2011 voters give a glimpse into 2012

In Ohio, a battleground in the 2012 presidential election and often an election bellwether, voters repealed a new Republican-pushed law restricting the collective-bargaining rights of teachers, firefighters, police and other public workers. It was seen as a referendum on Republican Gov. John Kasich, whose proposal to limit collective bargaining went beyond a similar controversial law in Wisconsin, and it triggered a big-spending campaign battle.
“I respect what people have to say,” Kasich said. “It requires me to take a deep breath, you know, and to spend some time reflecting on what happened here.”
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said Ohio “sent a message to every politician out there: Go in and make war on your employees rather than make jobs with your employees, and you do so at your own peril.”
Ohio voters also approved a ballot issue exempting residents from the 2010 federal health care law’s requirements that people buy medical insurance. It will likely face a court challenge.
In Mississippi, Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant beat Democrat Johnny Dupree, the mayor of Hattiesburg, to succeed Gov. Haley Barbour, a former national Republican Party chairman.
Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear easily turned back a challenge from Republican David Williams, president of the state Senate, to win a second term despite budget shortages and high unemployment. He and Bryant became the second governors of their parties elected a year before the 2012 elections.
Last month, voters elected Democrat Earl Ray Tomblin governor of West Virginia, and Louisiana re-elected GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Cain told reporters in a news conference in Phoenix that he did not recognize Sharon Bialek, the woman who came forward Monday with sexual misconduct allegations. Cain said that her claims he groped her in a car when she tried to ask for help finding a job in 1997 were “simply did not happen.”
Allegations from Bialek and three other women, Cain said, were planted by critics who did not want him to win the Republican nomination for president. He vowed they would not derail his campaign and he would remain in the race.
“The fact is these anonymous allegations are false and now the Democratic machine in America has brought forth a troubled woman to make false accusations, statements many of which exceed common sense and they certainly exceed the standards of decency in America,” he said.The reason sexual harassment is so difficult to prove is that workplace sexual predators try to make sure the victim is alone when the harassment takes place,” Kraushaar said. “The incidents in question occurred many years ago, but corroboration may still be possible with respect to some of the incidents, and in some cases it may even be possible to find witnesses.”
Kraushaar previously worked as a news reporter, and she has held other U.S. government jobs since she left the restaurant association after she settled her complaint against Cain. Her husband, Kevin, has worked as a lobbyist on environmental, municipal and health issues. He has donated money to both Democrats and Republicans. They live in suburban Maryland.
Kraushaar said she would be willing to nike dunk highsappear with the other women who claimed Cain harassed them, so they could present their stories so “the court of public opinion can consider the allegation as a body of evidence.”
Cain said he could only remember one instance in which Kraushaar may have been offended. “I can only recall one thing that I was aware of that was called sexual harassment,” he said. “One day in my office … I was standing next to (her) and I gestured … and said you’re the same height as my wife.”
Cain, who was accompanied by air yeezy attorney Lin Wood of Atlanta, was less delicate when he referred to Bialek. He implied she had a financial motive in bringing up charges more than a decade after they allegedly occurred. He and his campaign criticized Bialek’s hiring of attorney Gloria Allred, who has supported Democratic politicians. Bialek and Allred appeared on several morning television shows Tuesday, and Bialek said she has no financial motivation for coming forward 14 years after being subjected to “unwanted advances.”
“I was not paid to come forward, nike dunk highs nor was I promised any employment. Nothing at all,” Bialek said on ABC’s Good Morning America. “I’m just doing this because it’s the right thing to do.”
Bialek, 50, lives in the Chicago suburbs with her 13-year-old son and fiance. Her financial troubles stem from a series of legal, credit and medical bills. She filed for bankruptcy twice, once in 1991 and again in 2001. Her fiance, Mark Harwood, 50, who works in the medical-device industry, told The Associated Press in an interview that he supported Bialek’s decision to come forward.
Conservative pollster Kellyanne Conway said the campaign has handled the scandal poorly from the very beginning. “We need to remember who is running for president and who is not,” Conway said.
Some people may think Cain is becoming a bit of a liability and would make him hard to support, she said.
