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Monday, October 20, 2014

Gas prices are hitting a new low for the year, and the downward trend is expected to continue, according to AAA. The average price on a gallon of gas in the L.A.-Long Beach area on Monday was $3.52, down from $3.75 last month. In Orange County, the average price was $3.50, down from $3.72 last month. In the Riverside-San Bernardino area, the average was $3.48, and in Ventura, the average was $3.50. California has the highest gas prices in the continental U.S. According to Gas Buddy, the national average is $3.12, the lowest since Jan. 18, 2011. read more


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Testimony from public health officials in the Senate a few weeks ago and subsequent media follow up has pointed out a serious deficit for public health funding. In fact, NIH Director Francis Collins said, point blank "if we had not gone through our 10-year slide in research support, we probably would have had a vaccine in time for this that would've gone through clinical trials and would have been ready." These reports led House Democrats to call for a hearing on the lack of funding for the Ebola crisis. read more


As part of a proposed class-action lawsuit filed against sandwich chain Jimmy John's this summer, the employment agreement workers are made to sign has been revealed -- and its noncompete clause is pretty crazy. Even low-wage sandwich makers and delivery drivers aren't exempt from the agreement, which the Huffington Post has in full. Among other things, it bars employees from working for "any business which derives more than 10% of its revenue from selling submarine, hero-type, deli-style, pita, and/or wrapped or rolled sandwiches" within 3 miles of any Jimmy John's ... for two years after leaving Jimmy John's. -- Newser read more


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

This afternoon, the Supreme Court blocked a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit that had shuttered most of Texas' abortion clinics. Thirteen clinics in the state will be able to reopen tomorrow, according to the >i>New York Times. On October 2, the Fifth Circuit overturned a Texas district court ruling from August that had blocked the ambulatory surgical center provision of HB2 -- arguably the most onerous for abortion clinics -- from kicking in on September 1, 2014. The appeals court decision left just eight clinics open in the state, all in metro areas, leaving nearly a million women more than 150 miles from their nearest clinic. read more


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

New Hampshire State Rep. Steve Vaillancourt wrote a long blog post predicting the outcome of the race in the state's 2nd Congressional District on one factor: incumbent Democratic Rep. Ann McLane Kuster's looks. "Let's be honest. Does anyone not believe that Congressman Annie Kuster is as ugly as sin? And I hope I haven't offended sin," Vaillancourt wrote. By contrast, he wrote, Kuster's Republican challenger, State Rep. Marilinda Garcia, is "one of the most attractive women on the political scene anywhere, not so attractive as to be intimindating [sic], but truly attractive." A Daily Kos blogger called Vaillancourt's comments "yet another desperate Republican bid to win ugly."


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