Vilsack rules out run for U.S. Senate in 2020

first_imgDES MOINES — Former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack has decided against running for the U.S. Senate. For the past couple of months, Vilsack had been meeting with privately with influential Democrats and supporters of his previous statewide campaigns in 1998 and 2002 — discussing a potential challenge to Republican Joni Ernst’s bid for reelection next year.Vilsack hinted at a run in December, suggesting Ernst’s record might be vulnerable.“Make ’em squeal, I don’t know. Have we made even these folks squirm at all? I haven’t see it,” Vilsack told reporters. “But I think a ‘Happy Warrior’ — I think we’re ready for that.”Iowa Democratic Party chairman Troy Price issued a written statement this afternoon, saying Democrats appreciate Vilsack’s “thoughtful and deliberate consideration of making a run for the seat.” Price added there will be a “spirited primary” to select the Democrat who’ll challenge Ernst in 2020.A Des Moines Register “Iowa Poll” released this past week showed Ernst’s approval rating in Iowa is 57 percent.Vilsack got his start in politics as mayor of Mount Pleasant. He won election to the state senate in 1992. In 1998, Vilsack was the first Democrat elected governor in more than three decades. Vilsack briefly ran for president after serving two terms as Iowa’s governor. He served eight years as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture during the entire Obama Administration.Vilsack is currently the president and CEO of the US. Dairy Export Council.last_img read more

Konta deprives Clijsters of his first win after his return

first_imgThe British Johanna Konta, second favourite, introduced out her greatest weapon as an expert, the service, to defeat on Tuesday 6-3, 7-5 the Belgian Kim Clijsters within the first spherical of the Monterrey Tennis Open.Konta stored his serve undefeated and was affected person to interrupt the opponent’s service in video games seven and 9 and thus awarded the first spherical by which he confirmed superiority.At 36, the persistent Clijsters, who performed simply his second sport after his return to the WTA tour, confirmed flashes of the participant who in August 2003 reached the first place on the planet rankings.With good returns Clijsters stored the serve and prompted a 5-5, however when he tried to power a ‘tie break’, Konta broke to say victory in 1h 25.Within the second around the sixteenth rating participant will face the German Tatjana Maria, who eradicated the British Heather Watson 7-6 (4), 3-6, 7-5.Watson, who received the Mexican Open on Saturday, yielded the break of the first set and though he recovered and matched the duel, he suffered a break within the twelfth sport of the third sleeve to be out of the event. The 17-year-old Canadian Leylah Fernández, a finalist in Acapulco final Saturday, received 7-6 (5), 6-2 to the Swiss Stefanie Voegele and agreed to the spherical of 16, part by which he’ll face the American Sloane Stephens, participant 37 of the world, who beat his compatriot Emma Navarro on Monday.On the shut of the first around the Slovak Tamara Zidansek, racket 71 of the WTA, beat Belarusian Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 6-2, former world primary, and will probably be seen within the 16-best part with the Russian Anastasia Potapova, winner of the Italian Giulia Gatto-Monticone 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.This Tuesday the Ukrainian Kateryna Bondarenko eradicated Spain’s Sara Sorribes by beating 4-6, 6-0, 6-2. The Hispanic, 76 of the world, broke within the first set to get forward, however then misplaced fuel and was out of the championship.Ukrainian Elina Svitolina, first favourite, beat Danka Kovinic 6-3, 6-2, from Montenegro, and the American Lauren Davis, beat Argentina’s Nadia Podoroska 6-0, 6-3, in different duels this Tuesday.last_img read more