Cain acknowledged that some voters may write him off as a result of the scandals but said his supporters have stood by him. “Many of them have expressed their outpouring support for the fact that these incidents simply did not happen,” he said. “So rebuilding the trust on the part of some people, yes, that would be a challenge.”alian bond yields spiked above 7% Tuesday, a sign that investors are selling the bonds, losing faith in the country’s ability to repay its debt. Analysts say Italy will not be able to refinance its debt at current rates, making it more likely to require international assistance.
Overseas, uncertainty over who will lead Italy through the debt crisis once Premier Silvio Berlusconi resigns slammed European stocks and bonds Wednesday, pushing Rome’s borrowing rates to worrying new highs.
Tuesday’s news nike dunks on sale that Berlusconi had finally bowed to pressure and would resign once new austerity measures are passed had helped markets in the U.S. and Asia higher. Berlusconi had been perceived as part of the problem in the political deadlock gripping Italy.Italy’s ten-year yield jumped above the 7% rate widely considered to be unsustainable. When Greece, Ireland and Portugal saw their ten-year borrowing rates rise above 7%, markets concluded they had to be bailed out.
By late morning, the yield was at 7.35%, up 0.77 of a percentage point from the previous day.
What happens in Italy is crucial to the eurozone’s survival. With debts of around €1.9 trillion ($2.6 trillion), Italy’s debts are considered far too big for Europe to bail out.
Higher rates would make it more difficult and expensive for Italy to roll over its debts. The country has over €300 billion ($412 billion) to raise in 2012 alone.
The worry appears to be that even without Berlusconi at the helm, Italy faces a period of political deadlock.
The next government nike dunk high for sale will likely face the same pressures as Berlusconi — to enact quick reforms to shore up Italy’s defenses against Europe’s raging debt crisis.
“The positive impact of Berlusconi’s promised resignation is being diluted by a lack of clarity on where we go from there,” said Adam Cole, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets. “The possibilities range from a technocrat government — most market positive — to new elections — most negative.”
In Europe, the main Milan stock index was down 3.8% while Germany’s DAX was down 2.96% and the CAC-40 in France fell 2.45%. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 2.01% lower.
The euro also fell sharply, trading 1.1% lower at $1.3673.
As well as keeping one eye on developments in Rome, investors are waiting to hear who will be the new prime minister in Greece.
On Tuesday, Socialist Cabinet members issued their resignations, paving the way for the creation of a new government, which is only expected to last until February.
Former European Central Bank vice-president Lucas Papademos was the early favorite to become the interim prime minister, but it was unclear whether he remained in the running.
The new government will be nike dunk low tasked to secure the country’s new euro130 billion ($179 billion) European rescue package and then get it through parliament. That approval will allow the release of nike dunk sb a euro8 billion ($11 billion) loan installment, without which Greece will go bankrupt before Christmas, potentially wrecking Europe’s banking system and sending the global economy back into recession.
The political crisis erupted last week, when Premier George Papandreou said he would put the new European rescue package to a referendum. Other eurozone nations were horrified by the delay, markets around the world tanked and Greece’s international creditors froze the payment of the next bailout.
Earlier in Asia, nike dunk sb for sale sentiment had been boosted by the Berlusconi pledge, with Japan’s Nikkei 225 index closing 1.2% higher at 8,755.44. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.2% to 1,907.53 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng jumped 1.7% to 20,014.43.
There was also some cheer from the news that China’s stubbornly-high inflation fell in October as rapid rises in food costs eased. The decline was seen positively by investors as it gives Beijing more room to stimulate China’s economy.
Mainland China’s Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.8% to 2,524.92 and the smaller Shenzhen Composite Index rose 1.6% to 1,071.04.
Oil prices tracked equities lower — benchmark crude was down 96 cents at $95.84 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.On Tuesday, Europe’s fast-growing debt crisis claimed its latest victim in Berlusconi, who has led Italy for 11 of the past 17 years. He vowed to resign after shepherding the country’s economic austerity package through Parliament, creating at least some short-term relief for Europe’s fourth-largest economy.
If Berlusconi steps down, it will mark the fourth European government felled this year amid costly bailouts and emergency austerity measures.
It was a surprising turn for the nike dunk mens seemingly indestructible 75-year-old Berlusconi whose troubles include historically low approval levels, the defection of key political allies and court case after court case that have continued to dog the Italian leader.
