Sunday, January 8, 2012

6th period--Last current event of 2nd Quarter: due 1/13

Can you believe that this is your last current event assignment for the quarter? I can't! :)

For this week's post, please find a current event that is about anything that we have discussed during first semester. This is about as close to "your choice" as I can get while still making this somewhat relevant to the class. 

Just to recap, the following is a list of topics that we have covered over the course of the year: government, democracy, citizenship, revolution, the American Revolution, compromise, the Constitutional Convention, the Bill of Rights, the Amendments, the Legislative Branch (Congress and the General Assembly) and the Executive Branch (the President and the Governor). 

Hopefully this casts a wide enough net for you to find an article that interests you, hahaha. I look forward to reading what you uncover in your quest for the perfect Civics article. Have a great week and don't forget to STUDY for the 2nd Quarter Test on Tuesday and Wednesday. 


  1. Natalie Bulik-Sullivan Pd. 6
    “Appointments Challenge Senate Role, Experts Say”
    Author – Jonathan Weissman
    NY Times, 7/1/12

    Last week, President Obama made several “recess appointments”, bypassing the Senate confirmation process that presidential nominees generally go though. Although Obama has a constitutional right to make recess appointments, Senate was not formally in recess, which, along with the appointments themselves, has sparked a fair amount of protest. His actions were prompted by Senate Republicans’ frequent filibustering and use of other legal tactics in order to postpone or end a number of agency nominations (slightly fewer than 200 in total). It has been speculated that the Republicans’ motivation for this behavior was their desire to neutralize agencies that acted is discord with their own party’s goals and desires. 74 nominees have still not been discussed by the Senate, and another 107 have been assigned to committees, which they have not yet left. Many of these nominees were intended to fill economic positions or positions that work towards goals that are not supported by the Republican Party. The appointments Obama made filled the post of the director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and members of the National Labor Relations Board. Many of the nominees who are still pending consideration by the Senate have been doing so for months. 18 of Obama’s nominations have even withdrawn their names for consideration. Republicans have even threatened to filibuster during the consideration of certain names for the Consumer Financial Bureau until laws were changed to decrease the director’s influence or grant Congress more power over the Bureau’s actions.
    I have mixed feelings regarding this topic. Although there are precedents to Obama’s actions (ex. Roosevelt appointed 160 nominees between the close of one session and the opening of the next – a recess that lasted mere seconds), I am disappointed that he has had to resort to such underhanded methods. Obviously, I am inclined to blame the Republicans, as I frequently am, but I believe that Obama is also at fault. During the course of his presidency, he has made a complete hash of inter-party cooperation, which is vital to the success of our government. Had he accomplished more in that area, many of the problems our government has recently encountered may never have occurred. This whole affair simply outlines just how bad matters have become. On the other hand, I support the Senate’s right to confirm presidential nominations, but Senate Republicans have clearly taken advantage of that right, and I don’t see any other way Obama could have responded. If the USA’s government can’t figure itself out and start working together, rather than for the sole purpose of furthering personal or party goals, I cannot see how it can become productive or effective again.

  2. Kaitlin Jones, 6th period
    Outgoing Mississippi governor pardons four killers
    By the CNN Wire Staff
    January 10, 2012

    Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour recently pardoned four murderers from the rest of their lifetime sentence. He pardoned David Gatlin, Joseph Ozment, Charles Hooker, and Anthony McCray. This was not the first time that Governor Barbour had pardoned a criminal from a lifetime sentence. This is Barbour’s last week in office; he is about to be replaced by Phil Bryant who will be inaugurated Tuesday. The victims’ families of the killers are very upset that they are being pardoned of their crimes and do not agree with Governor Barbour’s actions. Some of the victims were mothers, whose children have had to grow up without them.

    I think that it is devastating for the victims’ families for the Governor to pardon these killers. I don’t agree with his actions either, and I think that they should have had to serve their lifetime sentence for the crimes they had committed. If I were living in Mississippi, I would not feel safe knowing that many criminals were pardoned so easily by the governor. I also find it strange that the governor would pardon so many people in his last days of office.

