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March 27th, 2008
07:16 AM ET

Morning Buzz

Good morning folks....Floods, planes being grounded and yes, according to the Generals on the ground in Iraq "the troops are feeling the strain" - really? Surprise, surprise!!! In Raw Politics the Democratic infighting continues, while John McCain lays out his foreign policy plans...AND check out the latest in the death of Carol Gotbaum in Crime & Punishment...her family has filed an 8 million dollar wrongful death suit, the police responded immediately by saying "if she was so sick, why was she traveling alone?" AND greeting cards for inmate? What will Hallmark think of next? There are lots of headlines to chew over this morning...Sooo grab your coffee and lets get this headline party started...

Top Stories
Arkansas braces for more flooding...
Arkansans sandbagged their front doors and pumped out their flooded basements Wednesday as a historic crest on the White River moved downstream, and a flooding expert said the state will have to deal with high water for weeks.

U.S. planes grounded...
The nation's aging airline fleets, already struggling with high fuel costs and growing passenger demand, delivered another blow to travelers Wednesday as American Airlines and Delta Air Lines canceled hundreds of flights while planes were reinspected for compliance with federal maintenance rules. More disruptions are expected

Florida apologizes for slavery...
The Florida Legislature formally apologized Wednesday for the state’s "shameful" history of slavery, joining five other states that have expressed public regret for what Senator Barack Obama, the Democratic presidential candidate, recently called America’s “original sin.”

Saddam paid for US congressional delegation...
Saddam Hussein's intelligence agency footed the bill for a U.S. congressional delegation's trip during a buildup to the Iraq war, according to a federal indictment unsealed Wednesday in the case of an Iraqi-born U.S. citizen charged with spying for the Iraqi government.

Troop strain...
Behind the Pentagon's closed doors, U.S. military leaders told President Bush they are worried about the Iraq war's mounting strain on troops and their families. But they indicated they'd go along with a brief halt in pulling out troops this summer.

U.S steps up strikes in Pakistan...
The United States has escalated its unilateral strikes against Al-Qaeda members and fighters operating in Pakistan's tribal areas, partly because of anxieties that Pakistan's new leaders will insist on scaling back military operations in that country, according to U.S. officials.


Raw Politics
McCain outlines foreign policy...
Sen. John McCain, carefully distancing himself from President Bush and seeking to sound a moderate tone, called Wednesday for stronger ties with allies and cautioned that American power "does not mean we can do whatever we want, whenever we want."

New poll: Clinton takes a hit...
As expected, one of the two major Democratic candidates saw a downturn in the latest NBC/WSJ poll, but it's not the candidate that you think. Hillary Clinton is sporting the lowest personal ratings of the campaign. Moreover, her 37 percent positive rating is the lowest the NBC/WSJ poll has recorded since March 2001, two months after she was elected to the U.S. Senate from New York.

Clinton backers send letter to Pelosi...
Top fundraisers for Sen Hillary Clinton's campaign upbraided House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) yesterday for suggesting that Democratic superdelegates should back the candidate with the most pledged delegates and urged her to respect the right of those delegates to back whomever they choose at the end of the primary season.

Obama warns of "you're on your own society..."
Presidential candidate Barack Obama, largely ignoring his Democratic rival for now, ridiculed likely Republican nominee John McCain on Wednesday for offering "not one single idea" to help hard-pressed homeowners facing foreclosure.

Dem party divide runs deep...
Political tension between Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton is inflaming Democrats' emotions as it spills over into the electorate with more voters threatening to defect from the party should their candidate lose the presidential nomination.

Finding political news online...
Senator Barack Obama's videotaped response to President Bush’s final State of the Union address — almost five minutes of Mr. Obama’s talking directly to the camera — elicited little attention from newspaper and television reporters in January.

McCain's daughter view of her dad...
"McCain Blogette" seems an oxymoron: a senior citizen and his presidential campaign chronicled by the Facebook generation.

Keeping them Honest
GPO profits go to bonuses and trips...
When the government's main printing agency booked $100 million in unexpected profit it went on a spending spree: large bonuses to top managers, trips to Paris and Las Vegas, and an official photo of the boss that cost $10,000.

U.S. unconcerned about erroneous shipment...
After Taiwanese officials reported in early 2007 that four packages they had received from the U.S. military did not contain the helicopter batteries they had expected, U.S. officials suggested that Taiwan simply dispose of the incorrect items - which turned out to be parts for U.S. nuclear missiles.

Crime & Punishment
Family seeks $8 million...
The family of a woman who died last year while in police custody at Phoenix, Arizona's, Sky Harbor International Airport filed an $8 million claim Wednesday against the city of Phoenix and its police department, the first step in filing a wrongful death suit.

