02-23-2024  1:52 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Amid Fentanyl Crisis, Oregon Lawmakers Propose More Funding for Opioid Addiction Medication in Jails

Democrats are looking to counterbalance restoring criminal penalties for possession with expanding access to treatment for a potentially growing number of people in the criminal justice system. The proposal would create a million grant fund for jails looking to provide opioid addiction medication. Federal data shows only 24% of jails provide such medication to people with prior prescriptions.

KGW Apologizes After Airing Racist Image

Television station KGW says it deeply regrets inadvertently showing a racist image during a segment called “The Good Stuff,” which invited viewers to share “cheesy, silly, or memorable” photos from the past. The 1950s image showed children throwing balls towards a sign prominently displaying a racial slur. KGW apologised for “the profound hurt this image inflicted upon our viewers and staff, particularly members of our Black community.” Leaders of the Portland NAACP chapter said they were appalled

Rep. Blumenauer Talks Retirement from Congress and His Plans to Help Put Portland Back Together

U.S. Representative for Oregon has held his seat for nearly 30 years.

NEWS BRIEFS

Black Community Input Helps Fuel George Park Project

The effort is an innovative partnership between the City, Portland Parks Foundation, and The Kidz Outside ...

Renewal of School Local Option Levy Will be on May Ballot

If approved by voters, the levy renewal would maintain the current tax rate and continue to fund approximately 660 teachers and other...

Wyden, Merkley Announce $70,000 for the Oregon Food Bank

“Nothing is more important than making sure folks in need have food to eat, and the resources to thrive,” Wyden...

Historic Church in Seattle Hosts Free Black History Month Film Series for All

New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, located in Seattle’s historic Central District, will host “Freedom Fridays: A Black History...

Remains found over 50 years ago identified through DNA technology as Oregon teen

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The remains of a teenager found more than 50 years ago have been identified through advanced DNA technology as a young woman who went missing from Portland, Oregon State Police said. The remains are that of Sandra Young, a high school student who disappeared...

Amid fentanyl crisis, Oregon lawmakers propose more funding for opioid addiction medication in jails

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Kendra Sawyer spoke with her dad from the Deschutes County jail and told him she loved him. Six hours later, in the throes of opioid withdrawal, the 22-year-old took her own life. A year later, Sawyer’s father, Kent, is left wondering whether his daughter,...

Mark leads Arkansas against Missouri after 26-point game

Missouri Tigers (8-18, 0-13 SEC) at Arkansas Razorbacks (13-13, 4-9 SEC) Fayetteville, Arkansas; Saturday, 12 p.m. EST BOTTOM LINE: Arkansas hosts the Missouri Tigers after Tramon Mark scored 26 points in Arkansas' 78-71 win over the Texas A&M Aggies. ...

Deen scores career-high 35, makes program-record 9 3-pointers as Bradley downs Missouri State 86-62

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — Duke Deen scored a career-high 35 points and made a program-record nine 3-pointers as Bradley beat Missouri State 86-62 on Wednesday night. Deen shot 13 for 17, including 9 for 12 from beyond the arc for the Braves (19-9, 11-6 Missouri Valley Conference)....

OPINION

Message from Commissioner Jesse Beason: February is 'Black History and Futures Month'

I am honored to join the Office of Sustainability and to co-sponsor a proclamation to mark “Black History and Futures Month” ...

Ending Unfair Contracts Harming Minority Businesses Will Aid Gov. Kotek’s Affordable Housing Goals

Senate Bill 1575 will protect small businesses from state and local government’s unfair contract practices while also allowing the building industry to help the governor meet her affordable housing project goals. ...

February is American Heart Month

This month is a time to recognize that heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, especially in the African American community ...

Thrilling History of Black Excellence in Our National Parks

In every facet of American life -from exploration; conquest; defense; economy; resistance; conservation and the pursuit of human rights – I can show you a unit of the National Park System where the event took place, where African Americans made the...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

A love affair unraveled before a Black transgender woman was fatally shot in rural South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A Black transgender woman and the guy she was secretly dating had just been pulled over in rural South Carolina. Dime Doe, the driver, was worried. She already had points against her license and didn't want another ticket to stop her from getting behind the wheel. Daqua...

Native American tribes gain new authority to stop unwanted hydopower projects

Federal regulators have granted Native American tribes more power to block hydropower projects on their land after a flurry of applications were filed to expand renewable energy in the water-scarce U.S. Southwest. Previously, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission granted developers...

HIV/AIDS activist Hydeia Broadbent, known for her inspirational talks as a young child, dies at 39

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Hydeia Broadbent, the HIV/AIDS activist who came to national prominence in the 1990s as a young child for her inspirational talks to reduce the stigma surrounding the virus she was born with, has died. She was 39. Broadbent's father announced on Facebook that she...

ENTERTAINMENT

Dreaming of summer peaches? Some gardening tips for growing a peach tree in many climates

I planted my first peach tree last June, five months before Pantone named Peach Fuzz the 2024 color of the year. How serendipitous! Today peachy tones are showing up everywhere, from TV backdrops to home furnishings, clothing and brand logos. But for me, it’s not about the trend but...

FuboTV files lawsuit over ESPN, Fox, Hulu, Warner Bros. Discovery sports-streaming venture

Streaming service FuboTV has filed an antitrust lawsuit against ESPN, Fox, Warner Bros. Discovery and Hulu, which are planning to launch a sports-streaming venture in the fall. The lawsuit has been filed in the Southern District of New York. FuboTV, which focuses primarily on live...