  3. Carly Narotsky Period 6
    “Could the 2012 GOP nomination be drawing to a close? Candidates attack Romney, but fail to land lasting blows”
    By David Chalian
    Yahoo News

    In the Iowa caucuses, Romney took the lead over Santorum by only eight votes. In the debates in New Hampshire this past weekend, the other GOP candidates tried to make arguments against Romney to take him out of the lead. The main point Romney’s opponents are making is that he’s not conservative enough. They say there is not a big contrast between him and Obama, so he will have a hard time getting elected. Romney argued that his opponents don’t have any experience in jobs outside of politics, like he does. However, Gingrich told him to “cut the pious baloney,” pointing out that Romney has in fact been running for various political positions since at least the 1990s. It seems that the candidates’ attempts to derail Romney have failed. He is still considered the front runner.

    I think that although Romney has the lead now, he won’t be able to sustain it throughout the race. Because I don’t think Romney will win the nomination, probably it will be Rick Santorum. The other candidates are simply not likable enough and therefore not electable enough. For example, I’ve never seen Newt Gingrich smile. He always looks angry. Ron Paul comes off as too emphatic, and a little bit on-edge. Most people agree that Rick Perry isn’t the smartest. I don’t know why nobody pays any attention to Jon Hunstman. I have heard some people say that Romney sounds insincere, but perhaps that’s because he changes his opinion on almost every issue. That leaves Rick Santorum as the likeliest nominee. I’m interested in seeing who will come out of the Republican primaries on top.

  4. Tim Bogan – 6th Period
    D.C. moves to adjust divorce law for same-sex marriages
    Author - Brad Lendon
    CNN, January 11, 2012

    The city council of the District of Columbia is making it easier for same-sex couples who are married to get divorced. The legislation was proposed by the District of Columbia’s councilman Phil Mendelson after hearing reports that marriages formed in the District of Columbia were denied divorces after moving to jurisdictions that did not recognize same-sex marriages. Mendelson’s bill removes a six-month waiting period during which someone seeking a divorce must reside in the District, provided that the marriage was formed in the District in the first place. The bill has been met with outstanding enthusiasm and support from the gay and lesbian population of Washington D.C. The bill is supported by seven other members of the 13-member council, meaning final passage is very likely.

    I believe this is a great thing for the residents of the District of Columbia. I am a supporter of same-sex marriage and this bill is a step to inspiring the creation of more areas in which same-sex marriages are recognized. This relates to our class topics because a piece of legislation is being proposed and will most likely be passed into law. The dissolution of marriage is an unfortunate thing by itself, but the inability to do so is a violation of someone’s rights.

  5. Allie Rives 6th Period
    Will Obama Break Even on Jobs?- Annalyn Censky
    CNN January 11, 2012
    As election time comes around for the next president, Obama is cutting it close to still having high unemployment rates. While studying the fact that only half of the job loses are blamed on Obama, it's been said that he might be able to break even by November. In other words, two thirds of the jobs lost have been saved by Obama, however he still has a little over one million to save. To reassure Obama still has a chance at taking on his second and final term of being president; George Bush was re-elected with being accountable for thousands of lost jobs.
    This challenge that Obama is taking on is definitely bittersweet. He is being blamed for the millions of lost jobs, however he is slowly but surely gaining the jobs back. As Bush was put in the same spot as Obama yet re-elected, it takes a positive turn that Obama could gain the power of the president once again. Although, since a lot of this started while Obama was president, I can see it being very difficult for people wanting to trust him again and question the next four years if they're going to lose their job...I agree with Dean Baker and his comment, "If I'm President Obama, I don't want to be in the position of telling people this is a good economy -- that strategy is going to fall flat." This is a major downfall to being the president. One must be truthful to the people, however the president must give the real deal so the people aren't shocked all of a sudden with what's going on in the economy. I'm looking forward to not necessarily finding out who wins the election, more so than hearing the people's opinions, thoughts and concerns!

