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September 28, 2009 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2009-09-28

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Monday, September 28, 2009 - 3A

The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom Monday, September 28, 2009 - 3A

Mich. panel votes to
cut prison spending
A legislative conference commit-
tee has voted to cut prison spending
in the Michigan budget year sched-
uled to start in four days.
The 5 percent cut would be met in
part by completing a previously an-
nounced plan to close prisons and
prison camps. Gov. Jennifer Gra-
nholm's administration has been pa-
roling more inmates to save money.
The Legislature could start pass-
ing the Corrections Department
budget when it returns to work to-
morrow. Lawmakers have until the
end of Wednesday to erase a $2.8 bil-
lion deficit.
It costs about $32,000 a year to in-
carcerate an inmate. Members of the
conference committee agreed Sun-
day to reduce per-prisoner costs by
$841 by trying to save on things like
inmates' prescription drugs and the
cost of moving prisoners from facil-
ity to facility.
Under pressure for
nukes, Iran test fires
short-range missiles
Iran's powerful Revolutionary
Guard said it successfully test-fired
short-range missiles yesterday in
drills meant to show Tehran is pre-
pared to crush any military threat
from another country. ,
The display of force comes days
after the U.S. and its allies warned
Iran over a newly revealed nuclear
facility it was secretly constructing.
Gen. Hossein Salami, head of the
Revolutionary Guard Air Force, said
Iran had perfected its short range
missiles to make themmore accurate
in tactical battlefield situations and
defend the country from any attacks.
"We are going to respond to any
military action in a crushing man-
ner and it doesn't make any differ-
ence which country or regime has
launched the aggression," state
media quoted Salami as saying. He
said the missiles successfully hit
their targets.
The tests came two days after
the U.S. and its allies disclosed that
Iran had been secretly developing a
previously unknown underground
uranium enrichment facility and
warned the country it mustopen the
nuclear site to international inspec-
tion or face harsher international
Gates calls setting
Afghan withdrawal
deadline a mistake
Defense Secretary Robert Gates
says it's a mistake to set a deadline to
end American military actionassome
liberals have sought, and that a defeat
would be disastrous for the U.S.
In a stern warning to critics of a
stan, Gates said the Islamic extremist
Taliban and al-Qaida would perceive
an early pullout as a victory over the
United States as similar to the Soviet

Union's humiliating withdrawal in
1989 after a 10-year war.
"The notion of timelines and exit
strategies and so on, frankly, I think
would all be a strategic mistake. The
reality is, failure in Afghanistan
would be a huge setback for the Unit-
ed States," Gates said in an interview
broadcast Sunday on CNN's "State of
the Union."
"Taliban and al-Qaida, as far as
they're concerned, defeated one
superpower. For them to be seen to
defeat a second, I think, would have
catastrophic consequences in terms
of energizing the extremist move-
ment, al-Qaida recruitment, opera-
tions, fundraising, and so on. I think
it would be a huge setback for the
United States."
Conservative Merkel
captures 2nd term
GermanChancellor AngelaMerkel
yesterday wonthecenter-rightmajor-
ity that eluded her four years ago -
nudging Europe's biggest economic
power to the right as it claws its way
out of a deep recession.
Voters sent the nation's main left-
wing party, the Social Democrats
of Foreign Minister Frank-Walter
Steinmeier, into opposition after 11
years as part of the government. It
was the party's worst parliamentary
electionresultsince World War II.
"Thereisno talkingaround it: this
is a bitter defeat," a subdued Stein-
meier said, vowing to lead a strong
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports

Michigan GOP
hopeful for 2010

Carlos Lopez Contreras, the foreign minister representing Honduras' interim government, answers a question during a press
conference at the presidential house in Tegucigalpa yesterday.
HondurascrISIS Intensifies

Interim government
expells OAS workers,
gives Brazil 10-day

because we are in the middle of
internal conversations."
Talks between Zelaya and
Micheletti's representatives have
produced no results. Zelaya, who
surprised the world by sneaking
back into Honduras last week,
called on his followers nationwide

said that, because Brazil has bro-
ken off diplomatic relations with
the interim government, it would
have to remove the Brazilian flag
and shield from the Embassy "and
it (the building) becomes a private
Brazil - like the rest of the

Attendance reaches
more than 2,300 for
three-day Republican
(AP) - Michigan Republicans left
a three-day Mackinac Island con-
ference yesterday with high hopes
that 2010will be amuch better year
for GOP candidates than 2008.
State party Chairman Ron
Weiser said voters' concern over
the policies of Democratic Presi-
dent Barack Obama and the state's
economic woes are causing them
to look toward the GOP.
"People are scared," he said
as the event wrapped up at the
landmark Grand Hotel. "They're
worried about what's going on
in Washington, they're worried
about what's going on in Lansing.
They want change."
Hundreds of newcomers came
to the once-every-two-years event
for the first time, pushing atten-
dance to more than 2,300 - a
record, Weiser said.
Tenth District GOP Chairman
Randy St. Laurent said the same
thing is happening at the local
level, with 26 people joining the
Lapeer County Republican Party
this year. Fears about Democratic
policies in Washington and Lan-.
sing have "done wonders for our
recruiting," he said.
Obama won Michigan by 16
percentage points last year, and
Michigan Democrats nabbed
seats in Congress and the Michi-
gan House. They even managed
to upset a longtime GOP state
Supreme Court justice.
GOP strategist Tom Shields,
president of Marketing Resource

