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March 23, 1995 - Image 14

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-03-23

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14- The Michigan Daily - Thursday, March 23, 1995
House energy bill faces resistance

bill that would eliminate federal heat-
ing assistance to the poor has met stiff
resistance in the Senate, where 35
senators including Carl Levin (D-
Mich.) have signed a letter support-
ing the $1.3 billion program.
"While we recognize the need to
cut the federal deficit, we believe the
Low Income Home Energy Assis-
tance Program is a valuable and cost-
effective way to help 5.6 million needy
American families pay their energy
bills," the senators wrote in a letter
released yesterday.
Added to the written dissent of
nearly one-third. of the Senate, Sen.
Arlen Specter (R-Penn.) - head of
the Senate subcommittee which will
review the cut - said he favored
keeping the program.
Michigan ranks fourth among
states in total heating assistance and
the state expected to receive $70.8
million in funds for fiscal 1995,

Levin's office said.
The program provided heating
assistance in 1993 to 377,893 house-
holds in Michigan with an average of
$183 for each household, according
to government figures. The recipients
had an average annual income of
"Some of these families would
have to choose between heating and
eating," Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)
said yesterday. "You die when you
don't heat."
Some House Republicans say the
program is no longer critical because
the energy crises of the 1970s is over
and oil prices have declined.
In addressing the criticism, sena-
tors from both parties wrote that elimi-
nating the program would force en-
ergy providers to "choose between
not getting paid for the energy they
provide and cutting off their neediest
Specter said he was committed to

the Republican aim of balancing the
federal budget by the year 2002, but
believed the energy assistance pro-
gram could be maintained and the
cuts be made elsewhere.
Specter, who has announced his
intention to run for President in 1996,
did not specify where he would make
the alternative cuts.
In a reference to the first presiden-
tial primary, Sen. Patrick Leahy of
Vermont said Republican senators
visiting New Hampshire next year
would be asked to justify voting for
tax cuts for some wealthy Americans
while "throwing 64,000 New Hamp-
shire residents off the LIHEAP pro-
The elimination of the program is
part of $17 billion in proposed cuts to
the fiscal 1995 budget in part to fi-
nance $5.4 billion in disaster assis-
tancetoCaliforniaand 39 other states.
The cuts passed the House last week.
"Twice as many people froze to

death during last year's cold spell as
were killed in California's 1994earth-
quake," Levin said.
The senators' letter went to Sen.
Mark Hatfield, the Appropriations
Committee chair who could start ex-
amining the House bill as early as this
Earlier this month, Rep. James
Barcia (D-Mich.) and Rep. John
Oliver (D-Mass.) authored a letter
urging the House to spare the pro-
gram. The letter was signed by 97
representatives including nine Michi-
gan Democrats and Michigan Repub-
lican Dave Camp.
In 1994, President Clinton sug-
gested paring the program to $730
million for fiscal 1995 and met with
resistance from half the Senate, which
successfully fought to kill the pro-
During the program's peak a de-
cade ago, it had $2.1 billion funding
and served 6.8 million households.


t. , '

Supreme Court rules on welfare 'families'

+a^e. .............


The Washington Post
Court ruled yesterday that states can
cut their welfare costs by counting all
needy children living under one roof
as a single family group, even if they
are not all brothers and sisters.
The unanimous decision, written
by Justice Clarence Thomas, is a vic-
tory for states that have wanted more
control over Aid to Families with
Dependent Children, and it is consis-
tent with congressional efforts to give
states more flexibility in managing
welfare funds.
But it is a loss for grandparents
and other guardians who, because of
today's fractured families, end up
caring for grandchildren, grandnieces
and nephews, and other orphans in
one home.

