Microbreweries are big business across the country, and Maryland's House passed a bill Tuesday that would make it easier to build them in Montgomery County.

Read It: Mayor Vincent Gray's State Of The District Address 2014

Read the full version of Mayor Vincent Gray's State of the District address, including the portion where he directly addresses claims that he participated in the illegal 2010 shadow campaign orchestrated by Jeffrey Thompson.

Analysis: Jeffrey Thompson Scandal Reaches National Politicians

Much of the focus of the case against businessman Jeffrey Thompson has so far focused on D.C. politicians, but as The Hill's Alex Bolton explains, Thompson had a hand in national campaigns as well.

In His Own Words: Mayor Vincent Gray Denies Knowledge Of 'Shadow Campaign'

Mayor Vincent Gray sat down with WAMU 88.5's District reporter Patrick Madden to discuss the recent accusations made by businessman Jeffrey Thompson about the mayor's knowledge of a shadow campaign.

Detainee Lawyer Calls Force Feeding In Guantanamo 'Water Cure' Torture

Jon Eisenburg is asking a federal court to slow the pace of the force-feedings. The amount of liquid food given to the detainees causes intense pain, the lawyer says.

Ethics Reforms Don't Go Far Enough In Virginia, Critics Say

Charges of corruption in the Virginia governor's office have sparked a number of ethics-reform efforts, but critics say the reforms don't go far enough.

In Closely Watched Election, Republican Jolly Wins In Florida

Pundits say David Jolly's victory portends a broader Republican victory during the midterms in November.

Feinstein's CIA Outrage Splits Senate

The Senate was a chamber divided in reaction to Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein's diatribe against the CIA for allegedly hacking into Senate computers.

What Would It Take To Destroy A Black Box?

When a plane crashes, it can take many months or years to find the black box that provides clues to what happened. Just what are these devices, how do they work, and why can they be so hard to find?

Former D.C. Teacher Eric Toth Sentenced To 25 Years For Child Pornography

Former D.C. teacher and member of the FBI's 10 Most Wanted, 32-year-old Eric Toth was sentenced to 25 years in prison on Tuesday for videotaping 17 children in his care.

Maryland Closer To Cracking Down On Bad Speed-Camera Tickets

The House of Delegates gave preliminary approval to a bill that would fine speed-camera operators for bad tickets.

People Overload Website, Hoping To Help Search For Missing Jet

A satellite company's call for crowdsourcing to help find the missing Malaysia Airlines jet brought a strong response on the Internet, placing an "unprecedented load" on the company's servers.

D.C. Moves To Extend School Day At Low-Performing Schools

Mayor Vincent Gray and D.C. Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson want students and 40 of the city's lowest-performing schools to stay in school a little longer every day.

Not Spring Yet: Wicked Winter Storm To Pound Midwest, New York

The 8 to 10 inches of snow predicted for Detroit will bring the city within reach of the record for snowiest winter in recorded history.

Crowd Pays Homage To The Notorious B.I.G. At Howard Theatre

It's been 17 years since the death of rapper Biggie Smalls, and a tribute concert at Howard Theatre on Monday night paid tribute to his memory.

Health Care Enrollments Up, But Still Well Short Of Goal

The administration says 940,000 people signed up in February for a total enrollment of 4.2 million. The White House is hoping for 6 million by the end of this month.

Whole Genome Scans Aren't Quite Ready For Your Doctor's Office

Wouldn't it be great to be able to scan your genes and find out your disease risk? Those scanners exist. But a test of their usefulness for medical care found them not as accurate as one would hope.

D.C. Elections Board Says Marijuana Initiative Is Appropriate For Ballot

The D.C. Board of Elections says that an initiative that would legalize marijuana can make it to the ballot, but proponents now have to gather more than 25,000 signatures.

Young People Lag Behind In Health Insurance Enrollment

One-quarter of the people who have signed up for private insurance through the federal and state exchanges are young adults. Insurers are counting on their participation to keep premiums manageable.

Federal Prosecutors Deny Request For Details On McDonnell Charges

Federal prosecutors say former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell is not entitled to more details on what they claim he did wrong.

Is There A Better Way To Track Aircraft During Flight?

Much of the technology we use to track a plane – like radar – is old. New technology is already out there, but their limited use and the cost of adoption are deterrents.

Save The Escargot! Snail-Devouring Predator Rears Its Head In France

The New Guinea flatworm is a vicious little thing with an appetite for snails. Its discovery in Normandy has raised concerns about the fate of Europe's snails — and France's famed mollusk appetizer.

Bitcoin Exchange Mt. Gox Files For Bankruptcy In U.S.

Mt. Gox had been the most active bitcoin exchange before it announced the loss of hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of the cryptocurrency last month.

Seriously: Angry Fat Cat Traps Family In Bedroom

The 911 call reveals the family's 4-year-old male cat Lux had a history of violence. The cat snapped after the owner kicked it to get it away from their infant.

Three Arrested In Wake Of Bank Robbery Search That Shut Down I-270

Three bank robbery suspects are in custody following a police search that shutdown I-270 in Maryland.

