- - Sunday, January 6, 2013

TUCSON — A TV interview with former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona and her husband will air on the second anniversary of the Tucson shooting rampage that killed six and wounded Ms. Giffords and 12 others.

ABC says Ms. Giffords and Mark Kelly, a retired Navy officer and astronaut, will speak during the interview about a new initiative, which the network didn’t specify. A call to a Giffords spokeswoman wasn’t immediately returned Sunday.

The interview with anchor Diane Sawyer will air at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

Ms. Giffords and Mr. Kelly met last week with the families of victims in the Connecticut school shooting and separately with New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, a longtime gun control advocate.


Obama signs legislation for flood insurance claims

President Obama signed into law a $9.7 billion bill to pay flood insurance claims from Superstorm Sandy.

The law increases the borrowing authority of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which had warned that it was set to run out of money without additional dollars from Congress.

The White House said more than 100,000 flood claim payments from Sandy would be delayed without the additional money.

The House has yet to act on a larger, more comprehensive Sandy aid package. House Speaker John A. Boehner has promised a vote Jan. 15 on that $51 billion package, and Senate leaders have promised a vote the following week.


Rand Paul’s teen son arrested, charged with underage drinking

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Sen. Rand Paul’s son was charged with underage drinking and disorderly conduct on a flight from Kentucky to North Carolina, according to a report in the Charlotte Observer.

William Hilton Paul, 19, was arrested Saturday morning at Charlotte Douglas International Airport, charged with consuming beer/wine underage, disorderly conduct and being intoxicated and disruptive, the paper reported.

In a brief statement, the elder Mr. Paul’s office said that “as many parents with teenagers would understand,” the family requested their privacy be respected “in a situation such as this.”


Clinton set for return to work after illnesses

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will return to work Monday after a monthlong absence caused by a series of health scares, including a blood clot in her head, the State Department said.

Mrs. Clinton’s return, after she was taken ill on her return from a trip to Europe on Dec. 7, was announced in the department’s public schedule for the week ahead released late Sunday.

According to the schedule, the top American diplomat will meet at 9:15 a.m. Monday with her assistant secretaries at the State Department in Washington. The meetings will be closed to the press.

A series of other meetings is planned through the week, including talks at the White House on Tuesday with Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and National Security Adviser Thomas E. Donilon and meetings Thursday with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.


Paul leads conservatives’ poll for candidate in 2016

President Obama has yet to be sworn in for a second term, but that hasn’t stopped the speculation about 2016.

Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican, is leading a conservative website’s interactive point-and-click poll for people to name their top choices for the Republican Party’s next presidential nominee.

Mr. Paul is leading the field at You Choose 2016, a website connected with FreedomWorks, a Washington-based nonprofit.

The top five Republicans in the unscientific poll are Mr. Paul, followed by Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, former Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, former Rep. Allen B. West of Florida, and 2012 vice presidential candidate, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.


U.S. rejects Assad proposal for talks, says he must go

The Obama administration is rejecting a new proposal from Syrian President Bashar Assad that would begin a peace process and keep the besieged leader in power.

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland called Mr. Assad’s latest plan “detached from reality” and would only allow the regime to continue its oppression of the Syrian people.

In a rare public speech Sunday, Mr. Assad outlined a new peace initiative that includes a national reconciliation conference and a new constitution. He ignored international demands to step down and pledged to continue the nearly two-year fight against rebels challenging his authoritarian rule.

Ms. Nuland said Mr. Assad has lost all legitimacy and should step aside to allow for a democratic transition that satisfies Syria’s people.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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