NPA and APM Terminals Sign MOU

first_imgAuthorities of the National Port Authority (NPA) and APM Terminals yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to commence the process of purchasing and installing Aids to Navigation that will light the Freeport of Monrovia on a 24/7 basis.The exercise, according to the terms of the MOU, will begin in October this year and continue through April next year following which the Freeport of Monrovia will have Aids to Navigation installed ready for 24/7 operations.The APM Terminals will purchase the Aids to Navigation on behalf of NPA based on the entity’s technical specifications in line with International Association of Lighthouse Authority (IALA) standards and have them installed at interest-free cost. And APM Terminals will recover the cost of purchasing and installing the Aids to Navigation through deductions from the NPA/ Government of Liberia (GOL) royalty.On October 24, the NPA, satisfied with the modifications in the technical specifications and installation of Aids to Navigation, and after taking a night time tour of the navigation, approved and authorized 24 hours operations in the port of Buchanan.“We are pleased to say that for the first time in 25 years, the Port of Buchanan in Grand Bassa County sailed M/V CSL Atlas at 7 p.m. and berthed another vessel M/V Bulk Peru one hour later,” the NPA management said, following the signing ceremony. For his part, APM Terminals Managing Director, George G. Adjei expressed satisfaction over the development.“We have been operating in the Freeport of Monrovia for five years, and it is part of the concession agreement to refurbish the 600 meter key. Now with the deployment of the Navigational Aid, vessels will be able to berth and de-berth during the night hours,” he said.He said the exercise is part of APM Terminals process which serves as “game changers” in operating the organization, which the management is excited about.The Government of Liberia stands to benefit immensely from the latest development, “because revenue and royalty will be generated on a 24 hour basis,” Mr. Adjei also said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

LFA Stands by James Debbah

first_imgThe Liberia Football Association says James Salinsa Debbah is still the head coach of the national soccer team, the Lone Star.The LFA in a statement said news report on social media and about replacing Debbah is untrue.LFA President Musa Bility said the football association stands by James Salinsa Debbah and his technical staff.Bility said the LFA believes in the ability and capability of James Debbah to take the team to Tunisia and subsequently qualify for the finals of the African Cup of Nations.“We have explicit confidence in James Debbah and his Deputy Kelvin Sebwe, and that confidence has not eroded,” the LFA President stated.However, after Lone Star’s failure to have maintained their 2-0 lead against Togo, Coach Debbah said on an LBS radio program that he did not sign a contract with the LFA to take the national team to an African Cup of Nations tournament.“I signed the contract to build a team,” Debbah said, and noted that the national team players could only play for 65 minutes, before fatigue sets in.He also admitted to a question that most of the Lone Star players are not playing on a competitive level, since the majority are not in Europe; and even those who are there are not first team material.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Health Authorities Respond to Lassa Fever Outbreak

first_imgThe National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health (MoH) has responded to the Lassa fever outbreak in the country.According to a release issued in Monrovia, cases of Lassa fever are on the increase in the Lassa belt (Bong, Nimba, and Grand Bassa Counties).Four new confirmed cases have been reported: from Bong (2), Grand Bassa (1) and Nimba (1) since the last outbreak in May, 2018. A blood specimen was collected and tested positive for Lassa fever on 4th-7th June 2018, at the National Public Health Reference Laboratory (NPHRL). The recent case from Nimba County was confirmed by the NPHRL on June 7.A total of 128 contacts, including 59 healthcare workers, have been line-listed and are being followed up. One case is currently undergoing treatment at Phebe Hospital in Gbarnga Bong County, while one has been discharged. Two deaths have been reported in this recent outbreak.Since the beginning of January, a total of 112 suspected cases have been reported across the country. Eighteen have been confirmed positive by RT-PCR (Nimba-7, Montserrado-3, Bong-4 Margibi-2, and Grand Bassa-2. The case fatality rate among confirmed cases is 72.2 percent (13/18). The high death rate is alarming to NPHIL and has launched an in-depth investigation.The release also discloses that although Lassa fever is not new to Liberia, it is a deadly viral disease that requires urgent attention. The disease is spread by rodents (rats)  through close contact with affected persons.People are advised to keep their environment clean: cover your dishes to prevent rats pu-puing or pee-peeing on them; cover food in tightly closed containers to prevent rats from playing in food or drinking water; do not eat rats because you can get the sickness by coming into contact with their blood, pee-pee or pu-pu and not to dry food in open places where rats can reach.Other preventive measures are to avoid body contact with affected persons and endemic zone and visit a health facility immediately when one feels sick.Meanwhile, NPHIL, MOH, and partners have appealed to the general public to take the necessary preventive measures, and to kindly report cases of fever to the nearest health facility.“We continue to improve our rapid response at the county, district and community levels through the County Emergency Operation Centers, and to provide technical, financial and logistical support to the outbreaks, the release concluded.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Govt awaiting report from ‘non-existent’ taskforce

