Iran hiker released – Sarah Shourd, one of three American hikers detained for more than a year in Iran, has been released from prison, state-run Press TV reported Tuesday. Attorney Massoud Shafii, who is representing the hikers, had said everything was in place for Shourd's release once bail of $500,000 was submitted to the Iranian judiciary.
Shourd, 32; Shane Bauer, 28; and Josh Fattal, 28, were detained July 31, 2009, after they allegedly strayed across an unmarked border into Iran while hiking in Iraq's Kurdistan region. Tehran has accused the three hikers of spying.
California marijuana fight – As Californians consider a November ballot initiative to tax and regulate marijuana for recreational use, there are unlikely characters peppering the political landscape.
California is hardly homogenous, but marijuana legalization makes politics downright confusing in a state where the sides are sometimes flipped. Here, some ex-cops, state assemblymen and billionaire businessmen favor legalization, while there are pot growers and dealers who want to keep it outlawed. Experts say predicting the ballot's outcome is impossible because special interests for both sides will storm the state ahead of the vote, hoping to pull fence-straddlers into their camps.
D.C. mayoral election impact - Mayor Adrian Fenty swept into office in 2006 promising to fix the District of Columbia's struggling schools. Now, Fenty is in the fight of his career – in part because of how he's tried to reform the district's schools. Fenty is in a nail-biter of a race in Tuesday's primary, running neck-and-neck with challenger City Council Chairman Vincent Gray.
While this is a local election, the race is being closely watched far beyond the District because the outcome could carry significant implications for the national debate over education reform.