Peterson search will continue...
Assured early on by authorities that her sister, Stacy Peterson, did not leave home by choice, Cassandra Cales is more determined than ever to know what happened to the young Bolingbrook mom who vanished five months ago.


What YOU will be talking about TODAY
Greeting cards for inmates?
Ever find yourself struggling to craft the perfect sentence for a loved one who's, um, serving a sentence? Now, you have a friend in the greeting card business.

soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Sabrina in Los Angeles

    Slavery –
    It is sad that we suppressed others and denied them the ability to thrive and survive and be free. This is a shameful thing that was done. Sadly, I feel that the current "worker" is now the new slave class to the wealthy; Unable to live without them "providing" for them. Minimum wage should cover all basic necessities for survival in a proper fashion, not a "good enough for government work" style.

    Hillary –
    She needs to stop trying to "arm-twist" Pelosi. The super-delagates need to vote reflecting the popular vote or there will be more McCain supporters or those turned off to the system for quite some time. Also, the question Chelsea was asked was legitamate and just proves why SHE SHOULD NOT BE THE PRESIDENT. That was a perfect opportunity to note that even though the most intimate, personal issue in her life fell apart, she had the strength to continue on and it didn't hurt her credibility.....but the daughter blew that one for her. Maybe the truth is she didn't handle it well and we need to know that so we will know if she can handle the job of president. A side note on Wal-mart, I bet she was on the board when this woman worked for her (the one who suffered brain damage and is now being told to give the money back). I bet you will find that she probably supported it as a chair-member.....and she want's a manditory health care plan? NO thanks. Wal-mart is a evil as you hear, I worked for them in Arizona and wow, the keep you under 40 hours so they don't have to provide health care....they teach you how to apply with the state.

    March 27, 2008 at 4:14 pm |
  2. Rose

    Wow, I am not sure how I feel about the Federal Government bailing out people who are facing foreclosure on their homes. We have become such a materialistic society that many people purchased homes, thinking that when the ARM came up, they would be able to refinance to lower the interest rate/monthly mortgage, or would be able to afford the ARM.

    However, some of those same also went out to purchase the nice furniture to go with the new home, on credit. Than, they had to have the nice cars, to go into the garage of the new home, and the list goes on. I live in an area, of Washington State, that has seen developers come in and plant cookie cutter divisions, left and right. The school enrollments have gone up, traffic has swelled.

    Now, home prices are going down because contractors are sitting on new homes that are now, not selling. Giving all sorts of incentives, just to sell. Folks are selling homes left and right before they face having to default, the problem is, there is no longer enough demand. It is a very sad situation.

    Not so long ago, purchasing a home was not all that easy. I am 33 years old, when my husband and I purchased our first home at 19 years of age, just married, we needed to have 20% in hand for the down payment. This was in 1994. I was fortunate that my husband was very wise with his spending habits and had saved up the $47K that we needed to get into our home and pay closing costs out of pocket. Our first mortgage was with Bank of America, and they went through our file with a fine tooth comb, because we were young, we did not have hardly any credit history, and where did the cash come from. Lucky, we had all in line and closed as planned.

    These past years, you did not have to have down payments, good credit or any credit, you could roll your closing cost into your mortgage and the list goes on. than we wonder why we are facing the obstacle we are? Very sad, but maybe McCain is not to far off on this topic. Put the responsibility back on the consumer and the lender. We are already facing enough turmoil in our current economy.

    March 27, 2008 at 12:45 pm |
  3. Lee

    I really hope that the family of the woman who died at the airport never get a dime. Her death is THEIR fault – not the police. They knew she had emotional problems. They should never have let her travel alone. Even if they didn't care enough to accompany her – hire someone to go with her ..... notify the airline that she needs assistance....... something.

    Now they want to make money off of her death. Disgusting.

    What a contrast from the family you showed last night who are involved in the Walmart suit.

    March 27, 2008 at 11:51 am |
  4. April in Texas

    Lots of stuff happening in the world. I hope the airlines find what they are looking for and take care of the problems. I am glad I have yet to schedule my trip to Florida I got for my birthday too.

    I am glad Florida and other states are reconizing race as an issue that does need to be addressed and I as a white woman was moved by Obama's speech on the subject. It showed true leadership in my opinion.

    I support Obama and (unlike Cynthia the first post) I feel the government should step in and help out the home owners. The government is bailing out banks and if you look at it full circle most of the housing crisis was caused by the encomy and the government choices. (btw I am not a home owner yet).

    Otherwise I would agree with most everything else (Cynthia) posted minus the canidates getting back to issues. Sadly the media and others seem to be delaying the canidates to get back to the issues or at least on the democratic side. I will say they are trying.

