Bush budget plan cuts deficit, CBO says
President Bush’s 2006 budget plan will shrink the deficit slightly more than he said it would, Congress’ fiscal watchdog said yesterday.
The Congressional Budget Office said in an assessment of Mr. Bush’s budget that the deficit for the current fiscal year, which ends Oct. 1, will reach $394 billion, better than the record $427 billion the White House forecast and about the same as CBO’s expectations of the deficit before factoring in Mr. Bush’s plan.
FBI offers reward in judge family slayings
CHICAGO — The FBI announced a $50,000 reward yesterday for information leading to the identification of anyone involved in the slayings of a federal judge’s husband and mother.
No one has been declared a suspect in the slayings of U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow’s relatives, agent Robert Grant said.
He said investigators were looking at all angles, and white supremacists were one logical direction. White supremacist Matthew Hale is scheduled to be sentenced next month for soliciting an FBI informant to kill Judge Lefkow.
Hale has been questioned in the jail where he is awaiting sentencing and denies any involvement, his parents told the Associated Press.
Lawmakers try to limit services to illegals
PHOENIX — Four months after residents voted to deny some government benefits to illegal immigrants, advocates for limiting immigration are pressing lawmakers to enact more restrictions on those who sneak into the country.
Opponents question whether the proposed changes — this time to education — would do much to stem the flood of illegal immigration in Arizona, the busiest illegal entry point on the nation’s southern border.
The legislation would require the state to check the immigration status of students’ parents before the children could enroll in primary and secondary schools. Similar citizenship checks would have to be made on applicants for adult education classes.
Judge upholds charges against KKK suspect
PHILADELPHIA, Miss. — A Mississippi judge yesterday upheld murder charges against a suspected Ku Klux Klansman in the 1964 slayings of three civil rights workers, clearing the way for a trial next month.
Circuit Court Judge Marcus Gordon rejected a defense motion that the case against Edgar Ray Killen be dismissed on the grounds that he had been denied his constitutional right to a fair and speedy trial.
Mr. Killen, 80, was arrested two months ago in connection with the slayings of Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney, which helped galvanize support for the civil rights movement and were dramatized in the 1988 movie “Mississippi Burning.”
The judge ordered Mr. Killen to stand trial as scheduled on April 18.
Oregon man survived assisted-suicide try
PORTLAND, Ore. — A terminally ill cancer patient who tried to end his life with drugs prescribed under Oregon’s assisted-suicide law awoke three days later, alert and talkative, his wife said.
David Prueitt, who had lung cancer, took what was believed to be a fatal dose of a barbiturate prescribed by his doctor in January. He fell into a coma within minutes, but woke up three days later, said his wife Lynda Romig Prueitt.
Mr. Prueitt, 42, lived for two more weeks before dying of natural causes at his Estacada home, about 35 miles southeast of Portland.
The state Department of Human Services will turn the case over to the Board of Medical Examiners or state Board of Pharmacy to determine whether the drug or the procedure was faulty, said Dr. Katrina Hedberg, assistant state epidemiologist.
Two are charged in family’s slaying
JERSEY CITY, N.J. — The upstairs neighbor of an Egyptian Christian family found slain in their home in January was charged along with another man yesterday in the killings. Authorities said the motive was robbery — not religious fanaticism, as some had feared.
Edward McDonald, 25, who rented a second-floor apartment above Hossam Armanious and his family, pleaded not guilty to four counts of murder, as did Hamilton Sanchez, 30. Both men were ordered held on $10 million bail.
Mr. Armanious, a 47-year-old Coptic Christian, his wife and their two daughters, ages 8 and 15, were found bound and gagged with puncture wounds in their throats.
The slayings raised tensions between Christian and Muslim immigrants in New Jersey.
But Hudson County prosecutor Edward DeFazio said the killings were carried out during a robbery by the two men, who owed someone a large sum of money.
From staff reports and wire dispatches