first_imgRusal workers’ futureBarring the recent announcement that Russian aluminium giant Rusal has received a temporary reprieve from the United States in the form of an extension of the deadline for ending third-party transactions, there is deep worry about how the local bauxite workforce will be affected.GBGWU President Lincoln LewisNevertheless, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon told the media on Monday that while a special task force was set up by Cabinet to deal with the future of workers attached to subsidiaries of Rusal in light of US-imposed sanctions, no report has been submitted to date.“The work of the committee is within the time frame that has been allotted to them and we expect before the deadline expires we will have a memorandum coming to Cabinet … that is with clear recommendations of what needs to be done,” he explained.The Government’s chief spokesman went on to explain that when a document arrives at Cabinet, it is studied by the subject Minister and a memorandum with recommendations, the impact and all other issues accompanies the report of any committee that is established.He said, “So, it’s not just a committee finishing the report and it comes to Cabinet. The responsible minister has to review the document and has to make clear recommendations. Once that happens, we will have a clear vision of what we can do in that situation.”A few months ago, Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman and a team visited Rusal’s operations where they listened to concerns by workers over the impending sanctions. The Government subsequently announced the setting up of the task force.Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman and Minister within the Natural Resources Ministry, Simona BroomesThe seven-member task force was given specific instructions by Cabinet “to hold discussions with the workers of Rusal on the impact of the sanctions on the work force”. It was headed by Minister within the Natural Resources Ministry, Simona Broomes and included Minister within the Finance Ministry, Jaipaul Sharma; President of the Guyana Bauxite and General Workers Union (GBGWU), Lincoln Lewis; Member of Parliament, Audwin Rutherford; Ministry of Social Protection’s Chief Labour Officer, Charles Ogle; Member of Parliament, Jermaine Figueira and Secretary Alicia James.But Broomes later stepped down after there was some confusion over an interim report that was submitted that totally ignored the US sanctions, but looked more specifically at labour relations issues between the company and the Union. Since then nothing has been done on the matter and no one has since officially replaced Broomes, although a name has been touted.No task forceGBGWU’s Lewis told Guyana Times Tuesday that he was unaware that the task force was active, while raising concerns that the team should have been actively engaged in intense discussions with bauxite workers, particularly those who are likely to be affected by the US sanctions.“I don’t know how Government is handling this issue. There is no task force that currently exists. Minister Broomes has resigned and no one has said anything to us for at least six weeks now,” he stated, explaining that these workers’ concerns should be of paramount importance.The US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) levied sanctions upon Rusal on April 6, citing its alleged interference in the Governments of several countries, including allegedly meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.Rusal was among several organisations named under the sanctions. However, the impact upon Rusal and the wider aluminium trade has been significant. As one of the world’s most prolific providers of alumina, sanctions on Rusal have threatened vital supplies of the substance to a market that was already reeling from the partial shut-down of an alumina refinery in Brazil.The threat of sanctions has also sent many of Rusal’s customers scrambling for different, potentially more reliable sources of aluminium and alumina. Even if sanctions are lifted later this year, many experts warn that Rusal will continue to suffer the effects.Rusal employs over 500 persons at its local operations. The company owns 90 per cent of the Aroaima, Berbice-based Bauxite Company of Guyana Inc (BCGI). The company’s operations are located on the Berbice River between Kwakwani and Linden, with residents from those areas making up the majority of its workforce.last_img read more


