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(NEW YORK) -- NBA Playoffs - Western Conference Finals: San Antonio Spurs 105 - Memphis Grizzlies 83 (Spurs Lead Series, 1-0)
NHL Playoffs - Eastern Conference Semi-Finals: Boston Bruins 5 - New York Rangers 2 (Bruins Lead Series, 2-0)
Ottawa Senators 2 - Pittsburgh Penguins 1 - 2 OT's (Penguins Lead Series, 2-1)
MLB: Philadelphia Phillies 3 (21-23) - Cincinnati Reds 2 (26-18)
New York Mets 4 (17-24) - Chicago Cubs 3 (18-25)
Tampa Bay Rays 3 (23-20) - Baltimore Orioles 1 (23-20)
Cleveland Indians 6 (25-17) - Seattle Mariners 0 (20-24)
Los Angeles Angels 6 (17-27) - Chicago White Sox 2 (19-23)
Miami Marlins 2 (12-32) - Arizona Diamondbacks 1 (25-19)
Atlanta Braves 5 (25-18) - Los Angeles Dodgers 2 (17-25)
San Diego Padres 13 (20-23) - Washington Nationals 4 (23-21)
Oakland Athletics 4 (23-22) - Kansas City Royals 3 (20-20)
Colorado Rockies 5 (24-20) - San Francisco Giants 0 (24-20)
St. Louis Cardinals 4 (28-15) - Milwaukee Brewers 2 (17-25)
Pittsburgh Pirates 1 (26-18) - Houston Astros 0 (12-32)
Boston Red Sox 5 (27-17) - Minnesota Twins 1 (18-22)
Texas Rangers 11 (29-15) - Detroit Tigers 8 (23-19)
New York Yankees - Toronto Blue Jays - PPD
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 22:30:00 PM
(SAN ANTONIO) -- Tony Parker scored 20 points and dished out nine assists in the San Antonio Spurs 105-83 win over the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 1 Western Conference finals victory on Sunday.
Kawhi Leonard had 18 points and shot 4-for-5 from 3-point land.
The Spurs, who only trailed for 21 seconds in the game, stormed out to a 17-point first quarter lead. The Grizzlies were able to cut the lead to six in the second quarter, but that was as close as they got.
Still, as convincing a victory as this was, the Spurs know not to count their chickens until they hatch.
"Memphis is a very tough team...very tough mentally," Parker said. "I can promise you nobody is happy in our locker room because we were up 2-0 last year (Western Conference finals versus Thunder) and we lost. This is just one game...It means nothing, and we still have a long way to go."
Mike Conley Jr. had 14 points and eight assists in the loss.
Game 2 takes place Tuesday in San Antonio. Tip-off scheduled for 9:00 P.M. Eastern.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 18:30:00 PM
(SAN FRANCISCO) -- On Sunday, Yahoo’s board of directors approved the purchase of the social networking and blog site Tumblr for $1.1 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Speculation that Yahoo would purchase Tumblr has been building for a while now, after Adweek reported that unnamed sources were expecting a deal. On Friday, Yahoo announced a press event on Monday in New York, Tumblr’s home town.
Under CEO Marissa Mayer’s leadership, Yahoo has purchased several startups as part of the company's efforts to reach a younger, more mobile audience. Tumblr, which is very popular with teens and young adults, is the largest and highest-profile purchase so far.
Tumblr’s founder and Chief Executive David Karp has said in the past that he does not care if Tumblr makes money, and last year the site generated $13 million in revenue – far short of the $1.1 billion Yahoo is reported to be paying for it.
Tumblr does have an expansive and growing user base, with 117 million unique users world-wide as of March of this year.
There has been no official word that Tumblr’s board has also approved the deal, The Wall Street Journal notes.
Yahoo stock dipped 0.23 percent, to $26.52, in trading Friday when the press event was announced.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 16:28:57 PM
(OXFORD, England) -- Bad at math? A new study by researchers at Oxford University suggests that applying high-frequency electrical noise to the brain can make you better at math for up to six months following treatment.
According to BBC News, 51 Oxford students participated in the small study appearing in Current Biology. Over a five-day period the students had to complete two arithmetic problems each day. Half were given transcranial random noise stimulation, or TRNS.
Six months later, the group that had received the TRNS preformed much better when asked to solve math problems than the control group.
Dr Roi Cohen Kadosh, study author from the department of experimental psychology at the University of Oxford, explained that the results “suggested that TRNS increases the efficiency with which stimulated brain areas use their supplies of oxygen and nutrients."
Dr Michael Proulx, senior lecturer in psychology at Bath University, told BBC News that using TRNS this was could have "real, applied impact," and could help those with learning disabilities or who are suffering from a stroke or other neurodegenerative illness.
Experts stress, however, that more testing is required before the practice becomes widespread, so don’t expect to hear math teachers telling students to put away their TRNS machines before tests anytime soon.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 15:47:58 PM
(NEW YORK) -- After declaring that he was walking away from being the head coach of the United States Olympic men's basketball team, Coach K is in discussions to return to the team, according to SI.com.
After the 2012 Olympics in London, Krzyzewski said that he had no plans on returning to the team, and was ready to walk away from international competition. But lately, he's been in deep talks with USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo.
"I think it's very close to being resolved," Colangelo said in the SI.com report. "That's all I can say for sure. Give it another week and it should be resolved."
Since the Americans don't play again till 2014, Colangelo was never in a rush to name Krzyzewski's replacement. SI.com is reporting that Colangelo had yet to even approach any candidates yet.
Krzyzewski was hired back in 2005 after a disappointing finishes in the 2004 Olympics and the 2002 world basketball championship.
Under Krzyzewski, the United States has won two straight gold medals in men's basketball.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 15:37:57 PM
(ATLANTA) -- President Obama said Sunday that he is motivated by the knowledge that “but for the grace of God … I might have been in prison,” in a commencement address at historically black Morehouse College, where he spoke frankly about race and young men’s responsibilities to 500 male graduates.
In his second commencement address of this graduation season, the president called on the graduates to set examples for others and reach out to those who need help, telling them that as a black man he felt a unique connection to assist those in need because he could have faced similar circumstances.
“There but for the grace of God go I, I might have been in their shoes. I might have been in prison,” he said at the commencement ceremony at Morehouse College. “I might have been unemployed, I might not have been able to support a family, and that motivates me.”
The president said that many young black men “make bad choices,” but told the graduates, “We’ve got no time for excuses,” because the difficulties they’ve faced “pale in comparison to the hardships previous generations endured, and if they overcame them, you can too.”
“Growing up, I made quite a few myself. Sometimes I wrote off my own failings as just another example of the world trying to keep a black man down. I had a tendency sometimes to make excuses for me not doing the right thing. But one of the things that all of you have learned over the last four years is that there is no longer any room for excuses,” he said.
The president spoke in extremely personal terms about growing up without a father present in his life, attributing his upbringing to his “heroic single mother,” and said that his legacy will be defined by his success as an active father and husband, a role he encouraged the graduates to adopt in their own lives.
“My whole life, I’ve tried to be for Michelle and my girls what my father was not for my mother and me,” he said. “I want to break that cycle where a father’s not at home, where a father’s not helping to raise that son or daughter. I’ve tried to be a better father, a better husband, a better man.
“I know that when I am on my deathbed someday, I will not be thinking about any particular legislation I passed; I will not be thinking about a policy I promoted; I will not be thinking about the speech I gave; I will not be thinking about the Nobel Prize I received,” he said. “I will be thinking about that walk I took with my daughters. I’ll be thinking about a lazy afternoon with my wife. I’ll be thinking about sitting around the dinner table and seeing them happy and healthy and knowing that they were loved. And I’ll be thinking about whether I did right by all of them.”
The president, who received an honorary degree from the school, honored one of the college’s famous graduates, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who “helped to forge the intellect, the discipline, the compassion, the soul force that would transform America.”
“He, in turn, taught others to be unafraid. And over time he taught a nation to be unafraid and over the last 50 years, thanks to the moral force of Dr. King and a Moses generation that overcame their fear, and their cynicism, and their despair, barriers have come tumbling down and new doors of opportunity have swung open,” he said. “Laws, hearts, and minds have been changed to the point where someone who looks just like you can somehow come to serve as president of these United States of America.”
Rain poured down on the crowd throughout the ceremony, forcing many in attendance to don plastic ponchos, and thunder rang out and lightning flickered in the sky as Obama wound down his speech. The president stayed dry on stage but sympathized with the rain-soaked graduates and attendees, even noting that his wife, Michelle Obama, would not be pleased with the rainy day because of what it would do to her famous hair.
“You all are going to get wet, and I’d be out there with you if I could, but Secret Service gets nervous. So I’m going to have to stay here dry, but know that I’m there with you in spirit,” he said. “Michelle would not be sitting in the rain. She has taught me about hair.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 15:26:58 PM
(TEHRAN, Iran) – Iran executed two men they had convicted of spying for the Unites States and Israel, according to Iran State Radio.
The radio report said one of the men hanged was Mohammad Heidari, convicted of providing the Israeli intelligence service Mossad with classified information. The second man was Kourosh Ahmadi, who was alleged to have given the CIA intelligence on Iran.
Iran has long accused Israel and the United States of spying on its nuclear program.
It’s not known when the two men were arrested and tried, but they were hanged at dawn Sunday, according to BBC News.
The execution comes only a few months after the Iran Supreme Court overturned Amir Mirzai Hekmati’s death sentence. Hekmati, an Iranian-American national, is accused of spying for the CIA and was arrested in August of 2011 while visiting family in Iran.
Hekmati and the United States government deny Iran’s spying allegations, and numerous groups are working to secure his release.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 14:55:29 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Spock beat Stark this weekend at the box office, as Star Trek: Into Darkness took the top spot from Iron Man 3.
The second installment of director J.J. Abrams re-booted Star Trek franchise opened on 3,868 IMAX and traditional movie screens across the country in both and 3D and 2D.
Since its opening on Thursday to Sunday the flick has brought in over $90 million, the highest of any movie in the franchise. Adams’ 2009 Star Trek had a weekend debut of $79.2 million.
In third place, The Great Gatsby continues to outperform expectations, offering moviegoers an alternative to the sci-fi and superheroics of the top two films.
Here are the top 10 movies from Friday through Sunday, with estimated ticket sales, according to Hollywood.com:
01 Star Trek: Into Darkness $70.555M
02 Iron Man 3 $35.182M
03 The Great Gatsby $23.415M
04 Pain & Gain $3.1M
05 The Croods $2.75M
06 42 $2.73M
07 Oblivion $2.22M
08 Mud $2.16M
09 Tyler Perry Presents: Peeples $2.15M
10 The Big Wedding $1.1M
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 14:13:33 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- Kerry Washington may have taken television by storm, playing crisis manager Olivia Pope on ABC's Scandal, but she joked Sunday that she is still haunted by being cast as a frog in a college musical.
"It was not my lifetime dream role to play a frog. In fact, the thought of it terrified me," Washington said in a commencement speech Sunday at her alma mater, George Washington University.
It was Washington's junior year when she was cast as a frog in the musical Croak, or The Last Frog, depicting the journey of Cassandra, the last frog on earth.
As a presidential scholar for the arts, Washington said, she was required to audition for every production at the school in order to keep her scholarship. After being cast in the show, Washington said she took the challenge head-on and spent hours watching frogs, reading about frogs and holding frogs.
"I crossed the threshold into unknown territory," she said with a laugh, adding that of all the roles she has played as an actress, it was still her father's favorite.
The "Scandal" star graduated from George Washington University in 1998 with a Bachelor of Arts and was named an Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts at Sunday’s commencement ceremony.
Washington, whose character on Scandal, Olivia Pope, is having a steamy affair with the president, joked that graduates were probably thinking they were celebrating their achievements "with that lady who is having an affair with the president on that television show."
"In real life, I'm just an actor. I play pretend. I tell stories," Washington said. "So bear with me because that is what I am going to do."
During her four years at George Washington University, Washington designed her own interdisciplinary major, taking acting classes, but also focusing on anthropology, sociology, and psychology.
She recalled "a lot of sleepless nights" and "more than a few drinks" at a bar near campus during her college years.
Since her graduation, Washington has catapulted onto Hollywood's A-list and has scooped up awards for her performances on Scandal and in the movies Ray and Django Unchained.
In 2009, she was named to the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities, and last year delivered a speech at the Democratic National Convention.
Washington, who has carved out a unique path in Hollywood, urged graduates to do the same, wherever their dreams lead them.
"Your life is your story and the adventure ahead of you is the journey to fulfill your own purpose and potential," she said.
And for those students with stories that would translate onto the big screen, Washington joked she would be calling to option the rights, because "I am so Hollywood now."
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 13:19:15 PM
(FRESNO, Calif.) -- Accidentally butt dialing someone is embarrassing or inconsequential to most, but for two Fresno, Calif., men, their cell phone mishap landed them in jail.
The call, which went to 911, started like any other call to the police dispatcher, with the operator asking, “What is your emergency?”
But when no one answered, the operator didn’t hang up, instead staying on the line and listening to the pair, who police identified as Nathan Teklemariam and Carson Rinehart, both 20, as they talked about wanting to do drugs. It wasn’t long before the conversation turned to breaking into a car.
“Get the bolt and give me the hammer just in case,” one of the two voices on the phone said.
Shortly after that statement, the dispatcher heard a window shatter and the people on the phone started yelling that they found prescription drugs.
As the two were driving away, police were already in the area searching for the men based on clues that the 911 dispatcher was feeding to them.
The police finally tracked the suspects down and pulled them over. The suspects acted confused and questioned what why they were being pulled over, police said.
“Oh, he’s following me, dog,” one of the suspects said in the recording. “Wow, what the [expletive] did I do?”
As they were being questioned, the suspects allegedly denied any wrongdoing, but after searching the car, police said they found items that allegedly were taken from the burglarized vehicle.
After being cuffed, the suspects were finally told how they were caught.
“This fool really called 911?” one of the suspects said. “Damn.”
“I have never heard of something like this,” Sgt. Jaime Rios of the Fresno Police Department told ABCNews.com. “There have been times where the dispatcher hears something like this, but never has a call come in before a crime being committed and staying on all the way to the end.”
Rios said the suspects are being charged with burglary, conspiracy and possession of stolen property.
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 12:23:31 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Sunday morning on ABC’s This Week, White House Senior Adviser Dan Pfeiffer told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that the legality surrounding the targeting of conservative groups by the Internal Revenue service is “irrelevant,” but called the behavior “inexcusable.”
“I can’t speak to the law here. The law is irrelevant. The activity was outrageous and inexcusable, and it was stopped and it needs to be fixed so we ensure it never happens again,” Pfeiffer said.
Stephanopoulos asked Pfeiffer if he really thought the law is “irrelevant.”
“What I mean is, whether it’s legal or illegal is not important to the fact that the conduct doesn’t matter. The Department of Justice has said they’re looking into the legality of this. The president is not going to wait for that. We have to make sure it doesn’t happen again, regardless of how that turns out,” Pfeiffer said.
Pfeiffer also insisted President Obama didn't find out that the IRS was targeting tea party groups until last week, when the scandal went public.
“The deputy secretary of the Treasury was made aware just of the fact that the investigation was beginning last year but no-one in the White House was aware,” Pfeiffer said, stressing that Obama was not involved in the scandal.
“Don't take my word for it,” he said, “take the word of the independent Inspector General who said that he found no evidence that there was any influence from anyone outside of the IRS.”
Several Republicans are not convinced.
“The IG report was an audit, it was not an investigation,” noted Republican congressman Tom Price of Georgia, also appearing on This Week.
