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  1. EYE FOR AN EYE Death Penalty Ready for Tsarnaev © Alexander Demianchuk / Reuters

    1. Death Penalty Ready for Tsarnaev

    Attorney General Eric Holder asked a federal court to give the death penalty to accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev if he is convicted in a trial this year. "The nature of the conduct at issue and the resultant harm compel this decision," Holder said in a statement. Tsarnaev has been charged with Conspiracy to Use A Weapon of Mass Destruction Resulting in Death; Use of A Weapon of Mass Destruction Resulting in Death; Possession and Use of a Firearm During and in Relation to a Crime of Violence Resulting in Death; Conspiracy to Bomb a Place of Public Use Resulting in Death; Bombing of a Place of Public Use Resulting in Death; and Malicious Destruction of Property Resulting in Personal Injury and Death. Good luck. 

    January 30, 2014 2:20 PM

  2. wait, what? GOP Backs Immigrant Legalization Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

    2. GOP Backs Immigrant Legalization

    At the House Republican retreat on Thursday, leaders announced a six-principle plan for immigration reform that would create a "zero tolerance" border security policy, allow eventual citizenship for "DREAMers," and possibly grant legal status to undocumented immigrants. The draft says immigrants who, among other things, "pass rigorous background checks, pay significant fines and back taxes, develop proficiency in English and American civics," could obtain legal status (though it's unclear how). DREAMers, meanwhile, are given a clear path to citizenship if they're eligible. On Thursday, the House rejected the immigration bill passed by the Senate last year. This new proposal is unlikely to see the floor until June.

    January 30, 2014 5:58 PM

  3. retried Knox Found Guilty of Murder Peter Kramer/NBC, via AP

    3. Knox Found Guilty of Murder

    On Thursday afternoon, an Italian court found Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito guilty of the murder of Knox's British roommate, Meredith Kercher, in 2007. She was sentenced to 28 years and 6 months, while Sollecito was given 25 years in jail. Knox did not attend the retrial, which was ordered by Italy's Supreme Court in March, and it's unlikely that the U.S. will extradite her to Italy. After an initial guilty verdict, Knox spent four years in prison in Italy, but the sentence was overturned in 2011 for "lack of evidence."

    January 30, 2014 3:57 PM

  4. backwards UAE Frees Woman Over Rape Getty

    4. UAE Frees Woman Over Rape

    Watch out, visitors to Dubai. On Thursday, a 29-year-old Austrian woman was released from the United Arab Emirates after facing a prison sentence for reporting an alleged rape to authorities in early December. She was threatened with one-year imprisonment for extramarital sex, and police allegedly told her she'd be acquitted by marrying her rapist. A delegation from Austria negotiated her release. In 2013, a Norwegian woman was sentenced to one year and four months in prison for extramarital sex and alcohol consumption after reporting her alleged rape to authorities. She was pardoned after a similar intervention.

    January 30, 2014 6:48 PM

  5. SECOND CHANCE DOJ Wants More Drug Clemency Kevork Djansezian/Getty

    5. DOJ Wants More Drug Clemency

    In a major move after President Obama's decision last month to commute the sentences of eight non-violent drug offenders, the Justice Department asked bar associations around the country Thursday to help some prisoners in their petitions for clemency. Deputy Attorney General James Cole is expected to speak on the change today in front of the New York Bar Association. In prepared remarks he says that there are more low-level, non-violent drug offenders in prison today who would probably have received a less harsh sentence if convicted of the same crimes now.

    January 30, 2014 11:06 AM

  6. O, CANADA Rob Ford: I Envy Bieber Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty

    6. Rob Ford: I Envy Bieber

    Crack-smoking Toronto mayor Rob Ford said he envies sizzurp-slurping Canadian idol Justin Bieber. "He's a young guy, 19 years old. I wish I was as successful as he was," Ford said on Washington D.C.'s Sports Junkies radio show Thursday. With Bieber facing criminal charges in Toronto, the mayor said he wouldn't comment on the case before the court. 