first_imgWalshyAfter a feast of rugby and cricket (he has played both!), Paddy Walsh questions the brutality of the oval ball sport, backs Shay Given to roll back the years and delights at Ireland bowling over the West Indies.PITCH BATTLESIs rugby too brutal today?A busted eye and three cracked vertebrae – rugby just gets more and more physical with each passing match. What the World Cup is going to bring later in the season should leave us shuddering at the thought and the authorities surely questioning where the game is going.Or maybe not. Perhaps, they revel in the physicality of it and Saturday’s Ireland/France bruiser had plenty of that.Johnny Sexton had just returned from being sidelined with concussion – another issue that those in charge aren’t tackling with any great momentum – to find himself the victim of a bloodied eye following a head collision with Mathieu Bastareaud who also, to be fair, suffered a similar injury.But it was the vicious knee in the back on Jamie Heaslip from the French lock, Pascal Pape – subsequently cited for his actions and hopefully facing the stiffest of bans – that underlined how rugby has turned from brawn to brutalised. Heaslip will be out for a month as he recovers from those cracked vertebrae – it could have been much longer had Pape put even more venom into his assault.Let’s face it, many of us actually watch rugby for the very purpose of viewing two teams go into battle at full throttle – soccer and Gaelic Games are infinitely softer in comparison – but we don’t need to see players on the end of potentially career – life? – ending challenges.On the performance itself, Ireland were deserving winners even though they, and fans, were forced to sweat through that final quarter as France upped the tempo and came within a converted try of puncturing the home team’s Championship aspirations.The fact that Joe Schmidt’s side didn’t register a single try themselves was certainly worrying though his tactics may have mitigated against it.Perhaps, they’re saving them for the England game. BREEN KEEPING IN BERKSHIREFormer Finn Harps star Chris Breen in action back in 2004.Former Finn Harps striker, Chris Breen, is now showing how it’s done on the pitch at Reading F.C. A skilful operator when he was at Finn Park, he’ll no doubt prove equally adept on the green grass at the Madejski Stadium.But, not as you may have seen already, as a player. For the Ballybofey man has ventured into a different capacity in the game – that of assistant green keeper at the ground which the English Championship club shares with the London Irish Rugby Union club.Breen undertook a course in Cork on green keeping and sports turf management and has subsequently worked on golf courses in Sweden and England. A chronic shoulder problem had forced him to retire from football much earlier than he should have. I always rated him as a player and can recall one hugely vital goal he scored that helped Harps to that rarest of things – a league title.It came in 2004 when the Finn Parkers travelled to Kildare County in the second last game of the season needing to win to almost make sure of clinching the First Division championship.There were just four minutes left and with the sides at stalemate, it looked as if U.C.D. might pip Harps to the title until Breen rose in the penalty to score with another rare thing – a header! Striking partner, Kevin McHugh, added another in stoppage time and Harps went on to beat Dundalk 3-0 at home in the final match of the season to signal some serious celebrating.Breen went on to play for both Shamrock Rovers and Limerick but I’d hazard a guess that the 2004 season remained a highlight of his League of Ireland career.And now he’s tending to the pitch of F.A. Cup quarter-finalists, Reading, who have been drawn away to Bradford. Who knows the giant-killers may yet be trotting out on to Breen territory should that game end in a draw and a subsequent replay.SHAYVE OF THE SEASONShay GivenWell, did you see it? THAT save from our own Shay Given? Matty James about to turn away in celebration for Leicester City after letting fly with a shot destined for the top corner only for the Lifford lion to somehow leap across his goalmouth and fingertip it away for a corner? Outstanding is one word for it. Undoubted save of the season is five more words for it.It might not have come in time to save Paul Lambert’s job at the Villa but it certainly helped propel them into the F.A. Cup quarter-finals. And while Lambert didn’t give the Donegalman any kind of decent run in his starting line-ups in recent times, Tim Sherwood may just have seen the benefit of including the vastly experienced Given in his team as he takes over the reigns at Villa Park.Thirty-eight he may be but goalkeepers don’t age as quick as outfielders and you could see the former Republic of Ireland international – or maybe not former – don the gloves for the remainder of the campaign. AVOIDING THE RESULTSA letter in one of the English newspapers caught my attention for a specific reason.The writer recalled doing his best to