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Hillary Clinton's Campaign-In-Waiting Grows Restless
Hillary Clinton is close to being ready. Now, she just has to find a way to tame the legions of loyalists who have been ready since their last presidential ride ended. The complicated political machine known as Clintonland is revving its engine, as outside groups, top donors, and prospective aides begin preparing for an anticipated formal announcement of her presidential candidacy early next year. In the coming week alone there will be a half-dozen fundraisers aimed at greasing the path toward her 2016 debut. Some events are aimed at scooping up checks for existing pro-Clinton groups, while others will pocket financial “commitments” for a future campaign account. Bloomberg
VOA VIEW: Hillary's ambition, with liberal media support leaves no doubt she will run.

Loose-Lipped ObamaCare Adviser's Predictions More Bad Than Bold
All the millions of dollars paid to Jonathan Gruber by the federal and state governments to help design and implement ObamaCare may have been a bad bargain for reasons other than MIT economics whiz's inability to stop insulting voters. His predictions, which government agencies used to make critical projections about the heath care plan, have not held up, according to an analysis. Although President Obama has downplayed Gruber's role in crafting the Affordable Care Act, White House logs show he visited 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. more than a dozen times and was paid $400,000 for his work on the project. That followed several years of work with the state of Massachusetts, where a universal health care system implemented under former Gov. Mitt Romney has been hailed as the model for ObamaCare. Fox News

Study Says A Bad Marriage Could Literally Break Your Heart
If you are in an unhappy marriage, you may want to check in with a cardiologist. A study led by a Michigan State University sociologist has found that older couples in bad marriages, especially wives, have a higher risk for heart disease than those who are happily wed. The study, funded by the National Institute of Aging, was recently published in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior and sought to examine whether marital quality is related to risk of heart disease. It also looked at whether gender or age influenced the relationship between marriage and heart health. Michigan State's Hui Liu and co-researcher Linda Waite, a sociology professor at the University of Chicago, analyzed five years of data from more than 1,000 married men and women who were participants in the National Social Life, Health and Aging Project. The participants ranged in age from 57 to 85. CNN


Women's Desire For Sex Is Complicated, Not Strictly Hormonal
What makes a woman want to have sex isn't totally hormonal, as it can be with men. Instead, women need a lot more to be turned on, according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. "Women's interest in sex is extremely complicated," said Dr. John Randolph, a study author. Randolph is a professor of obstetrics and gynecology with the University of Michigan Health System. While some drugs are in the pipeline, there is no drug treatment available in the United States for boosting the female sex drive, although up to one-third of adult women may experience "hypoactive sexual desire disorder," the medical term for a low interest in sex, according to a 2002 study. CNN

Sessions: Congress Has ‘Duty’ To Oppose Spending On Things They Don’t Believe In
In response to President Obama’s executive order on immigration, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) said that Congress has a “duty to oppose spending money on things they don’t believe in” at a Heritage Foundation event on Friday. CNSNews.com asked Sessions, “You’ve said the upcoming CR should prevent the president from spending any money on executive actions that will legalize illegal aliens. Would you vote for a CR that would allow the president to do that?” “I believe that we’ve got to work together and do this the right way, so I’m open to various ideas, but I do think Congress has a duty to defend its interest as the people’s Congress, and it has the power to do so,” Sessions said. CNS News
VOA VIEW: Congress must not give Obama an inch.

CATO Economist: Time To Get Rid Of ‘Slow, Disorganized, Profligate’ FEMA
"The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) large and growing budget consists mainly of counterproductive and inefficient aid programs that should be eliminated,” says Chris Edwards, a former senior economist on the congressional Joint Economic Committee. He advised Congress to shut down the federal agency in a Nov. 18 policy paper entitled Floods, Failures and Federalism. Even worse than FEMA's  “slow, disorganized and profligate” track record is the fact that it is undermining the time-tested role of state, local and private institutions in disaster relief, Edwards, who is now at the CATO Institute, told CNSNews.com. “One of the problems with FEMA is that things could get a lot worse,” Edwards pointed out. CNS News


Any New U.S. Internet Rules Must Withstand Lawsuits: FCC Chief
U.S. regulators expect Internet service providers to sue the government over any changes in the way they are regulated and must reevaluate any proposals to make sure they stand up in court, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler said at a meeting on Friday. Last week U.S. President Barack Obama said Internet service providers should be regulated more like public utilities to make sure they grant equal access to all content providers. This touched off intense protests from cable television and telecommunications companies and Republican lawmakers. "Let's make sure that we understand what is going on here. The big dogs are going to sue regardless of what comes out," Wheeler said. Reuters

