Friday, November 04, 2005

Friday News Brief

Here are the stories you need to know about going into the weekend.

In domestic politics:

As I noted yesterday, the Senate confirmation hearings for SCOTUS nominee Judge Samuel Alito are scheduled for mid- January, according to the Judiciary Chaiman Arlen Specter.

In a related story, Former Democratic president Jimmy Carter condemned the Democrats' stance on abortion, as well as the party's intolerance for candidates and nominees who oppose abortion.

Also, Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, a Republican trying to become the state's first African-American senator, is seeking an apology from Sen. Chuck Schumer, head of the DSCC, for the racist attack by a liberal blogger who doctored a photo of Steele with minstrel makeup and called him "Simple Sambo."

Schumer DSCC also illegally obtained Steele's credit report, but has neither apologized nor taken any responsibilty for the DSCC's actions. RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman noted the silence of top Dems' on their party's treatment of Steele.

Earlier today the president refused to comment on whether Karl Rove will keep his job. The president said that he wanted to wait until an investigation into Rove's role in the CIA-leak case is completed.

In foreign affairs:

The riots in Paris continue, and they're spreading.

French Prime Minister Dominique Villepin declared Thursday that he "will not give in" to the violence and would make restoring order parliament's "absolute top priority".

Today, however, Villepin met a group of young people from urban areas affected by the rioting, seeking input on how to launch a plan of action.

According to Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, the riots are well organized and not spontaneous. Furthermore, the riots are becoming more violent and less rational. Earlier in the week, a woman on crutches was doused in flammable liquid and set on fire as she tried to get off a bus in a Paris suburb.

Finally, China reported its fourth Bird-Flu out break in the past month.