Health commissioner faces hard questions at hearing Minnesota Health Commissioner Dianne Mandernach faced her critics Tuesday at a joint House-Senate hearing in St. Paul. Several lawmakers have called on Mandernach to resign, after she waited a year to reveal data about cancer deaths among miners in northeastern Minnesota.7:24 a.m.
Star Tribune publisher: No harm intended in transferring files In testimony on Tuesday, Par Ridder acknowledged taking 18 to 20 spreadsheets containing
sensitive data on advertising, finances and personnel when he was
hired in March. But he said he intended to use them only to
re-create the forms with Star Tribune data.7:56 a.m.
National Public Radio Stories
Lugar Hopes Shift Persuades Bush on Iraq
Republican Sen. Richard Lugar, who has broken ranks with the Bush administration over Iraq, says he had hoped the president would have "come to other conclusions" about the war before now.
Natural Death Considered a Blessing in Iraq
In Iraq people die every day from acts of violence: a roadside bomb, a suicide attack, a sectarian assassination. Though it's hard to lose a loved one no matter what, in this kind of world it's considered a divine gift when someone dies a natural death.
Recall of Chinese-Made Tires Faces Complications
The U.S. government has recalled Chinese-made tires for light trucks and vans sold under the brand names Westlake, Telluride, Compass and YKS. But the Chinese manufacturer denies that the tires are defective, and it's unclear who is liable.
Chinese Firms Accused of Dashing Safety Rules
Defective tires are the latest product manufactured in China to have trouble with regulators. John Frisbie, president of the U.S.-China Business Council, says Chinese companies are not adhering to international safety standards. Frisbie talks about whether recent bad news has changed American business interests in China with Steve Inkseep.
Biosphere 2 Reopens for Climate Study
Biosphere 2, a facility dedicated to the research and understanding of global scientific issues, is reopening. A bunch of scientists won't live in it this time. Instead the new owners of the Biosphere are leasing the 3.5-acre glass building to the University of Arizona, which plans to use the space to study climate and water.
Senate Gives New Life to Immigration Bill
The Senate resumes debate on the immigration bill after passing a vote to bring the bill back to the floor. The measure provides a path to citizenship for millions of undocumented worker, and tighter border security. But the legislative road ahead for the controversial measure is seen as anything but smooth.
Interior Official Sentenced in Abramoff Scandal
A federal judge hands down a 10-month prison term to the highest-ranking Bush administration official implicated so far in the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal. Steven Griles was second-in-command at the Interior Department during President Bush's first term. He was sentenced for lying about favors he did for Abramoff.
Candidates Forego Assembly of Rural Voters
A recent survey of rural voters, usually considered reliably Republican, indicates they are now up for grabs. But despite being credited with giving President Bush his margins of victory they're not getting much attention from presidential candidates.
Blackstone Shares Slip Below Offer Price
Private-equity firm Blackstone Group went public on Friday. It was one of Wall Street's most anticipated offerings in years. But when trading finished Tuesday, the share price had slipped lower than its initial price of $31. That has some people wondering about the buyout boom, partly because of a bill in Congress that could more than double the taxes that firms like Blackstone pay.
SEC Probes Collateralized Loans
The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating one of Wall Street's latest investment trends. They're complex debt instruments called collateralized loan obligations, or CLOs. They are used to channel capital to businesses and other borrowers. Some analysts are worried that the spread of CLOs could put the economy at risk.