avoid seeing the football results on one particular Saturday afternoon back in the seventies to enable him to enjoy the Match of the Day highlights later on that evening.He was watching a Five Nations rugby match – no Italy back then – on the television when a latest score flashed up on the bottom of the screen. Consequently he decided to stick a roll of black tape over this part of the T.V. to prevent him seeing anymore.But when the next latest update came it was scrolled across the TOP of the screen. Result? A black tape border surrounding the entire screen which just about allowed him the space to see the action on the rugby pitch but did keep him ignorant of the results from the soccer.Only reason I mention this is because I’m one of those irritating people who attempt to avoid all the final scores, Premiership and Football League, so I can settle down to savour the highlights programmes later on Saturday night. It has meant avoiding the tail-end of news bulletins, plugging my ears with my thumbs if I’m in a shop and the results come on, and requesting the drivers of cars in which I’m getting a lift to turn off their radios just before the sports headlines (I told you I irritate the hell out of people). And you know what – look away now if you don’t want to know the result – it’s worked most of the time and I’m able to sit down for Match of the Day and the Football League Show with no results to hand and a couple of hours of not knowing the outcome of any of the games on show.Sad, isn’t it? And to think I used to go out on a Saturday night.WEST INDIES STUMPEDLast time I watched a cricket match all of the players were wearing white and I couldn’t tell the difference between them.How things have changed. Now they’re geared up in every colour of the rainbow and looking like fashion statements more than sporting figures.But what a statement made by the Irish cricket team this week – disposing of no less a top cricketing nation than the West Indies in a World Cup Pool B game in New Zealand and no freak result either.It appears we’re arriving on the world stage and even the loss of a couple of Irish born stars – eat your heart out Eoin Morgan from Dublin who opted to quit Ireland for England and is now the captain of our ‘local’ rivals – hasn’t knocked us back.Not the first big scalp for an Ireland cricket team – indeed the West Indies were victims of past such upsets – but this time it feels like a genuine move forward and one that could yet yield the ultimate achievement.Apparently there have only been five successful chases of more than 300 in World Cup history and three of them belong to Ireland (check the rules yourselves to rate that particular accomplishment).CRICKET IN GWEEDOREMartin McGuinness is rarely left stumped – unless he’s in Gaoth Dobhair.Even Martin McGuinness is flying the Irish cricket flag and was recalling this week how he used to play the game with his children in no less a location than Gweedore.Acclaiming the Irish performance in the World Cup, the Deputy First Minister for Northern Ireland acknowledged his passion for cricket on the John Murray radio show on R.T.E. “We used to take our kids to Gweedore and we would go to the grass part near the beach and play cricket there. I used to be infuriated when a five year old would get me out.”Not, of course, the first time a politician has been infuriated after being put out.SOUND AND VISIONHow do you manage to get David Bowie into a headline on an F.A. Cup match report? Well, ‘The Sunday Times’ did so at the weekend in their coverage of Blackburn Rovers’ 4-1 thumping of Stoke City.Rovers players came on to the field of play to the soundtrack of Bowie’s ‘Heroes’, the first line of which runs: “I, I will be king’ which became even more appropriate as the game wore on.Okay, Stoke were Under Pressure, and endured much Sorrow throughout and were far from Hunky Dory over the ninety minutes.But after conceding first, Blackburn won it courtesy of a hat-trick from their Starman, Josh King.[Editor’s Note: I had a plateful of pancakes yesterday and none of them were as flat as that}.SEE YOU IN THE BARGreat result for Munster in their Pro 12 clash with Cardiff Blues at the weekend but undoubtedly the moment of the match belonged to the referee, Lloyd Linton.During a break in play – of which there can be quite a few in rugby – he addressed one of the Cardiff players with the comment: “Is that you? We’ll have a wee chat afterwards…see you in the bar”, as clearly heard over his link mike and broadcast to TG4 viewers.Anyone out there who happened to be in the Musgrave Park bar after the game might fill us in.TICKER FAKERSTwo men were charged in a Merseyside court last week with conspiracy to make and sell fake tickets for hundreds of Liverpool’s home games.The Judge is apparently considering sentencing them to watch Manchester United for the rest of the season.WHY IRISH RUGBY JUST ISN’T CRICKET – IT’S WALSHY ON WEDNESDAY was last modified: February 18th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Walshy on Wednesdaylast_img read more