Questions Remain About Whether Doctors Can Curb Children's Drug Use

In the absence of evidence about what works best to discourage drug use among teens and kids, doctors are left with their own judgment and clinical experience to fall back on.

Libyan Premier Dismissed Over Oil Port Standoff With Rebels

Prime Minister Ali Zeidan lost a vote of confidence triggered in part by the showdown over a North Korean-flagged tanker that purchased oil from separatists forces.

CIA Tampered With Senate Panel's Work, Feinstein Says

Sen. Dianne Feinstein says some of the CIA's actions could be illegal or unconstitutional, accusing the agency of interfering with the oversight committee she chairs.

Deborah Hersman Stepping Down As Head Of NTSB

While leading the National Transportation Safety Board, she's been a familiar face at investigations into plane crashes and other accidents. She's leaving to run the nonprofit National Safety Council.

For A Faster-Aged Bourbon, You Need The Motion Of The Ocean

The longer bourbon ages, the richer its flavor and color. Now, an artisan Kentucky distiller is speeding up nature by sending barrels on boat journeys on the high seas. How does it work? Chemistry.

Tiny In-Nose Filters Aim To Keep Allergies At Bay

Tiny Nose Filters sounds like a prog-rock band on NPR. But these filters do exist. They're designed to block allergens, and one study says they help. Other allergists aren't yet convinced.

New Sports Injury Guidelines Applauded By Fairfax School Administrators

Administrators for public school sports programs in Virginia's Fairfax County are applauding the National Athletic Trainers' Association's new guidelines for concussion injuries.

They're Melting! Great Lakes Come Close, But Miss Ice Record

The long, cold winter did its best, but the ice cover on the lakes appears to have begun breaking up. So they likely won't touch a recorded record set in 1979.

Reporter For Swedish Radio Shot Dead In Afghanistan

The attack on Nils Horner, who had dual British and Swedish citizenship, is reportedly the first in years in which a Western journalist appeared to have been specifically targeted.

Machen: Thompson Pleas 'Only The Tip Of The Iceberg'

U.S. Attorney for D.C. Ron Machen said on Monday that guilty pleas from D.C. businessman Jeffrey Thompson for campaign finance violations were only one part of an ongoing investigation into corruption in D.C.

NASA Offers $35,000 For Help In Tracking Asteroids

Cash prizes await "citizen scientists" who can improve algorithms that help NASA find and identify asteroids in our solar system, the agency says. A contest begins next week.

On Day That Thompson Pleads Guilty, Feds Say Gray Knew Of Shadow Campaign

D.C. businessman Jeffrey Thompson has pleaded guilty to two felonies related to his illicit funding of local and federal campaigns, including Mayor Vincent Gray's 2010 mayoral bid.

Deadline Nears To Buy Or Switch Obamacare Coverage

People who were stymied by website snafus when trying to sign up for health insurance may be able to get retroactive subsidies or choose a different plan.

Dallas Seavey Wins Iditarod Despite Lack Of Snow, High Winds

Seavey, 27, was victorious in the iconic dog sled race for a second time, slipping under the famed burled arch in Nome, Alaska, the finish line for the 1,000-mile-long trail.

'Ringing' Phones Do Not Mean Malaysian Passengers Are OK

Some friends and family of the 239 people who have been missing since Saturday have called their loved ones' cellphones and heard rings. Sadly, that doesn't mean the phones and their owners are safe.

Virginia Watches Supreme Court Case Of Inmate Fighting To Keep Beard

The case of a Muslim prisoner's fight to grow a beard, and the outcome could impact the seven states — including Virginia — that bar facial hair behind bars.

Arguments Over Medicaid Expansion In Virginia Pushes Budget Into Special Session

Members of Virginia's General Assembly adjourned without passing a budget, which means that a special session is on the horizon featuring an epic battle over expanding Medicaid.

Appeals Court Will Hear Virginia Same-Sex Marriage Case In May

A federal appeals court has tentatively scheduled May arguments on Virginia's constitutional ban on same-sex marriages.

Catania Makes It Official: He's Running For Mayor

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An aide to D.C. Council member David Catania say the independent will formally file paperwork for a mayoral run later this week.

Obama Goes Between The Ferns To Talk With Zach Galifianakis

Hoping to boost young people's enrollment in health care, President Obama appears on the web-based show Between Two Ferns, where he submitted to questions from the comedian.

Top Stories: Still No Sign Of Missing Plane; Crisis In Ukraine Continues

Also: The Senate passes Sen. McCaskill's bill about sexual assaults in the military; author Joe McGinniss dies; and in Venezuela, a student leader is killed in anti-government clashes.

Crimean Parliament Passes 'Declaration Of Independence'

Tensions continue to build in advance of a regional referendum on Sunday. Crimeans will be asked whether they wish to split from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation.

Florida Election Tests Midterm Messaging

A closely contested House special election Tuesday is being viewed by the national parties and big-money interests as an early barometer for Obamacare.

Missing Jet Was Way Off Course, Malaysian Air Force Gen. Says

The search continues for the plane and the 239 people. Radar shows it turned and flew hundreds of miles in a wrong direction, one defense official says. Another Malaysian official disputes that.