In the Nation

Bill Gardner, New Hampshire secretary of state (right), announcing the primary date, with a supporter, Cy Gregg.
Bill Gardner, New Hampshire secretary of state (right), announcing the primary date, with a supporter, Cy Gregg. (JIM COLE / Associated Press)
Posted: November 03, 2011

New Hampshire primary is Jan. 10

New Hampshire will hold the nation's first presidential primary Jan. 10, its secretary of state, Bill Gardner, said Wednesday. The announcement largely cements the election calendar for 2012, which will see fewer contests in the early stages than in the 2008 race.

The contests will begin with the Iowa caucuses Jan. 3. South Carolina Republicans hold their primary Jan. 21, followed in 10 days by the Florida primary. Nevada Republicans will hold the first-in-the-West caucuses Feb. 4.

This year's "Super Tuesday" will fall on March 6, when about a dozen states hold primaries or caucuses.

Pennsylvania and Delaware will hold their primaries April 24 and New Jersey on June 5. - Tribune

Washington Bureau

Air Force will cut 9,000 civilian jobs

WASHINGTON - The Air Force said Wednesday that it planned to eliminate 9,000 civilian jobs in a cost-saving move, with more reductions to come later as part of a military-wide effort to adjust to a new era of defense spending cuts.

Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, the Air Force chief of staff, said the Air Force would try hard to achieve the job reductions through attrition and other management moves to avoid forced layoffs.

After growing rapidly for a decade, the Pentagon budget is headed for substantial reductions. The Obama administration is committed to cuts of $450 billion to $465 billion over 12 years, and cuts about double that size could be imposed depending on the outcome of congressional budget negotiations.

The Air Force said a portion of its planned job reductions would come from a reorganization of the Air Force Materiel Command, its largest employer of civilians, at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. That command's restructuring is to be done by October 2012. - AP

4 in militia group held in terror plot

Four Georgia men who were part of a fringe militia group were arrested Tuesday in what the Justice Department described as a plot to use guns, bombs, and the toxin ricin to kill federal and state officials and spread terror.

The men were recorded telling an FBI informant that they wanted to kill federal judges, IRS employees, and agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, according to court documents. "There is no way for us, as militiamen, to save this country, to save Georgia, without doing something that's highly, highly illegal: murder," one of those charged, Frederick Thomas, 73, of Cleveland, Ga., was recorded telling the informant.

Another of the men, Samuel J. Crump, 68, of Toccoa, Ga., is accused of saying he wanted to make 10 pounds of ricin and disperse it in Atlanta and other cities, as well as loosing it from a car traveling on interstate highways. The others arrested were Dan Roberts, 67, and Ray H. Adams, 65, both of Toccoa, Justice said. - N.Y. Times News Service

Elsewhere:

Crews worked feverishly Wednesday to restore power to nearly 1.2 million homes and businesses in the Northeast in the dark after a freak weekend snowstorm. Hard-hit Connecticut still had nearly 550,000 customers without power.

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