The House was expected to approve the budget accord between the
White House and congressional leaders, one day after the Senate
Budget Committee easily passed it with a 17-to-4 vote. Passage was
expected despite word from an aide to House minority leader Richard
Gephardt that he will not support the accord, which will
reportedly balance the budget by 2002.
Crews of the space shuttle Atlantis and Russia's Mir station
worked to finish hauling supplies and equipment between the docked
spacecraft and Mir. The seven-member shuttle crew and three Mir men
- two cosmonauts and an American - were to have everything in place
by this morning, when hatches between the two spacecraft were to be
closed. Atlantis is to undock tonight and return to Earth on
Saturday after nine days aloft.
A move in Congress to impeach liberal judges deserves to fail,
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said. A group of GOP lawmakers
is pressing for impeachment of some judges on grounds that their
decisions usurp power from Congress and the people. Scalia told
members of the Anti-Defamation League, a Jewish civil-rights group,
that impeachment of judges would be overly intrusive. He is
considered one of the more conservative Supreme Court justices.
The Senate seemed close to a final vote on banning a late-term
abortion procedure. GOP lawmakers agreed to minor changes in the
bill and in return received a stamp of approval from American
Medical Association. They hoped AMA support would swing enough
votes to overcome a presidential veto. The changes are reportedly
designed to shelter doctors from overzealous prosecution. The House
had already passed the ban, which provides for exceptions only when
the mother's life is at risk, by a veto-proof margin.
President Clinton was scheduled to launch a so-called Welfare to
Work Partnership in a meeting at the White House. The heads of
Burger King, Monsanto, Sprint, United Parcel Service, and United
Airlines are leading this effort to provide companies with guidance
on how to train those coming off welfare.
Defense Secretary William Cohen was scheduled to answer
questions from the Senate Armed Services Committee about proposals
to close military bases, reduce certain weapons contracts, continue
sending troops to remote hot spots, and otherwise cut defense
forces. A recommendation to hold two more rounds of base closures
was expected to draw the most scrutiny.
US subsidiaries of foreign companies gave at least $12.5 million
in political donations to US candidates and parties in 1995 and
1996, a study by the Center for Responsive Politics found. It said
more than two-thirds of the contributions went to Republicans,
one-third to Democrats. During the study period, 128 US
subsidiaries of 93 foreign-owned companies donated to US campaigns.
Thirty percent of Americans close to retirement have saved less
than $10,000 for the years when they are no longer working, a
survey by the research group Public Agenda indicated. In the poll
conducted for Fidelity Investments, only 29 percent of respondents
aged 51 to 61 reported savings of $100,000.
The threat an oil spill poses to Lake Barre in southern
Louisiana is greater than originally reported. Texaco had estimated
Friday's pipeline spill at about 17,000 gallons. It is now believed
to be as many as 210,000 gallons and a serious threat to sensitive
marshland. The area has been closed to oyster harvesting, and
shrimpers are being asked to stay away.
The scheduled court-martial of the Air Force's first female B-52
pilot was delayed while authorities waited for Pentagon permission
to proceed. Approval was needed because of 1st Lt. Kelly Flinn's
request that she be allowed to resign with an honorable discharge.
The delay came after an unconfirmed report that the secretary of
the Air Force was not inclined to approve Flinn's request in order
to avoid a potentially embarrassing court-martial. She is charged
with adultery, disobedience, and lying.
The self-proclaimed leader of what was formerly called Zaire was
drawing up a new Cabinet to replace the regime of ousted President
Mobutu. Laurent-Desire Kabila, who has renamed the country the
Democratic Republic of Congo, was to announce a transitional
government yesterday in Kinshasa, the capital. Meanwhile, the
United Nations refugee agency reported that more than 2,000
citizens have fled to neighboring Central African Republic since
Kabila's men took power last weekend.
In the first case of its kind in Great Britain, 36 people are
suing the country's two largest tobacco companies. The plaintiffs'
attorney charges that tobacco companies knew in the 1950s that
cigarettes were a health risk. If the court sides with the
industry, he says it could end antitobacco litigation in Britain.