  6. Ryan Castellano, 6thPeriod Romney Wins N.H. Primary; Fight On For Second
    Alan Greenblatt, January 10th, 2012, npr

    Mitt Romney has been on a roll so far in this election, winning the first two states. Mitt Romney recently won the Republican preliminary in New Hampshire yesterday. A lot of people expect Romney to have a twenty percent lead in the polls by the time South Carolina rolls around January 21st. If Romney manages to get at least two fifths of the voters to agree with him, he will be hard to beat the next couple months. Both Huntsman and Paul are not projected to catch up in New Hampshire with Paul looking for around one fifth of the votes. New Hampshire had long been considered promising territory for Romney seeing he was once the governor of Massachusetts and lived in New Hampshire.
    I have not done a ton of research on the potential candidates, so I cannot make an accurate statement about my opinion on them. However, I do believe that a candidate should have some military experience of some kind and a lot of experience in the government. Right now it looks like it could be a tight race but Romney has the head start in this competition.

  7. Ashley Powell, 6th
    New Hampshire Aftermath: Cleaning up after the Campaign
    CNN, January 12, 2012

    Nobody thinks about the city after the primary is over. The only ones still thinking about it is the people who have to come and clean up afterwards. Hundreds of forgotten signs are left in the barren wasteland that was once the center of the country. People have to work countless hours just to clean up after the signs. Sometimes campaign workers search through the trash afterward to retrieve thrown out signs to bring to the next town or save for when the nominee is elected. The workers say about as soon as they are done cleaning up all the signs they find more out on the street for the 2 president elects. One worker commented that it is a “never ending battle”.
    I think that campaign workers should clean up after themselves. They should not leave it for the town’s people to have to do themselves. This would make the town be much more ready for more campaigning. Even if they did not want to clean up after themselves they could pick up all the signs and use them again so they save money. This would also keep thousands of pounds worth of trash from filling the landfills every city they go to.

  8. Gabe Foster 6th
    New Hampshire Aftermath: cleaning up after the campaigns
    By: Steve Kastenbaum

    Mitt Romney won the GOP primary on Tuesday with almost 40 percent of the vote and the candidates have now moved on to South Carolina. Now the state of New Hampshire is left with many signs and posters that need to be taken down. The job has been left for public works employees with the campaigns sitting back to watch. A worker said members from the campaigns come and look in the piles of signs and pull out their candidates to reuse in another state or in the real election should their campaign win the nomination. The candidates have moved on to South Carolina but they have left a mess for the state to clean up and will leave another one wherever they go to campaign.

    I think this article shows just how much work is put into running for office that you normally don’t see. When I read this article I got the image of the candidates as a bunch of little kids. They come over to play at your house but leave just before it’s time to clean up. They make the mess and let someone else clean it up and then go through piles looking for their “toys”.

  9. Catherine Romaine
    6th period
    Obama loses chief of staff
    Ben Feller
    News and Observer, 1/10/12

    On Monday, President Obama announced that his chief of staff, William Daley, had resigned after just one year of work. He decided that he wanted to return to his family in Chicago, even though he had committed to Obama that he would stay until the election. Daley was very hardworking during a tough time in the Obama administration. Obama even said that "No one in my administration has had to make more important decisions more quickly than Bill." Daley's decision has been hard on Obama. Jack Lew, the budget chief, will take over Daley's position.

    This article is very relevant because we just finished learning about the executive branch. The chief of staff is the head of the EOP (Executive Office of the President). This is a big deal because the chief of staff is a big job.

  10. Paul Miller
    Romney steps up defense of business record
    By CNN Wire Staff
    January 12, 2012

    Mitt Romney, the current GOP frontrunner for the presidential nomination is being challenged by other candidates about his business record saying that he downsized companies for his own benefit during his time at Bain Capital. Romney defended himself by saying his company was one that thrived but when others are not doing well, they have to be cut back to survive and that they are sometimes successful and sometimes not. Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich are accusing Romney of “vulture capitalism”, or when you gut a few companies for the benefit of a select few. Romney says that every job loss is a tragedy and when Bain invested in companies they did it so that the company could keep alive. Jim DeMint, a South Carolina senator defended Romney by saying the time at Bain is a teaching moment and that it makes no sense to him that Perry and Gingrich are taking shots at the frontrunner.