The court said states can make
rules that reflect "the economies of
scale" when numerous people live
together. The California regulation at
issue, similar to policies in most states
and the District of Columbia, consoli-
dates all children in a household and
reduces individual, per-child benefits
as the number of children increases.
Prior state standards had counted chil-
dren who were not siblings as a sepa-
rate family unit and allowed a care-
taker more money on their behalf.
California Deputy Attorney Gen-
eral Mateo Munoz said the court
rightly recognized that same-size
families should get the same assis-
tance. That way, six brothers and sis-
ters would not qualify for less AFDC
money than three siblings and three
cousins, he said. "An aunt is not going

to withhold food or buy cheaper cloth-
ing for one member of a family than
another," Munoz said.
In 1984, when Congress amended
the rules for aid to needy children and
the relatives who live with them, it
said all siblings should be considered
asingle family unit thatpoolsresoures.
Since then, states have tried to con-
solidate siblings and non-siblings.
Verna Edwards, who lives with
her granddaughter and two grand-
nieces and receives AFDC aid, was
the lead challenger to the California
rule. She had been receiving $901 per
month on behalf of the three girls
when they were considered part of
two family units. In 1991, when Cali-
fornia grouped the three girls together
as a single family unit, it reduced the
monthly payment to $694.

After Edwards and others in her
predicament sued, lower courts struck
down the California rule, saying it
conflicted with federal regulations and
assumed a single caregiver - here a
grandmother - would evenly divide
up the household income and re-
The 9th U.S. Court of Appeals
said states could not assume the econo-
mies of scale with children who are
not siblings.
In reversing the appeals court, Tho-
mas said neither that federal provi-
sion nor any other stops California
from counting all children in the same
household as one family unit, regard-
less of whether they are siblings.
The Clinton Justice Department
had supported California in the case
of Anderson vs. Edwards.


On the rise
A student walks up to the main entrance of Angell Hall yesterday.


Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES -A subdued Brian
"Kato" Kaelin yesterday described his
evening with O.J. Simpson in the hours
beforeapair of grisly slayings and banged
his fist to demonstrate the three mysteri-
ous thumps authorities believe are linked
to the killings.
Deputy District Attorney Marcia
Clark guided Kato through a methodi-
cal recitation of his actions the night
of the June 12 slayings. The effect
was mixed forprosecutors, as Kaelin's
testimony was sometimes disjointed,
particularly when asked about events
that took place after the slayings.
Simpson pleaded not guilty to the
fatal stabbings of his former wife,
NicoleBrown Simpson, and her friend
Ronald Goldman.
Kaelin spent the evening making
phone calls to friends, and Clark pre-
sented phone records to establish when
Kaelin was in his room.
Kaelin's appearance on the wit-
ness stand drew record numbers to
the courthouse, topping the draw for
the testimony of Los Angeles Police
Detective Mark Fuhrman.
Using the phone records, Clark
traced Kaelin's steps through the
evening, beginning with a conversa-
tion between him and Simpson after
Simpson returned from his daughter's
dance recital.

Shapiro defends place
on Simpson legal team

Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES - The archi-
tect of O.J. Simpson's defense de-
nied speculation that he is breaking
from his defense colleagues and
defended his decision to wear a pin
signaling support for the Los Ange-
les Police Department - a move
that astounded other members of
the defense.
In an interview late Monday night,
Robert Shapiro accused some trial-
watchers of misinterpreting comments
he made on the issue of race in the
trial and stressed he has no intention
of quitting the team.
"That is just ridiculous. ... I don't
know where they come up with this,"
Shapiro said. "I committed to O.J.
Simpson 100 percent. I'm in this to
the end."
Shapiro's latest comments come
after an unusual public statement by
the attorney last week. Outside court,
Shapiro expressed his regret that race

