Another hearing on a Pawlenty request for more bridge funds
State lawmakers say they intend to hold another hearing on a request by the Pawlenty Administration for spending authority for the new 35-W bridge. A special panel of eight lawmakers met yesterday and criticized the Minnesota Department of Transportation for signing a contract to build the bridge before the federal government has sent the money for the project. Several lawmakers also object to the size of the request and worry that they'll end up giving a disfunctional department too much money.7:20 a.m.
Minnesota Guard's overseas duty not over While Minnesota welcomed home some 2,600 National Guard members from Iraq during the summer, many more of them are still deployed overseas. We caught up with one of them in Iraq.8:40 a.m.
National Public Radio Stories
Air Force Plays Smaller Role in Iraq
The nature of the Iraq war does not lend itself to the use of heavy airpower, so airmen rarely find themselves flying airplanes. When airplanes are required, they're usually unmanned and controlled by pilots via satellite from the Nevada desert.
Rise in Violence Puts Kirkuk's Future in Doubt
Violence is growing in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, a hotbed of ethnic tensions among its Kurdish, Arab and Turkmen residents. It now appears that the long dispute over whether the city will become part of the autonomous Kurdistan is not likely to be resolved this year. A referendum on it was due before 2008.
Eject Pro Sports from the Olympics
As much of the world gears up for the Beijing Olympics, commentator Frank Deford says it's time for big-time professional sports to get out of the games. Instead, he says, major league sports should showcase talent in their own arenas.
Pakistan, Islamists in Deadly Clashes
Pakistan's army has moved into the tribal region of North Waziristan, where it has been fighting Islamist militants. The fighting is the deadliest violence for several years in an area which the United States says is a haven for al Qaeda and the Taliban. Pakistan claims it has killed 200 militants; 45 troops are also dead.
Broadway Labor Negotiations at Impasse
Broadway is on the verge of going dark, as labor negotiations between the League of American Theaters and Producers and the International Association of Theatrical Stage Employees — the union that represents the stagehands — have come to an impasse.
U.S. Auto Industry Battles Rivals, Image
Detroit automakers are trying to negotiate labor contracts to become more competitive with their overseas rivals. They are also fighting the perception that their products are not as good as foreign-made vehicles.
California Seeks School Sites Far from Freeway
Lawmakers and scientists agree that building schools close to freeways is a bad idea. The concern is air pollution and the impact it can have on young lungs. But in Los Angeles, where more than 100 new public schools are being built, it's hard to find a site that's not near a freeway.
Clinton Boosts Campaign Time in Iowa
Sen. Hillary Clinton has been the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination, but only recently has she taken the lead in Iowa. That state holds the first vote in January. But a new poll by the Des Moines Register put her in the top spot for Democratic contenders for the first time.
Indian Trust Funds Suit Returns to Court
The Indian Trust Funds lawsuit is back in court. Plaintiffs say the federal government has mishandled a trust that is supposed to manage natural-resources leases and other Indian assets. The government says it is offering a fair accounting, even though it doesn't have all of the documents.
Fed Minutes Spark Record Stock Moves
Stocks across Asia rallied after Wall Street set new records. Markets in China, South Korea, Australia and elsewhere climbed to all-time highs. The U.S. spike was prompted by the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve's Sept. 18 meeting, when it cut interest rates by half a percentage point.