- The Washington Times - Friday, August 31, 2001

Judge dismisses Democratic challenge
JERSEY CITY, N.J. — A judge yesterday dismissed a Democratic lawsuit aimed at keeping the Republican National Committee from spending money in the race for governor of New Jersey.
The lawsuit is "not ripe," state Superior Court Judge Arthur N. D'Italia said, noting that there is no evidence any expenditures have been made.
Democratic candidate Jim McGreevey and his campaign wanted the judge to block an Aug. 15 ruling by the state Election Law Enforcement Commission that let the RNC run ads on behalf of party nominee Bret Schundler. Under the commission ruling, the RNC can proceed as long as it does not "coordinate" campaign efforts with the Schundler campaign.

Letters to the editor protected, court rules
COLUMBUS, Ohio — People who write letters to the editor are entitled to the same free-speech protection as editorial columnists, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled.
In a 5-2 decision Wednesday, the court said letter writers who are not affiliated with the media cannot be sued for defamation if the court determines their comments are an expression of opinion rather than fact.
In 1986, the court set down a similar standard for editorial columnists after someone sued a newspaper and its columnist over an opinion piece.

Ex-official admits aiding Torricelli probe figure
NEWARK, N.J. — A former State Department official pleaded guilty to a conflict of interest charge yesterday, admitting he aided a man now at the center of the inquiry into the campaign finances of Sen. Robert G. Torricelli, New Jersey Democrat.
Retired diplomat C. Kenneth Quinones, 58, of Centreville, Va., said he failed to tell superiors he had a job offer from businessman David Chang when he recommended that a Chang company provide material to help recover the bodies of U.S. soldiers from the Korean War.
Chang has cooperated with investigators since admitting last year that he funneled $53,700 in illegal contributions to Mr. Torricelli's 1996 campaign. He is among seven persons who have admitted making such illegal contributions, of which Mr. Torricelli has said he had no knowledge.

College eliminates race in awarding scholarships
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The University of Florida has announced that it no longer will give scholarships based on race.
The university immediately will begin revising more than 50 minority scholarship programs to make them race-neutral, UF Foundation Vice President Leslie Bram said Wednesday.
She said she expects the process to take about a year. Provost David Colburn said any student with an existing scholarship can keep it.

Suspect arrested after police standoff
MANSFIELD, Texas — A man suspected in the shooting deaths of his estranged wife and two children was captured yesterday after apparently falling asleep during an armed standoff with police, authorities said.
Terry Lee Hankins was charged with capital murder in the deaths of Tammy Hankins, her 13-year-old son, Kevin Galley, and their 11-year-old daughter, Ashley Mason.
Police, acting on a tip, went to the apartment in nearby Arlington yesterday and contacted Mr. Hankins by phone. A 10-year-old girl and a 39-year-old woman — described by police as relatives of Mr. Hankins' girlfriend — were inside with him.

Co-workers drop Powerball claim
PORTLAND, Maine — Four co-workers of one of the winners of the $294.8 million Powerball jackpot dropped their claim to a piece of the prize yesterday, just one day after suing.
They dropped their case after learning that the facts did not support their assertion that the winning ticket held by a Maine couple had been bought as part of an office pool, said John McVeigh, an attorney for the plaintiffs.
Four winning tickets to the jackpot were sold around the country before Saturday's drawing in the multi-state lottery. One of those tickets was turned in by Pat Wales and her husband, Erwin.

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