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Sign linking Obama, Hitler condemned

DES MOINES | A billboard created by an Iowa tea-party group comparing President Obama to Adolf Hitler and Vladimir Lenin is being condemned by other tea-party activists.

The North Iowa Tea Party began displaying the sign in Mason City last week.

The sign includes photos of Mr. Obama, Hitler and Lenin with the statement: “Radical leaders prey on the fearful & naive.”

North Iowa Tea Party co-founder Bob Johnson said the sign highlights what the group argues is Mr. Obama’s support for socialism. He said the pictures might be overwhelming the intended message.

Shelby Blakely, a spokeswoman for the national Tea Party Patriots, said the sign isn’t appropriate and her group opposes any comparisons of Mr. Obama to Hitler or Lenin.

The White House declined to comment.


Kilpatrick arraigned on federal charges

DETROIT | Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick pleaded poverty Tuesday and was granted a lawyer at public expense to defend him against charges that he spent hundreds of thousands of dollars collected for a charity on himself and his family.

Kilpatrick, 40, waived a reading of the tax and fraud charges during his first court appearance since being indicted last month. A not-guilty plea was entered on his behalf.

“That is correct,” he replied when a judge said Mr. Kilpatrick apparently can’t afford to hire a lawyer.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Donald Scheer said the public would pick up the tab.

Mr. Kilpatrick was indicted in June on fraud and tax charges. The government accuses him of enriching himself and others by milking $640,000 from the Civic Fund, a tax-exempt charity he created as a good-works effort to enhance Detroit and improve the city’s image.


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