Nation/World Briefly: Alaska senator concedes primary to Palin’s pick

  • Tue Aug 31st, 2010 10:12pm
  • News

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Tuesday conceded her Senate primary race to Joe Miller, a full week after the primary.

Murkowski trailed Miller, a Fairbanks attorney, by 1,668 votes after last week’s primary. Election officials began counting absentee and outstanding ballots Tuesday. Murkowski made slight gains, but was never able to get Miller’s lead below 1,100 votes.

Miller has never held elected office but had the backing of former Gov. Sarah Palin and the Tea Party Express.

New York: Judge blocks part of taxes on tribal smokes

A federal judge on Tuesday temporarily blocked New York state’s plans to tax cigarette sales by two American Indian nations to non-Indian customers while the tribes challenge the policy shift as a threat to sovereignty and their financial well-being. Judge Richard Arcara granted the Seneca and Cayuga nations’ request for a court order that stops the state from imposing a $4.35 per pack sales tax on cigarettes sold by reservation retailers starting today. The duration of the order wasn’t immediately clear; another hearing in the case was set for Thursday.

D.C.: Fewer kids in foster care

The number of U.S. children in foster care has dropped 8 percent in just one year, and more than 20 percent in the past decade, according to new federal figures. The drop is largely because of a shift in the policies and practices of state and county child welfare agencies. Department of Health and Human Services figures show there were 423,773 children in foster care as of Sept. 30. That’s down from 460,416 a year earlier and from more than 540,000 a decade ago.

Texas: Man slits his throat in court

A suburban Dallas man used a thin blade from a safety razor to slit his throat in an apparent suicide attempt Tuesday in the courtroom where a judge had just sentenced him to 40 years in prison. Marcial Anguiano, 47, was taken from the courthouse on a stretcher with his neck covered in bandages. The blade cut into muscle but did not strike an artery. Anguiano had pleaded guilty to aggravated assault for cutting his niece with a butcher knife.

California: Man orders his own stolen cell phone online

A Malibu man who bought a cell phone on Craigslist, only to find it was the same one that was stolen from his car, tipped off sheriff’s deputies, who arrested a man they believe broke into dozens of vehices. Deputies arrested 28-year-old Neil Hefner and recovered 163 cell phones, along with computers, wallets, gift cards and rare coins. He was booked for investigation of burglary.

Afghanistan: Six American troops die

Six more American troops were killed in action in Afghanistan, ending August with a spike in bloodshed that has claimed the lives of 20 U.S. service members in only four days. NATO said four of the Americans who died Tuesday were killed by a roadside bomb in eastern Afghanistan, while two died in gunfights with insurgents in the country’s south. No other details were released.

Israel: On eve of peace talks, Palestinians kill 4 Israelis

Palestinian gunmen opened fire Tuesday on an Israeli car in the West Bank and killed four passengers on the eve of a new round of Mideast peace talks in Washington. The Islamic militant group Hamas claimed responsibility. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas was already in Washington meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton when the attack took place. Hamas, a fierce rival of the Western-backed Palestinian president, expelled Abbas’ forces from Gaza in 2007 and took over the territory.

From Herald news services