    I have no idea what happened when Romney was at Bain Capital but I don’t think any candidate wants to eliminate jobs like what they say Romney did during his tenure there. I do think that Perry and Gingrich shouldn’t keep trying to damage Romney’s chances and use that time trying to get people to vote for them telling their argument for the nomination. Plus no one’s record is perfect and Romney can just as easily take shots at Perry and Gingrich if they keep trying to derail his chances. This will be an interesting race for the nomination, too bad Herman Cain is out. This relates cause we learned about presidents and the executive branch.

  11. Nate Hebert
    6th Period
    Rivals turn up heat on Romney after New Hampshire win
    CNN Wire Staff
    CNN 1/12/12

    Mitt Romney is the clear front runner heading into South Carolina. His rivals are trying to halt his momentum after his victory in New Hampshire. Texas Rep. Ron Paul finished 2nd with 23%. Jon Huntsman came in 3rd with 17%. After that came Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum with each just under 10%. Rick Perry just gained 1% of the vote. Winning South Carolina is especially important to the candidates because since 1980 the winner of that state won the nomination. Rick Santorum says that Mitt Romney still has a long way to go if he wants to win the nomination. Romney’s success has been a combination of momentum, cash, and growing support. Romney hopes to win South Carolina followed by Florida to determine an early winner. Rick Perry thinks he can still win the nomination if he can win South Carolina.
    I think that it will be a close match between Mitt Romney and actually Rick Perry. I think Romney will have a chance because he actually knows what he is talking about. Perry has a chance because he is one of the more hard core conservative’s, and he just seems like a guy that South Carolina would elect. Seriously though I think South Carolina would elect Perry. This relates to what we have talked about this quarter because it deals with the executive branch.

  12. Mikko Rich-voorhees, 6th
    Iran Nuclear: Ali Larijai accepts Turkey talks offer
    1/12/12. BBC
    BBC World news

    Iran has been under close nuclear watch for a while now and recently the UN found they were producing 20% uranium, which could be used in making nuclear weapons. Now the legislative leader Ali Laijai has agreed to talk with five UN members about these groups of nuclear material, which have been identified in Iran. In the past years they had gotten by, claiming they were simply nuclear power plants showing up on the radar, but this new discovery of the uranium found could serve as being extremely dangerous if to were used in a threatening way.
    Personally I do believe Iran has intentions of using this nuclear material to make weapons either to use them, or simply say they have them. During the Manhattan project the US second in command had little to no idea about what was happening, so I’m assuming that in a similar situation like this the Iranians won’t be releasing too much information to other countries. This is an example of foreign agreement and diplomacy between countries in that it is a few groups of leaders coming together and talking over an issue so that a compromise can be proposed that everyone agrees on.

  13. Natalie Ragazzo
    6th period
    Outgoing Mississippi governor pardons four killers

    In the last few days of governor, Haley Barbour has pardoned four men that were charged with murder. These three men have been working at the governor's mansion and serving life sentences. The families of the men's victims are infuriated with Barbour's pardons. They are saying how it is not fair that they must live without their love ones while these men don't have to serve their full terms. The men have left children without mothers and families without their loved ones. One victims family even stated how one man served less time than the victim ever lived.
    I believe that the men should not have been pardoned. They have done many wrong things and should be punished for their actions. They have left many families without some of their members. The worst is that left children to grow up without their mothers and without their father because he's in jail for killing their mother. It's just a terrible situation. I do believe in second chances though and maybe Governor Barbour has seen a side to these men that we have not and think they really do deserve a second chance. But if they are to go out into the world and mess up again, it's on his hands.

  14. Colin Bergey
    6th period
    Obama Unveils Plan to Streamline Government
    1/13/2012 on

    Obama asked Congress for more power to organize and streamline the federal gobernment. He wants to combine agencies that preform similar tasks. For example, the Commerence Department will be eliminated, moving its responsibilities to other departments. This plan is cutting an estimated 3 billion dollars over the next decade, but also at the cost of 2000 government jobs. Obama is doing this becase he wants to have a better chance in winning the presidential election n 2012. This is a surprising change because government has grown a lot over the past three years.
    I feel that this is a good idea to cut spending and reduce complexity of the Federal Government. Although, I think that Obama should be making this change because he feels that it is the right thing to do for the country. But, some feel he is doing it to get the upper hand in the up coming election.