“This is just the beginning of this process and we need to get to the bottom of it, we need to find out who made those decisions, hold them to account and see how high up the chain it went,” Price said.
Senator Rob Portman is among the Republicans calling for a Special Counsel in the IRS scandal. The Ohio lawmaker wrote a letter to President Obama wanting to know what if any private pressure was exerted by the White House on the IRS regarding standard for approving and monitoring tax exempt organizations. Portman also appeared on This Week.
“It seems to me that there's a lot of issues here we need to get to the bottom of, we need to find out what really happened and make sure we can begin to regain some trust in our government, that's my concern,” he said.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 12:11:05 PM
(NEW YORK) -- New York City police say a deadly shooting that took place in Greenwich Village Saturday was an anti-gay hate crime.
32-year-old Harlem resident Marc Carson and his companion were just blocks from the famous Stonewall Inn when a group approached them, making anti-gay slurs.
Police say that one member of the group, Elliot Morales, asked the two men if they were “gay wrestlers," and later asked “do you want to die here?"
Morales then pulled out a gun and shot Carson in the face, according to NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly. He died in the hospital soon afterwards.
An officer arrested Morales a few blocks away from where the shooting took place.
This is the latest in a series of bias attacks on gay men in the area, and police are investigating to see if there is any connection between this incident and earlier ones.
“It's a really sad affair,” said Sean Williams, a friend of Carson.
“I mean, come one. This is 2013. Who's killing people for being gay nowadays?”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 11:28:20 AM
(ZEPHYRHILLS, Fla.) -- A single ticket matching all the numbers in Saturday's $590.5 million Powerball drawing was sold at a Zephyrhills, Fla., grocery store, according to lottery officials.
The winning numbers in Saturday's drawing were 10, 13, 14, 22, 52, and a Powerball of 11.
The identity of the lucky ticket holder was not immediately known. Florida Lottery officials did not indicate whether anyone had come forward to claim the jackpot yet.
Earlier estimates had put the jackpot at $600 million, however the Powerball website reflected at adjusted total of $590.5 million, still the largest jackpot in the game's history.
The previous record for a Powerball jackpot was $587.5 million on Nov. 28, 2012.
The odds of winning the top jackpot was 1 in 175.2 million.
Lottery officials said 80 percent of the possible combinations had been purchased, making it likely a ticket would match all five numbers and the winning Powerball.
The person or group holding the ticket will have to decide whether to take an annuity or the lump sum, which comes out to $370,896,780.54.
While there was only one grand prize winner, 31 tickets matched all five numbers, earning those lucky ticket holders a prize of $1 million each. Two tickets sold in New York and South Carolina were Power Play winners worth $2 million each, according to Powerball officials.
In the one month since California joined the list of 42 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands in playing, Powerball fever has swept across the Golden State and played a part in helping the jackpot swell to a record level, lottery officials said.
The country's most populous state became one of the top ticket sellers, alongside Florida and New York. Lottery officials said total ticket sales had hit $464 million for Saturday's historic drawing.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 10:52:17 AM
(HEMPSTEAD, N.Y.) -- The Hofstra University junior killed during and armed home invasion of her off-campus house on Friday was accidently fatally shot by the responding officer, forensic investigators have concluded.
Police say Dalton Smith, a wanted man with a lengthy criminal history, was masked when he entered 21-year-old Andrea Rebello's home Friday, demanding money and valuables from Rebello and her three roommates. When police arrived, Smith used Rebello as a human shield in an attempt to escape.
“He's still got the gun to our victim's head,” Nassau County Homicide Squad Police Lieutenant John Azzata explained. “Eventually menaces our police officer, points his gun at the police officer and at that point, the police officer fires several rounds.”
The officer, who is described as “highly decorated,” fired eight shots. Seven of them hit Smith, but the eighth bullet hit Rebello in the head. Both were killed.
The officer is currently on sick leave.
Now, instead of celebrating Sunday’s graduation festivities at Hofstra University, friends and classmates held a memorial for Rebello.
“It's really sad. She's a very sweet girl, she doesn't deserve this,” one student told ABC's Linzie Janis. “I really have no words for this. It is so unbelievable. I didn't think it was real.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 10:41:53 AM
(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) -- Delivering her only speech at a high school graduation this year, first lady Michelle Obama joked about the failures her husband, President Obama, has encountered in life as she told a graduating class of high school seniors in Nashville, Tenn. Saturday that in order to achieve success in life, they must first experience failure.
“When something doesn’t go your way, you’ve just got to adjust. You’ve got to dig deep and work like crazy, and that’s when you’ll find out what you’re really made of during those hard times, but you can only do that if you’re willing to put yourself in a position where you might fail, and that’s why so often failure, is the key to success for so many great people,” Obama said at the graduation ceremony for Martin Luther King Jr. Academic Magnet High School.
“Oprah was demoted from her first job as a news anchor. Now she doesn’t even need a last name,” she said. “And then there’s this guy Barack Obama. … I could take up a whole afternoon talking about his failures, but he lost his first race for Congress, and now he gets to call himself my husband.
“All jokes aside, the point is that that resilience and grit, that ability to pick yourself up when you fall, those are some of the most important skills you’ll need as you make your way through college and through life,” she said. “I want you to tell yourself that no matter what challenges you face that you will commit yourself to achieving your goals no matter where life takes you.”
As a student introduced Obama, he noted that his own mother found inspiration in the first lady and her well toned arms.
“Now my mom’s arms look better than mine,” the graduate said.
“I would love to see your mom’s arms. Where are they?” Obama asked as she started her speech and asked the graduate’s mother to stand. ”Yes! I love that, and she’s showing them off too!”
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 09:41:16 AM
(NEW YORK) -- When Zachary Quinto, who plays Spock in Star Trek Into Darkness, came out publicly that he is gay, he gave no warning to his friends, family or publicists.
“I didn’t tell anyone I was going to do it so no one had a chance to [give me advice],” said Quinto in an interview with movie critic Peter Travers on ABC’s Popcorn. “I just did it. No one in my life knew.”
The star’s high-profile ‘coming out’ two years ago, which preceded others like NBA player Jason Collins, seems to have help undermine the prejudice that publicly gay actors won’t be accepted by audiences in straight film roles.
Quinto said he has experienced no adverse effects in his career in the aftermath of his announcement, and thinks people are more accepting of homosexuals and marriage equality than they were a few years ago.
“I felt supported at the time in a really profound way, by fans and people that just know me by my work,” he said. “I think I’m in a really good place.”
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/19/2013 09:24:13 AM
(INDIANAPOLIS) -- Lance Stephenson scored 25 points and grabbed 10 boards to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 106-99 win over the New York Knicks Saturday.
The win sends the Pacers to their first Eastern Conference final since 2004.
"I just didn't want to go back to New York and play Game 7," Stephenson said. "Just get it done with now and I'd do whatever it takes to do that today. It showed tonight."
George Hill returned to the Pacers' lineup just two days after being diagnosed with a concussion. He scored 12 points in 42 minutes.
Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 39 points. Iman Shumpert chipped in 19 in a losing effort.
Indiana trailed 92-90 with just under six minutes to go before Roy Hibbert blocked an Anthony dunk attempt at the rim. That spurred a 13-5 Pacers run that helped them close out the game.
"That's why they pay me the big bucks this summer, so I have to protect the paint," said Hibbert, who signed a $58 million contract last summer. "If all else fails, meaning the offense, I have to protect the paint."
The Pacers will face the Miami Heat, the team that eliminated them from last year's postseason, in the Eastern Conference finals. Game 1 is Wednesday night in Miami.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 23:11:00 PM
(BALTIMORE) -- Oxbow won the 138th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on Saturday evening.
"I get paid to spoil dreams," said D. Wayne Lukas, the 77-year-old Hall of Fame trainer for Oxbow, who gave Lukas his sixth Preakness victory and a record 14th Triple Crown win.
Oxbow's odds to win the race were 15-1, and he paid $32.80 to win.
Ridden by veteran jockey Gary Stevens, Oxbow finished unofficially in 1:57.54.
Itsmyluckyday came in second with Mylute placing third.
Kentucky Derby winner Orb was the perennial favorite to win the middle leg of the Triple Crown with 3-5 odds, but he seemed to have been thrown off from starting at the No. 1 post position. Only two horses have ever won the Preakness Stakes from that spot since 1950.
"I'm disappointed. I'll be more disappointed tomorrow than I am right now," said Orb's trainer, Shug McGaughey. "I know the game. It is highs and lows. Probably more lows than highs."
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 19:16:00 PM
(NEW YORK) -- With the recent loss of Melvin Ingram to a torn ACL, the San Diego Chargers needed to bolster their defense, and they've done just that. The team has has signed veteran defensive end/linebacker Dwight Freeney.
Freeney's deal with the Chargers is for two years with a base value of $8.75 million according to ESPN's Ed Werder.
The 33-year old Freeney had spent his entire 11-year career with the Colts, but the team cut the veteran after a scheme shift to a 3-4 defense as well as a slip in performance in recent seasons.
"Dwight will help us in a lot of ways," Chargers head coach Mike McCoy told Werder. "He will help us on the practice field, in he locker room, and in games. He's one of the greatest pass rushers in the NFL so, in that regard alone, the name Freeney speaks for itself."
Freeney registered 107.5 sacks during his time with the Colts, but he's ready for a fresh start.
"I'm excited to start this new chapter with some good people with great potential to do great things," Freeney wrote in a text to Werder.
Freeney had just 5.0 sacks last season, his lowest mark since 2007.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 17:15:57 PM
(LONDON) -- Police in Great Britain said they have identified new leads in the case of Madeleine McCann, the British girl who went missing in Portugal six years ago at the age of three.
Several persons of interest, as well as "both investigative and forensic opportunities" in the case, have been identified by Scotland Yard, authorities said.
Metropolitan Police said they were working with Portuguese police to determine the next steps, even though the missing girl's case is closed in the country.
"Our investigative review is ongoing and we are encouraged by the progress we are making," Metropolitan Police said in a statement, according to the BBC. "We are reviewing a significant number of documents and continue to identify potential lines of inquiry."
McCann was 3 years old when she vanished on vacation with her parents Kate and Gerry McCann and twin siblings in the Algarve region of Portugal. The girl's parents say they found Madeleine missing after having left the children in the home unsupervised while having dinner less than 500 feet away.
The review into the McCann case was opened last year after Prime Minister David Cameron responded to a plea from the girl's parents.
Kate and Gerry McCann have maintained a website and a 24-hour tipline to keep their daughter's case in the public eye.
On May 3, 2013, six years after Madeleine went missing, Kate McCann posted on the "Find Madeleine" website that the family was there "for the long haul."
"We still worry about her, we miss her as much as we ever did," McCann wrote. "We remain as determined as ever to find her and to know what has happened."
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 16:58:29 PM
(SMYRNA, Tenn.) -- Bob Robertson is 77 years old and a faithful golfer in more ways than one.
The Tennessean plays golf four days a week and says he asked God to let him score a hole-in-one for a good cause. Robertson not only got a hole-in-one last month, he shot a hole-in-one three times in 29 days on the same hole.
He’s an Air Force veteran who had a stroke six years ago, which left him blind in one eye.
Robertson says the improbable golf shot wasn’t by chance. He planned it.
“I told God if he let me that win that money, that I’d donate that money to mission work and he let me win it,” Robertson said. “I know it might be hard to believe, but it’s true.”
Robertson’s granddaughter is studying to be a missionary and is leaving Saturday for a mission trip to Indonesia.
Robertson plays in a senior golf league at the Smyrna Golf Course every Tuesday. Two of his hole-in-one shots were during league play, making him the winner of a $500 pot to which 75 seniors contributed.
“After I got the hole in one for the prize money, one of my friends got awfully close to a hole in one, so I decided if they were going to slice up the prize money I wanted a second slice of it,” Robertson said.
He says even after a stroke and five heart-bypass surgeries, he wants to improve his golf game.
“What I’ve been trying to do is smooth out my golf swing. I was reading an article just now about how to get it right and yesterday I broke 80 for the first time since last summer,” Robertson said.
For all of the people who look to him for inspiration, “I tell them that I didn’t do it alone. Faith did it.”
The director of the Smyrna Golf Course, Hal Loflin, told ABC News that he can’t believe Robertson’s accomplishments.
“I’ve never seen anything like it and I’ve been a PGA pro for 23 years,” Loflin said. “I’m jealous and envious because I’ve playing since 13 and never made one.”
Loflin said Robertson is a celebrity on the golf course. The hole where Robertson has hit his multiple hole-in-one shots is a par 3 and roughly 109 yards. Robertson plays off the tee designed for older golfers.
As for another hole-in-one, Robertson says just wait and see.
“I’ve got some more coming,” he said.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 16:20:18 PM
(LOS ANGELES) -- Paramount Pictures released a new teaser trailer for the highly-anticipated sequel to the 2004 film Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy on Saturday.
Anchorman: The Legend Continues is currently being filmed in New Orleans, and is tabbed for a December release.
The teaser, just over one minute long, features the movie's stars, Will Ferrell, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd and David Koechner on a lighted stage. In a similar vain to the previous teaser, the actors, all in character improvise a handful of one-liners.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 15:53:05 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- Congressman Michele Bachmann Thursday called the various scandals facing the White House “far worse than Watergate,” blaming the Obama administration for “direct actions taken against Americans who sought to exercise their free speech rights under the First Amendment.”
Bachmann, who ran for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination and currently chairs the Tea Party caucus, held a press conference on Thursday attended by various other conservative luminaries to criticize the administration not just for the IRS targeting Tea Party groups but the Justice Department seizing phone records of Associated Press reporters and the ongoing controversy surrounding last year’s deadly attack on the diplomatic mission in Benghazi.
The Minnesota Republican and her GOP allies suggested that if the White House wasn’t complicit in various cover-ups, at the very least, the administration is guilty of allowing the federal government to abuse its already massive powers.
As for the IRS singling out groups affiliated with the Tea Party and various other conservative causes, Bachmann expressed concerns that the White House might go to any lengths to impede the activities of anyone that doesn't march in lockstep with the president’s policies.
Asked whether she thought the various scandals are impeachable offenses, Bachmann measured her words, saying, “We also don’t want to jump to conclusions, we want to go where the facts lead us. We aren’t interested in creating our own facts.”
However, she promised multiple investigations to get to the bottom of the IRS scandal while chief executive Jordan Sekulow of the conservative American Center for Law and Justice said his group will bring a lawsuit against the IRS on Tea Party groups’ behalf next week.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 15:18:46 PM
(NEW YORK) -- As the countdown ticks on to Saturday night's record Powerball drawing, the jackpot has swollen to over $600 million, largely due to California's participation in the game, lottery officials said.
In the one month since California joined the list of 42 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands in playing, Powerball fever has swept across the Golden State.
California, the country's most populous state, has skyrocketed to the top three states in terms of ticket sales, alongside Florida and New York, according to lottery officials.
"Once California joined the Powerball family, we helped change the dynamics to this game because of the mere size of the state and the number of players that we have," a California lottery spokesperson told ABC News.
The size of the jackpot has created a frenzy that has also driven ticket sales, according to lottery officials. The previous record for a Powerball jackpot was $587.5 million on Nov. 28, 2012.
Tickets sold at a rate of 600,000 per hour in New York on Friday, New York lottery spokeswoman Carolyn Hapeman told ABC News.
It's expected that tickets will continue to sell at a rapid rate until the 10 p.m. ET cut-off time Saturday night. The winning numbers will be drawn at 10:50 p.m. ET, perhaps minting a few new millionaires.
However, if no one matches all five numbers plus the Powerball, the jackpot will continue to balloon.