Lady Spartans win home tournament with thriller over West Valley

first_imgRed Bluff >> The Red Bluff Lady Spartans beat the West Valley Eagles 54-46 Saturday night to claim the Holiday Classic championship trophy.In a game that was close the entire way, the Spartans took an early lead but the Eagles wouldn’t back off, tieing it at 16 in the second period before falling behind again and going into the half down 30-21. The Eagles hung around in the third and took the lead 37-33 with 3 minutes in the period, but the Spartans came back and a three-pointer from Jesse …last_img read more

USDA trade mission to Ukraine, Romania

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Leaders from five state departments of agriculture and eight U.S. agribusinesses and organizations will accompany Agriculture Acting Deputy Secretary Michael Scuse on a trade mission to Ukraine and Romania June 11 to June 18 to expand export opportunities for U.S. food and agricultural products.“Both Ukraine and Romania offer potential as markets for U.S. farm and food products,” Scuse said. “U.S. exports to Romania have been on the rise, and could be further helped by passage of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. In Ukraine, the continuing economic and political transition could likewise lead to new business opportunities. I look forward to joining U.S. agricultural leaders as we seek to enhance our trading relationship with both nations.”Mission participants come from across the United States and represent a range of agricultural products and commodities. They will meet with potential customers and host government representatives, forging relationships and learning about the market conditions and business environment in Ukraine and Romania.Mission participants include representatives from the Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and Oregon departments of agriculture, as well as the following companies and organizations:American Commodity & Shipping Inc., Vienna, Va.Case IH (Case New Holland), Washington, D.C.Cuba Beverage Co., San Diego, Calif.JM Grain, Garrison, N.D.LL International, LLC, Corte Madera, Calif.Missouri Rice Council/USRPA, Cape Girardeau, Mo.Unverferth Manufacturing Company, Inc., Kalida, OhioValley Milk, LLC, Turlock, Calif.USDA trade missions open doors and deliver results for U.S. exporters, giving them the opportunity to gather market intelligence and develop strategies to start or expand their sales in key markets overseas. For more information, visit read more

Premiumbeat’s Ultimate DSLR Giveaway Winner Announced!

first_imgPremiumbeat would like to congratulate Peter Vandenbelt, the winner of the Canon 5D Mark III.Our Canon 5D Mark III Camera Kit Giveaway has come to a close, with the announcement of the lucky random winner:Peter Vandenbelt from Mercer Island, WashingtonPeter is currently a third year student at the University of California Santa Barbara where he is studying environmental science and film.  The Canon 5D will be beneficial in his current job as a staff photographer for the UCSB Family Vacation Center.Peter learned about the contest through our partnership wtih  “I check out Dave Dugdale’s blog nearly everyday and I’m ecstatic I was drawn” he said.  “I was planning on working this summer to buy a Canon 5D Mark III.  This is a dream come true!”Big thanks to all who entered, and to our partners and B&H Photo Video Pro Audio.  Their partnership made this giveaway a great success.Keep your eye on the Premiumbeat blog for future giveaways.  For more info on this giveaway see the original contest page.last_img read more