  15. Arjun Raghavan
    Period six
    civics and economics with llogan
    us upgrades ties with Myanmar as reforms continue
    jan. 13 2012
    Andrew Quinn

    President Obama and the United States have upgrades various ties with Burma. 120 political prisoners, or people who are imprisoned due to their political views, have been released. The country, previously Burma, had violent protests against democracy in the past which caused the United States of America to down-grade their relationship with the country. Burma, rich with resources, didn’t see mto prosper due to various problems in the country. The re-formation of the country is now causing the US to reconsider its ties with the nation and the next step is to send an ambassador there.

    I think of this as a valid move by this country because Myanmar is slowly taking consistent steps in restoring the country. We can benefit the country by upping our ties. This is an overall good move, and I hope this turns out to be a long-term and successful relationship between the countries.

  16. Alex Walker, 6th Period
    Obama to Ask Congress for Power to Merge Agencies
    Author: Mark Landler
    Source: New York Times
    Publishing Date: January 13, 2012

    On Friday January 13, President Obama announced a new campaign to decrease the sprawl of federal government. To do this, Obama asked congress for the power to merge agencies together to form a larger one, a power which no president since Ronald Reagan has held. With this power, the president would begin by combining the Small Business Administration and five others into one giant group, which would then replace the Commerce Department. This process would save $3 billion over the course of 10 years, and ultimately result in the loss of 1,000 to 2,000 jobs, although this would occur through attrition and not layoffs.

    I have mixed feelings about this overall. It is good that President Obama is trying to reduce the national debt, but leaving 2,000 people without jobs is not the best way to do it in my opinion. Also, I think it would be a difficult task for a single group to do the work of six agencies and one department as one unit. Overall, this article has a lot to do with our second quarter topics. It focuses on the federal bureaucracy as well as touching on congressional and presidential powers.

  17. Laura Sullivan
    6th Period
    Rivals turn up heat on Romney after New Hampshire win
    CNN Wire Staff
    CNN 1/12/12

    Romney is the in the lead of the election heading into South Carolina. His rivals are trying to take him down after his victory in New Hampshire. Rick Perry came in last winning only 1% of the votes. Right before him was Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich with just under 10% each. John Huntsman came in third with 17%. In second came Ron Paul with 23. Winning South Carolina is important because since 1980 the winner of that state has won the nomination. Rick Santorum is really putting pressure on Mitt Romney saying that he’s still got a long way to go to win the nomination. Romney’s success has been a combination of momentum, cash, and growing support. Romney is hoping to win South Carolina and Florida to be a sure winner. Rick Santorum thinks he can still win if he wins South Carolina.
    I personally think that between all of the candidates it is going to be a close match. They all have showed good qualities in themselves that I think would be good for a republican candidate. I think Romney knows what he’s doing and Rick Perry is one of the more hard core conservatives. Santorum I think has gotten to big of a head and personally I don’t like him that much. Whoever South Carolina elects I don’t think the winner will have won by a long shot, it will be close. This relates to what we have done so far because it deals with the executive branch.

  18. David Hicks 6th Period
    “SOPA: House to hear testimony from Reddit co-founder, Rackspace CEO & others”
    Tom Cheredar
    Venture Beat, January 9, 2012

    A small group of tech industry leaders and security experts were invited to give their opinion on the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in front of the House of Representatives. This meeting is scheduled for January 18th, 2011. Participants include Reddit Co-founder Alexis Ohanian and Rackspace CEO Lanham Napier. These experts are hoping to persuade congress against SOPA. Sopa allows companies and copywrite holders to block the ISP’s of individuals who they claim are infringing their work. They can go so far as to blocking the website from search engines and banning them from Paypal (Along with other “online money” sources). The witnesses will also discuss how to protect copy written material without hurting the economy.
    SOPA is one of the most hypocritical bills I have ever seen, considering it’s supporters are the ones it’s attacking. CBS, one of SOPA’s main supporters, used to distribute the programs that allowed you to steal music - Limewire, BitTorrent, and Kazaa. These were all distributed from’s (a dividsion of CBS and Viacom) website. In the MGM Studios, Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., it was stated:

    “We hold that one who distributes a device with the object of promoting its use to infringe copyright, as shown by clear expression or other affirmative steps taken to foster infringement, is liable for the resulting acts of infringement by third parties.”

