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White House Orders Flags Flown At Half-Staff

The order will be in place until December 18th.

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Susan Rice Will Not Be The Next Secretary Of State

NBC News is reporting that UN Ambassador Susan Rice has pulled out of the running to replace Hillary Clinton when she retires from her job as Secretary of State next year.

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WH Holding Out Hope

There are reports today that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid does not believe that a deal to prevent the fiscal cliff will be reached before Christmas. But that’s not what the White House is saying.

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Same Story, Different Day

The most recent conversation held this week between President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) was reportedly tense because Boehner asked Obama for a permanent extension of the Bush tax cuts for wealthy Americans.

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Troops On Heightened Alert Following North Korean Missile Launch

The soliders are working 24 shifts — 24 hours on, 24 hours off — as a precautionary measure in the wake of the launch, which some experts say is a step in North Korea’s pursuit of a nuclear missile.

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Obama’s Call With Mayors And Community Leaders Is Off The Record

President Obama will be hosting a conference call today with a bipartisan group of mayors and community leaders to discuss the looming fiscal cliff.

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WH Shoots Back At Boehner, Says Obama’s Budget Includes Detailed Cuts

“From pages 17-to-45, details on proposed spending cuts by the president,” Carney said.

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Obama Attacks Michigan’s Right To Work Law

“These so-called right-to-work laws, they don’t have to do with economics, they have everything to do with politics,” said the president during a visit to a Daimler diesel truck manufacturing facility located in Detroit.

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Washington Democrats Blast Michigan Right-To-Work Initiative

When asked about the legislation today, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said that President Obama’s “opposition to so-called right to work laws is well known.”

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Details Of Obama’s Meeting With Boehner Slow To Emerge

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was tight-lipped on how the meeting went, refusing to say whether the White House feels more confident that the two leaders will be able to strike a deal on preventing the looming fiscal cliff.

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TRNS News Notes- 3/27

Reid Retiring
Senate vote-a-rama: GOP budget passes
Vote-a-rama: Long eared bats / edible marijuana
Plane crash: Police find “significant clue”
Yemen turmoil: Regional conflict
Yemen now: Why it matters

Friday, March 27

● Arnie’s Army moves to Florida

● Label rule makes generic drug makers squirm

● Student loan collection should copy IRS tactic

● Rating state laws for charter schools

● CDC rolls out new anti-smoking campaign

● Taking aim against predatory lenders

Senate Republicans Claim Saudi Arabia Has Lost Faith In U.S.

Adel Al-Jubeir, the Saudi Ambassador to the United States, denied the Senators claims, saying that the Saudi government is “working very closely with the U.S., consulting very closely with the U.S.

Obama Boosts Consumer Protection Bureau, Goes After Payday Loan Lenders

The new rules will require payday lenders to ensure consumers can afford to repay the loans in a timely fashion, keeping consumer from “getting stuck into cycles of debt.”

Building Explodes, Collapses In NYC’s East Village

Photo credit: Scott Westerfeld

According to reports, witnesses said an explosion was heard prior to the building being engulfed in flames, with the New York Fire Department declaring the situation a level seven-alarm fire.

Coalition Airstrikes Begin In Tikrit… Conditionally

That is, the coalition will not strike unless Iranian-backed militias leave the premises.