John Kerry Leaves Iran Nuclear Talks As Monday Deadline Looms
Secretary of State John Kerry left talks over Iran's nuclear program in Vienna on Friday as the deadline for a deal loomed just four days away. After more than a decade of diplomacy, Iran and six world powers met briefly in the Austrian capital seeking what they hope will be a breakthrough. Kerry was due to head to Paris for discussions with "European counterparts." A senior Iranian official told NBC News on Friday that Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif was leaving the talks to return to Tehran for consultations. However, a senior negotiator later said that Zarif’s “plans have changed” and he would not leave. At a sensitive juncture of a previous round of the talks, Zarif traveled to Iran to brief Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. It was not clear when Kerry would return to Vienna. MSNBC

Ferguson Decision: Attorney General Eric Holder Appeals For Peace
While a Missouri grand jury secretly decides whether to charge Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for fatally shooting Michael Brown, the nation’s top law enforcement official today called on concerned Americans to appreciate “the gravity” of the matter and express themselves peacefully. "History has ... shown us that the most successful and enduring movements for change are those that adhere to non-aggression and nonviolence,” Attorney General Eric Holder said in a video released by the Justice Department.  The message comes just days after the FBI -- an agency overseen by Holder -- warned law enforcement agencies across the country that extremist, violent protesters could hijack otherwise peaceful demonstrations nationwide. And it comes one day after Brown’s own father issued his own call for calm. ABC
VOA VIEW: Looters and rioters should be met with unaploguctic force.

Fed May Limit Wall Street Role In Commodities, Citing Risks
The Federal Reserve may curtail Wall Street commodity businesses after lawmakers said banks’ role in energy, power and metals markets spurred unfair trading advantages and could threaten financial stability. At a Senate hearing today, Fed Governor Daniel Tarullo said curbs under consideration include ownership limits, restricting how much revenue can be derived from commodities and requiring Wall Street firms to boost capital. He said the new rules, to be proposed early next year, could restrict banks from investing in oil tankers, coal mines and other businesses involved in physical commodities. Bloomberg

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Bill Would Lift Ban On VA Doctors Advising Patients On Medical Marijuana
A new bill aims to make it easier for veterans to talk to their doctors about medical marijuana. The Veterans Equal Access Act, introduced Thursday by Reps. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore. and Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., would lift a ban Veterans Affairs doctors face that prevents them from giving opinions or recommendations on medical marijuana to veterans living in states where its use is permitted. "Post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury are just as damaging and harmful as any injuries that are visible from the outside," Blumenauer said in a statement, according to the Huffington Post. “Sometimes even more so because of the devastating effect they can have on a veteran's family. We should be allowing these wounded warriors access to the medicine that will help them survive and thrive, including medical marijuana, not treating them like criminals and forcing them into the shadows. It's shameful." Fox News

Obama’s Immigration Decision Has Precedents, But May Set A New One
President Barack Obama’s planned action to shield millions of immigrants in the U.S. illegally from deportation and grant them work permits opens a new front in the decadeslong debate over the scope of presidential authority. Although Obama is not breaking new ground by using executive powers to carve out a quasi-legal status for certain categories of unauthorized immigrants - Republican Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush all did so - his decision will affect as many as 5 million immigrants, far more than the actions of those presidents. Obama’s action is also a far more extensive reshaping of the nation’s immigration system. “The magnitude and the formality of it is arguably unprecedented,” said Peter J. Spiro, a Temple University law professor.  Las Vegas Sun

WHO Declares Democratic Republic Of The Congo Free Of Ebola
The World Health Organization declared an end to the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on Friday. The health agency's announcement comes after the Central African country saw no new Ebola cases for a requisite period of 42 days. The Ebola outbreak in DRC, the country's seventh since 1976, was unrelated to the ongoing Ebola outbreak in West Africa, WHO noted. A total of 66 Ebola cases were recorded in DRC, including eight health workers. Forty-nine of those infected died from the virus. UPI

Manufacturing Jobs Returning To U.S. As Southern Labor Standards Drag Down Wages
Although the American automotive industry continues to add jobs, those jobs are not necessarily high paying, as manufacturing wages across the U.S. are in decline.
According to a new study by the National Employment Law Center, manufacturing jobs widely perceived as high paying are now not even enough to give a foothold in the middle class. "Thanks to global market forces and aggressive courting and subsidies by the federal government and states, some manufacturing jobs are rebounding, but the quality of too many of the returning jobs is low and fails to live up to workers' and the overall public's expectations," the study says. UPI
VOA VIEW: Misleading information.