    Because of this, I am strongly against SOPA. It limits freedom of speech on the Internet, which is supposed to be a shared space, and it is supported by those who created the tools that started it. This relates to what we are doing in class because it deals with legislation.

  19. Katie Mimmack pd 6
    Man Faces Deportation Despite Marriage To U.S. Citizen by Sarah Hoye
    CNN on January 11, 2012

    Frederic Deloizy is a French citizen who has been on various visas since 1990 in an effort of staying and raising a family with his partner Mark Himes, a natural-born U.S. citizen. The couple was officially married in California in 2008, and have four children ages 6-11. But Deloizy’s final visa expired in September 2011, and now faces deportation because immigration officials do not recognize their marriage under the Defense of Marriage Act. There is an increasing number of same-sex couples with a partner of foreign nationality who face risk of separation under DOMA. The couple filed a spousal green card commission, and will soon have to appear before an immigration officer to defend their marriage and family. They may receive a decision on the day of the appearance, weeks afterwards, or if they are lucky their case could be put on hold until DOMA reaches the Supreme Court, which has been under a lot of debate regarding its constitutionality.

    I think it’s really sad that this couple isn’t recognized as being married and faces deportation because of that. Because of DOMA, immigration officials are forced to ignore the fact that these same-sex couples have families and have built a life together over the past 21 years. I think it’s horrible that this family may have to split up because of a discriminatory act passed in the 1990’s. To quote the duck test, “If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck.” If these people look like a family, act like a family, and think of themselves as family, then they probably are, and should be treated like, a family. This article makes me wonder, of course, what the ruling will be on Frederic Deloizy’s green card, but I am also curious as to about how many other couples are facing a similar situation. This article relates to what we’ve studied in class because it is about citizenship.

  20. Grant DeSelm – 6th
    Obama asks for power to reorganize six federal agencies
    Many authors 1/13/12

    President Barack Obama wants to shrink the federal government. In order to do this, he wants to close the US commerce department and merge six different agencies into one. The white house says this will save $3 billion dollars over the next ten years. The only problem with this is that it cuts over 2,000 jobs. This is coming up because of Republican criticism over Obama being too liberal. The last time such a change was made, Ronald Regan was the President. Congress is expected to vote on it within the next 90 days which gives republican presidential candidates the time to look over and criticize them. The six agencies would be; Department of Commerce, the Small Business Administration, the Office of the US Trade Representative, the Export-Import Bank, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the Trade and Development Agency. This group deals with a ton of foreign and domestic issues and they are expected to overlap in ideas in very different ways.
    I think this is a very bad idea. Obama should make two small groups, not one large one. Cutting 2,000 jobs is a big deal, even if you’re saving $3 billion by 2022. I believe Obama is doing this because he needs leverage against the republicans in the upcoming elections. They are criticizing him left and right and I think he is just getting tired of it. In every debate, all the candidates talk about how bad of a job Barack Obama is doing. It’s almost like whoever disagrees with Obama the most, gets the most praise.

  21. Julian Wilson
    6th Period
    Obama to Ask Congress for Power to Merge Agencies by Mark Landler
    New York Times
    January 13, 2012

    This article is about President Obama’s plan to try to merge and consolidate many government agencies. At a meeting today in the West Wing of the White House Obama talked about how there are many overlaps in the area that executive agencies cover. For example, fresh water salmon falls under the Interior Department while salt water salmon falls under the Commerce Department. He says that this combination of government agencies will save the government around 3 billion dollars over 10 years. He also said that they won’t lay people off but they will lose up to 2,000 jobs over time through attrition. This is significant because it could dramatically change the structure of our government, especially if Congress helps Obama with his plans for consolidation.
    I actually think that Obama’s plans could be very good, because there is a lot of unnecessary overlap and things that would be beneficial to combine or remove. I think this is a good way to help to eliminate unneeded positions in the government and to help save money during the debt crisis. This relates to what we are learning in class because it deals with the executive branch, specifically the President and executive agencies.

