- - Thursday, July 12, 2012

A website sued by President Obama’s re-election campaign for selling T-shirts and other merchandise with the campaign’s signature “O” logo is taking down the offending merchandise.

A judge in Washington on Monday agreed to bar Washington-based Demstore.com from selling merchandise with the “O” logo trademarked by the campaign. But the judge had reserved judgment on whether the website should also be barred from selling merchandise with a logo that uses the distinctive “O” as part of the year 2012.

Demstore.com owner Steve Schwat said Thursday he is pulling all items with the “O” logo, not just those the judge required, and is negotiating a settlement with campaign officials. He says about 100 products were affected.

Demstore.com will still sell products with generic messages supporting Obama.


Cheney lends a bit of GOP star power

JACKSON — Former Vice President Dick Cheney is using his popularity with Republican conservatives to give a boost to Mitt Romney, hosting a fundraiser for the party’s likely nominee at a mountain valley resort as well as a private dinner at his Wyoming home.

Mr. Romney has avoided appearing in public with Mr. Cheney or with former President George W. Bush. Both are seen as divisive figures by many of the swing voters Romney needs to win the presidency.

The fundraiser and dinner Thursday evening at the resort town of Jackson represent a welcome endorsement for Mr. Romney, who is eager to win over more of the party’s base.

Mr. Cheney’s daughter Liz plans to attend Thursday’s fundraiser. She recently bought a house in Wyoming, sparking questions about whether she plans to run for office.


Reid wants compromise to avert defense cuts

The Senate’s Democratic leader is reminding House Republicans pressing him to avert automatic defense cuts that they voted for the cuts last year. He insisted that only compromising on taxes will spare the military.

Majority Leader Harry Reid sent a biting letter to the GOP members of the House Armed Services Committee on Thursday. Republicans had written him in June demanding that he propose a plan to avoid the across-the-board cuts that take effect Jan. 2 to defense and domestic programs or stop obstructing GOP plans.

Mr. Reid sarcastically thanked the lawmakers for the letter “urging the Senate to renege on spending cuts” that President Obama and congressional Republicans agreed to last August. He urged them to focus their energies on convincing Republicans to compromise and consider taxes.


Oversight of horse-racing industry under consideration

Top horse racing industry players differ on whether the sport needs federal oversight to ban doping.

Barry Irwin, whose Team Valor ownership group won last year’s Kentucky Derby with Animal Kingdom, called on Congress to pass legislation to rid horse racing of drug use. He said at a Senate hearing Thursday that the states don’t do a good enough job policing the sport.

But Kent Stirling of the National Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association says the federal government has no experience or expertise to regulate the sport. Mr. Stirling’s group represents thoroughbred horse owners and trainers.

Sen. Tom Udall, a New Mexico Democrat who is chairing the hearing, has proposed legislation to ban race-day medication in horse racing. The sport is currently regulated on a state-by-state basis.


Jackson’s ‘mood disorder’ creates more questions

CHICAGO — U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.’s disclosure that he is suffering from a “mood disorder” still leaves many questions about his secretive medical leave and whether the Illinois congressman has satisfied mounting calls to be more open about his monthlong absence.

Just hours after Democratic leaders in Congress ratcheted up pressure on Mr. Jackson to reveal more information, his office released a brief statement from his doctor on Wednesday saying the Chicago Democrat was receiving “intensive medical treatment at a residential treatment facility for a mood disorder.”

But it offered no details about Mr. Jackson’s whereabouts or even the name of the doctor, citing federal privacy laws.

Several experts said that based on the doctor’s use of the term “mood disorder,” they believed Mr. Jackson might be suffering from depression. But the statement did not elaborate on his condition and rejected claims that the 47-year-old congressman was being treated for “alcohol or substance abuse.”

“He is responding positively to treatment and is expected to make a full recovery,” the statement said. His spokesman declined to elaborate..


Pro-GOP group airs new ads hitting Obama on debt

A pro-Republican group says it’s spending $8 million on new TV ads attacking President Obama for sustained unemployment and calling on him to cut the national debt.

Crossroads GPS is launching the ads on the heels of recent government figures showing the economy added only 80,000 jobs in June.

Crossroads GPS, the nonprofit arm of the American Crossroads super political action committee, criticizes “three years of crushing unemployment.” The national unemployment rate is currently at 8.2 percent. Unemployment has been above 8 percent for most of Mr. Obama’s term.

The ads will air in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Nevada, Ohio and Virginia.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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