Russia said it would reconsider its new partnership with NATO if
it moved to offer membership to the Baltic states. A Foreign
Ministry spokesman reiterated President Yeltsin's remarks that any
attempt to grant former Soviet republics membership would not be
About a quarter of Jewish houses in the West Bank and Gaza are
empty, a US survey found. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu
dismissed the report as groundless and said he would continue to
expand settlements there. Haaretz newspaper said the survey was
raised during US envoy Dennis Ross's recent visit to refute Israeli
arguments that more construction in the mainly Palestinian areas
was needed to accommodate natural growth.
The number of refugees worldwide dropped to 34 million in 1996 -
a seven-year low. According to a report by the US Committee for
Refugees, one reason for the decline is that refugees are having a
tougher time finding asylum. Germany and the US were two of 15
countries named where guarantees of political asylum have been
China praised President Clinton's decision to recommend renewal
of its most-favored nation trade status for another year. But
Beijing urged Washington to grant the concessions on a permanent
basis. The decision was also hailed in Taiwan and Hong Kong, whose
economies are closely linked to China's.
Drastic measures are needed to protect Vietnam's children from
the rising tide of sexual exploitation, the UN said. UNICEF
reported that, although Hanoi had demonstrated a commitment to
tackling the problem, implementation of measures remained weak.
Some 20,000 children under 18 are said to be victims of
prostitution in Vietnam. The percentage of prostitutes that are
children has grown from 11 to 15 percent since 1991.
Opposition warlord Rashid Dostum's grip on northern Afghanistan
slipped further as fighting raged in his home province of Jozjan,
his spokesman said. Dostum has reportedly lost control of another
region, Sar-e-Pul. His soldiers are battling a former general who
deserted and joined the Taliban religious militia, which controls
much of the country. The uprising appears to have seriously
weakened the anti-Taliban alliance. Also, the Taliban said they had
captured the Shibar Pass.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan condemned a Turkish incursion
into northern Iraq. Thousands of Turkish troops pushed into Iraq a
week ago in a foray against Kurdish rebels, sparking international
criticism. Turkey's defense minister said the incursion will
continue until the guerrillas are hunted down.
Yeltsin fired one of his key supporters after he was charged
with corruption, his spokesman said. Gen. Konstantin Kobets was
dismissed from his posts as chief military inspector and deputy
defense minister and discharged from the Army. He was charged with
taking a $241,000 bribe.
". . . if you let the legislature intrude too much on the
judiciary, we'll be in trouble."
- Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, on a move in Congress to
impeach liberal judges.
A Plainville, Conn., car dealer is going - well - bananas, after
staying true to his word and bartering away a Cadillac. On the
heels of this ad for a 1983 model - "First Ten Thousand Bananas
Takes It" - in came a demanding customer with a mountain of fruit.
The man had purchased - at wholesale - 10,000 bananas for about
$1,100 - less than half the price of the car.
Newlyweds Jeff Graham and Leslie Ashfield are already having
their ups and downs. They tied the knot beside the refurbished
60-year-old Blue Streak roller coaster at Conneaut Lake Park in
Pennsylvania. After saying "I do's" on the platform, they climbed
aboard for a ceremonial ride. They're to spend their honeymoon
riding the coaster at Cedar Point Park near Cleveland. He's from
Dallas; she's from Quincy, Mass. But they met in England near -
guess what? - a roller coaster.
Live-fire commando training at the Navy's Bloodworth Island
complex in Maryland has been stopped cold by a pair of expectant
peregrine falcons. Wildlife officials say the birds are sitting on
eggs in an area where the Navy's SEAL units train. An environmental
review is under way.
The Day's List
'Fifth Element' Is Tops At the Box Office Again
For the second consecutive weekend, "The Fifth Element" led all
other films in gross revenues May 16-18. However, its stay at the
top is expected to end once the blockbuster "The Lost World:
Jurassic Park" opens on Friday. Last weekend's top 10 films and
their estimated grosses (in millions):
1. "The Fifth Element" $11.6
2. "Fathers' Day" 6.4
3. "Breakdown" 6.0
4. "Austin Powers, International Man of Mystery"5.6
6. (tie) "Liar Liar"3.0
"Night Falls on Manhattan" 3.0
9. "Romy and Michele's High School Reunion"2.2
10. "Anaconda" 2.1
- Exhibitor Relations Inc./AP