Far from gloomy, darker paints create a cozy, more welcoming room

Dark hues have a bad rap as gloomy and depressing. More likely, they're bringing home the good vibes, all year long. One weekend when I had the house to myself, I painted our family room Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal, a deep, earthy gray. I waited till I had two...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

A love affair unraveled before a Black transgender woman was fatally shot in rural South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A Black transgender woman and the guy she was secretly dating had just been pulled over in...

Belarus cracks down on clergy who supported protests of its authoritarian leader

TALLINN, Estonia (AP) — The Rev. Viachaslau Barok was a familiar face in Rasony, a town in northern Belarus near...

AP PHOTOS: Ukraine endures a second year of war with scenes of grief, suffering and also joy

The second year of Ukraine’s fight against Russia’s full-scale invasion brought no respite for Ukrainian...

Albanian Parliament approves controversial deal to hold migrants for Italy

TIRANA, Albania (AP) — Albania’s Parliament voted Thursday to approve a deal for the country to hold thousands...

Sweden and Hungary move to smooth over tensions ahead of vote on Sweden's NATO accession

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Nearly two years after Sweden formally applied to join NATO, its membership now hinges...

UK and EU agree to cooperate on tackling illegal immigration as post-Brexit relations thaw further

LONDON (AP) — Britain and its former partners in the European Union have struck a deal to cooperate more on...

David Espo AP Special Correspondent

President Barack Obama has lunch with Toledo Mayor Michael Bell at Rudy's Hot Dog in Toledo, Ohio, June 3. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

 WASHINGTON (AP) -- The threat of a first-ever default by the federal government is pushing President Barack Obama and Republicans toward a sweeping agreement to cut government spending and increase the Treasury's borrowing authority. Yet a perennial partisan struggle over Medicare drives them apart.

Remarkably, the two sides seem determined to pursue both accord and discord simultaneously, sparing the still-wobbling economy from threatened calamity while preserving Medicare as a political issue in the 2012 elections.

"I'm willing. I'm ready. It is time to have the conversation" about deficit cuts and the debt limit, said House Speaker John Boehner, urging Obama to become personally involved. "It is time to play large ball, not small ball."

But a few days later, House Democratic leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California said, "I could never support any arrangement that reduced benefits for Medicare. Absolutely not," she told CBS' "Face The Nation," emphasizing a position she and other Democrats had laid out at their own meeting with Obama.

Given the sheer size of Medicare, nearly $500 billion a year, any deal on reducing future deficits is likely to include savings from the program, if not the benefit cuts many Democrats oppose.

But if any Republican thought that the White House and congressional Democrats might agree to even a temporary cease-fire on Medicare, they may want to reconsider.

Boehner, R-Ohio, and fellow House Republicans had scarcely left a White House meeting with Obama on Wednesday when presidential press secretary Jay Carney told reporters that Obama "doesn't believe that we need to end Medicare as we know it, to dismantle the program as it currently exists, in order to achieve significant deficit reduction."

Within seconds, he said the Republican plan for Medicare "puts too much of the burden of deficit reduction on the shoulders of seniors, of low- income children and the disabled. And the president just feels that that's unacceptable."

A few moments later, Carney hit a trifecta of sorts, calling the Republican plan "premium support or privatization or voucherization."

None of these can be considered terms of endearment, politically, particularly not by Republicans. They say their Medicare plan, developed by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is designed to save the program from bankruptcy and preserve it for future generations.

In the meeting the president hosted for rank-and-file Republicans, Ryan and Obama clashed.

The congressman told Obama it was not leadership to demagogue a good-faith attempt to save Medicare, when it is clear the program is headed for bankruptcy, according to several participants in the session.

Obama replied it wasn't leadership to shift billions in costs from the federal government to states and individuals who can't afford it.

Ryan responded that wasn't what his plan did, explained it in some detail and drew an ovation from fellow Republicans.

The plan retains Medicare in its present form for current beneficiaries and those age 55 and older.

For anyone younger, Medicare would consist of a government-mandated package of benefits, purchased on the open market from private insurers. Federal funds would help defray the costs for beneficiaries.

Polls and recent events such as the unexpected loss of a House seat in upstate New York and criticism from GOP president contender Newt Gingrich make clear that the Republican plan is not favorable political terrain for the party.

They are on far safer turf, they concede, when they stress that job creation is their top goal and spending cuts the surest way to achieve it.

Even some House Democrats who once talked of wanting to allow more government borrowing without taking steps to rein in future spending voted against legislation last week to do precisely that.

Republicans presented the bill as something Obama had asked for, but the House Democrats' second-in-command, Rep, Steny Hoyer of Maryland, called it a "demagogic vote" designed to render his rank and file vulnerable to campaign attack ads.

His comments underscore how much the Republicans have succeeded in casting the political debate since they were sworn into office in January and took control of the House.

If anything, the announcement from Moody's Investors Services that it might downgrade the U.S. debt, followed by a report showing an increase in unemployment, helped Republicans who are eager to put the Medicare debate aside.

"If we don't get our fiscal house in order, the markets will do it for us," Boehner said Friday.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner put it slightly differently after meeting with first-term House members, most of them Republicans who are determined to cut spending.

"I'm confident two things are going to happen this summer," he said. "One is we're going to avoid a default crisis, and we're going to reach agreement on our long-term fiscal plan."

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EDITOR'S NOTE - David Espo covers Congress for The Associated Press.

The Skanner Foundation's 38th Annual MLK Breakfast