    Watching politics closer than I have ever done before has been interesting but you can certainly tell which party the anchors are for and sometimes even down to the canidates themselves. FOX for example leans majorly towards republican where at least CNN and MSNBC seem to be split and fair to all canidates.

    Obama 08
    Austin Texas

    March 27, 2008 at 11:42 am |
  5. Ronda

    It is nothing like a big corporation going after a little person to ensure a person's trust in our capital system. Whatever. I have to say that this story sickens me. How can any company big or small make these kind of demands upon their associates? Where is the compassion that Wal-Mart should have for their fellow man? It seems to me that the larger a company gets, the less concerned about their fellow man they become.

    It saddens to say this, but I can not bring myself to shop at Wal-Mart anymore. I have been a very loyal consumer of Wal-Mart stores for years mostly because their prices were usually so much cheaper than their competition. However, I feel that by continuing to shop their, I am condoning what they have done to this family. I live in a metro area, so there will be other discount stores for me to shop. My concern is for the people who live in smaller communities that have only one discount store–Wal-Mart. I think people in those places are going to have to decide for themselves if they can afford to seek out other stores. For anyone who is pinching pennies like my husband and I, deciding to not shop at Wal-Mart was a difficult decision to make. For us, it has come down to morality. Wal-Mart's actions have been grossly immoral and unconscionable. We want nothing more to do with their stores.

    March 27, 2008 at 11:34 am |
  6. Melissa R, Louisiana

    While I am glad someone is bringing attention to the demands we are forcing upon our soldiers and their families while fighting two wars, I am still disappointed that has taken this administration so long to realize what this war is costing us.

    The divorce rate amongst soldiers on their 3, 4, and 5th rotations to Iraq is staggering. The suicide rate is up, and many more will forever be known as disabled vets because of injuries. We have no buisness in Iraq and we should bring our troops home as soon as it is safe to do so. Unfortunately, we must send more of them to Afghanistan to defeat Bin Laden and his gang of murderers.

    Wow, the state of Florida apologized for it's part in the slave trade. This one made my day. It appears the speech given by Senator Obama is having the desired affect afterall. I say let the talks begin. I, like Senator Obama have cousins of every race, color, and creed and believe that we must begin to learn of each other if we are ever going to come together for one common goal.

    I say get rid of all the classifications of race due to skin color, and simply classify everyone as American. We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 27, 2008 at 10:49 am |
  7. Mary An Oklahoma Grandmother

    It would be great to live in a world again where the economy is booming and we are not sending our young men and woman into a senseless and endless war. With Senator John McCain, it would be another 4 years of 99% like the George Bush administration. Right now, citizens are very concerned about their futures.
    If anyone can fix the economy and end the war, it would be Senator Hillary Clinton. Senator Obama does not have the judgement, intergity or experience necessary. Most of his policies are borrowed from the Clinton campaign.
    GO HILLARY.

    March 27, 2008 at 10:29 am |
  8. Art Vigil

    I'm still confused as to where John McCaine is getting his support from. With a record deficit, forclosures and pending forclosures, job losses, the soaring price of gas and food and 4000 dead and as for the number of injured we will never really know (you cannot diagnose PTS, we just had another Iraqi vet commit murder /suicide where I live).
    He has joked about bombing Iran, staying in Iraq for a 100 years and to top it off says he does not understand how the economy work. I really don't know what classifys him a hero when he chose to remain a prisoner to avoid having to fight. Maybe that is his reason for wanting to stay in Iraq is to make up for his shortfalls in Vietnam.

    Art

    March 27, 2008 at 10:15 am |
  9. Cindy

    I think that all airlines need to ground their flights and check out all of their planes. I mean atleast the old ones. It makes no sense to keep on using them knowing that they may have things wrong with them that could end up killing many people. It's only common sense.

    So they are just now getting it that the troops are strained!! HELLO!! They have been fighting mercilessly for 5 years with no breaks....what do they expect!! Are they clueless or what!?

    Atleast one of the candidates has gotten back to the real issues and stopped all of the childish bickering back and forth!! Now if the other two would!

    Obama has no clue!! It shouldn't be up to the government to bail people out of their foreclosure mess. They got into it it is their own fault. The government can't go behind and clean up everyone's mess. Where is that kind of money going to come from anyway!? We already have a HUGE national debt! And we owe other countries WAY too much.

    I can't believe that we shipped Taiwan nuclear missile parts and then told them to discard of them like they are nothing. What if they got into the wrong hands. Are we that ignorant or what!?

    I figured that the Gotbaum's would sue the police. But I am on the police's side. If she was so sick why was she going there alone!? Makes no sense to me!

    I think I have heard it all now....greeting cards for inmates! Who would've thunk it!!?

    Cynthia, Covington, Ga.

    March 27, 2008 at 8:28 am |