After Cochran's intervention, the
three lawyers proclaimed their will-
ingness to work together, and Shapiro
publicly bestowed the title of "lead
trial counsel" on Cochran.
Given that history of squabbling,
Shapiro's comments about race fi-
eled speculation
that he was again
trying to distance
himself from
Bailey, who had
just concluded
his racially
charged and
4 poorly received
tion of Los An-
Shapiro geles police De-
tective Mark
But Shapiro insisted Monday night
that his comments were not directed
at Bailey or at his questioning of
"I was not talking about the
Fuhrman cross," Shapiro said. "I just
was saying that I wished race had not
become an issue in this case. That's
always been my feeling. It's not a
change in position. It's been my posi-
tion from day
m/mif ttd In the inter
view, Shapiro
ipsof also defended
and explained
his decision to
end." wear a blue rib
bon pin - a
obert Shapiro symbol of loy-
e attorney for alty to the Po-
O.J. Simpson ligeDepartment
- during his


Brian "Kato" Kaelin smirks during his testimony at the O.J. Simpson double-murder trial yesterday.

Later that evening, Kaelin said, he
and Simpson went out for hamburg-
ers, returning to Simpson's estate at
about 9:40 p.m. After that, Kaelin
said he went back to his room, ate his
food and made some calls.
Kaelin said during one call he
heard three thumps so loud he feared
an earthquake. Clark asked him to
demonstrate the sound he had heard,
and Kaelin pounded three times on
the witness stand.

Those thumps are among the most
important elements of the prosecu-
tion case. Kaelin estimated he heard
them between 10:40 and 10:45 p.m.
Authorities believe Simpson was
skulking around his estate at that hour,
trying to enter without being noticed
and possibly seeking to dispose of
The timeline for the slayings and
their aftermath is extraordinarily im-
portant in the Simpson case because
Simpson has a strong alibi after about
11 p.m., when he left for the airport.
Thus, prosecutors need to show the
killings occurred early enough for
Simpson to have committed them,
rushed home to meet the limousine.
Kaelin told police of the thumps
when they arrived the next morning.
One of them, Fuhrman, said he then
went in search of the area where the
thumps occurred, and while investi-
gating, came upon a bloody glove
resembling one found at the crime

scene. According to prosecutors, DNA
tests show the blood on the glove
could be a mixture of blood from both
victims and Simpson.
After hearing the noises, Kaelin
said he went to investigate and stopped
because he only had a small flashlight
and was scared to go further.
Back in front of the house, Kaelin
testified he saw Simpson and a limou-
sine driver as Simpson was rushing to
catch a flight.
Kaelin said he helped load
Simpson's golf bag into the limou-
sine. But when he went to pick up
another bag, Simpson said he would
get it himself. That bag has never
been recovered, Clark said in her open-
ing statement, suggesting that it might
have contained evidence.
Clark asked Kaelin whether he
had noticed any cuts on Simpson's
hands during the evening. Kaelin said
he saw Simpson's hands several times
and neither appeared to be injured.

had become an issue in the trial, not-
ing he had long hoped it would not
"My preference was that race was
not an issue in this case and should
not be an issue in this case," Shapiro
said at that time.
colleagues on
the defense 1 am c
team were an-Obto J
gered by those toO EJ Si
remarks, and
some observ- 1 0p r
ers interpreted this to th
them as sug-
gesting a re-
newed rift defer
within the
team. A few
analysts sug-
gested Shapiro might be signaling his
intention of leaving the highly touted
legal group that he brought together
last year.
According to sources, however,
Simpson wants Shapiro to stay. If any
of the team's lawyers were suddenly
and could draw inferences that would
reflect badly on Simpson, the sources
Members of Simpson's defense


We've taken
to th e D is a~ e.r a g !

tion of a Los Angeles Police Depart-
ment detective.
Among those surprised by
Shapiro wearing the pin were his
colleagues on the defense team.
Some of them privately derided
Shapiro for that decision, and also
belittled his cross-examination of
Detective Philip Vannatter.
Shapiro, however, once again
seemed intent on distancing himself
from his colleagues. In the interview,



Don't let half your grade get you
tA".cvM durino. aafinalts.


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