White House Launches Bullying Prevention Task Force
Building on their 2011 Bullying Prevention Summit, the White House Initiative on Asian American and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI) has partnered with the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Department of Education, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, to launch a new Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Bullying Prevention Task Force to address bullying in the schools. It will bring together federal experts in various fields and community members to study the data, understand the barriers, improve outreach, develop training and toolkits for schools, and make AAPI communities aware of federal resources and recourse. According to a 2013 study by Asian American Defense and Legal Education Fund (AALDEF) and The Sikh Coalition, 50 percent of Asian-American children in New York City report being bullied, up from 27 percent in 2009. 54 percent of the bullying occurred inside the classroom, and cyber-bullying occurred once or twice a month -- 40 percent more often than for other groups. MSNBC

John Boehner Files Long-Awaited Lawsuit Over Obamacare
House Speaker John A. Boehner filed a long-awaited lawsuit Friday that alleges President Obama took unlawful steps to delay part of his health care law and is paying out funds to insurers without congressional approval. The Republican-led lawsuit has arrived more than three months after the House authorized Mr. Boehner to sue, and after two law firms decided not to take part. It also piggybacks on fierce GOP criticism of Mr. Obama’s announcement late Wednesday that millions of illegal immigrants will not face deportation. “Time after time, the president has chosen to ignore the will of the American people and re-write federal law on his own without a vote of Congress,” Mr. Boehner, Ohio Republican, said. “That’s not the way our system of government was designed to work. If this president can get away with making his own laws, future presidents will have the ability to as well. The House has an obligation to stand up for the Constitution, and that is exactly why we are pursuing this course of action.” Washington Times

Obama Formally Signs Immigration Executive Action
Upon landing in Las Vegas Friday afternoon, President Obama officially signed two memoranda to carry out his executive actions granting legal status and work permits to nearly 5 million illegal immigrants. Mr. Obama signed the documents aboard Air Force One, the White House said. He’s giving a speech at a Las Vegas high school to rally support for his actions. The first memorandum is “will direct agencies to work in consultation with stakeholders to develop recommendations on how to better improve our visa system so that it more efficiently uses government resources, prevents fraud, and reduces burdens on employers and employees,” the White House said. It requires federal agencies to submit recommendations within 120 days. Washington Times

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Pentagon Reforms Aim To Curb Predatory Sales Targeting Troops
Moving to curb predatory sales practices targeting U.S. military personnel, the Pentagon said on Friday it was reforming its payment system for troops to prevent them from using direct salary deductions to buy consumer goods like cars and computers. Under the reforms that go into effect Jan. 1, 2015, military personnel will no longer be able to have the Pentagon directly deduct money from their salaries to make installment payments for personal property like cars, washers and dryers or big-screen televisions, a defense official said. The reforms would not affect purchases that have already been made and are ongoing, but troops would not be able to initiate new transactions for consumer-style goods, the official said. The system could still be used for mortgages, rent, savings, investments and transferring money to relatives. Reuters

President Obama 'Damaging Presidency' With Unilateral Action, Boehner Says
House Speaker John Boehner said that President Obama is damaging the institution of the presidency by taking unilateral action to reform the country's immigration laws, setting up another political showdown on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue as Republicans work on a strategy on how best to react to Thursday's announcement.
"All year long I've warned the president that by taking unilateral action on matters such as his health care law, or by threatening action repeatedly on immigration, he was making it impossible to build the trust necessary to work together," Boehner, R-Ohio, said. "As I warned the president, you can't ask the elected representatives of the people to trust you to enforce the law if you're constantly demonstrating that you can't be trusted to enforce the law." ABC

Why Obama’s Speech May Be Unofficial Launch Of Reid’s Re-election Campaign
When President Barack Obama stands on the stage at a Las Vegas high school today and rallies support for his immigration policies, Sen. Harry Reid will be right by the president's side. And he wants to make sure you know it. This past week, Nevada's senior senator has hosted press conferences, given speeches and blasted emails and tweets about his support for the president's action to delay deportations and prosecution for millions of immigrants in the country illegally. "It's not about Democrats versus Republicans, or Republicans versus the president," Reid said Thursday. "It's about real families who are torn apart." All signs point to Reid running for a sixth term in the U.S. Senate in 2016, and today could serve as the unofficial launch of his campaign. Las Vegas Sun

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PA Chief Warns Against Resorting To 'Religious War'
Amid rising tensions in Jerusalem, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas cautioned Friday against the dangers of the political conflict between Israel and the Palestinians morphing into a "religious war." Admonishing Jerusalem against "resorting" to religious warfare, where holy sites become flashpoints for violence, he said Israel should steer clear of "our holy places, mosques and churches," which only contribute to the explosive situation. Speaking at an event in Ramallah, the PA leader highlighted the Palestinian people's plight, pinning the blame for their suffering on the Israeli "occupation." He said Palestinians could not access 60 percent of land in the West Bank due to Israeli restrictions, and reiterated his plans to turn to the UN Security Council to set a timeframe for Isaeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines. Jerusalem Post