Kelly Cripe, media director for the Texas Lottery, which is one of the states in the Powerball lottery, said the next drawing would be May 22 and estimated the pot would be at least an astonishing $925 million. The frenzy of such a massive jackpot would likely push it even closer to $1 billion.
The odds of winning the grand prize are one in 175,223,510, according to the Powerball website.
While Saturday's jackpot is a Powerball record, it's not the biggest lottery jackpot in U.S. history. That honor belongs to the Mega Millions, which paid out a record $656 million on March 30, 2012.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 14:27:45 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Many people suffer from depression as a complication after suffering a stroke, however, a new study shows that depression may be a risk factor for future strokes.
Researchers studied women born between 1946 and 1961, surveying the participants every three years between 1988 and 2010. Women were asked to self-report their depression, medication use and diagnosis or treatment. They also self-reported any stroke they may have suffered. Additionally, stroke deaths were identified using a national database.
Over 10,000 women participated in the survey, the results of which were published in the journal Stroke.
The data determined that women who were depressed were more than twice as likely to suffer a stroke than those who were not depressed.
The researchers believe that improvement in the diagnosis and treatment of depression could play a role in limiting stroke risk later in life.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 14:18:37 PM
(NEWARK, N.J.) -- A U.S. Airways official confirmed that a turboprop plane carrying 31 passengers and three crew members was forced to make a belly landing in Newark, N.J., early Saturday morning due to a problem with the jet's landing gear.
The jet, operated by Piedmont Airlines, left Philadelphia before 11 p.m. on Friday.
According to U.S. Airways Spokesman Davian Anderson, tower operators attempted to help the pilot troubleshoot after the plane's landing gear remained retracted. After multiple attempts, they decided to execute a belly landing.
When the pilot attempted to land the plane without the use of landing gear, sparks flew, but he managed to keep the plane steady and on the runway.
All 34 people on board were taken off the plane and bused to the terminal.
U.S. Airways believes the issue was an isolated mechanical problem. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 13:30:43 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- After a week of hearings in Washington and despite cloudy skies, President Obama is spending his Saturday afternoon on the golf course.
Obama's foursome included Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and Senior Policy Advisor Sam Kass.
Obama has frequented the golf course often this spring, but until Saturday always with male golfing partners. Sebelius is the first woman to join the president on the golf course this year.
Sebelius was seen getting into the president's SUV before the motorcade left the White House.
Kass is also the executive director of Let's Move! and an assistant chef at the White House.
The president’s golf outing comes after the White House spent a week dealing with a series of political scandals, from the IRS targeting conservative groups seeking tax exempt status for extra scrutiny, to the administration’s release of a trove of e-mails about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, last year, to the Department of Justice obtaining phone records of Associated Press reporters.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 13:12:10 PM
(NEW YORK) -- We’ve seen Michele Bachmann and a half-naked blogger wear Google Glass over the last couple of weeks.
But those images don’t warm your heart like a two-year-old with the connected glasses on. The toddler's review of the hot new tech device might be one of the cutest things you'll see on the Internet this week.
Chris Angelini, a writer and editor at tech site Tom’s Hardware, decided to put the glasses on his two-year-old son, Lucas. The result is an adorable video of Lucas telling people to “Look at my cool glasses!” Lucas only wears the glasses for 2 minutes and 42 seconds in the video, but that’s long enough for him to document the experience of getting some watered-down apple juice, show off his Lego collection and play catch with his dad.
It’s long enough for him to point out some of the bad things about Glass too. The video, shot in a low-light room, is hard to see at times, and at the end he adds, “They’re hot!” It’s true, the glasses do get fairly warm on the right side after shooting more than a minute of video or providing GPS navigation.
The video is extremely cute, but it has also inspired some thoughtful comments from its 100,000-plus viewers, many of whom point out that Lucas’s generation will grow up with this new wearable technology. Google, however, does say that the glasses shouldn’t be worn by anyone younger than 13 since it could harm developing vision. Angelini, 33, said he doesn’t plan on allowing his son to wear the glasses at length and that when they were on, he made sure the boy was looking around and not at the small display.
But Angelini himself plans to wear them a lot and take lots of footage of his son. “As a dad, you don’t have to be passive in the child-rearing process. It allows you to be so much more active,” Angelini told ABC News. “People are trying to record every minute but they aren’t in the moment, that’s the killer app for Glass — being able to participate more in what he is doing.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 11:44:45 AM
(NEW YORK) -- Over the past ten years, the rate of mental health disorders in American children has been rising, according to a new study.
Between 13 and 20 percent of children have experienced a mental disorder, says the study, published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Those figures were based on surveillance data from a number of federal agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control, gathered between 1994 and 2011.
The data from 2010 showed that the second leading cause of death among children between the ages of 12 and 17 was suicide. Additionally, mood disorders were the most frequent diagnosis for hospitalized children in the United States.
Among the most prevalent mental disorders in American children were ADHD, behavioral or conduct problems, anxiety and depression.
The CDC concluded that comprehensive surveillance is needed to prevent mental disorders and promote mental health for children.
Statistics from 2010 showed that children were hospitalized for mental disorders at a rate of 17 hospital stays per 10,000 population, up 80 percent from 1997.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 11:28:01 AM
(MOUNT VERNON, Wash.) -- Police believe a Washington woman used her toddler to steal an antique violin from a teenager Wednesday afternoon at a local restaurant.
Mount Vernon Police Lt. Chris Cammock told ABC News that 17-year-old Kalob Tatum entered a McDonald’s with his backpack and violin after school. When he went up to the counter to order a burger, he turned around, and his 100-year-old Czechoslovakian copy of a Stradivarius violin was missing.
“When I saw the violin gone, my heart just dropped,” Tatum told ABC affiliate KOMO News. “I had this feeling that something terrible just happened.”
Tatum has been playing the violin since kindergarten, according to Lt. Cammock. The teen earned a scholarship to perform in New York this summer.
“I got a scholarship to a two-week camp and… I do not have a violin and I don’t have the money to get a new one right now,” Tatum told KOMO.
Officers searched for the violin immediately following the theft.
“On the security video that’s inside the McChevron (McDonald’s there is attached to a Chevron gas station), it showed a young girl who picked up the violin and left the restaurant with her mother,” Cammock said. “By depiction, it looks like the mother would have been aware that her daughter was taking it.”
Officers then took the footage obtained from the store and circulated the girl’s picture.
On Thursday, Cammock says an officer on patrol spotted the mother and daughter walking near a school.
“The officer stopped her, had a conversation with her and asked for the violin,” Cammock said. “The violin was then returned to the victim.”
The mother, who was not identified, faces possible charges of theft, Cammock says.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 10:36:25 AM
(PALO ALTO, Calif.) -- 19-year-old Indian immigrant Diwank Singh Tomer has an impressive resume. The accomplished hacker and startup founder who initially enrolled in college in India quickly decided he would learn more by moving here and immersing himself in the Silicon Valley entrepreneurial scene.
And one of the world's most famous entrepreneurs agrees with him.
For the third year running, Peter Thiel, Facebook's first investor and the co-founder and former CEO of PayPal, is giving about 20 teenagers $100,000 each to drop out of college and launch a business.
The German immigrant's Thiel Foundation mentors the young entrepreneurs during the two-year fellowship as they pursue new advances in everything from robotics to fashion. But there's a catch. The recipients cannot be enrolled in school or employed during that time without special approval from the foundation. The idea is for fellows to immerse themselves entirely in the world of innovation.
There are some skeptics who point out that not every one of Thiel's fellows succeed. Some fail miserably. But the beauty of the tech world and those who reside in it is the ability to iterate quickly. Failure and the determination to try again is a huge part of that.
And besides, Thiel would argue that many of his fellows do succeed in spectacular fashion.
In the past two years, the fellows have launched more than 30 companies and raised more than $34 million in outside funding. The new crop of fellows was selected from a pool of more than 500 applicants from nearly 50 nations.
"When we created the fellowship more than two years ago, our intention was to help a small number of creative people learn and accomplish more than they might have otherwise," Thiel said in a statement. "To their great credit, they have exceeded our expectations, and inspired people of all ages by reminding them that qualities like intellectual curiosity, grit, and determination are more important than a degree in determining success in life."
The idea that a college education is highly overvalued sounds controversial. Everyone from the Obama administration to high school counselors seem to push students toward a university degree. And study after study shows that college graduates make more money and advance further than people who don't attend college.
But it's not necessarily for everyone, the Thiel Foundation argues, particularly with many students racking up student debt to pursue degrees that may never be worth the expense.
Thiel Foundation Vice President of Grants Mike Gibson said he can see technical certificates that confirm someone knows how to code, for example, being valuable. But this idea that a college degree makes someone qualified or that someone cannot be qualified without one, is bogus.
He had been at college in India for less than a month when he decided "he had nothing to lose" by dropping out. He'd already launched a startup to help people learn to code, and the computer science major knew he could continue to teach himself how to code.
So, he bought a ticket to San Francisco, hopped on a plane and only called home to tell his parents he'd left for the United States when he landed.
"To drop out in India means failure," he said. But failure doesn't scare Tomer. In fact, he thinks it's an important part of the growing process.
The key to learning, he said, is to ask lots of questions, something he doesn't think traditional schools promote.
"Schools force you to appear smart," he said. "It's bad to ask questions."
People learn best, he said, when they have access to mentors and the ability to learn in a way that suits them. The Thiel Foundation is big on mentors - each fellow meets with them throughout the two-year fellowship.
In Tomer's case, that approach has produced something interesting. The biking enthusiast is using his foundation funding to launch a new interactive learning environment based on his earlier coding venture.
He wants to launch a site that will allow people to learn about different topics - he's focused on coding and applied sciences - at their own pace with the help of his program. He's developed an algorithm that will respond to the user's actions. If someone wants to learn about a small area of coding and then do a deep dive into it before moving on, the program will prod the user in that direction by taking cues from the ways they interact with the site. If someone wants to get a breadth of knowledge before focusing on depth - Tomer's preferred style - that's fine too.
He thinks he'll need to hire a couple of engineers and a designer, but says his ability to code means he's capable of remaining at the helm.
Although he's only been in the Bay Area about eight months, Tomer plans to stay for good. He lives in a "hacker house" in Palo Alto with a bunch of other like-minded young people looking to strike entrepreneurial gold.
Tomer wouldn't say so himself - but he's an example of what a young entrepreneur with perseverance and a high tolerance for failure can accomplish by taking an unconventional path. The worst thing that can happen is that he has to go home and back to college. With that knowledge, Tomer said, coming to the hotbed of innovation was worth every bit of risk.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 10:16:25 AM
(SEOUL, South Korea) -- The South Korean Defense Ministry says that North Korea fired three short-range guided missiles into waters off its east coast on Saturday, raising concerns about the potential for more military provocation in the region.
Two KN-02 missiles were fired in the morning, followed by another in the afternoon, spokesman Min-seok Kim said.
Unlike the mid-range Musudan missiles which are believed to be capable of traveling more than 1,800 miles, within reach of Japan and South Korea, the missiles launched Saturday only have a range of 75 miles.
Kyodo News, citing an unnamed Japanese official, said the missiles never reached Japanese waters.
North Korea routinely tests short-range missiles, but the launches Saturday came amid signs that diplomacy may finally be cooling tempers on the Korean Peninsula after weeks of warlike threats from Pyongyang.
This past week, Glyn Davies, the State Department's senior envoy on North Korea, traveled to Beijing, South Korea, and Japan, to discuss all aspects of the North Korea issue. That trip was preceded by a surprise visit to Pyongyang by one of Japan's most experienced diplomats on North Korea, Isao Iijima.
During his four day trip, Iijima, an adviser to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, met with senior officials, including North Korea's No. 2 leader Kim Yong Nam.
Abe has largely remained mum about the secret visit, aimed at restarting talks to bring home Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea in the 1970s and 80s, a key hurdle in normalizing bilateral ties.
Tensions on the Korean peninsula escalated to its worst in decades earlier this year, after North Korea conducted its third nuclear test in February.
Angered by UN sanctions, and joint US-South Korean military drills, Pyongyang threatened nuclear strikes on Seoul and Washington, and unilaterally pulled out of the 60-year-old war armistice that ended the Korean War.
In April, North Korea suspended operations at the jointly run Kaesong Industrial Complex, pulling out 53,000 workers.
US officials said North Korea withdrew two of their Musudan missiles earlier this month, but Pyongyang renewed threats of a nuclear war last week, following the arrival of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz.
The ship was brought in to the southern port city of Busan for joint US-South Korea naval drills.
North Korea's state TV called the move an "extremely reckless" provocation, saying "The risk of a nuclear war in the peninsula has risen further due to the madcap nuclear war practice by the US and the South's enemy force."
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 09:56:56 AM
(NEW YORK) -- Google didn’t show off all of the fun features of Hangouts, the company’s new multiplatform text and video chat service at this week’s big I/O conference. If you’ve been thinking your chats have been a little too text-heavy, you can now decorate them with some animated animals.
In the chat window, you can now punch in codes to add some fun animations. For instance, typing “/streamponies” into the chat window in the web interface and hitting “enter” will prompt dancing ponies to appear.
“Some of you may [have] already figured out the hidden Easter Eggs in the new Hangouts … Keep in mind that those codes only work with Hangouts on Google+ and the Chrome Extension. Not in video calls or mobile,” Google employee Moritz Tolxdorff wrote on his Google+ page.
Tolxdorff posted a cheat sheet listing all the codes and commands to pull up different animations and chat window tweaks. In addition to the stampeding ponies, there’s a shy dinosaur (/shydino), an angry, charging pitchfork mob (/pitchforks), and you can even change the chat background by inputting a variation of the Konami “Contra Code” with your keyboard.
Maybe these bits of fun will appease those users who are disappointed by the current lack of SMS, or text messaging, support in the new Hangouts service. Though another Google employee recently mentioned on her Google+ page that SMS was “coming soon” to Hangouts, she later made an edit to the same post, saying, “Oops! We actually have nothing to announce at this time. My apologies.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 09:43:46 AM
(NEW YORK) -- Seventy two hours after Elissa Bantug's mastectomy, she felt broken. She was only 25 years old, but she had lost both breasts and her strawberry blonde hair to cancer. Drainage tubes still hung from her chest to remove excess fluid from the operation.
In that moment, she just wanted to have sex with her boyfriend.
"I just needed something to make me not feel so broken," said Bantug, who is now 31. "Anything to make me feel beautiful."
But instead of responding to her advances, Bantug said, her boyfriend pushed her off of him and told her it was crazy for her to have sex when she was so sick -- and so obviously in pain.
"It was awful," said Bantug. "It ended in a screaming match with doors being slammed."
Bantug said it was just one of the instances in which she and her boyfriend -- to whom she is now married -- didn't communicate well during her cancer experience. He had a hard time figuring out when he was supposed to let Bantug make decisions and when he was supposed to help her decide what to do. He didn't tell her how afraid he was.
When they did have sex, Bantug's boyfriend didn't know where to put his hands or whether putting them certain places would draw attention to Bantug's scars and upset her. He thought he should sleep in the guest room because he thought she needed the space to heal, but that made her worry that he was pulling away.
Now, Bantug knows better than to stay silent about these things, and it's her job to make sure cancer patients at Johns Hopkins Medical Center do, too. She runs the hospital's Breast Cancer Survivorship Program, where it's her job to answer the questions cancer patients and their spouses feel silly asking their oncologists.
Couples want to know about what to eat and how to tell their children about the diagnosis, but they also want to know about nipple sensitivity, body image and whether cancer patients will be able to have an orgasm again, she said.