    January 30, 2014 4:03 PM

  7. jig's up Human Trafficking Rings Busted Mario Tama/Getty

    7. Human Trafficking Rings Busted

    After 10 years of operation, two Houston employment agencies that allegedly supplied restaurants in seven states with undocumented immigrants were shut down by federal authorities on Thursday. The agencies recruited hundreds of immigrants from Mexico and Central America living in the U.S. to Chinese restaurants across the country. Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested 32 people, most of whom are legal immigrants from China, and nine of whom face conspiracy charges.

    January 30, 2014 7:58 PM

  8. COWABUNGA U.S. Economic Comeback Continues Bill Pugliano/Getty

    8. U.S. Economic Comeback Continues

    On the back of the highest consumer spending in three years, the U.S. economy grew at a rate of 3.2 percent for the fourth quarter of 2013. The growth continued what was a strong finish to the year, as the preceding three months saw growth of 4.1 percent. The continued strength of the economy was likely part of the reason the Federal Reserve announced yesterday it will keep cutting back on bond purchases. The growth came despite a government shutdown, and a significant drop in federal spending.

    January 30, 2014 9:46 AM

  9. HUNGER STRIKE Utah Snatches 40 Kids' Lunches John Moore/Getty

    9. Utah Snatches 40 Kids' Lunches

    No free lunch in Utah. About 40 students at Uintah Elementary in Salt Lake City had their meals taken and thrown away on Tuesday because there were outstanding balances in their accounts. Apparently, the district’s child-nutrition manager decided the best way to deal with the large number of students who owed money for lunches was to withhold the lunches. Unfortunately, cafeteria workers could not see which owed money until after they purchased something. "It was pretty traumatic and humiliating," said one parent. "I think it’s despicable. These are young children that shouldn’t be punished or humiliated for something the parents obviously need to clear up." According to the district, the parents are told about balances once a week, and they tried to contact the parents on Monday and Tuesday.

    January 30, 2014 9:53 AM

  10. TEMPER TANTRUM MSNBC Apologizes to RNC Chair Win McNamee/Getty

    10. MSNBC Apologizes to RNC Chair

    MSNBC President Phil Griffin apologized to RNC Chair Reince Priebus for a controversial tweet that prompted him to call for a conservative boycott of the network. On Wednesday night, MSNBC tweeted a link with the line "Maybe the rightwing will hate it, but everyone else will go aww: the adorable new #Cheerios ad w/ biracial family.” In response, Riebus instructed all RNC staffers and surrogates to refuse to go on MSNBC until Griffin “personally and publicly apologize for this behavior.” The network removed the tweet and fired the staffer responsible.

    January 30, 2014 4:32 PM

  11. LAST OF HIS KIND Henry Waxman Calls It Quits Alex Wong/Getty

    11. Henry Waxman Calls It Quits

    The last of the Democrats elected in 1974 and known as the “Watergate babies” is retiring. California Democrat Henry Waxman will retire from Congress at the end of 2014 after forty years in the House. Waxman, who is seen as one of the most effective legislators in Congress, champions infant formula safety, clean air regulations, help for AIDS victims, and low-priced generic drugs. He was also one of the lawmakers that was instrumental in the passage of the Affordable Care Act. Fellow California congressman and “Watergate baby” George Miller also announced his plans to retire at the end of the year.

    January 30, 2014 11:27 AM

  12. star power Ashley Judd Still Mulling Politics Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty

    12. Ashley Judd Still Mulling Politics

    She's back. At an education event hosted by President Obama in Nashville, Ashley Judd said she's still considering a run for office. The actress considered running for a Senate seat against Mitch McConnell, but decided against it after negative attacks. "How am I supposed to know? How do you make God laugh? You make plans. And how do you make yourself look like an idiot? You tell people those plans," she told CNN of her future prospects in Washington.

    January 30, 2014 7:52 PM

  13. PLANET OF THE APES Scientists Modify Monkey DNA Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty

    13. Scientists Modify Monkey DNA

    Cut and paste isn't just for your keyboard anymore. Researchers in China have created genetically modified monkeys by copying DNA into living beings, which could allow them to recreate human diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Animal rights groups have criticized the new tests, which they say will give scientists "almost limitless power to create sick animals." (Meanwhile, Merck said it would end chimpanzee research.) The technique could also be used to test drugs or monitor diseases on small pieces of lab-grown human organs.

