Crude oil leaks into Montana's Yellowstone River
July 2nd, 2011
09:54 PM ET

Crude oil leaks into Montana's Yellowstone River

An ExxonMobil pipeline leaked an undetermined amount of crude oil into the Yellowstone River near Billings, Montana, prompting a burgeoning cleanup effort, officials said Saturday.

About 80 people from a regional response team were on site Saturday and 70 additional trained individuals were en route, an ExxonMobil spokesman said.

The cause was under investigation. Spokesman Kevin Allexon said no information was available Saturday on the pipeline's age, depth under the river and its maintenance record. The spokesman said he could not speculate on whether river conditions had anything to do with the incident.

Crude leaked into the Yellowstone River, officials said.
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Filed under: Energy • Environment • Montana
July 2nd, 2011
08:39 PM ET

Strauss-Kahn pursued by media

One day after a stunning court revelation about an accuser's lack of honesty in the Dominique Strauss-Kahn sexual assault case, media across New York descended on the freed financier with a renewed sense of vigor.

On Saturday, the former head of the International Monetary Fund was pursued by photographers and news teams across Manhattan.

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Filed under: Crime • Dominique Strauss-Kahn • France • Justice • Uncategorized
Thad McCotter joins presidential race
July 2nd, 2011
08:32 PM ET

Thad McCotter joins presidential race

Vowing to "restructure the government," Congressman Thad McCotter formally announced his candidacy for president at a festival in his home state of Michigan Saturday.

McCotter is the tenth Republican and third member of the U.S. House of Representatives to enter the race.

McCotter is considered a long-shot candidate by party insiders. But he is laying the groundwork for a campaign in Iowa. Last month McCotter anonymously purchased a prime location for the upcoming the Ames Straw Poll in August.

Fond of quoting rock bands in his political commentary, McCotter described last spring's near government shutdown as a "Communication Breakdown" between the parties in a reference to the Led Zeppelin classic.

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Filed under: Elections • Politics • Republican Party
Cop tracks down presidential limo's seal
Magnetism is the only thing that keeps the presidential seal on the president's limousine.
July 2nd, 2011
02:18 PM ET

Cop tracks down presidential limo's seal

The round, gold-trimmed presidential seal is an impressive symbol affixed to the door of the limousine known as "The Beast."

It appears to be a permanent part of the limo. But in reality, it's a magnetic seal that comes on and off, vulnerable to wind and elements just like anything we'd put on our own cars.

And Thursday night, the seal came off during President Obama's motorcade to the airport after his fundraising visit to Philadelphia, ending up alongside Interstate 76.

Secret Service spokesman Ed Donovan said agents and Philadelphia police returned to the area off the freeway that night and looked for it, but were unable to find it in the dark.

But the next day, a Philadelphia police officer found it on the side of the road. The Philadelphia Daily News reports the officer had been part of the motorcade the night before and was helping a disabled car when he spotted it.

It was brought to the Secret Service field office and is being returned to Washington.

"It happens periodically," Donovan said. "They're only magnetic. They're not put on any special way."

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Pennsylvania • Politics
July 2nd, 2011
12:23 PM ET

Rhode Island governor signs civil union bill into law

In a move largely seen as a compromise over the rights that can be afforded to gay and lesbian couples, Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee on Saturday signed into law a bill that legalizes civil unions, making his state the fifth in the nation to allow them.

The bill - which was signed just over a week after New York legalized same-sex marriage - will take effect later Saturday, according to the governor's spokesman Christian Vareika.

The law will provide same-sex couples with a host of new state tax breaks, health-care benefits and greater ease of inheritance.

Such unions are currently permitted in New Jersey and Illinois, and will be allowed in Delaware and Hawaii beginning January 1, 2012. California, Oregon, Washington and Nevada also allow for "comprehensive domestic partnerships," largely considered an equivalent to their civil union counterparts.

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Filed under: Rhode Island • Same-sex marriage
Kvitova takes Wimbledon title
Petra Kvitova won the Wimbledon women's championship in straight sets Saturday.
July 2nd, 2011
10:45 AM ET

Kvitova takes Wimbledon title

[Update 10:37 a.m] Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic defeated Russian Maria Sharapova 6-3, 6-4 in the Wimbledon women's singles championship, the final point coming on a thundering ace that froze Sharapova where she stood. Kvitova is only the third left-handed woman to win the championship in the open era, which started in 1968; one of the others was fellow Czech Martina Navratilova.

[Update 9:51 a.m.] Petra Kvitova won the first set of the Wimbledon best-of-three women's final, 6-3 over Maria Sharapova. Sharapova had four double-faults in the set.

[Original post 9:31 a.m.] No. 5 seed Maria Sharapova is playing No. 8 Petra Kvitova Saturday in the women's final at Wimbledon, a matchup heralded by NBC analyst Mary Carillo as the epitome of "Big Babe Tennis."

The 6-foot-2-inch Russian and the 6-foot Czech are prime examples of the "grip it and rip it" power game that thrills former champion Martina Navratilova, SI.com's Bruce Jenkins writes.

Sharapova won the title in 2004, when she was just 17; this is 21-year-old left-hander Kvitova's first appearance in a Grand Slam final. The match began at 9 a.m. ET. FULL POST

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Filed under: Sports • Tennis • United Kingdom
July 2nd, 2011
10:07 AM ET

Afghan roadside bombing kills 11 civilians

At least 11 civilians were killed in a roadside bomb attack in Afghanistan's southern Zabul province, a local police official said.

"Women and children are among the deaths, too. These people were on the way going to Pakistan from Zabul province," said Ghulam Nabi Elham, Zabul police chief.


Filed under: Afghanistan • War • World
July 2nd, 2011
08:40 AM ET

Shelling pounds embattled Libyan town

Libyan rebels and troops loyal to Moammar Gadhafi shelled each other for hours on Saturday in clashes at the highly contested frontline of Dafniya, an embattled town just west of the besieged port city of Misrata.

At least 11 rebels were wounded in the exchange of fire and treated at one of the two field hospitals in what has been the most active day in Dafniya this week, according to a CNN team.

Heavy government shelling on Misrata and Dafniya began shortly after Gadhafi rallied his supporters in an audio message on state TV and threatened to take the fighting to Europe in retaliation for NATO's bombing campaign.

"As soon as Gadhafi's speech ended, they started shelling Dafniya and around midnight there was a salvo of about eight rockets inside Misrata itself, and it continues on the front this morning," said CNN's Ben Wedeman, who was in Misrata Saturday.

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Filed under: Libya
July 2nd, 2011
08:35 AM ET

Seattle police make cold-case arrest

A 71-year-old Seattle man living under an assumed name at a retirement community in Washington has been arrested in connection with the 1957 kidnapping and murder of an Illinois girl, authorities said Friday.

Maria Ridulph, 7, disappeared while playing near her home in the town of Sycamore, west of Chicago.

Her story captured national headlines and the attention of President Dwight D. Eisenhower and FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, according to news accounts published at the time.

Federal agents joined local and state law enforcement authorities as well as the community in the search for the girl, whose remains were found four months later by a couple walking in the woods, the news reports said.

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Filed under: Crime • Washington state