Even though breast cancer is primarily about the woman fighting it, psychologist Jennifer Wolkin said conversations about relationships inevitably come up in her sessions with patients.
In addition to finding themselves thrust into the unfamiliar role of emotional supporter, men feel they need to deny their own feelings to be stoic, said Wolkin.
"They give off an air of self-assuredness to protect women, but, ironically, it comes off as rejection," said Wolkin, who works at the Joan H. Tisch Center for Women's Health at NYU Langone.
She said men often lack support centers and have to journey through cancer alone. If they show their feelings, they worry it somehow makes them weak. Sometimes, a man's libido can even drop -- not so much because he's no longer attracted to his wife, but because of the uncertainty associated with the situation and her body.
But it doesn't have to be that way. Men and women just need to communicate and ask for help when they need it.
"Mastectomy is horrific, but I think it has potential to offer this place where a man and woman could really significantly grow in their relationship," Wolkin said.
It's important for both partners to be as informed as possible about what's going to happen during breast cancer treatment and recovery, said Lynn Erdman, the vice president of community health for Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Erdman, a nurse who specializes in oncology, said men have their own set of concerns and emotional issues when it comes to having a spouse with breast cancer, but they often don't feel comfortable talking about them because they think it makes them selfish. She said many hospitals now offer support groups for men as a safe place for them to ask questions that would otherwise seem taboo.
"What we hear a lot of times is, 'What's the breast going to feel like after the implant is in and the tissue in it has been removed?'" Erdman said. "'If I hug her, is it going to hurt her?' 'Will it change our sex life?'"
"I've seen it often bring couples much closer together," she said."It's part of going through the cancer battle together."
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 09:32:58 AM
(LAS VEGAS) -- Star-studded collaborations are on tap for Sunday night's Billboard Music Awards, airing live on ABC from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Fans will see solo artists like Taylor Swift and Bruno Mars perform, of course, but they'll also enjoy some musical collaborations during the telecast, which starts at 8 p.m. ET.
Justin Bieber is actually doing double duty Sunday night: he'll sing his song "Take You" solo, and then team up with Will.i.am for their collaboration, "#thatpower." Pitbull is also doing double duty: he'll perform "Live It Up" with Jennifer Lopez, as well as "Feel This Moment" with Christina Aguilera and an unannounced "special guest." We're betting that special guest will be A-ha, the Norwegian '80s pop group whose song "Take On Me" is sampled in "Feel This Moment."
Other collaborations include David Guetta, Ne-Yo & Akon, who'll perform the song "Play Hard," and Nicki Minaj and Lil Wayne, who'll perform "High School."
Solo performers on the show include Swift and Bruno Mars -- debuting his new single "Treasure" -- as well as Ed Sheeran, Selena Gomez, Chris Brown, Miguel, The Band Perry, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Icona Pop and even music legend Prince, who will receive the Billboard Icon Award during the telecast.
Other stars who'll appear on the show include Madonna, who'll receive a special award for her top-grossing MDNA tour; and presenters Celine Dion, Shania Twain, Ke$ha, Carly Rae Jepsen, Miley Cyrus, PSY, Kid Rock, Cee Lo Green and Alanis Morissette.
As for the actual awards, Taylor, fun. and Maroon 5 are the leading nominees. Because there are so many different Billboard charts, it's impossible to list who's nominated in every single category, but Taylor, fun. and Maroon 5 are finalists in 11 different ones. Taylor and Maroon 5 also are both competing for the night's big honor: Top Artist of the Year. The other nominees in that category are Rihanna, Justin Bieber and One Direction.
Speaking of Rihanna, she's nominated in 10 different categories, while Carly Rae Jepsen's represented in nine, thanks to the success of "Call Me Maybe." One Direction is represented in eight categories.
Here are the nominees in a few of the biggest Billboard Music Awards categories:
Top 100 Song
"Somebody That I Used to Know"
"Call Me Maybe"
"One More Night"
Top Billboard 200 Album
Up All Night
Take Me Home
Mumford & Sons
Top New Artist
Carly Rae Jepsen
Top Pop Artist
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 08:53:04 AM
(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama says he believes "the true engine of economic growth" is a "rising, thriving middle class." But in order to build on progress made over the last four years, he says in his weekly address, government should invest in three areas: jobs, skills and opportunities.
President Obama has been visiting cities across the country as part of his "Middle Class Jobs and Opportunities Tour" to highlight the innovations taking place in the U.S. to create jobs or teach skills needed to fill opportunities for middle class families. On Friday, the president wrapped up the tour's second stop in Baltimore, where he visited Ellicott Dredges, a factory that exports digging equipment abroad. Also in Baltimore, the president read with children and visited at a program that helps low-income earners get more training and guidance to find work opportunities.
"More than anything," President Obama says of the tour, "the American people make me optimistic about where we're headed as a nation. Especially after all we've been through the past several years. And that should encourage us to work even harder on the issues that matter to you."
Touting the Administration's progress -- lower unemployment, increased corporate profits, a "healing" housing market and "shrinking" deficits -- the president says both parties still need to continue to work to generate more jobs even faster.
"And I’m going to keep trying to work with both parties in Washington to make progress on your priorities. Because I know that if we come together around creating more jobs, educating more of our kids, and building new ladders of opportunity for everyone who’s willing to climb them – we’ll all prosper, together," he says.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/18/2013 06:01:26 AM
(FAIRFIELD, Conn.) -- Approximately 60 people were taken to hospitals this evening – five with critical injuries – when a New York-area commuter train derailed near Fairfield, Conn., knocking a second train coming the other way off the tracks, officials said.
Amtrak train service between New York and Boston was suspended indefinitely, as was service on the Metro-North Railroad’s New Haven commuter line in Connecticut, amid an investigation, and damage to the Metro-North trains and tracks.
Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy estimated normal service would not resume until at least Monday.
“These tracks have been torn up,” he told reporters. “There’s been extensive damage.”
The National Transportation Safety Board was sending a team to investigate the crash, and was to be the lead agency in the investigation.
Local police initially put the number of injured between 20 and 25, but several hours later Malloy said 60 people had been taken to hospitals. Five of those 60 had critical injuries, he said, including one person who was considered “very critical.”
The accident occurred just east of the Fairfield metro station at approximately 6:10 p.m., when trains heading in opposite directions between New Haven, Conn., and New York’s Grand Central Terminal collided, officials said. The collision occurred after the New York-bound train derailed, knocking cars from the second train off the tracks.
Rob Oliver, a passenger on board the train that was struck, said he heard “a tremendous amount of metal and just an extremely loud sound.”
“We suddenly were screeching to a stop, but you knew it wasn’t a screech-normal stop … because there was just an awful burning smell and the cabin was filling with smoke,” he said.
He saw people being removed on stretchers with apparent neck or back injuries.
“I know some people breathed in some smoke, including myself, and I’m sure there’s people who have those sorts of [smoke] injuries,” he said. “Other people got injured coming off the train, because it’s a big jump down to the tracks and people were scrambling to get off the tracks as quickly as possible.”
Multiple reports of injuries initially prompted officials to scramble ambulances from all over the region to the site, police said.
The train cars involved were M8s, which were fairly new to the New Haven line. This was the first serious accident involving the new cars, considered state-of-the-art.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 22:19:06 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh apologized Friday for comments he made last week that a “hook-up mentality” among America’s youth might be responsible for some sexual assaults in the military. The comments were criticized by members of Congress and victims’ advocacy groups.
In a meeting with reporters, the Air Force’s top general said he was sorry to the victims of sexual assault who saw his comments as blaming victims. ”This crime is horrible – I think my position on this is pretty clear – but in view of the fact there are victims who took what I said as blaming them, boy, I am sorry about that.” He added, “There is nothing that is farther from the truth as far as how I personally feel or how any service chief or commander in our Air Force feels.”
Welsh said that his response to a question from Sen. Angus King, Ind.-Maine, at a congressional hearing was trying to explain the cultural piece of the sexual assault problem.
Last week Welsh told King that 20 percent of the young women who go into the Air Force report having been sexually assaulted in some way before enlisting. ”So they come in from a society where this occurs. Some of it is the hook-up mentality of junior high even and high school students now, which my children can tell you about from watching their friends and being frustrated by it. The same demographic group moves into the military. We have got to change the culture once they arrive. “
On Friday he said, "We have to get at instilling from the day people walk in the door in our Air Force this idea of respect, inclusion, diversity and value of every individual. And I didn’t say that at the hearing and I wish I had."
“We have a problem with respect for women that leads to many of the situations that result in sexual assault in our Air Force,” Welsh said. “In many of the cases, it’s friends who get together. Typically alcohol is involved. And at some point during the evening, if it’s a man on a woman, the man basically just shows a lack of respect for the woman, who is incapacitated, and commits a crime. It’s not a mistake. It’s not bad behavior. It’s a crime.”
He called taking on sexual assault “my No. 1 priority” and that the Air Force was not simply paying lip service in trying to do away with sexual assault.
“There is absolutely no place for this,” he said. “We get criticized a lot for saying that a lot and yet nothing changes. Well in my mind you have to keep saying it a lot while you’re trying to change. Saying it is much better than not saying it because that creates a different view inside the Air Force."
Welsh said he was open to considering all options for stopping sexual assault, including congressional legislation that would remove the authority to prosecute sexual assault cases from the chain of command. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, later said at a Pentagon news conference that he too was willing to consider the notion.
Welsh characterized as a “game changer” a new Air Force initiative called the “Special Victims Counsel Program” that assigns Air Force attorneys to advise victims of sexual assault through the legal process.
In place since just January, the pilot program has significantly reduced the number of cases in which victims go through the legal process only to later decide they do not want to pursue prosecution against their alleged assailants. While that used to happen in 30 percent of the cases, in the 300 cases in which counselors have been assigned, only two individuals have chosen not to pursue a prosecution.
In another positive development, 55 percent of the victims assisted by the counselors have switched their cases from the restricted category to the unrestricted category that allows for prosecution. That’s a significant increase from the 13 percent who have done so in the past.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 20:09:39 PM
(NEW YORK) -- The former Chechen rebel who said his home was searched by the FBI in connection to the Boston Marathon bombing investigation said in a letter Friday he has "nothing to do with the terrible act in Boston."
"I would like to state that I barely knew the Tsarnaev family, and only met them for the first time after we moved to the U.S.," 35-year-old Musa Khadjimuradov said in a letter handed to media outlets. "During the very few encounters, which were initiated by Tsarnaev, we have never discussed political or religious issues, so I could never guess what ideas were in their minds."
"Should I have any suspicions I would do my duty to prevent what happened at the Boston marathon," he added.
Khadjimuradov told Voice of America Thursday he met with Tamerlan Tsarnaev less than a month before the bombing. He said he has been repeatedly interviewed by the FBI and agents searched his Manchester home and took DNA and fingerprint samples Tuesday.
Tamerlan and his younger brother Dzhokhar are accused of setting off a pair of bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon April 15, killing three people and injuring more than 260 others. Tamerlan was killed in a firefight with police, but Dzhokhar survived and was later captured.
A neighbor of Khadjimuradov's, Troy Boudreau, said he noticed sedans with tinted windows and Massachusetts license plates near his home two weeks ago and finally asked one of the occupants for identification.
"They showed me their FBI badge,'' said Boudreau, 36. "I asked them why they were there and they would only say, 'it's a private matter.'"
Days later, Boudreau saw roughly a dozen investigators go into Khadjimuradov's home. He said for most of the day crime scene technicians and FBI agents came in and out of the apartment carrying electronic equipment. "They were moving furniture in, moving furniture out. They didn't leave until after 10 pm."
Boudrea said it was "unsettling" to think Tsarnaev had walked past his door to visit his neighbor.
In the VOA report, Khadjimuradov said he moved to the U.S. from Chechnya in 2004 and met Tamerlan at a gathering for Chechens in Boston in 2006.
Khadjimuradov told VOA he felt like he was being treated like a suspect by the federal agents, but said they told him not to worry. In the new letter, which is dated May 16, he said he understands why they were focusing on him.
"… I fully cooperate with the federal investigators, and I understand that these guys need to do everything they can to solve this case, so they can prevent anything like this horror from happening again in the future…" he says.
Khadjimuradov said in the letter he and his family are exhausted from stress and asked for privacy.
"I am sincere in saying that America has become a new, beloved home for me and my family, and we appreciate the freedom and peace this country gives us," the letter says.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 20:08:15 PM
(NEW YORK) -- If the reports are correct, Beyonce's having another baby. Multiple sources have confirmed to E! that the singer is pregnant.
ABC News has reached out to reps for both Bey and her husband, Jay-Z, for comment; so far, there's been no response.
Rumors that they are expecting their second child began swirling earlier this month when Beyonce showed up to the Met Gala in New York City wearing a belly-concealing Givenchy gown. The buzz intensified when the singer postponed a Belgium concert earlier this week, with her publicist citing "dehydration and exhaustion."
If the news of Beyonce's pregnancy is true, then the timing might come as a bit of a surprise, what with her Mrs. Carter Show world tour under way. Then again, Beyonce revealed in an exclusive interview with ABC a couple of weeks ago that she "would like more children," explaining that she thinks her daughter, Blue Ivy, "needs some company."
Well, now it looks like a new sibling may be coming to Blue, who was born January of last year.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 19:59:43 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- The Internal Revenue Service planted a question at an American Bar Association conference in order to reveal that it had inappropriately targeted conservative groups prior to the 2012 elections. But members of Congress are questioning why they weren’t told earlier.
The question that prompted Lois Lerner, IRS director of tax exempt organizations, to apologize for the agency’s actions came from Celia Roady, a prominent Washington lawyer in private practice. Roady said that she received a call from Lerner the day before the May 10 conference, requesting that Roady ask a question about tax exempt groups.
“I received a call from Lois Lerner, who told me that she wanted to address an issue after her prepared remarks at the [American Bar Association] Tax Section’s Exempt Organizations Committee Meeting, and asked if I would pose a question to her after her remarks,” Roady said in a statement obtained by ABC News.
“I agreed to do so, and she then gave me the question that I asked at the meeting the next day. We had no discussion thereafter on the topic of the question, nor had we spoken about any of this before I received her call. She did not tell me, and I did not know, how she would answer the question.” (The event was not recorded.)
But at a House Ways and Means Committee hearing on Friday, lawmakers questioned why Lerner had appeared before the committee just days before the conference and failed to disclose what she knew about the targeting.
“A little more than a week ago Lois Lerner was in front of our Oversight Subcommittee. She serves as the director of the Exempt Organization Division, and she has been directly involved in this matter, yet she failed to disclose what she knew to this committee, choosing instead to do so at an ABA conference two days later,” Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich., said on Friday morning. “This is wholly unacceptable.”
Acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller was grilled by Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.) over what he called the IRS’s “scheme” to plant a question at the ABA but not inform Congress.
Miller said he spoke with Lerner about how to make the information in the inspector general’s investigation public.
“So we were going to do it at the same time, I believe, that our intent was to talk to [Congress] at the same time,” Miller said.
Asked by Roskam whether Congress was informed “at the same time,” Miller said, “It did not happen, I don’t believe.”
In a conference call with reporters on May 10, Lerner said that she did not publicly reveal the fact that the IRS had targeted conservative groups earlier because she had never been asked.
“Somebody asked me a question today, so I answered it,” Lerner said.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 19:17:49 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Mini-movies of growing embryos could help boost the success of in vitro fertilization, a new study found. But the number of women who could benefit from the time-lapse technology is unclear.
For the study, British researchers used time-lapse photography to track the earliest stage of embryonic development – a process that unfolds in womb-mimicking incubators for couples using IVF. The researchers then used an algorithm to spot the embryos most likely to grow into babies.
