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“I’m confident that, while this legislation may have been her last act as a congresswoman, it will not be her last act of public service,” Mr. Obama said in a statement.


U.S. to discuss human rights when Xi visits

The White House said it won’t recoil from raising grave human rights concerns during a getting-acquainted visit this week by China’s likely future leader.

China Vice President Xi Jinping’s trip will be for him to understand issues that are important to America, including the situation in Tibet, and freedom of speech and religion, said Daniel Russel, the White House senior director for Asian affairs.

“We don’t sacrifice the important issues for the sake of having a comfortable visit,” Mr. Russel said.

Mr. Xi is slated to succeed Hu Jintao as Communist Party leader this fall, then become the nation’s president in spring 2013. Mr. Hu made a similar visit to the United States in 2002 before he took the reins of the world’s most populous nation.

Mr. Xi arrives Monday at the invitation of Vice President Joseph R. Biden and will also meet with President Obama in the Oval Office and Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta at the Pentagon. He will spend four full days in the United States, also traveling to Iowa and California.


State senator, wife attacked at casino

NIAGARA FALLS — A state senator and his wife said Saturday they were attacked and beaten at a Niagara Falls casino hotel after the lawmaker tried to break up an argument between two men, one of whom accused him of hating the Indian tribe that owned the resort.

Sen. Mark Grisanti said he suffered bruised ribs in the Friday night altercation. His wife, Maria, was more seriously hurt. She was diagnosed Saturday morning with a concussion and possible broken nose.

“It’s just been horrible,” Mrs. Grisanti said after returning home from the hospital Saturday afternoon. She said she feared for her life during the attack.

The fight happened after a fundraising gala for the Seneca Diabetes Foundation at the Seneca Niagara Casino and Hotel Events Center. The Grisantis attended because their daughter was part of the entertainment for the night, performing with the Buffalo singing act, the Scintas. They were in a lobby area around 11:30 p.m. when they encountered two men arguing loudly.

Mr. Grisanti said he thought the men were about to come to blows, so he asked them to calm down.

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