Group in Lansing, said Michigan
remains ablue-leaningstate, some-
thing Republicans won't be able to
change in the 401 days left before
the November 2010 elections.
But he said voters are consider-
ing all their options.
"We're seeing not necessarily a
shift toward the Republican Party,
but a shift toward Republican
ideas" of fiscal responsibility and
less govertnent intrusion, Shields
said as he left the conference.
"People are really concerned about
governme At spending. ... A lot of
it's being driven by Washington
because of Obatnacare."
State Democratic Chairman
Mark Brewer said the Democratic
president is energizing his party
and still drawing the support
of people who want the change
he promised. The state party is
having a easy time recruiting
candidates for 2010 races, from
statewide seats for governor,
attorney general, secretary of
state and the Supreme Court to
local races for legislative seats, he
And even if voters' allegiances
are shifting, they can just as easily
shift back, he noted.
"This is a very competitive
state," Brewer said. "You can't take
anything for granted."
Republican National Commmit-
teewoman Holly Hughes of Mon-
tague said votei-s' determination to
head in a new direction is evident
in the number of people turning
out for the anti-tax "tea parties"
and showing up for local GOP Lin-
coln Day dinners.
That renewed excitement also
is evident in volunteers showing
up to help out in the Battle Creek-
Jackson area race for the state Sen-
ate seat formerly held by now-U.S.
Rep. Mark Schauer, she said.

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras to mark today'sthree-month anni- international community - rec-
(AP) - Honduras' interim gov- versary of the coup with a mass ognizes Zelaya as Honduras'
ernment yesterday expelled per- march in the capital to demand legitimate president, and says it
sonnel from the Organization of his reinstatement, what he called wants to protect him.
American States looking to set up "the final offensive" against the But the Brazilian government
a mediation effort and gave Bra- interim government. said previously that Zelaya's
zil a 10-day ultimatum to decide A spokesman for Micheletti arrival took Embassy officials by
what to do with ousted President also warned Brazilian authorities surprise, and Silva asked Zelaya
Manuel Zelaya, who is holed up in to "immediately take measures to "to take care to give no pretext to
the Brazilian Embassy. ensure that Mr. Zelaya stops using the coup leaders to engage in vio-
OAS Special Adviser John Biehl the protection offered by the dip- lence."
told reporters in the capital, Tegu- lomatic mission to instigate vio- On Tuesday, the day after
cigalpa, that he and four other lence in Honduras." Zelaya's return, baton-wielding
members of an advance team - Brazilian President Luiz Inacio soldiers used tear gas and water
including two Americans, a Cana- Lula da Silva immediately reject- cannons to chase away thousands
dian and a Colombian - were ed the missive, saying his govern- of his supporters outside the
stopped by authorities after land- ment "doesn't accept ultimatums Embassy.
ing at Tegucigalpa's airport yes- from coup-plotters." Since then, the diplomatic mis-
terday. Biehl, who is Chilean, said Micheletti didn't specify what sion has been surrounded by police
he was later told he could stay, but he would do after 10 days. He has and soldiers. Zelaya and about 65
the others were put aboard flights said previously that he plans to supporters inside accused author-
out of the country. arrest Zelaya, who was deposed ities of temporarily cutting off
"A high-ranking official told us in a June 28 coup. Zelaya faces water and electricity early in the
we were expelled, that we had not treason and abuse of authority week, and later said the govern-
notified (the interim government) charges for ignoring court orders ment released an unidentified gas
that we were coming," he said. to drop plans for a referendum on that caused headaches, nosebleeds
"For reasons I completely do rewriting the constitution. and nausea.
not know, as we were getting in a Lopez said Brazil has 10days to Brazilian Charge d'Affaires
line for the flight (out), a colonel in "turn Zelaya over to the judicial Francisco Catunda confirmed that
civilian dress called my name ... authorities of Honduras"or decide Saturday: "Yes, it was released,"he
and said I could decide then and some other arrangement for him. said in a rare interview outside the
there if I wanted to stay." The government has said it has no building. "One of our officials felt
Biehl said he was in Honduras plans to raid the Embassy and that it, felt symptoms." Catunda added
to set up a visit by OAS Secretary- Zelaya could leave if Brazil offers that some people had throat prob-
General Jose Miguel Insulza, him political asylum. Flores also lems, but he did not give details.
who he said would arrive "at the
appropriate time."
Interim government Foreign
Minister Carlos Lopez said the
four were turned back because
they had been "clearly warned" AN*4A
that they had to give advanceiS
notice of their visit, and didn't.
He said Biehl had been allowed
to stay because he had played a .4
role in the San Jose talks medi-
ated by Costa Rican President *,*.
Oscar Arias.
Interim President Roberto
Micheletti has previously said
the OAS was welcome to come,
but suggested that represen-
tatives begin arriving today.
Flores said the team's arrival
didn't come "at the right time ..._

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