7:52am

Wed September 19, 2012

7:30am

Wed September 19, 2012
The Two-Way

Housing Starts Rose Again In August, Pace Remains Well Above Previous Years

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 8:30 am

Construction that was underway this summer in San Mateo, Calif.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images
(This post was updated at 10:05 a.m. ET.)

In the morning's second sign of strength in the housing sector, the National Association of Realtors reports that sales of existing homes rose 7.8 percent in August from July and were 9.3 percent above the pace of August 2011.

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6:55am

Wed September 19, 2012
It's All Politics

The End Of WASP-Dominated Politics

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 12:02 pm

The Obamas walk back to the White House after attending Easter service at St. John's Episcopal Church on April 8. President Obama is the only Protestant on either 2012 presidential ticket.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Just looking at Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, you might not think of them as cultural pioneers. But the Republicans make up the first presidential ticket in history not to feature a Protestant.

Romney is Mormon, Ryan, Catholic. That might not seem like such a big deal — especially when you consider they are running against the first African-American president.

But all of these individuals are emblematic of an enormous shift in both American demographics and political power.

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6:38am

Wed September 19, 2012
The Two-Way

18 Innings Are A Lot, But Orioles-Mariners Game Is No Record-Breaker

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 7:57 am

Fans were few and far-between (and possibly not awake) as the Orioles-Mariners game went on and on in Seattle.
Otto Greule Jr. Getty Images

Hearing about the 18-inning, 5 hours and 44 minutes-long game between the Baltimore Orioles and Seattle Mariners that stretched from last night into today set us off in search of news about Major League Baseball's longest games.

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6:11am

Wed September 19, 2012
Politics

Univision Cries Foul, Hosts Own Presidential Forums

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 6:55 am

Univision host Jorge Ramos will be one of the moderators at the "Meet the Candidate" events featuring President Obama and rival Mitt Romney.
Lynne Sladky AP

Spanish-language network Univision will broadcast the first part of its presidential forum Wednesday night. GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney will be the first candidate to appear, and President Obama follows Thursday night.

The presidential interviews came after a dramatic clash that would rival any of the network's famous telenovelas. Univision confronted the Commission on Presidential Debates, the nonprofit group that organizes the candidate debates, after it announced an all-white lineup of moderators.

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5:41am

Wed September 19, 2012
The Two-Way

Shuttle Endeavour Is On Its Way To California

Space shuttle Endeavour, attached to a 747, on the tarmac at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Bill Ingalls/NASA UPI /Landov

Space shuttle Endeavour has taken off on its farewell tour across the country.

The third of the retired fleet of four to head off to a retirement home, Endeavour is being ferried from Florida to Los Angeles — with a stop on the way in Houston. It is perched atop a 747.

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5:21am

Wed September 19, 2012
The Two-Way

France On Alert, Closing Embassies, After Magazine Publishes Muhammad Cartoons

At the offices of the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo earlier today, publisher/editor Stephane Charbonnier ("Charb") struck a defiant pose.
Fred DuFour AFP/Getty Images

A French magazine's publication today of "crude caricatures" depicting the Prophet Muhammad has that nation on alert and preparing to close 20 of its embassies in Muslim nations.

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5:17am

Wed September 19, 2012
Animals

Dog Shoots French Hunter

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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5:11am

Wed September 19, 2012
Around the Nation

Good Samaritan's Car Averts Pedestrian Crash

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. A flat tire could have been tragic for an Ohio man, but for a good Samaritan who stopped to help and whose own car was then struck by a drunk driver.

Gerald Gronowski told the Cleveland Plain Dealer that he and his son would surely have been hit as they stood on the shoulder. All the more miraculous, the stranger, Christopher Manacci, had rescued Gronowski eight years earlier, pulling out a hook embedded in his hand while he was fishing.

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4:36am

Wed September 19, 2012
Asia

Japan Shocked By China's Fury Over Island Dispute

The head of Japan's Foreign Trade Council says China has started to delay imports of Japanese products. It's a replay of the de facto trade sanctions China imposed two years ago during a similar flare-up of tensions. The most recent confrontation was sparked by Japan's purchase of disputed islands which China claims sovereignty over. In Japan, the response to the more than a week of anti-Japanese protests across China has been shock.

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