Arizona's new immigration laws went into effect today and sparked protests that are still going on tonight. We'll have all the angles. Plus, Congressman Charlie Rangel can't make a deal to avoid a potentially embarrassing public trial. He's facing 13 ethics charges. We'll talk it over with CNN's Jeffrey Toobin and Gloria Borger.
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President Barack Obama said Thursday that Shirley Sherrod "deserves better than what happens last week when a bogus controversy ... led to her forced resignation."
"Many are to blame" for the reaction that followed, he said, "including my own administration."
Her whole story, Obama said he told Sherrod, "is exactly the kind of story we need to hear in America (because) we all have our biases."
The president made his remarks during an appearance at the National Urban League's 100th Anniversary Convention in Washington.
As Arizona's new immigration law took effect Thursday, opponents of the law hit the streets with mixed expressions of relief and outrage.
Demonstrators were arrested outside the office of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a staunch defender of the state measure.
In addition, several nonviolent protests were planned throughout Phoenix to mark the passage of the legislation, which officially took effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday.
U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton's decision Wednesday to grant a temporary injunction against some of the most controversial provisions of the bill came as a surprise to some opponents of the law, who thought that the conservative political climate made the legislation's enactment inevitable.
CNN Wire Staff
The House ethics committee on Thursday accused veteran Rep. Charles Rangel of 13 violations of House rules involving alleged financial wrongdoing and harming the credibility of Congress.
"Credibility is what's at stake here; the very credibility of the House itself before the American people," said Rep. Mike McCaul, the ranking Republican on a subcommittee that will hold a trial-like hearing on the charges against Rangel.
McCaul spoke at the subcommittee's first meeting, which heard the charges against Rangel, a 20-term Democrat from New York running for re-election this year. Rangel was not required to attend and did not show up.
It's been a long, hot summer for Arizona even without the help of the scorching temperatures that have made the state's landscape so unforgettable for many visitors.
Tourists are still flocking to beautiful places such as the Grand Canyon, Lake Havasu and the resort town of Sedona, and hotel occupancy is up across the state despite a political storm that prompted some to call for a boycott of Arizona's hospitality industry.
But while the leisure snapshot seems encouraging, tourism officials say they are worried about the long-term impact on lucrative business travel, which they say may be affected for years to come.
At least 40 groups have canceled meetings or conventions in Arizona since Gov. Jan Brewer signed a new immigration bill, said Kristen Jarnagin, a spokeswoman for the Arizona Hotel & Lodging Association.
Shirley Sherrod told a panel at the National Association of Black Journalists convention Thursday she would pursue a lawsuit against blogger Andrew Breitbart.
"I will definitely do it," she said, when asked about rumors she was considering legal actions.
The Sherrod controversy began after conservative blogger Breitbart posted a portion of the speech in which Sherrod spoke of not offering her full help to a white farmer. The original post indicated that the incident Sherrod mentioned occurred when she worked for the Agriculture Department, and news outlets quickly picked up on the story.
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