The Top 10 Stories of July 12, 2013

By Duane Shank 7-12-2013

Quote of the day.
"We should treat them differently because they are different. They've had different experiences. And in most instances, we've sent them into harm's way." U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Warner, who started the federal veteran's court in Salt Lake City, on why the program is invaluable for addressing the unique needs of veterans.
(San Francisco Chronicle/AP)

1. Farm bill passes House without food stamp money.
House Republicans narrowly passed a farm bill on Thursday that was stripped of hundreds of billions in funding for food stamps, abandoning four decades of precedent to gain the backing of conservative lawmakers.
(Washington Post)

2. Harry Reid slams Mitch McConnell, ready for nuclear option.
Majority Leader Harry Reid charged on Thursday that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has “broken” his promises to consider President Barack Obama’s executive branch nominations, as the Nevada Democrat prepared to move forward with the “nuclear option” to change Senate rules.

3. Difficult spot for Obama on immigration push.
As opposition to an overhaul of the immigration system hardens in the Republican-controlled House, President Obama is trapped between the need to promote what could be a legacy piece of legislation and the reality that being out front might be counterproductive at best.
(New York Times)

4. Low-wage food workers stage one-day strike at Smithsonian museums.
Ross was one of about 100 protesters gathered Thursday morning in front of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, calling on President Barack Obama to issue an executive order to force federally contracted businesses, such as restaurants within the Smithsonian, to provide all workers with a “living wage.”
(McClatchy News)

5. Fracking wastewater linked to rise in earthquakes.
A boom in earthquakes seems to have accompanied the U.S. energy boom, geologists reported Thursday. The connection: wastewater from energy drilling that is injected deep underground, putting pressure on quake faults.
(USA Today)

6. U.S. is pressing Latin Americans to reject Snowden.
The United States is conducting a diplomatic full-court press to try to block Edward J. Snowden, the fugitive American intelligence contractor, from finding refuge in Latin America, where three left-leaning governments that make defying Washington a hallmark of their foreign policies have publicly vowed to take him in.
(New York Times)

7. Senators seek clarity on Afghanistan.
Leading lawmakers called on the Obama administration Thursday to make and announce a decision on the size of the U.S. military force to remain in Afghanistan following combat withdrawal next year.
(Washington Post)

8. Egypt braces for more protests, prays for calm.
Supporters of ousted President Mohamed Mursi called for protests on Friday and Egyptians prayed there would be no repeat of clashes that have killed more than 90 people in the last week in the bitterly divided Arab nation.

9. Drones in Niger reflect new U.S. approach in terror fight.
The drone base, established in February and staffed by about 120 members of the Air Force, is the latest indication of the priority Africa has become for the United States at a time when it is winding down its presence in Afghanistan and President Obama has set a goal of moving from a global war on terrorism toward a more targeted effort.
(New York Times)

10. War denying millions of children an education.
Almost 50 million children and young people living in conflict areas are out of school, more than half of them primary age, and reports of attacks on education are rising.

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