The colorful-if-gaffe-prone leader who won worldwide notoriety for making remarks such as describing President Obama as “handsome, young and also sun-tanned” and bragging about his dalliances with young women had people around the world shaking their heads at times.In Italy, the dramatic developments came after Berlusconi’s allies failed to achieve a parliamentary majority on a budget measure that had been seen as a vote on Berlusconi’s leadership. Berlusconi mustered 308 votes of support in the 630-member chamber.
Berlusconi later announced he would resign after the approval of the budget measure, which contains spending cuts and reforms demanded by the European Union finance ministers.
The dramatic news from Italy came at the same time Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou prepared to officially resign and party leaders worked to hammer out a deal to install a government that would be able to implement a European Union rescue package agreed to last month.
Earlier this year, Ireland and Portugal saw their governments collapse under the weight of debt fears.
In Italy, the political uncertainty drove the cost for the government to borrow money to its highest level since the euro was introduced nearly a decade ago. The yield on benchmark 10-year bonds reached as high as 6.74% before the parliamentary vote, precipitously close to the 7% level that sparked the government collapse in Greece and in Ireland and Portugal.
“We have to be cautious with parallels with Ireland and Portugal, because Rome goes into this crisis with a much stronger budgetary position than either of those two countries,” said Jan Randolph, head of Sovereign Risk at IHS Global Insight. “Italy collects more in taxes than the government spends, giving it a strong positive cash flow.”
Even so, the rising bond yields raise the cost for the government to borrow money, making the prospect of paying down the country’s massive debt — which is worth $2.6 trillion, or 120% of the country’s gross domestic product — even more daunting.
Italy’s economy is nearly three times larger than those of Greece, Ireland and Portugal combined. It is unlikely that the European Union would be able to raise enough capital to bail the country out if it must default on its debt payments.
A failure of any kind in Italy would have dire repercussions for the eurozone as a whole.
“If Italy gets to the same state Greece was in, it would no longer be possible to have the euro currency,” said Luca Silipo, a former Italian Central Bank official and now an economist with Natixis SA. “If Italy goes bankrupt, then France will be next.
“You clearly don’t want Italy to have the same problem as Greece,” he said.
Notwithstanding its political developments, Italy could be headed in the same direction as nearby Greece, nike dunk mens shoes for sale analysts said. Though Italian markets are expected to Wednesday, that may be a short-term trend.
“If Berlusconi goes, the markets will probably respond positively … (but) the underlying economic problems remain, and there is no easy fix,” said Javier Noriega, a senior economist with investment bankers Hildebrandt and Ferrar. “I don’t know if the Italian public has gotten its head around the fact that it’s going to get much worse in Italy before it gets better, and that there is a lot of difficult work ahead.”
Carsten Brzeski, economist at ING financial group in Brussels, agreed.
“Italy is, in terms of growth, the sick man of Europe,” he said. “The country has very, very sluggish growth. It is not a recession like in Greece or the other peripheral countries. We all know that Italy is too big to fail. They cannot be rescued or bailed out by the other European countries, they need to do it themselves otherwise the eurozone has big problem.”The recall affects 447,000 vehicles in North America, as well as 38,000 in Japan and another 25,000 in Australia and New Zealand, said Toyota spokesman Dion Corbett. In Europe some 14,000 vehicles are being recalled along with 10,000 in the Middle East and 14,000 in Asia outside Japan.
There have been no reports of accidents or injuries related to the problems, Corbett said.
Toyota’s U.S. sales unit said in a press release that there is a possibility that the outer ring of the engine’s crankshaft pulley may become misaligned with the inner ring, causing noise or a warning signal to light up.
If the problem isn’t corrected, the belt for the power steering pump may become detached from the pulley, making it suddenly more difficult to turn the driving wheel.
In the United States, the automaker is recalling 283,200 Toyota brand cars, including the 2004 and 2005 Camry, Highlander, Sienna and Solara, the 2004 Avalon and the 2006 Highlander HV. Its recall of 137,000 Lexus vehicles includes the 2004 and 2005 ES330 and RX330 and 2006 RX400h.
The recall notification process varies from country to country.
In the U.S., Toyota will mail owners a notification to make an appointment with an authorized dealer to have their car inspected once replacement parts have been produced in sufficient quantities.
If needed, parts will be replaced for no charge, the company’s American sales unit said. Notifications will be mailed starting in January.
