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NEWS
February 6, 2015 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - When he started working on defense issues, Ashton Carter said Wednesday, there was just one big worry: the Cold War and its threat of nuclear disaster. "Those were the good old days," said Sen. James M. Inhofe (R., Okla.). Now, as Carter stands poised to become the civilian head of the U.S. military, the Abington High School graduate faces a much more complex tangle. "We are in a time where the number and severity of risks is not something I've seen before in my life," Carter said during the first hearing on his nomination to become secretary of defense.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 5, 2015 | BY CHUCK DARROW, Daily News Staff Writer darrowc@phillynews.com, 215-313-3134
SO, A COUPLE of Academy Award nominees are teaming up to do Anton Chekhov's "The Cherry Orchard. " Big deal, right? You can't swing a rolled-up Playbill in New York's theater district without hitting some big-time movie or TV star taking a huge pay cut to hit the boards. (Paging Bradley "Elephant Man" Cooper!) But when David Strathairn (nominated for "Good Night, and Good Luck") and Mary McDonnell ("Dances With Wolves," "Passion Fish") hit the stage Feb. 11, they will be, according to Mapquest, exactly 114.72 miles southwest of Times Square, at People's Light & Theatre Company, in Malvern.
NEWS
January 28, 2015 | By David O'Reilly, Inquirer Staff Writer
The New Jersey Senate Judiciary Committee put off a planned vote Monday on Gov. Christie's nomination of Robert Barr to the Pinelands Commission, a decision hailed by opponents of a controversial gas pipeline proposal. State Sen. Kip Bateman (R., Somerset), a committee member, said afterward it appeared the vote was not held because there was not enough support for Barr to win approval. He said he thinks the governor is trying to stack the commission to enable the pipeline. In a related development, the chairman of the Pinelands Commission said he would seek to tighten its regulations to make it difficult for utilities to win waivers for nonconforming projects such as a pipeline.
NEWS
December 13, 2014 | By Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON - Gov. Christie's pick to head the state Education Department won unanimous approval Thursday from a Senate panel, even as one conservative lawmaker and members of the public expressed unease with his embrace of the divisive Common Core State Standards. David C. Hespe, who was education commissioner under Gov. Christie Whitman, has served as acting head of the department since March, following the resignation of Chris Cerf. He was chief of staff in the department during Christie's first term and returned to the administration after a stint as president of Burlington County College.
NEWS
December 7, 2014 | By Dan DeLuca, Inquirer Music Critic
This year's twist in the Grammy nominations was to roll out the announcements little by little, all day Friday. The first of the major noms, announced by Ed Sheeran and Pharrell Williams on CBS This Morning , was record of the year. The last ones, for album of the year, were revealed on A Very Grammy Christmas Special Friday night on CBS. Nominated for album of the year are Sam Smith's In the Lonely Hour , Beyonce's self-titled release, and Williams' G I R L , along with Beck's Morning Phase and Ed Sheeran's X . And the nominees for record of the year are: Iggy Azalea and Charli XCX, "Fancy"; Sia, "Chandelier"; Taylor Swift, "Shake It Off"; Meghan Trainor, "All About That Bass;" and Smith, "Stay With Me. " The song of the year slate was nearly identical, with the tracks by Sia, Trainor, Swift, and Smith, plus the intriguing "Take Me to Church," by Hozier.
NEWS
December 7, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - He walked into a room named for Theodore and Franklin D. Roosevelt, just behind President Obama and Vice President Biden, as members of the president's inner circle and national defense elites stood and applauded. Ashton Carter, born in Philadelphia and raised in Abington, had a bright moment in the spotlight Friday morning as he was nominated to become secretary of defense, which would put him in charge of the world's most powerful military and a host of vexing challenges.
NEWS
September 17, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - The civil rights lawyer whose path to a prominent post in the Obama administration was blocked by connections to the Mumia Abu-Jamal case has withdrawn as a nominee and joined a high-profile law firm. Debo Adegbile, whose nomination to lead the Justice Department's civil rights division was derailed in March by a charged Senate vote, has joined Wilmer, Cutler, Pickering, Hale & Dorr L.L.P. as a partner, the firm announced Monday. In an interview, Adegbile defended his work on Abu-Jamal's case, which drew a chorus of criticism led by Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.)
NEWS
July 7, 2014 | By Karen Heller, Inquirer Columnist
Ben Franklin is the best. He is a man of firsts for the state and the nation, and he's ours, despite his birth in Boston. Franklin is, by far, the most fun Founding Father, the revolutionary figure with whom you would most want to share that proverbial tankard of ale. We are all about the Benjamin. Franklin is the greatest Pennsylvanian, according to a recent Harper poll of the commonwealth, where 57 percent deemed him tops. Most likely, Franklin will always be our greatest citizen.
NEWS
June 18, 2014 | By Maddie Hanna, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON - The Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday approved Gov. Christie's two nominees - one a Democrat, the other a Republican - to the state Supreme Court, advancing with little dissent a deal brokered by Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D., Gloucester). The deal will likely keep Democratic Chief Justice Stuart Rabner on the court, while adding to the bench Camden County Republican Lee Solomon, a state court judge who has ties to Christie and has been praised by Democrats. The full Senate is expected to decide Thursday on the nominations of Rabner and Solomon, who cleared the Judiciary Committee by votes of 11-2 for Rabner and 12-1 for Solomon.
NEWS
May 19, 2014 | By Amy Worden, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
  HARRISBURG - There's more at stake Tuesday than determining which Democrat will face off against Gov. Corbett in the fall. Voters in the state's southeastern corner will also choose party nominees for Congress, decide whether embattled state legislators deserve to stand for reelection, and settle the ticket in some unexpected primary contests. Among the most heated races is one pitting four Democrats vying for the nomination in the 13th Congressional District, which straddles the Philadelphia-Montgomery County border.
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