"Embryo selection based predominantly on specific time-lapse derived algorithms could rapidly become routine in IVF treatment," the study authors wrote in the journal Reproductive BioMedicine Online, describing how the healthiest-looking embryos had a 72.7 percent chance of leading to a pregnancy and a 61.1 percent chance of resulting in a live birth.
Embryos deemed to look less healthy by the time-lapse technique had a 25.5 percent chance of leading to a pregnancy and 19.2 percent of resulting in a live birth, according to the study.
But the study was small, with only 69 couples, and some experts say many women lack the luxury of choice when it comes to embryo implantation.
"A lot of the time, we don't have that many embryos to choose from," said Dr. James Goldfarb, director of the University Hospitals Fertility Center in Cleveland and past president of the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technologies, who was not involved in the study.
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An IVF cycle starts with a woman taking drugs to stimulate the production of multiple eggs. After about two weeks, the eggs are collected and fertilized. Then, the resulting embryos are grown in a lab for up to five days, depending on how many there are and how healthy they look.
The more healthy embryos there are, the more likely an embryologist will watch them for five days to let the weakest die off, leaving the strongest behind. The pregnancy rate for women under 35 with day 5 embryo transfers is 69 percent, compared to 57 percent for women with day 3 transfers, according to data from the Cleveland Clinic's IVF Laboratory.
"For some patients, you might get 15 eggs, and maybe 13 will fertilize and you have enough embryos that look good on day 3 to go out to day 5 without a problem," said Goldfarb. "But at the other end of spectrum, you might have a patient with only six or seven eggs, only three or four get fertilized, and by day 3, you only have two that look reasonable."
In that case, Goldfarb added, "it's better to transfer them on day 3."
The number of embryos transferred depends on the woman's age. But for women 35 and under, it's typically one or two, according to Goldfarb. So if only one or two embryos are thriving on implantation day, there's not much of a choice.
But the new study raises an interesting possibility for women with multiple embryos to choose from. Based on time-lapse imaging, the researchers were able to weed out embryos with an abnormal number of chromosomes – embryos that would likely fail to implant in the womb or result in a miscarriage. None of the embryos deemed the least healthy by the time-lapse technique resulted in a pregnancy or a live birth, according to the study.
"In some ways, it's more of a negative to get pregnant and miscarry," said Goldfarb. "That rollercoaster can be much more traumatic than not getting pregnant at all."
But the study does not break down the couples' ages and explain how that might have impacted their IVF success rate, noting only that they ranged in age from 25 to 47 with an average age of 36. Nor does it detail how long the embryos were observed in culture before being transferred into the womb, instead indicating that they were "cultured until 5 or 6 days" after fertilization. And while the study does suggest that technology can help in the embryo selection process, experts say the decision to undergo IVF and the odds of being successful vary from couple to couple.
"Obviously, the goal is to pick out the best embryos, and this study is certainly not the first to look at this technique," said Goldfarb, explaining how similar studies have found mixed results. "It's something still in play, and we'll how this sorts out in long run."
"But I think the one thing patients want to hear is your best assessment of their individual chance of getting pregnant," he added. "And you can get a pretty good estimate of that based on their age and some other characteristics."
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 18:56:28 PM
(MOSCOW) – In a breach of protocol, Russia has publicized the name of a man it says is the CIA station chief in Moscow.
In comments to Russian media Friday, a spokesman for Russia’s Federal Security Service, or FSB (the successor to the KGB), confirmed that Russia had complained to the CIA station chief in Moscow about efforts to recruit Russian officers as spies as far back as 2011. The name of the supposed CIA agent appeared in a quote attributed to the FSB spokesman in a Russian language article by Russia’s Interfax news agency. The man’s identity was removed from the quote in an English language version.
The name could not be immediately confirmed. A spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department said she had not seen the Russian reports.
The exposure comes on the heels of the latest spy scandal between the old Cold War rivals, and despite signs that the Kremlin was prepared to let that incident go.
Earlier in the week, Russia publicized the detention of an American diplomat they insist was really a spy attempting to recruit a Russian security officer as an informant. State-owned television quickly broadcast video of the man’s detention, as well as photos of his supposed spy kit. That kit included a pair of wigs, a map of Moscow, and a compass. It also included a letter instructing the potential spy how to communicate with his handlers.
The alleged spy, Ryan Fogle, is listed as a third secretary in the political section of the US Embassy in Moscow. According to Interfax, Fogle had been placed under surveillance when he arrived in Moscow two years ago, already suspected of being a spy. Interfax also reported that Fogle left the U.S. Embassy on Monday in the back seat of a car and wearing a wig. He changed wigs before going to meet his suspected contact, Interfax reported.
After Fogle’s arrest, Russian authorities revealed that another alleged American diplomat, identified by the Russians as Benjamin Dillon, was caught last December and expelled from the country in January.
Russian news reports have said that Fogle was attempting to recruit a source in the Russian security services with expertise in the North Caucasus, suggesting that he was attempting to gather information as part of the investigation in the Boston bombing suspects, who came from that restive region.
Fogle has been given until Monday to leave the country, according to RIA Novosti.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 18:16:54 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- At their joint news conference Friday at the Pentagon, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey addressed the reports of new Russian missile sales to Syria. Dempsey called it “ill-timed” and an "unfortunate decision." Hagel agreed with Dempsey with regards to missiles “and whatever else is involved with the Russians does not help. It makes it more dangerous.”
Hagel said Secretary of State John Kerry had traveled to Moscow a few weeks ago to work out issues with Russia regarding Syria, including arms sales. He said the U.S. is trying to "convince the powers that are involved in the region to be careful with escalation of military options and equipment.”
“What's happening there, everybody knows, is very, very dangerous. And what we don't want to see happen, the Russians don't want to see happen, is for Syria to erupt to the point where we may well find a regional war in the Middle East," Hagel said Friday.
“The escalation of weaponry in the Middle East is dangerous,” Hagel continued, “and we are working with our partners in that area as well as other countries to make sure that whatever influence we have, that that doesn't continue."
Dempsey was blunt in calling the new anti-ship missile reports “at the very least an unfortunate decision that will embolden the regime and prolong the suffering. So it's ill-timed and very unfortunate.”
Later during Friday's briefing, Dempsey was asked about the sophisticated S-300 anti-aircraft missiles that Russia is planning to sell to Syria. He warned that their arrival might embolden Syrian President Bashar al-Assad into a miscalculation.
“The S-300, for example -- higher altitude, longer range, multiple tracking capability. It pushes the standoff distance a little more, increases risk but not impossible to overcome. What I really worry about is that Assad will decide that since he's got these systems, he's somehow safer and more prone to a miscalculation. So, you know, again, an unfortunate decision.”
Dempsey emphasized that Russia doesn’t have these weapons and that there are no military plans to prevent their delivery to Syria.
Hagel added there had still been no decision on whether to provide lethal aid to Syrian rebels.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 18:03:17 PM
(NEW YORK) -- The estimated jackpot for Saturday's Powerball drawing has swelled to a record $600 million for the popular lottery game, but one official estimated Friday that if it goes unclaimed the prize would zoom to nearly $1 billion.
The biggest lottery jackpot ever was $656 million for the Mega Millions drawing on March 30, 2012. The previous record for a Powerball jackpot was $587.5 million on Nov. 28, 2012.
The jackpot soared to $600 million after no one won Wednesday's drawing. That would translate into a lump sum payment of $376.9 milliion.
The pot is expected to keep growing Friday night and Saturday as the bonanza attracts even more people to take a chance. Tickets for Saturday's drawing can be purchased until 9 p.m. ET Saturday.
If no one matches all five numbers plus the Powerball on Saturday, the jackpot will continue to grow. Kelly Cripe, media director for the Texas Lottery, which is one of the states in the Powerball lottery, said the next drawing would be May 22 and estimated the pot would be at least an astonishing $925 million. The frenzy of such a massive jackpot would likely push it even higher.
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Carolyn Hapeman, spokeswoman for the New York lottery said as of mid-day on Friday, the Empire State was selling over 600,000 tickets an hour.
Part of the boost in ticket sales is the addition of California in April to the list of states that participate in the Powerball game. The lottery game is now played in 43 states, Washington, D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
"Now you have another 11 million people with the addition of California. You've got all these players, maybe some for the first time because of the extreme nature of the jackpot, the largest ever for this particular game," Hapeman said.
This current jackpot began rolling on April 3 with a mere $40 million jackpot, but has grown as no winner has emerged in several drawings.
Hapeman also attributes the growing popularity of the game to its makeover last year in celebration of its 20th anniversary. That's when the jackpot increased to $40 million from $20 million and the second prize, which requires just five matching numbers, jumped to $1 million from $250,000.
The odds of winning the grand prize are one in 175,223,510, according to the Powerball website. The odds of winning the second prize are one in 5,153,632.65.
With the "brisk sales," Hapeman encouraged New Yorkers not to wait until the last minute if they choose to participate.
For the $578.5 million jackpot last November, lines formed around the block in New York City.
"Don't be one of those last people. Or if there's an office pool, don't be the guy that doesn't get in," she said.
Because Hapeman works for the state lottery, she isn't eligible to participate.
"I want to, but I can't," she said.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 17:55:00 PM
(NEW YORK) -- With tiger moms, helicopter parents, and permissive and authoritarian models, parenting styles differ as much in the United States as they do in any country.
But can American parents learn something from their counterparts in different parts of the world?
The answer is yes, according to Christine Gross-Loh, author of the recently published book Parenting Without Borders: Surprising Lessons Parents Around the World Can Teach Us. The Harvard-educated mother of four traveled to and researched parenting styles in Finland, Sweden, Germany, France, Japan, China, Italy and other countries.
American parents may not think they need any lessons. According to a study released in March by the Pew Research Center, moms and dads in the U.S. gave themselves good marks for how they raised their children. Almost 70 percent of parents with children under 18 said they have done a very good job or better. Only six percent rated themselves poorly.
In other parts of the world, American parenting styles stand out. When Gross-Loh and her husband were raising their four children in Japan, she noticed something unusual when they were playing in the park.
“I was the only parent following my children around the park and preventing disputes,” she said in an interview with ABC's Christiane Amanpour.
Japanese parents allowed their children to get into scrapes, she said, and felt that disagreements were character-building.
“Even though we in America prize independence and autonomy and freedom so much, children in Japan were being raised with a lot more of these qualities,” said Gross-Loh.
Without a doubt, good parenting means being involved in children’s lives. But Gross-Loh’s research led her to conclude that being over-involved is detrimental and undermining.
“We like children who can speak their own minds and give their own opinions and be their own person,” she said. “This is a part of being independent. But there’s a whole other part that I think we’ve been neglecting and that’s the idea of self-reliance and self-responsibility. Those are the sorts of ideas that I see being fostered in other countries that are not being fostered as well by many parents in the U.S. It’s not our fault. We’ve been told that it’s good to look out for our children and help them out.”
One facet in developing independent children seemed counterintuitive: co-sleeping. Gross-Loh pointed to a survey showing that out of 100 countries, the U.S. was the only one in which parents provided a separate sleeping place for their children. In other countries, when little children sleep in the same bed, the same room or nearby the parents, their levels of dependence better matched during day and night.
“The idea is that when you allow children to be dependent in this way when they are babies, then they can more easily move into age-appropriate independence as they get older,” said Gross-Loh. “And research does show that even American children who were co-sleeping with their parents were more independent in different ways."
“Parents who have this 24-hour relationship with their kids, in Japan, for example, were not as reluctant to ask more of their children during the daytime,” Gross-Loh added. “They could carry their own bags, walk to school on their own, do chores around the house. In the U.S., we have this tendency to think there are things they can’t handle during the day, but we ask them to do something different at night.”
Another aspect of self-reliance and independence is safety. But Gross-Loh argued that allowing children to take some risks is actually the best sort of protection to give them, something she saw in Japan and certain European countries.
“That is how they will form the judgments to deal with all sorts of situations,” she said.
Gross-Loh recounted visiting a kindergarten in the German forest and coming across a 5-year-old child whittling on a stick with a knife.
“He had been taught how to do it safely,” she said. “Meanwhile, a lot of children in the U.S. are not even allowed to pick up a stick at the school playground because it might hurt someone.”
Through raising her children abroad and her research, Gross-Loh said she has learned her own lessons for her family.
“For me, I learned that I could be more relaxed about parenting because there’s so many ways to be a good parent,” she said. “And a lot of them involve a lot less involvement than we believe we should be doing.”
But what about lessons that American parents can teach the rest of the world?
“One of the things that was really striking is that we strive to raise tolerant children,” said Gross-Loh. “In a way, it’s necessitated because we live in such a diverse society. But it’s the sort of thing I didn’t see in other cultures.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 17:05:37 PM
(NEW YORK) -- NHL Playoffs: Pittsburgh Penguins 4 - Ottawa Senators 3 (Penguins lead series, 2-0)
MLB: New York Mets 3 (16-23) - Chicago Cubs 2 (17-24)
New York Yankees 5 (26-16) - Toronto Blue Jays 0 (17-25)
Arizona Diamondbacks 9 (24-18) - Miami Marlins 2 (11-31)
Philadelphia Phillies 5 (20-22) - Cincinnati Reds 3 (25-17)
Tampa Bay Rays 12 (21-20) - Baltimore Orioles 10 (23-18)
Atlanta Braves 8 (23-18) - Los Angeles Dodgers 5 (17-23)
Pittsburgh Pirates 5 (25-17) - Houston Astros 4 (11-31)
Cleveland Indians 6 (23-17) - Seattle Mariners 3 (20-22) 10 innings
Saint Louis Cardinals 7 (27-14) - Milwaukee Brewers 6 (16-24)
Detroit Tigers 2 (23-17) - Texas Rangers 1 (27-15)
Boston Red Sox 3 (25-17) - Minnesota Twins 2 (18-20) 10 innings
Colorado Rockies 10 (22-20) - San Francisco Giants 9 (24-18)
Oakland Athletics 2 (21-22) - Kansas City Royals 1 (20-18)
Chicago White Sox 3 (19-21) - Los Angeles Angels 0 (15-27)
Washington Nationals 6 (23-19) - San Diego Padres 5 (18-23)
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 16:36:39 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Seattle Seahawks defensive end Bruce Irvin will not be on the field to start the 2013-14 season.
The pass rusher was suspended for the first four games of next season for league's performance-enhancing drug policy.
"I want to apologize to my teammates, coaches and Seahawks fans for making a mistake when I took a substance that is prohibited in the NFL without a medical exemption," Irvin said in a statement. "I am extremely disappointed in the poor judgment I showed and take full responsibility for my actions. I will not appeal the discipline and instead will focus my energy on preparing for the season so I can begin earning your trust and respect again. I look forward to contributing to the team the moment I return."
He will be eligible to return to the Seahawk's roster on September 30. During his suspension, he will be allowed to take part in all offseason practices and preseason games.
Irvin had eight sacks as a rookie out of West Virginia last season for Seattle.
Copyight 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 16:35:54 PM
(LOS ANGELES) -- Is Nicki Minaj leaving American Idol? She won't say.
Nicki came backstage briefly after the show’s season finale Thursday and took three questions. One she chose not to answer was, "Are you coming back?"
Nicki was first asked why she didn't perform Thursday night since all the other judges did. She explained that she was committed to performing her song "High School" at this Sunday night's Billboard Music Awards, so she wasn't allowed to perform on Idol. She also revealed that this season, she was supposed to premiere the song's video during American Idol, but Fox rejected it as being too risque.