In the meantime, if an abnormal noise is heard coming from the engine compartment, the owner is asked to make an appointment with any Toyota or Lexus dealer to have the vehicle inspected for this condition, the release said.Now that the 22-year-old German has won the $8.72 million prize at the World Series of Poker, he can steer his life in pretty much whatever direction he wants.
“Honestly I’m not sure what I’m going to do with the money,” Heinz said early Wednesday after winning the main event in a marathon session of Texas Hold ’em. “Probably my family is going to get a couple gifts.”
Heinz won with an ace high, just nine nike dunk minnie mouse online sale hands after using the same hand to boost himself from a nearly insurmountable disadvantage against 35-year-old Martin Staszko.
Heinz, of Cologne, Germany, called an all-in bet from Staszko with an ace and a king. Staszko held a seven-10 of clubs.
The board was a five of clubs, deuce of diamonds, nine of spades, jack of hearts and four of diamonds, helping neither player but cementing Heinz’s win in the $10,000 buy-in tournament that started in July.
Staskzo won $5.43 million for second place, a nice consolation prize, but it comes without a bracelet — the prize given to WSOP event winners and coveted by all serious card players.
“Have you ever worn it?” Heinz asked 2010 title winner Jonathan Duhamel as Duhamel handed him the bracelet.
“It’s got to be the happiest day of my life,” Heinz said. “But I can’t believe what happened — it’s unreal.”
Staszko, a chess whiz who once worked for three years at an auto paint shop, said he thought his finish would help poker in his native country.
“I’m never happy if I don’t win,” Staszko said. “But it’s not too bad. Second place is OK.”
Staszko, who mainly plays online, said he’ll be back to Sin City and the series.
“I’ll come back next year,” he said. “I hope I can win a bracelet.”
Asked before the final table began whether they’d accept second place money right then and forgo a shot at the title, Heinz said yes; Staszko said no.
Now, Heinz is happy they played the game.
Once it was down to the nike dunk supreme two players, they exchanged the lead nine times over 119 hands. At one point, Staszko had a nearly 4-1 chip edge on Heinz.
But Heinz, who started the day with just over half the chips in play, convinced Staszko to gamble with less-than-ideal hands in an attempt to put the no-limit Texas Hold ’em tournament away. Over the years, she has shared her emotional struggles, and now she’s sharing her weight-loss struggles for people “going through the pain and shame — everything that comes with weight gain.”
Some of her future commercials for Jenny, the company’s new shortened name, will feature her song Make It Happen. “I wrote that song from personal experience.”
The song is “so fitting because a lot of people give up hope when they have had their kids and can’t lose that 20 pounds or 40 pounds, or they have gone through issues with weight their entire lives. It becomes so frustrating and debilitating that you give up.”
Carey says she had a few indulgences during her pregnancy, including sugary drinks, soul food and pizza. But she doesn’t know how much weight she gained because she didn’t weigh herself. “I was walking around the house, pregnant and miserable, looking at mirrors and saying: “Why did I put so many mirrors in my house?’ ”
After the babies were born by cesarean section, she breast-fed them for a while and followed a regular diet.
Several weight-loss companies called her about working with them, Carey says, but when she spoke to the executives at Jenny, “all of whom had their own issues with weight,” she felt “a kinship with everybody I spoke with.”
The company is known for its high-profile success stories, including actresses Carrie Fisher and Valerie Bertinelli, lifestyle counseling services and packaged food eaten in combination with high-fiber fruits and vegetables.
Carey also will be working with Jenny in a new venture to support and promote the American Heart Association’s new initiative, My Heart. My Life.
Dana Fiser, CEO of Jenny, says, “We are thrilled to have her commitment for such a big cause for several years.”
Fiser says the nike dunk mid pro sb company hopes that the combination of Carey and its new name to broaden its appeal to younger women.
In July, when Carey was no longer breast-feeding the twins, she started on the Jenny program, ate the company’s foods and was particularly fond of their soups. She says she mixed it up and did some of her own cooking, too, which is part of the program. She does mostly aquatic workouts for 45 minutes four or five days a week.
Speaking of her current weight, Carey says she doesn’t go by the scale but by “my dress size. Right now I am between a 4 or 6.” She’s 5-foot-9.

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