    January 30, 2014 2:13 PM

  14. WOOF North Korea: We Shot Kim's Uncle Han Myung-Gu/WireImage

    14. North Korea: We Shot Kim's Uncle

    Well, it's official: Kim Jong-un did not feed his uncle to 120 dogs last month. In an interview Thursday with U.K.'s Sky News, the North Korean ambassador to the U.K. said Jang Song Thaek was shot to death. When asked about the reported execution of Thaek's entire family, including grandsons, Ambassador Hyun Hak-bong said: "This is the political propaganda by our enemies," adding, "I know he was punished but if his family were punished or not, I don't know."

    Go behind the facade of North Korean propaganda to see the country's dark side.

    January 30, 2014 8:09 AM

  15. SILLY KID Bieber Drug Test Shows Xanax, Pot Reuters

    15. Bieber Drug Test Shows Xanax, Pot

    While the test results have not been formally released, law enforcement sources say that the toxicology report for Justin Bieber’s arrest in Miami Beach had him testing positive for marijuana and Xanax. The pop star pleaded not guilty to the DUI charges on Wednesday, as well as resisting arrest and driving with an expired license. An arraignment is set for February 14, but Bieber’s presence is not required.

    January 30, 2014 12:21 PM

  16. TOO YOUNG TO DIE Detroit Deadliest City for Kids Bill Pugliano/Getty

    16. Detroit Deadliest City for Kids

    A new study reveals Detroit to be the deadliest city in America for kids, more bad news for the bankcrupt, violence-plagued city. As of 2010 (the most recent data available), kids under 18 in Detroit are dying at a rate of 120 per 100,000. At higher risk from the moment they’re conceived, according to the study, Detroit's youth are most often killed by complications from premature birth and violence. Dr. Herman Gray, executive vice president of pediatric health services for the Detroit Medical Center, called the announcement an “emergency” Thursday. “We are losing our future,” he told the press.

    January 30, 2014 8:36 AM

  17. BLIND LEADING BLIND WSJ Board Defends Nazi Comparison Steve Jennings/Getty for TechCrunch

    17. WSJ Board Defends Nazi Comparison

    According to The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board, the comparisons by billionaire Tom Perkins between the Nazis and those who criticize the one percent were apt, arguing that “liberal vituperation makes our letter writer’s point.” While the defense does acknowledge that Nazi comparisons were “unfortunate,” it goes on to list the number of ways liberals in power have applied their “intolerance” to use the government to crack down on those they disagree with.

    January 30, 2014 7:52 AM

  18. SEE YA LATER Scarlett Johansson Cuts Oxfam Ties Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty

    18. Scarlett Johansson Cuts Oxfam Ties

    After eight years as an ambassador for the humanitarian group Oxfam, 29-year-old actress Scarlet Johansson is calling it quits. At issue was Johansson’s new role as a brand ambassador for the Israeli company SodaStream. SodaStream has been threatened with boycotts for having a factory within territory in the West Bank that was won by Israel in 1967 and which is claimed by Palestinians. While Oxfam opposes all trade from Israeli settlements, Johansson says she is a “supporter of economic cooperation and social interaction between a democratic Israel and Palestine.”

    January 30, 2014 7:54 AM

  19. HARD WORKER Police Snag Happy Meal Heroin Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP/Getty

    19. Police Snag Happy Meal Heroin

    McDonald’s did tell its employees to get a second job! A McDonald’s drive-thru employee was arrested Wednesday after undercover cops in Pittsburgh say they caught her selling heroin via a Happy Meal box. According to officials, “The way that the deals would happen is that the customer looking for heroin was instructed to go through the drive-thru and say, ‘I’d like to order a toy.' The customer would then be told to proceed to the first window, where they would be handed a Happy Meal box containing heroin.” Police said the accused, Shantia Marie Dennis, did include the requested toy with the heroin.