Nicki then said that she felt that newly-crowned champ Candice Glover was "absolutely" the right person to win. When a publicist said the rapper would take one more question, several were shouted, and Nicki chose to take one about whether or not she was working on new music -- she begins work on her official third album in July.
But as reporters shouted, "Are you coming back?" she blinked, smiled, and walked offstage.
Meanwhile, Candice's debut album, titled Music Speaks, will be in stores July 16 and is available for pre-order now. The newly-minted champ will perform on Live with Kelly & Michael on Monday, and will also appear on PBS’s 24th Annual National Memorial Day Concert, and on the annual special A Capitol Fourth.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 15:39:08 PM
(WASHINGTON) -- Irate lawmakers Friday accused the acting IRS commissioner of misleading them about the agency's selective scrutiny of tea party-affiliated groups, demanding to know who was responsible and why no one told Congress about it.
"Why did you mislead Congress and the American people on this?" Louisiana GOP Rep. Charles Boustany, who chairs the Ways and Means panel's Oversight Subcommittee, asked Steven Miller.
"I did not mislead Congress or the American people," Miller replied.
Miller apologized but maintained that politics did not motivate the perceived targeting.
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"First and foremost, as acting commissioner I want to apologize on behalf of the IRS for the mistakes that we made and the poor service that [we] provided," Miller told the House Ways and Means Committee in his opening statement. "Partisanship or even the perception of partisanship has no place at the IRS."
Miller has effectively been fired by the Obama administration. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew requested his resignation, but Miller remains acting commissioner until his appointment expires June 8.
"I think that what happened here is that foolish mistakes were made by people who were trying to be more efficient in their workload selection," Miller told the committee.
Asked by Georgia GOP Rep. Tom Price whether he thinks the IRS's actions were "illegal," the outgoing commissioner said it is not.
"It is absolutely not illegal," Miller told Price.
Miller asked Price to clarify his question, which Price did: "Do you believe it is illegal for employees of the IRS to create lists to target individual groups and citizens in this country," the conservative congressman asked Miller.
"I don't believe it is. I don't believe it should happen," Miller said, after indicating that the legality of the IRS' practices is for others to decide.
Committee members grilled Miller on who at the IRS knew what, and when. Miller said that after initially becoming aware of problems last year with conservative groups' 501(c)4 applications, he asked an IRS official "to lead a team and take a look and see what was going on in terms of cases that had gotten those letters."
One employee was reassigned, and managers were instructed that the targeting should not continue, Miller said.
Miller said he became aware of the activity in May 2012.
Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., asked Miller why he failed to mention it in July 2012, when he appeared before a subcommittee hearing and was asked about conservative groups' difficulties with the IRS.
"How can we not conclude that you misled this committee?" Ryan asked. "You knew of our concern of this targeting … You knew that, but you didn't mention this to the committee. Do you not think that that's a very incomplete answer?"
Miller said he didn't mention the actions because the question had implied political motivation, which he did not believe existed. Miller said he was only asked about letters from conservative groups.
"I did not mislead the committee. I stand by my answer then, and I stand by my answer now," Miller said. "Harassment that was part of that question implies political motivation."
At a July 25, 2012 subcommittee hearing on tax-exempt organizations, Texas GOP Rep. Kenny Marchant asked Miller about conservative groups that had complained of IRS scrutiny.
"I have been contacted by several of the groups in my district. And they feel like they are being harassed. I don't have any evidence that that is the case.
"But they feel like they have been harassed and feel like the IRS is threatening them with some kind of action or audit. What kind of a letter or action is taking place at this time that you are aware of?" Marchant asked Miller at that hearing, after Miller had been briefed on the scrutiny of tea party groups.
Miller responded, at the time, without mentioning the actions of which he now says he was aware.
"I am aware that there is an uptick of organizations that came into us for exemption," Miller said in July 2012. "So it was the determination letter process, not the examination process. I am aware that some 200 501(c)4 applications fell into this category. We did group those organizations together to ensure consistency, to ensure quality. We continue to work those cases."
Ohio Republican Rep. Pat Tiberi pressed Miller on why he appointed Sarah Hall Ingram, who led the division in charge of tax-exempt organizations, to run the IRS's Affordable Care Act Office.
"Because she's a superb civil servant, sir," Miller explained, noting that he did not think Ingram was involved in the scrutiny of tea party groups.
In the course of asking extra questions of tea party groups, IRS officials requested lists of their donors. Miller told the committee Friday that he believes the agency destroyed those lists.
Miller also defended former commissioner Douglas Shulman's testimony in March 2012 that "there's absolutely no targeting," explaining that at that time, he and Shulman were aware of problems with conservative groups' processing, but not that keywords and groups' policy missions were being used to single them out.
"It was incorrect, but whether it was untruthful or not -- look, when you talk about targeting … it's a pejorative term," Miller said. "What happened here is that someone saw tea party cases come through, they were acknowledging that they were going to be engaged in politics. This is the time frame in 2010 when Citizens United was happening … people in Cincinnati decided, 'Let's centralize these cases.'"
Miller took issue with the term "targeting" multiple times.
"Again, I'm going to take exception to the term 'targeting,'" Miller said when Texas GOP Rep. Kevin Brady asked him, directly, who was responsible.
Miller said he prefers the term "listing" and that he didn't have any names of IRS employees to supply.
Both Republican and Democratic members voiced frustration with the activities, by any name, that Miller and others failed to mention to Congress before now.
"We are all outraged," New York Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley said.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 15:28:51 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Where do wildly popular fast food ideas come from? According to Gary Cole: Prison.
That is the contention of Cole, who claims that it was he who invented Taco Bell’s famous Doritos Locos tacos while doing time in maximum security federal prison in Florence, Colo. He is so adamant about it that on May 15 he filed a federal lawsuit in Dallas alleging that Taco Bell, along with Pepsi, Frito Lay and Taco Bell parent Yum Brands, stole his idea.
Cole has been incarcerated since 1997, when he was given a 25-year sentence for “delaying interstate commerce, conspiring to do so, and using and carrying a firearm in relation to a crime of violence,” according to court papers. Fellow inmates include alleged September 11 co-planner Zacarias Moussaoui, shoe bomber Richard Reid and Unabomber Ted Kaczynski.
Cole claims that in 2006 he sent his lawyer a notarized document with a list of nine products he devised, the Dallas Observer reports.
The majority fall under a brand he called “Divas and Ballers,” which include hot sauce, body oil, clothing line, and shoes and accessories. But second on the list was a “Tacos [sic] shells of all flavors (made of Doritos).”
In his 35-page handwritten complaint, Cole -- who is representing himself -- alleges that in 2010 he had sent his original list via certified mail to Janice B. Cole and Keonia K. Cole. That letter, he maintains, was “stolen through the United States Postal Service Brand and Submitted to Frito Lays [sic], Taco Bell, Yum Brands.”
He contacted the FBI, and also sent a Freedom of Information Act request to Taco Bell, asking to be sent documents relating to the invention of Doritos Loco Tacos. Private companies are generally not subject to FOI laws, however.
He also wrote to the IRS, that “a check was made out to a person for a large amount by Taco Bell, Frito Lay, and Pepsi Co. Inc. for an idea or invention that was submitted to them by theft and fraud.”
While Cole did not specify a monetary amount in his civil action, he did ask the court to place “a lean [sic] and moratorium” on “Taco Bell, Frito Lays, Pepsi Co, Yum Brands, et al. for the fraudulent and concealment, theft, lying, and covering up, to violate patent and trademark, invention and United States Constitutional Rights, to steal the taco shells made of Doritos of all flavors.”
In an email statement to ABC News, Taco Bell spokesperson Rob Poetsch said that “Given the unprecedented success of Doritos Locos Tacos, we are not surprised others may seek to claim credit. The reality is, the suit is completely without merit as our product innovation team continuously develops and tests new menu concepts, and as a policy we do not accept unsolicited ideas, period.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 15:15:52 PM
(TAMPA, Fla.) -- A member of the elite team that killed Osama bin Laden donated a knife he carried on the historic raid to a charity auction recently, raising $35,400 for the family of another Navy SEAL who perished in a training accident in March.
Mark Owen, the pseudonymous author of No Easy Day, which detailed the bin Laden mission, told ABC News he was approached by a friend who was setting up the auction and volunteered to part with the combat knife he’s carried with him on missions for over eight years.
“If there was something I could do, I wanted to be involved,” the former SEAL Team Six member said.
The auction in all raised more than $75,000 for several special operations charities, but the proceeds from the knife sale will specifically go the family of Brett “Shady” Shadle, according to Matthew Griffin, a former Army Ranger who helped organized the event. Shadle, who served in SEAL Team Six with Owen, was killed in late March in a training accident in Arizona.
Owen’s knife, a folding Emerson knife that Owen said was his secondary blade, was one of several items in the charity put on by The Macalan Group along with Combat Flip Flops and Intelligent Waves IW simultaneously online and at the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference and Exhibition (SOFIC) hosted this week in Tampa, Fla. The auction began May 1, exactly two years after President Obama announced the death of the al Qaeda leader.
Griffin, the co-founder of Combat Flip Flops, told ABC News that when the bids for the knife jumped in the last minutes of the auction, the audience at SOFIC was ecstatic.
“People were cheering, folks were in tears,” he said.
Griffin said he and the other organizers threw the auction together in just a couple weeks and sought out people like Owen willing to donate items. Since there was no overhead, Griffin said 100 percent of the proceeds will go to the special operations charities.
The winning bidder for the knife has not been identified, but will also be presented with a letter of certification from Owen.
Click the links below to find out more about the organizations Griffin said were supported in the auction:
- The Green Beret Foundation
- The Lead the Way Fund
- The Tommy V Foundation
- The Station Foundation
- The Team 5 Medical Foundation
To learn more about Combat Flip Flops and its work in Afghanistan, click here.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 15:14:48 PM
(AUSTIN, Texas) -- A Texas startup has developed a “smart rifle”that barely needs to be aimed.
The maker of the gun, being shipped to stores this week, brags that “even a novice shooter can become an elite long-range marksman in minutes.”
The company, TrackingPoint, has said its “world’s first” long range Precision Guided Firearms (PGF) integrate precision hardware, digital optics, and tracking technology to deliver an unmatched shooting experience. The line of rifles starts at about $22,500, and each comes packaged with an iPad mini including the interactive TrackingPoint mobile app.
“We’re taking centuries old tech, firearms and ammunition, and introducing 21st century technology to it,” TrackingPoint CEO Jason Schauble told ABC News.
The PGF line of rifles come equipped with what the company is calling the XactSystem, which uses a network tracking scope with digital display interface, laser tagging to “paint” a moving target, and a guided trigger that only lets the shooter fire when there is a high percentage shot.
The weapon is being introduced at a time when the debate over gun control has raised tempers on both sides of the argument.
Schauble said safety is paramount, just like with any other gun or rifle. “It is a firearm. It is controlled by federal law,” he said.
He said a password can be set on the gun’s scope software. This doesn’t render the rifle useless, but it does lock any unauthorized users out of the precision technology.
Elliot Fineman, chief executive officer of National Gun Victims Action Council, said the “smart gun” is a “mixed proposition.”
“I’m very much in favor of the password protection, but [if the user opts not to utilize password protection] this product gives shooters a better accuracy than, on average, most cops,” Fineman said. He said the target accuracy of most police is three out of 10.
“To think that private citizens that are not trained could shoot better than 3 out of 10, it’s scary,” Fineman said.
David Chipman, a spokesman for Mayors Against Illegal Guns which lobbies for an expansion of background checks for people buying guns, said the PGF “is not your grandfather’s hunting rifle used for sport and recreation this is a weapon designed to kill with precision.”
“This technology potentially enables any two bit criminal to operate with the skills of a highly trained sniper,” Chipman said.
Josh Horwitz, executive director of the Education Fund to Stop Gun Violence, dismissed the significance of locking the software.
“This is an industry hell bent on making weapons more lethal and taking no measures to extend safety,” Horwitz said. “If this type of technology is transferred into semi automatic and automatic weapons, it would make it even more lethal.”
The way the gun operates sounds like a video game. The visual scope on the PGF connects via WiFi the iOS app on an iPhone or iPad by way of ShotView. The feature shows a live video of the digital Heads Up Display (HUD) and video can also be recorded and shared online. Schauble said an Android app is on the way.
TrackingPoint is in the process of developing a dedicated, online community for TrackingPoint users to share videos and information with each other.
“There’s a young, digital generation that will want to hunt and shoot, so we’re not only developing a product for people that shoot today, but also the new digital generation,” said Schauble.
He said the live streaming ShotView feature can be used to help instruct new shooters on the fly or to capture an impressive shooting range or hunting shot to show to others later.
“We’ve been surprised at how many older shooters and hunters embrace the product, too. This kind of tech helps them to still hunt for years or even take shots that may not be possible with traditional hardware,” he said.
The PGF rifles, TrackingPoint’s first product line, was introduced at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in January, but this week the company began fulfilling preorder requests with the first units shipping.
With this first run of PGF rifles, the CEO said TrackingPoint is selling directly to customers.
Schauble said his company has signed a contract to provide technology to some less expensive, short range Remington firearms, and those products will be distributed through vendors, but the distribution of other runs of TrackingPoint product will be decided on a case-by-case basis.
But with TrackingPoint’s Precision Guided Firearms, Schauble said the main objectives are “trying to make existing, long-range shooters more capable.”
“Right now, we’re the most advanced tech company in outdoor shooting sports.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 15:10:50 PM
(CANNES, France) -- It sounds like the plot of a Hollywood thriller: while a fancy jewelry company is hosting a ball at the Cannes Festival, thieves break into a company employees’ hotel room and steal $1 million worth of jewelry.
But this story is real. It happened in Cannes overnight.
A representative of Chopard, the Swiss-based watch and jewelry company, left the stash in the safe in his room at the Novotel Hotel in Cannes while he attended a late-night gala at a much fancier hotel across town. When he returned, thieves had ripped a safe from the wall of his room.
Police are still trying to determine exactly what was inside, but they say the contents were likely Chopard jewels to be loaned to A-list celebrities as they walked the festival’s red carpet surrounded by a phalanx of eager photographers. Actress Julianne Moore has already been seen on the Cannes red carpet sporting gems from Chopard.
French police say the Chopard gala ran until 5 a.m. They believe the burglary happened around 2.30 a.m. The time suggests the thieves -- they do not believe this was a solo job -- knew exactly what they were doing.
In another twist worthy of Hollywood, a film with a similar plot had just been screened at Cannes. Sofia Coppola’s The Bling Ring is about celebrity-obsessed teenagers in Los Angeles who follow movie stars online and break into their homes while they are at public events. The film is based on a real gang of teens who broke into the home of Paris Hilton and other stars.
Chopard doesn’t just make jewels. They also make the Oscar-like trophies for the Cannes film festival, the crystal and gold Palme d’Or.
Festival officials say the Palmes are safe.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 13:50:34 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Fake meat isn’t a new thing, but good fake meat that is almost indistinguishable from real meat could be very big in cleaning up your diet and helping the planet.
Beyond Meat, a Manhattan Beach, Calif.-based food company that specializes in making “chicken” from plant-based protein, claims it is 80 percent of the way toward making real-tasting fake chicken. And you can find out for yourself as their products are now in Whole Foods markets and the Tropical Smoothie restaurants in New York City, where you can substitute its fake chicken for real chicken in burritos.
“What we offer the market is the cleanest form of protein that money can buy,” says Ethan Brown, Beyond Meat’s founder and CEO. “You don’t have any concerns about antibiotics, avian flu, mad cow disease. You have no hormones or steroid use.”
