- - Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Obama administration is warning American businesses about an unusually potent computer virus that infected Iran’s oil industry.

The warning comes even as suspicions persist that the U.S. government is responsible for secretly creating and unleashing such cyberweapons against foreign countries.

Unlike a bullet or missile fired at an enemy, a cyberweapon that spreads across the Internet may circle back accidentally to infect computers it was never supposed to target. It’s one of the unusual challenges facing the programmers who build such weapons, and presidents who must decide when to launch them.

The Department of Homeland Security’s warning about the new virus, known as “Flame,” assures U.S. companies that no infections have been discovered so far inside the U.S.


Congressman won’t attempt write-in re-election campaign

LIVONIA — Rep. Thaddeus McCotter of Michigan announced Saturday that he would not seek a sixth term through a write-in campaign after he failed to get enough signatures to get on the ballot.

Mr. McCotter ran a little-noticed Republican presidential campaign last year before asking voters to re-elect him to his Detroit-area congressional seat. He surprised everyone late last month when he announced the Michigan secretary of state’s office had determined he didn’t have the 1,000 valid signatures needed to get on the Aug. 7 primary ballot, even though 2,000 signatures were turned in.

A spokesman for the secretary of state has said only a couple hundred signatures appeared valid and many seemed to be copies.

Mr. McCotter initially said he would conduct a write-in campaign, while seeking an investigation into happened with his petitions. But Saturday, he issued a statement saying he could not cooperate with the investigation, fulfill his current duties and run a write-in campaign, so he was ending his candidacy.

“One can’t clean up a mess multitasking,” he said. “Honoring my promise to the sovereign people of our community only allows me to finish the official duties of my present congressional term; and aid the state attorney general criminal investigation that I requested into identifying the person or persons who concocted the fraudulent petitions that have cost me so dearly.”


Clinton: U.S. needs Europe ‘operating at full speed’

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the United States needs Europe “to be strong and operating at full speed once again” in order for America to completely recover from its own economic downturn.

She said the U.S. supports the need for changes among the 17 countries that share the euro as their currency, in order to make Europe more competitive and deal with issues various countries haven’t addressed.

Mrs. Clinton said at a press conference in Stockholm that the tough decisions are up to the Europeans themselves.

Belt-tightening has been the approach for coping with a debt crisis that has raised the possibility of the breakup of the single currency. But some leaders are now calling for measures to increase growth and employment to offset the impact of austerity policies.


Romney net worth remains near $250M

A new financial report from GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney shows that his wealth remains near $250 million, about the same as last year.

Mr. Romney’s campaign said his assets ranged between $190 million and $250 million, and a tally by The Associated Press confirmed this. The new financial report from Mr. Romney describes sales of a large amount of stocks managed through his blind trust. Romney campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul stressed that the trust manages investments for Mr. Romney and his wife, Ann.

The new report shows that Mr. Romney still made millions of dollars over the past year in lucrative bank notes and investment funds, including nearly 40 different funds associated with his former company, Bain Capital.


Biden’s daughter marries doctor from Pennsylvania

WILMINGTON — Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s daughter Ashley married a Pennsylvania doctor at a ceremony in Delaware, the vice president’s office announced late Saturday.

A press release from Mr. Biden’s office said 30-year-old Ashley Blazer Biden was married Saturday to Dr. Howard David Krein in Wilmington.

She is a social worker for the Delaware Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families. He is a New Jersey native and a facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, according to the News-Journal of Wilmington.

The newspaper reported that the couple exchanged vows at the same church where she was baptized, St. Joseph on the Brandywine, in a joint Jewish-Catholic ceremony. It was being followed by a reception at the Biden residence in Greenville. The guest list numbered about 200.

Mr. Biden and his wife, Jill, issued a statement saying the couple’s close family and friends attended the private ceremony.

“We’re happy to welcome Howard into our family, and we wish them all the best in their new life together,” they said.

The bride and groom were introduced in late 2010 by Mr. Biden’s son, Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden.

• From wire dispatches and staff reports

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