- Associated Press - Friday, October 3, 2014
Judge tosses 6-state suit over California egg law

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit filed by Missouri and five other states asking the court to strike down a California law barring the sale of eggs in the state produced by hens in cramped living conditions.

U.S. District Judge Kimberly Mueller dismissed the suit Thursday, giving California a major victory in a cross-country battle that pitted animal protections against the economic interests of farmers in the South and Midwest.

Mueller said the states lacked legal standing to sue because they failed to show that the California law does genuine harm to their citizenry instead of just possible future damage to some egg producers.

“It is patently clear plaintiffs are bringing this action on behalf of a subset of each state’s egg farmers,” Mueller wrote in the decision, “not on behalf of each state’s population generally.”

She also ruled that the suit can’t be refiled or amended, though the states can appeal.

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster filed the lawsuit in February challenging the law that is set to take effect in January, 2015. Nebraska, Alabama, Oklahoma, Kentucky and Iowa joined in March.

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Romney praises McConnell in Kentucky Senate race

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - It may be 2014, but Mitch McConnell wants to party like it’s 2012.

The five-term Republican senator held a private fundraiser at Donamire Farm in Lexington on Thursday night featuring 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. While Obama won re-election in 2012, there was no doubt whom Kentucky voters supported: Romney carried the state with more than 60 percent of the vote.

Since then, Obama’s disapproval ratings in Kentucky have remained above 60 percent, giving Republican candidates an obvious strategy when running against Democrats in general elections. McConnell has largely followed that script, running TV ads pointing out that his Democratic challenger, Alison Lundergan Grimes, was an Obama delegate at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, and ending with the slogan “Obama needs Grimes. Kentucky needs Mitch McConnell.”

On Thursday, Obama gave Republicans candidates a gift when he said in a speech at Northwestern University that he was not on the ballot this year, but his policies are.

“I couldn’t agree more,” McConnell told reporters with Romney at his side Thursday night. “This race here in Kentucky and the races across the country are about Barack Obama’s agenda.”

Grimes has pushed back against those attacks, pointing out she disagrees with the president on his energy policies and some of his gun-control proposals. And she has brought former Democratic President Bill Clinton to Kentucky twice to campaign for her. Clinton, like Romney, won Kentucky when running for president. And Wednesday, the Grimes campaign began airing a statewide TV ad featuring Clinton urging Kentucky voters to send Grimes to the U.S. Senate.

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Judge sets hearing in challenge to Kentucky law

COVINGTON, Ky. (AP) - A federal judge in Covington will hear a challenge to Kentucky’s law banning campaign signs within 300 feet of a polling place.

U.S. District Judge William O. Bertelsman set the hearing for Oct. 13 - three weeks before the state holds a U.S. Senate election and multiple local offices appear on ballots before voters.

Businessman John Russell of Cold Spring sued the state over the law, saying it violates his First Amendment rights. Russell sought to put up signs backing candidates at his business, Campbell Auto Body, but had been told to remove them.

The state’s law creates a buffer zone from the door of the polling place and is designed to prevent interference with the voting process.

Russell is seeking a preliminary injunction stopping enforcement of the statute.

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Homeless man arrested in boy’s stabbing death

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Louisville police have charged a homeless man in the slaying of 12-year-old boy who was stabbed in a popular public park.

Joseph Cambron, 21, has been charged with murder and evidence tampering, police said Thursday.

The boy, Ray Allen Etheridge, was found stabbed multiple times in a wooded area inside Louisville’s Cherokee Park, a popular and scenic destination surrounded by historic homes in the Highlands neighborhood. Police say the attacker used a knife.

Cambron was living at a campsite near where the attack occurred and was seen on surveillance video that day with the victim, Lt. Todd Kessinger said Thursday at police headquarters. Cambron contacted police about the slaying on Wednesday, saying “he wanted to talk to us,” Kessinger said. An arrest report said Cambron gave a recorded statement to police “admitting his involvement in the incident.”

Cambron was an acquaintance of the boy, who frequented the park and surrounding areas with his family, police said.

On the afternoon of the attack, Ray was with his mother at a shopping center near the park when he wandered away from her, Kessinger said. She had him taken out of the southern Indiana school he attends ahead of the dismissal time that day, and they were waiting for her husband to get off work.

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