Brown noted that meat consumption has been linked to cancer and heart disease, and that it takes a toll on the environment, too.
“If you look at climate, 51 percent of greenhouse gas emissions can be attributed to meat consumption,” he said.
Brown, who is vegan, looked far and wide for the technology his company uses in its fake meat products. He finally stumbled upon two researchers at the University of Missouri in Columbia who had been working for 10 years on a system that heats, cools and pressurizes protein from plants so that it mimics the fibrous structure of meat.
“Now we’re not all the way there,” Brown says, “but I would challenge you in a tortilla or an enchilada to tell me which is chicken and which is not.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 13:46:10 PM
(NEW YORK) -- The estimated jackpot for Saturday's Powerball drawing has swelled to a record $600 million for the popular lottery game.
The biggest lottery jackpot ever was $656 million for the Mega Millions drawing on March 30, 2012. The previous record for a Powerball jackpot was $587.5 million on Nov. 28, 2012.
The jackpot soared to $600 million after no one won Wednesday's drawing. That would translate into a lump sum payment of $376.9 million.
The pot is expected to keep growing as the bonanza attracts even more people to take a chance. Tickets for Saturday's drawing can be purchased until 9 p.m. ET Saturday. If no one matches all five numbers plus the Powerball, the jackpot will continue to grow.
This current jackpot began rolling on April 3 with a mere $40 million jackpot, but has grown as no winner has emerged in several drawings.
The odds of winning the grand prize are one in 175,223,510, according to the Powerball website. The odds of winning the second prize are one in 5,153,632.65.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 13:43:58 PM
(CONCORD, N.C.) -- Retired stock-car driver Richard "Dick" Trickle died on Thursday from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Trickle, 71, called the Lincoln County Communications Center to tell them that "there would be a dead body and it would be his."
Emergency units found Trickle's body lying near his pickup truck when they arrived.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Dick Trickle on his passing today," NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France said in a statement. "Dick was a legend in the short-track racing community, particularly in his home state of Wisconsin, and he was a true fan favorite. Personalities like Dick Trickle helped shape our sport. He will be missed."
Trickle's impact on the sport of racing influenced many, including Sprint Cup series driver David Ragan.
"He was the man," Ragan told ABC Sports Radio on Friday. "He was very good at what he did and it's sad to have him leave."
Trickle, who was a force on the short-track, recorded about 1,000 victories in feature races and was the rookie of the year in NASCAR's premier series in 1989.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 12:52:35 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Aimee Copeland, the 25-year-old who lost her hands, both feet and her entire right leg to flesh-eating bacteria a year ago, has received two new bionic hands.
Copeland spent the week in Ohio at Touch Bionics, where she received two bionic hands free of charge. The hands cost $100,000 a piece, on average, a company spokesperson told ABC News.
Copeland spent the week getting fitted for the limbs and learning how to use them. The prosthetics respond to muscle signals in Copeland’s residual limbs and are capable of 24 different kinds of movements.
She will leave Touch Bionics to return to her Snellville, Ga., home Friday. Touch Bionics offered to donate the prosthetic hands because Copeland had run out of health insurance to pay for them herself, a company spokesperson said.
Copeland cut open her right leg falling from a zip line near the Tallapoosa River in Georgia in April 2012, allowing a deadly bacterium to enter her body. She said she sensed something wasn’t quite right days after receiving 22 stitches to close the wound on her calf because it hurt up to her thigh.
The bacteria advanced undetected until her leg turned “a dark purple color,” Copeland said on the set of ABC’s Katie talk show in September.
“I wasn’t able to walk,” she told show host Katie Couric. “I wasn’t able to speak. The only thing I was able to babble was, ‘I think I’m dying.’”
After being in and out of the emergency room with the painful wound that wouldn’t heal, doctors realized Copeland had necrotizing fasciitis and amputated her leg from the hip. Later, when her hands turned black, doctors amputated them, too.
Copeland spent two months in a hospital and another two months in rehabilitation before returning to her renovated home in late August 2012.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 12:44:58 PM
(BOISE, Idaho) -- An Uzbekistan national living in Idaho pleaded not guilty Friday to terror charges.
Fazliddin Kurbanov pleaded not guilty to three counts that charge him with giving cash, computer software and other resources to a recognized terror group in Uzbekistan.
The 30-year-old truck driver was arrested Thursday at his apartment in Boise where federal prosecutors had been watching him for some time. They say he's a supporter of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, whose stated purpose is the overthrow of the Uzbekistan government -- but it had not been thought of as a direct threat to the United States.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 12:36:43 PM
(NEW YORK) -- American consumers are feeling better about the economy.
Consumer confidence rose this month to 83.7 -- better than expected and its highest level since July 2007, according to the University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index. In April, the figure stood at 76.4.
“Overall, a number of indicators in the economy have been improving,” said Rebecca Jarvis, ABC News’ chief business and economic correspondent, “and that has positively impacted the mind and the psychology of the American consumer.”
“The Dow above 15,000 for the first time, the S&P 500 hitting new records every day -- that helps when you think about the mind of the consumer,” Jarvis said. “As does housing values improving, as does the fact that gasoline prices have sunk to a large degree over the last couple of months.”
There is one place where there’s still room for improvement.
“The jobs picture,” Jarvis said. “It has improved to some degree, [but] it’s still not where we would consider normal.”
U.S. employers added 165,000 jobs to their payrolls last month, taking the unemployment rate down to 7.5 percent.
“A normal jobs picture would be with unemployment more like 5 or 6 percent,” Jarvis said, “and we’re still a ways away from that. The reason we care so much about a number like this is that it looks at what the future of our economy could hold and it looks at it from the perspective of the consumer.”
“Consumer spending accounts for 70 percent of economic growth and so when the consumer is feeling better, the consumer tends to spend more,” she added.
In a separate report, the index of leading indicators from The Conference Board -- a non-profit business research group -- rose 0.6 percent last month. The index aims to predict future growth and was pushed higher by the housing recovery.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 12:28:14 PM
(NEW YORK) -- Sixteen tornadoes ripped through North Texas on Wednesday, the National Weather Service confirms, killing six people and injuring dozens more. But the severe weather that also destroyed more than 100 homes in Granbury, Texas, may not be over.
More twisters could erupt throughout the weekend, as ABC News Anchor Sam Champion explains.
"Saturday, as a cold front sits in the middle of the country, you've got that cold air clash with warm humid air, the jet stream pulling up right through the center will build those storms even taller and higher and that's what you need for very powerful thunderstorms and the possibility for tornadoes," he says. "Chicago, Kansas City, Oklahoma, you're all in line -- Minneapolis even -- by the time we get to Sunday and this kind of lingers in that part of the country for Monday."
The tornado outbreak that tore through Texas mid-week included an EF-4, with winds up to 200 miles per hour. That was the first EF-4 tornado in the state since 1994.
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 11:49:31 AM
(ROME) -- Police in Italy have arrested four possible members of Anonymous, the global hacker group known for attacking websites of organizations that opposed the exposed WikiLeaks documents.
The suspects have been placed under house arrest, accused of targeting Italian government and parliament websites, as well as those of the Vatican.
Police say while the suspects are charged with hacking, it is not clear if they are individuals acting for their own private purposes and using the Anonymous name, or if they are really part of the Anonymous group.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 11:48:29 AM
(NEW YORK) -- After eight years on Saturday Night Live, Bill Hader announced that this season, which ends Saturday, will be his last – and all he wants to do afterwards is “sleep.”
“[I'll be] spending time with my family. A new set of concerns,” he tells GQ magazine in its June Comedy Issue. “Heading back to LA. I met my wife in California and lived out there before this. We have good friends out there.”
During his time on the show, Hader, 34, became famous for his impressions of James Carville, Al Pacino and Julian Assange, though he says he never set out to make that his forte.
“I don’t know if I’ll keep doing impressions,” he says in the magazine, on stands May 21. “People told me I had a facility for it and I was like, ‘Okay, I’m the impression guy.’ So you imagine the cast at SNL is an A-Team and you’ve got the explosives guy, and I’m the impression guy.”
He also doesn’t intend to reprise Stefon, the infamous club kid with insider knowledge of the most ridiculous hotspots in New York City.
“Sometimes people say to me, ‘I want a Stefon movie!’ and I’m like, you think you want a Stefon movie but then you’ll see the poster for it and think, ‘Wait, I don’t want this!’ he says. “There’s no emotional through line.”
And while he’s fine with saying goodbye to his characters, Hader does have great affection for his SNL co-stars, particularly Seth Meyers, who was just tapped as the new host of Late Night.
“When I heard the news I started clapping–you know, just by myself, clapping. It’s amazing. He is the perfect fit,” he says. “I’ve watched as SNL hosts come into our office and we pitch them ideas and Seth is always at ease with them. He’s naturally and genuinely curious about people. And he really is such a funny writer. I’ve learned more from him about sketch comedy than probably anybody.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 11:33:35 AM
(NEW YORK) -- Looking for work? Well, just finding out this Microsoft job exists is work.
Microsoft has posted a sort of secret job listing for a Bing software development engineer inside the code of their Bing.com search site, as found by The Register. The only way to stumble upon the link to the job posting is to visit Bing.com using Microsoft’s Internet Explorer with debug mode enabled.
Once the page is loaded, a pop-up will ask, “Do you want to debug this webpage?”
Inspecting the page with the Internet Explorer developer tools console will uncover a message -- "Interested in creating Bing.com experiences? Apply today." -- and a link to the job listing on the Microsoft careers website.
Be warned: the requirements for the position are more than just employing the skills to find the hidden listing. Applicants are expected to have at least a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science and experience with multithreaded programming in C# and/or C++ and other web coding languages.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 11:24:23 AM
(NEW YORK) -- NASCAR driver David Ragan is in his second season racing full-time in the Sprint Cup series and is gearing up for this weekend's All-Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
"[It's] going to be a fun night, I know the stands are going to be packed," Ragan told ABC Sports Radio on Friday. "Everyone is going to enjoy those short segments and the final ten laps will be a lot of fun."
Ragan won his second career Sprint Cup race at Talladega on May 5 and is looking forward to third All-Star weekend.
Ragan's CSX team started the "Play it Safe" campaign, which provides information about railroad safety. Ragan's Front Row Motorsports Ford Fusion will feature a special “Play it Safe” paint scheme this weekend, including a bumper sticker on the back that says, “I brake for trains,” the “Play it Safe” logo and a hood that says: “Beats Goliath. Brakes for trains."
"We need to be aware. We need to pay attention of what's going on and mind the rules around it," Ragan said of his safety iniative. "It's a great message to get out there. There is over 700 fatalities a year, so we want to get that number to zero."
Ragan currently sits in 26th in the Sprint Cup standings.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 11:09:00 AM
(MUNICH, Germany) -- When you bring the monkey, you must pay the price.
The German animal shelter that has been keeping Justin Bieber's capuchin monkey is asking the singer to pay for his pet's two-month stay there. Mally the monkey has reportedly racked up a bill of several thousand euros for food, housing and veterinary care at the Munich animal shelter where Mally has been staying since customs officials seized the animal March 28.
Bieber had brought Mally with him on tour, but reportedly didn't have the proper paperwork to take the monkey with him on the road in Germany.
Bieber also reportedly has until Friday night to claim Mally, though what will happen to the animal if he doesn't isn't quite clear.
E! News reported late last month that the animal shelter housing Mally claimed Bieber's management had surrendered the monkey to the shelter. However, there's still paperwork to be done, and customs officials claim so far, they haven't received the necessary documents to release Mally, wherever she may end up.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 10:29:42 AM
(NEW YORK) -- New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski will undergo a fourth surgery on his left forearm next week, sources told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
The fourth surgery has been considered to be "very likely" since Gronkowski's forearm became infected earlier this year. The exact date of the surgery is not yet set.
Dr. Jesse Jupiter of Massachusetts General Hospital will perform the surgery, but it should be noted that Gronkowski brought in orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews as a consultant.
He should need about 10 weeks to heal following the surgery, with that estimate putting his return right around the beginning of training camp in July.
Gronkowski originally broke his forearm Nov. 18 playing against the Indianapolis Colts. He returned for the postseason but re-broke the forearm in the AFC divisional playoffs against the Houston Texans.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 09:00:00 AM
(NEW YORK) -- H&M made headlines last month when it featured plus-size model Jennie Runk in its new swimwear ad campaign.
In an industry where swimwear is traditionally modeled by willowy or waifish models, Runk’s appearance in the retailer’s general -- not plus-size -- swimsuit campaign sent a strong message.
Runk, 24, is 5 feet, 10 inches tall, and wears size 12 or 14.
In an open letter this week posted on her Facebook page, and reprinted by the U.K.’s BBC News, Runk railed against the general obsession with size.
“People assume plus equates to fat, which in turn equates to ugly. This is completely absurd because many women who are considered plus-sized are actually in line with the American average,” she wrote.
Runk, who was discovered when she was 13 years old, had a choice to lose weight and remain a size 4 or gain weight and kick-start her career as a plus-size model.
“I knew I was going to end up gaining weight anyway,” she said in an interview with ABC News’ Bianna Golodryga that aired Friday on Good Morning America. “I was getting hips, I was growing into a woman, so I figured it was easier.”
That kind of confidence has served her well in an industry where some retailers -- most recently Abercrombie & Fitch -- don’t even offer clothing in her size.
Asked how she avoided negative thoughts about her body, Runk said, “I am the only one who can judge me. My opinion is the only one that matters when it comes to me.”
Runk credits her success to the many other so-called plus-size models who blazed the trial before her, including Robyn Lawley, designer Ralph Lauren’s first plus-size model.
“I met a lot of them and they taught me a lot of what I know now,” Runk said.
Runk hopes she has helped start a conversation that may change attitudes about beauty and the so-called “mean girl” culture that sometimes comes along with it.
“Our bodies are built to be naturally different sizes,” she said. “To denote any of these body types negatively is only hurting all of us, because that’s where you get girls of one body type slamming another to make themselves feel better.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 08:47:09 AM
(NEW YORK) -- The recent video of a Syrian rebel commander carving open the corpse of a fighter loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, removing several organs and biting into what appeared to be a lung, shocked and revolted even the closest observers of Syria’s increasingly brutal civil war.
A new video has now surfaced of the rebel, Khalid al-Hamad -- who goes by the nom-de-guerre Abu Sakkar -- in which he warns that “if the blood in Syria doesn’t stop, all of Syria will become like Abu Sakkar.”
Asked by the cameraman what drove him to mutilate the man’s body, he responded: “Cellphones [of pro-Assad militiamen] contain videos showing how they raped women, killed kids, burned the bodies, cut off a man’s arm while alive, tortured another man, then slaughtered him. Every free Syrian wouldn’t be able to control himself while watching these atrocities.”
Abu Sakkar said he would be willing to be tried for it if “Bashar and his thugs stand trial for their atrocities.”
TIME magazine uncovered the original clip in which Abu Sakkar proclaims, “I swear to God we will eat your hearts and your livers, you soldiers of Bashar the dog.”
In a follow-up interview, the rebel -- who is Sunni, like almost all those fighting the regime -- told TIME: “Hopefully we will slaughter all of them [Alawites]...I have another video clip that I will send to them. In the clip, I am sawing another shabiha [pro-government militiaman] with a saw. The saw we use to cut trees. I sawed him into small pieces and large ones.”
Both the political and military arms of the Syrian opposition have condemned Abu Sakkar’s actions.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 08:36:10 AM
(WASHINGTON) -- Richard Milhous Nixon was “not a crook,” or so the 37th U.S. president would have us believe. But such denials at a Nov. 17, 1973, news conference meant little or nothing by then, six months to the day after North Carolina Sen. Sam Ervin opened two weeks of often-riveting, live televised hearings on the Watergate scandal.