US Drone Strike Kills Six Suspected Militants In Northwest Pakistan
A US drone strike killed six suspected militants in northwestern Pakistan, security officials said on Friday, as al-Qaida said two members of the group had been killed in a strike. Two missiles struck a house in Mada Khel village of the North Waziristan tribal region near the Afghan border on Thursday night, said a security official based in the area. Six people were killed and three wounded, he said, citing intercepts of Taliban conversations. Local and foreign militants were among the casualties, he added. Two al-Qaida men were killed in a drone strike, said al-Qaida in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) spokesman Usama Mahmoud, but it was not immediately clear if they were killed in Thursday night's strike or a previous strike. Jerusalem Post

Nuclear Talks: Iran Says 'No New Ideas' On Table
Iran's foreign minister has said he heard "no new ideas" as talks on Tehran's nuclear programme stretched into the evening in Vienna. Mohammad Javad Zarif said he had received "no remarkable proposals to take to Tehran" after meeting US Secretary of State John Kerry for the third time in 24 hours. Mr Kerry had cancelled plans to leave for Paris to fit in the latest talks. The clock is ticking down to a Monday deadline for a deal. Six world powers representing the UN - the US, the UK, France, Germany, Russia and China - want Iran to curb its nuclear programme in return for the lifting of UN sanctions. BBC

Ukraine Crisis: Joe Biden Warns Russia Faces 'Isolation'
US Vice-President Joe Biden has warned Russia faces "rising costs and greater isolation" if it fails to respect the September peace deal in Ukraine. Mr Biden, on a visit to Ukraine where he met President Petro Poroshenko, called on Russia to withdraw its military forces from Ukraine. Ukrainians are marking a year since the start of the uprising which ousted pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych. Amid celebrations, they paid tribute to those killed over the winter in Kiev. Ukraine formed a coalition government on Friday with a mission to overhaul the economy, fight corruption and pursue integration with the EU. BBC

Most Adults Who Drink Too Much Are Not Alcoholics
Contrary to popular opinion, only 10% of US adults who drink too much are alcoholics, according to a federal study released this week, a finding that could have implications for reducing consumption of beer, wine and liquor. While many people think that most, if not all, heavy drinkers are alcoholics, medical specialists have long suspected that belief is incorrect, said Robert Brewer, an author of a study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that analyzed self-reported data from 138,100 US adults. The study found that 90% of heavy drinkers fell short of the criteria for alcoholism. Women who have eight or more drinks per week and men who have 15 or more are considered heavy drinkers. Guardian

Isil Hostage John Cantile: 'I Have Accepted My Fate'
British hostage John Cantlie has said he believes he will suffer the same fate as his former fellow prisoners of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, who were all beheaded. In the latest video in the series of propaganda clips, he reveals he knows that three of his former cell-mates - James Foley, Steven Sotloff and David Haines - have been killed. "Long ago, I accepted that my fate will overwhelmingly likely be the same as my cellmates, and I’m angry about it," he says. "Not towards the mujahideen – they’re doing what they said they would do if our countries did not negotiate, and that was before the American airstrikes against the Islamic State. Telegraph

Israel Arrests Four Palestinians Over 'Plot To Kill Minister'
Members of the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas plotted to assassinate Avigdor Lieberman, the Israeli foreign minister, in a move designed to shock Israel’s political leadership into abandoning last summer’s military assault on Gaza, the country’s intelligence service has said. The disclosure came from the Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security agency, which said it had arrested four men behind the conspiracy. The plotters planned to kill Mr Lieberman with a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) attack on his ministerial motorcade, Shin Bet said in a statement, adding that the men had confessed under interrogation. Telegraph

UN Conference Generates Renewed Global Momentum To Eradicate Malnutrition
In a move hailed as renewed global momentum to end hunger, leaders from over 170 countries attending a United Nations nutrition conference which concluded today, pledged to establish national policies aimed at eradicating malnutrition – in all its forms from, hunger to obesity – and transform food systems to make nutritious diets available to all. The Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) organized by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and held at its Headquarters in Rome, Italy brought together over 2200 participants, including 100 ministers and vice ministers, 150 representatives from civil society and nearly 100 from the business community. UN News

UN-Backed Reconstruction Efforts Set To Kick-Off In Gaza Next Week
The next phase in reconstruction efforts for war-ravaged Gaza is slated to begin as early as next week following an updated “understanding” between Israeli and Palestinian stakeholders, the United Nations special envoy in the region has announced. In a statement released today, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, hailed what called a “further understanding” to the trilateral agreement between Israel, the Palestinian Government of National Consensus, and the UN, permitting some 25,000 home owners in Gaza to access building materials for the repair of their homes damaged in the recent 51-day conflict there. UN News

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