  22. Anna Zhang 6th
    White House chief of staff stepping down
    Jessica Yellin, CNN
    Mon January 9, 2012

    After serving for a year, White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley decided to step down from his position. The reason, he claims, is to spend more time with his family. However, Daley will still be in office during the State of the Union Address and through the end of January. In his resignation letter, Daley praised President Obama for his effort and determination and bringing down Osama bin Laden. Jack Lew, the director of Office of Management and Budget, will be replacing Daley.

    I was kind of surprised that Bill Daley only served for one year as Chief of Staff before he decided to quit. Is a one year term normal for Staff Chiefs? It must be kind of sad for President Obama; first Rahm Emanuel left and now Bill Daley too. I don’t think it’s always easy getting along with a brand new adviser.

  23. Maddie McNeal, Period 6
    Reuters, January 12, 2012
    Mary Slosson
    New Mississippi governor supports amendment on limiting clemency

    New governor Phil Bryant who served as lieutenant governor to Haley Barbour stated that he would be in favor of an amendment to the state's constitution in order to change the governor's clemency powers. Spokesman Mick Bullock said that the governor has asked Senator Michael Watson to review the law regarding pardons and whether it needs to be worded more effectively. Bullock then went on to say that the governor believes that an amendment is the best way to address this important issue within the state. The former governor has been topic of controversy since he ordered a pardon for 200 convicts in Mississippi. The next day a judge banned the release of any of the pardoned prisoners who still remain in jail; however, five prisoners had already been released. This ban blocked the freedom of 21 convicts who were still in jail when the pardon was issued, it also ordered the released convicts to appear for a hearing in January. Former Governor Barbour said these pardons were meant to allow the inmates to find a good job and be productive members of society. Although these pardons have created more of a controversy because he pardons criminals who had committed serious crimes. Former U.S. Attorney general Jimmy Gurule says that no governor should have the authority to pardon. It is possible that the pardons were granted illegally, if this is true then they will be void and the convicts will be rearrested and must finish their sentences.
    It's hard to imagine 200 convicts being pardoned. I agree that it is a good thing to have former inmates be able to get good jobs and to become productive and responsible members of their community, but some of the convicts pardoned were responsible for very serious crimes. One has to wonder why all of these criminals were pardoned. It's a very extreme movement. I would be a little bit afraid of some of the inmates and other citizens probably would be as well. I do believe though that we all deserve a chance to make things right and that helping these people get their lives back on track would be a good thing. It's hard to tell how the convicts will react to being freed, some may just make the same mistakes. This is a really good example of state legislations at work.

  24. Emma Beck
    Per. 6
    Days Before Primary, N.H. Restraint Bans Presidential Candidates
    By Elise Hu
    January 8th, 2012

    Restaurant owner Jeremy Colby asked one of her employees to put a sign on the front door saying "No Politicians, No Exceptions." Colby owns a small restrain with only 10 tables, seating 28 people. Colby finds it annoying that the politicians sit at one table for a very long time as well as companying in his business. He also finds it annoying how the candidates talk about how important small bissness are and yet, they create such a big disturbance in his. One of the candidates asked to reserve hale of the restaurant (5 tables) and said that he would have the pleasure of "waiting on Gov. Perry and to just act himself."

    I think that it is obnoxious of the GOP candidates thinking that they are better. I also agree with Jeremy Colby that it is amusing how the candidates say that they are for small businesses and yet they do such damage to his. I also think that it is weird that of all the small places to go for lunch they went to this tinny restaurant. I also think that it is rude what all of the candidates are doing. I think that it is amusing to put up a sign like that and it makes me think of Gilmore Girls.