    January 30, 2014 7:46 AM

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  21. WHAT GOES AROUND Birther Lawyer Ousted by SCOTUS YouTube

    20. Birther Lawyer Ousted by SCOTUS

    Philip J. Berg is experiencing a case of poetic justice. The lawyer, who asked the Supreme Court to remove President Obama from office because of speculation he was not an American-born citizen, has lost the right to practice before the highest court in the land. One of the first to file “birther” lawsuits against Obama, Berg was also suspended by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court for two years for insufficiently handling his professional obligations to clients. Luckily, he has another activity to keep him busy. He said, “I am now writing a book about Obama.”

    January 29, 2014 7:43 PM

  22. R-E-S-P-E-C-T Navajos Push for Gay Marriage

    21. Navajos Push for Gay Marriage

    The marriage-equality movement isn’t only sweeping state governments, but also tribal ones. Navajo members of the LGBT community are starting to fight the tribe’s ban on same-sex marriages. The Diné Marriage Act was adopted in 2005 to correspond with George W. Bush’s pressure to insert gay-marriage bans into state constitutions. Advocates argue that defeating the ban could help LGBT members of the community to be seen as equal, as well as improve the tribe’s complicated land trust system for their spouses.

    January 29, 2014 4:22 PM

  23. CROSSED THEIR FINGERS Russia Broke Treaty With Missile Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP/Getty

    22. Russia Broke Treaty With Missile

    American officials say they believe Russia violated a 1987 treaty banning medium-range missiles by conducting flight tests of a new ground-launched cruise missile in 2008. The Obama White House is not yet willing to formally declare the violation, which some officials say is part of a pattern of excessive patience toward Moscow in hopes for future arms-control accords. Meanwhile, Russian officials' response has been to say the investigation and case are closed.

    January 30, 2014 7:13 AM

  24. CORRUPT IG: Afghans Can’t Be Trusted Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty

    23. IG: Afghans Can’t Be Trusted

    A new report to be released Thursday by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction argues that the Afghan government cannot be trusted when it comes to the use of U.S. aid. Apparently the report is so devastating, officials worked assiduously to keep it from coming to light. In spite of the audit's findings, money has continued to be sent to Afghanistan. According to the report, not a single one of Afghanistan’s 16 ministries are seen as trustworthy in terms of funds being safe from theft or waste.

    January 30, 2014 7:11 AM

  25. CHECKED OUT Ukraine President Takes Sick Leave Alexander Nemenov/AFP/Getty

    24. Ukraine President Takes Sick Leave

    Best. Excuse. Ever. As his country continues to roil, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich is taking a sick leave, with his deputy health chief saying it is “in connection with an acute respiratory disease accompanied by high fever.” The leave comes one day after Yanukovich forced his country's parliament to pass a conditional amnesty for 100 imprisoned protesters, despite demands from the opposition that the amnesty be unconditional. Kiev has been overtaken by protests, some turning violent, since Yanukovich bowed to Russian pressure and turned down a trade deal with the European Union two months ago.

    What does the world think about the turmoil in Ukraine.

    January 30, 2014 7:49 AM

  26. EH? Bieber Charged for Toronto Assault Jag Gundu/Getty

    25. Bieber Charged for Toronto Assault

    Just a week after being arrested and charged for driving under the influence in Florida, teenage pop star Justin Bieber is being charged in Toronto with assaulting a limousine driver last month. While he turned himself in at a Toronto police station amid swarming paparazzi and screaming girls, his lawyer says Bieber is innocent. According to police, the limousine driver was hit on “the back of the head several times.”

    January 30, 2014 7:56 AM

  27. OLD MCDONALD House Passes Food-Stamp Cuts John Moore/Getty

    26. House Passes Food-Stamp Cuts

    After a two-year fight, the House has finally passed a new Farm Bill. Yet the supposedly pro-business measure touted by Republicans is already being ripped by the conservative American Enterprise Institute, of all places, as a “bait and switch” that lines the pockets of wealthy farmers and the crop-insurance industry. And while it is less than the nearly $40 billion the GOP House proposed to cut last year, the bill still lops off $8 billion over 10 years from the federal food-stamp program. The bill now heads to the Senate, where it will likely be approved.

    January 30, 2014 7:09 AM