Bush Calls For More
4460 Orchard f2ake
Washington/JTA — President Bush
called for an expansion of federal
funding of faith-based initiatives.
In his State of the Union address,
Bush asked Congress to pass legisla-
tion allowing religious organizations
to receive federal funds to provide
community services, such as drug
rehabilitation and homeless shelters,
and he proposed an increase in fund-
ing for such services.
Regarding the Middle East, Bush
said, "We continue to seek peace
between a- secure Israel and a demo-
cratic Palestine." Bush also proposed
$400 billion over 10 years to reform
Medicare, and he called for legisla-
tion against human cloning and par-
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New York/JTA — The controversial
National Jewish Population Survey
2000-01, which was delayed last year
when some data got lost, shoUld be
released within several months.
A report to the United Jewish
Communities federation umbrella
said that the NJPS — billed as the
most comprehensive demographic
portrait to date of U.S. Jewry —
should be made public in "not more
than several months" after an inter-
nal probe found it was not necessary
to "redo the research," UJC spokes-
woman Gail Hyman said.
The UJC blames Roper Audits &
Surveys Worldwide, the firm that
conducted the study, for "program-
ming errors" that led to the missing
A Roper spokeswoman said the
firm is "working closely" with the
UJC on its review of the delay.
Barring the discovery of new prob-
lems, the review should be wrapped
up in six to eight weeks, Hyman
Jerusalem/JTA — Meretz Party
leader Yossi Sarid and Yisrael
Ba'Aliyah leader Natan Sharansky
resigned following their parties' poor
showings in Israeli elections.
Sarid submitted a letter resigning
as head of the left-wing Meretz Party.
He still may stay on as a Knesset
member. Meretz won six seats
Tuesday, down from 10. Sharansky,
whose party fell from four to two
seats, said he was resigning from the
Knesset but would remain on as his
party's leader, working to expand its
base of support.
New York/JTA — A subway conduc-
tor won a matzah ball eating contest
in New York.
Eric Booker ate 21 matzah balls in
five minutes and 25 seconds to win
the sixth annual contest at Ben's
Kosher Deli. "The matzah balls were
a little fluffier than what I trained
with," Booker said, adding that he
felt great after winning the competi-
The event is a fund-raiser for the
Interfaith Nutrition Network, which
operates soup kitchens and homeless
shelters on Long Island and in New
In Israel's History
Jerusalem/JTA — Only 69 percent of
Israel's eligible voters cast their bal-
lots in the recent elections, the low-
est percentage in Israel's history.
Some 3.2 million of 4.7 eligible
voters cast ballots, according to the
Central Election Committee.
Israeli Soldier Dies
After Long Coma
Jerusalem/JTA — An Israeli soldier
died after being in a coma for almost
19 years. Sgt. Maj. Nadal Fero suf-
fered massive injuries to his stomach
in an April 1984 skirmish with
Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza
Strip, according to the Israeli daily
"The doctors didn't even think he
would make it through one day, but
he fought for almost 19 years, like a
hero," his mothe'r told the paper
after he died Sunday.
U.S. Jews Lose
New York/JTA — American Jews
have grown more pessimistic about