Millions of U.S. households bore witness to the Senate Watergate Committee’s tactical destruction of White House subterfuge, methodically convincing Americans that perhaps “Tricky Dick” was more than some absurd distortion of the president’s legacy-in-waiting.
A month after the televised hearings, which started on May 17, 1973, an astonishing 97 percent of Americans had heard of Watergate, according to the U.S. Senate website. And 67 percent believed that President Nixon had participated in a cover-up of the 1972 break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate office complex in Washington.
Nixon never confessed and declared that “I have never been a quitter” right before he did just that.
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 08:12:07 AM
(NEW YORK) -- The Powerball jackpot has swelled to $550 million after no tickets matched all the winning numbers during Wednesday night's drawing. And the top prize is continuing to grow ahead of the next drawing on Saturday night.
The Mega Millions jackpot, meanwhile, is up to $190 million ahead of its Friday night drawing.
While the chances of scoring either jackpot are 1 in more than 175,000,000, what are your chances of raking in the combined $740 million?
"If you buy one ticket for each game your odds are about 1 in 30 quadrillion," says Jeff Bergen, a math professor at DePaul University. "That's a one followed by 13 zeros."
And, he notes, that's much better than in March, when your odds of guessing a perfect NCAA basketball tournament bracket were 1 in 9 quintillion.
"That's 300 times harder than winning both of these jackpots at the same time," Bergen says.
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Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 07:22:53 AM
(NEW YORK) -- The changing climate could prove to be very troublesome for allergy sufferers. Here are some of the possible effects:
Attack of Potent Pollen
In the past 53 years, carbon dioxide levels have risen globally, approximately 22 percent. Much has been written about how the rise in greenhouse gases and that it's bad for the environment, but less has been said about how these gases can help some plants flourish.
Unfortunately for humans, these plants -- like poison ivy and ragweed -- tend to be irritating or even harmful to our health. A 2005 study found that when ragweed plants, a prime cause of hay fever symptoms in late summer and fall, were exposed to higher carbon dioxide levels they not only produced more pollen, but the grains of pollen were covered with increased numbers of nose-irritating proteins, supercharging the pollen's allergic properties.
The study subjected ragweed plants in a lab setting to different carbon dioxide levels from three eras -- the preindustrial age, the present day and even the end of the 21st century. The study found that the allergen concentrations increased 20 percent from the preindustrial age to today. But they were projected to rise a startling 60 percent by the end of the century.
So the plants might be flourishing in 90 years, but anyone with a ragweed allergy will be miserable.
"They're growing faster, they're producing more flowers," said Dr. Lewis Ziska, a research plant physiologist at the United States Department of Agriculture and one of the study's authors. "It's a two-edged sword...the [plants] that are responding have implications for public health."
Double Whammy Allergy Season
Traditionally, allergists break up the year into three distinct seasons. In spring, it's the trees that cause the most problems; summer brings flowering grasses that induce sneezing; and in fall, ragweed pollen afflicts allergy sufferers with itchy, watery eyes.
But as temperatures more common for July start showing up in April and May in certain areas of the country, plants react to the weather and not the calendar date.
Increased overlap between allergy seasons means more pollen in the air and little relief for people hoping for a break between seasons. However, even when there are multiple allergy seasons happening at once, allergists say there are things people can do to stave off the worst symptoms.
To keep pollen out of the home, experts recommend washing your face and changing your clothes after you arrive home and using a neti pot daily to help flush out irritating pollen grains.
A Milder Winter Might Mean a Miserable Spring
When the weather is warmer and seasons are milder, some plants will be releasing allergy-inducing pollen for longer periods of time.
A 2011 study looked at the length of the ragweed seasons in cities along different latitudes from Georgetown, Texas, to Saskatoon, Canada, over a 14-year period. During that time, nearly all the cities experienced fewer days with frost and longer ragweed seasons.
Cities further north also had statistically larger increases to their ragweed allergy seasons. The population of Saskatoon had to contend with a ragweed season 27 days longer in 2009 than in 1995.
Marooned on an 'Urban Heat Island' Means More Sneezing
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 80 percent of Americans currently reside in urban areas.
While cities that lack greenery may seem like a safe place for people with pollen allergies, experts say they won't offer much sanctuary during allergy season. That is partly because cities often become what scientists call "urban heat islands," where concrete and pavement soak up heat, resulting in consistently higher temperatures compared with surrounding rural areas.
With warmer temperatures and higher levels of carbon dioxide, some allergen-inducing plants can produce more pollen than the same plants located in rural areas.
A 2003 study on allergen levels in Baltimore found more than three times the amount of ragweed pollen in the city compared with the surrounding rural areas.
Also, densely packed urban areas have higher levels of diesel and car exhaust, which can irritate the nose and throat, making allergy symptoms worse.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 06:38:17 AM
(WASHINGTON) -- The House bipartisan “Gang of Eight” has reached an agreement in principle on immigration overhaul, including major points such as a pathway to citizenship, border security, health care and guest workers, a member of the group told ABC News Thursday night.
The lower chamber now expects to work out details next week before taking the Memorial Day break and introducing the bill June 4.
Over hoagie sandwiches, a two-hour meeting of a bipartisan group of congressmen nearly fell apart Thursday over who would pay for immigrant health care, the House “Gang” member said.
Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, was the last holdout, who had to call into the meeting from Idaho where his daughter had a recital, the member said.
Labrador, described as the most influential Republican in the House “Gang of Eight” because he represents Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s interests, finally agreed when language proposed by Democrats ensured that taxpayer money would not pay for immigrant health care.
Although not a member of the “Gang of Eight,” Wisconsin congressman and former vice presidential contender Paul Ryan was instrumental in bringing the Republicans along in the agreement.
The House bipartisan group that seemed to have stalled earlier Thursday announced it is finally moving forward on its own version of immigration overhaul.
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters Thursday that he was “concerned that the bipartisan group has been unable to wrap up their work.”
”I know that there are some very difficult issues that have come up, but I continue to believe that the House needs to deal with this and the House needs to work its will,” he said. “How we get there, we’re still dealing with it.”
But Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., told reporters Thursday evening that the group has "an agreement in principle that we’re drafting."
That agreement was struck after the two-hour meeting late Thursday afternoon.
“It is a very well-thought out, responsible, serious, enforceable proposal,” he said. “I feel really, really, really, really comfortable with the fact that this is a very complete bill, that fulfills what I’ve always wanted, which is to fix what’s broken.”
The whole package will now be run past their respective leadership and colleagues before the final language is finished and reviewed. But Diaz-Balart said the bill “is imminent.”
Meanwhile, the Senate Judiciary Committee has completed three days of markups and had addressed a total of 82 of the 300 amendments introduced to the legislation, which was written by the “Gang of Eight.” That meant they had earlier addressed more than a quarter of the amendments.
A spokesman for Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., told ABC News earlier Thursday that they were “making good progress and by far most amendments have passed on bipartisan basis.”
“Last week, we met for hours and worked through scores of amendments,” Leahy noted at Tuesday’s hearing. “Some termed our efforts ‘a lesson in democracy.’ Many noted that senators ‘showed a commitment to fairness and compromise.’”
A spokeswoman for the Senate Judiciary Committee said earlier Thursday that “Leahy has said he is committed to completing work on this bill by the end of next week.”
That’s good news for the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who promised again Thursday to bring the immigration bill to the floor of the Senate as soon as it’s ready out of committee.
“As soon as it’s ready, I’m going to bring that immigration legislation to the floor,” he said. “We’re going to start on the farm bill Monday. I’m going to bring the immigration bill to the floor regardless of whether we have committed action on the farm bill. Although immigration is a complex and controversial issue that deserves ample time for thoughtful debate and consideration, it’s also too important to delay action any longer.”
For a significant piece of legislation, such as this, many days in committee are not unusual.
According to Congressional Quarterly (CQ), the markup for the Affordable Care Act took 13 days and 60 hours.
CQ reported that committee members and staff believed the Affordable Care Act was the longest markup period ever for the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions, with almost 500 amendments considered, compared to 300 on immigration.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 05:18:02 AM
(CLEVELAND) -- Ariel Castro, the man accused of kidnapping three women and keeping them imprisoned in his home for a decade, stalked the neighborhood where his daughters lived and preyed on the girls' friends, his daughter says.
Two of his alleged victims, Gina DeJesus and Amanda Berry, went to school with Castro's two daughters and the four girls all knew each other, his daughter Emily told a private investigator in a recorded jailhouse interview obtained by ABC News.
"It couldn't be coincidence," Emily Castro told private eye Chris Giannini of her father's decision to allegedly target two girls his daughters knew.
Emily Castro is serving a 25-year prison sentence for stabbing her own infant daughter in 2011.
At the time of her 2003 abduction, Berry lived just a few houses down the block from the home in which Castro's daughters lived with their mother and stepfather. And Emily's sister Arlene was the last person to see DeJesus before she disappeared.
Berry, now 26, and Emily, now 25, attended school together. "I went to Wilbur Wright [Middle School] with her," Emily Castro told Giannini.
She said she was bothered that her father allegedly "used" her and her sister to look for victims on their street where they lived and played.
"He would come to his own kids' neighborhood, not his own. I'm not saying he should have done it all. I'm saying he didn't consider anything about us being his kids. He didn't consider that he's not only doing [kidnapping children] but he's hurting us," Emily Castro said.
She said she had seen DeJesus, a close friend of her younger sister, "a couple times" and spoke to her on the phone on the night before she was abducted.
Arlene Castro was the last person to see DeJesus on the day in 2004 that she vanished. The two wanted to go home together after school, and DeJesus lent her friend 50 cents for a pay phone call to ask her mother for permission, which was denied. DeJesus would normally have used that money for the bus, but instead she walked. It was on that walk she was allegedly abducted by Castro.
"I didn't want to believe they were connected," Emily Castro said upon learning that both girls she knew growing up had been living in captivity in a home owned by her father.
She said her father was routinely abusive of her mother Grimilda Figueroa, even beating her once while her mother was recovering from brain surgery. During the incident Emily Castro said she jumped on her father's back, stabbing him with a pencil in an effort to get him to stop.
Ariel Castro was arrested following that incident, but the charges were later dropped.
Despite the violence Castro alleged aimed at her mother, Emily Castro said her father never abused her or her siblings. She said Ariel Castro doted on his daughters and was overprotective. He insisted the girls cover up in public, wearing shorts under their skirts, T-shirts over their bathing suits and never change in front of him.
Castro, she said, even insisted his daughters shower "with underwear on" when he was in the house.
Emily said she had no knowledge of her father's alleged crimes and would have called the police herself had she known anything.
"I didn't know, I didn't have any knowledge at all. It is unbelievable," she said.
Along with Berry and DeJesus, Castro allegedly kidnapped a third woman, Michelle Knight, in 2003. The three women escaped last week when a neighbor heard Berry screaming and helped kick in the home's front door.
Castro has been charged with kidnapping and rape. Additional charges are expected, including counts that could carry the death penalty. He has not entered a plea.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 05:17:29 AM
(NEW YORK) -- The NBC comedy The Office ended its nine-season run Thursday night with a 75-minute episode that was heavy on surprises, including the return of Steve Carell.
The finale was set one year after the premiere of the TV documentary in which the employees of the Scranton, Pa., branch of the Dunder Mifflin paper company starred. We learned that many of the workers had moved on, some by choice -- Stanley retired, Andy had become a viral sensation thanks to his miserable reality show audition -- while others -- Kevin and Toby -- were fired.
The entire crew came together for the wedding of Dwight and Angela. Their old boss, Carell's Michael Scott, showed up at the last second to be Dwight's best man.
Dwight remarked, "I can't believe you came." Michael responded as only he can, with his signature catchphrase: "That's what she said."
Carell didn't have much screen time in the episode. In one of his rare lines of the night, he told the documentary film crew, "It feels like all my kids grew up and married each other. It's every parent's dream."
In the other major development of the episode, Jim and Pam decided to sell their home and move to Austin, Texas, so he could recommit himself to the growing sports marketing company he helped launch in Philadelphia. His involvement with that company had strained the couple's marriage for most of the season.
As for some of the other major characters:
- Original cast members Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak reprised their roles of Kelly and Ryan, respectively. Kelly ditched her man at the wedding to run away with her on-again, off-again boyfriend Ryan, who's now a single dad. Actually, he was a single dad, until he decided to abandon the kid at the ceremony. The baby ended up in the hands of Nellie, who had been looking to adopt.
- At a documentary reunion panel, the adopted Erin was united with her biological mother and father, played by guest stars Joan Cusack and Ed Begley, Jr.
- After his firing, Kevin became a bar owner, but he is still his goofy self.
- Oscar is a candidate for state Senate -- a nod to the fact that he once had an affair with Angela's ex-husband, a state senator.
In the final moments of the episode, Creed -- played by Creed Bratton, former member of the 1960s rock band The Grass Roots -- performed music in the office as various employees reflected on their Dunder Mifflin experience with the cameras.
Jenna Fischer, as Pam, closed the show by saying, "All in all, I think that an ordinary paper company like Dunder Mifflin was a great subject for a documentary. There's a lot of beauty in ordinary things. Isn't that kind of the point?"
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 04:59:38 AM
(NEW YORK) -- Bill Hader's final appearance as a cast member of Saturday Night Live will come this weekend. But the season finale of the NBC late-night sketch program may also mark the swan song of two other longtime stars.
The New York Post reports that Fred Armisen is set to depart SNL, and that Jason Sudeikis will "probably" exit the show, too.
Armisen is wrapping up his 11th season on SNL. He's also the star of the IFC comedy Portlandia.
Sudeikis, who's completing his eighth season on SNL, has an active movie career.
The season finale of SNL will be hosted by Ben Affleck, with musical guest Kanye West.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 04:51:15 AM
(MOSCOW) -- Moscow is putting pressure on Iran to take an active role in a conference planned for the beginning of June that seeks a peaceful resolution to the ongoing conflict in Syria.
Last week, Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced together that they would spearhead an international peace summit on Syria with members of both President Bashar al Assad's regime and the main Syrian opposition group expected to be in attendance.
During an interview Thursday, Lavrov stressed that its regional ally Iran, which is also close to al-Assad, can play pivotal role during the conference.
The top Russia envoy said, "We must not exclude such a country as Iran from this process due to geopolitical preferences. It is after all a very important outside player...directly interacting and supporting one or other Syrian side in a political or other way."
However, Lavrov admitted that Tehran hasn't responded yet to his overture. In fact, Damascus has also expressed reluctance to participate, which would undermine the intent of the conference.
Lavrov also accused some Western nations of trying to narrow the scope of the summit, saying this would also be counterproductive in finding a solution to the two-year Syrian conflict.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 04:21:34 AM
(BOSTON) -- The overtime magic continued for the Boston Bruins on Thursday night.
Brad Marchand scored a goal with 4:20 left in the extra period to give the Bruins a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
"It's always frustrating" not to score, Marchand said, "but there's so many other areas of the game. It's always nice to get the first one and you hope you just keep going."
Marchand's goal gave the Bruins their third straight overtime win, while the Rangers have lost three-straight overtime games.
The game was deadlocked throughout the majority of regulation, but shots proved to be the difference in overtime as Boston outshot New York 16-5.
"I thought it was pretty even going into the overtime," Rangers coach John Tortorella said. "But we got spanked in the overtime."
Game 2 of their best-of-seven series is Sunday night in Boston.
Copyright 2013 ABC News RadioPublished: 5/17/2013 04:03:00 AM