Latino’s will be the Majority in California by 2014….

I can see Texas following California and most of the Mid-West in this demographic shift…..

Could this be the Big push from some Republicans for some sort of Immigration Reform?

For the first time since California became a state, Latinos will become a plurality in 2014 and they are set to become a crucial part of the workforce as baby boomers retire, according to the Department of Finance.

The figures released Thursday found Latinos will be even with the white population by mid-2013. Each is expected to be about 39% of the population, with Latinos gaining more numbers by the end of the year.

As the white baby boomer population ages into retirement, Latinos and Asians will maintain the labor force and economy in California, according to the study.

The study looked at expected population shifts through 2060 for California. It found that by 2060, the state’s population will grow to nearly 52.7 million, about 40% higher than the most recent 2012 estimate.

While the white and black populations will increase by 2060, their numbers will have decreased in proportion to the total population. By then, Latinos will make up 48% of all Californians….

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photo…grist.org

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Sen. Robert Menendez has a problem?…..

The story is hot today just when Menendez is ascending to the Chair of the Foreign Relations Commmittee in the Senate in place of Senator Kerry who will be  the Secretary of State tomorrow….

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is denying any allegations of wrongdoing after FBI agents raided the business of a Florida doctor close to him.

FBI agents searched the office of Dr. Salomon Melgen on Tuesday night, according to a report from the Miami Herald. Melgen runs the Vitreo-Retinal Consultants Eye Center in West Palm Beach and is a big donor to Menendez and other Democratic lawmakers, Federal Election Commission records show.

Melgen has been tied to several trips to the Dominican Republic by Menendez over the last several years. Melgen owns a private jet and flew Menendez to the Caribbean island on multiple occasions, according to campaign disclosure reports.

“Dr. Melgen has been a friend and political supporter of Senator Menendez for many years,” Menendez’s office said in a statement. “Senator Menendez has traveled on Dr. Melgen’s plane on three occasions, all of which have been paid for and reported appropriately. Any allegations of engaging with prostitutes are manufactured by a politically-motivated right-wing blog and are false.”

In November, the Daily Caller, a conservative publication, reported that Menendez allegedly had sex with prostitutes while staying with Melgen at an exclusive resort in the Dominican Republic.

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photo….abcnews.go.com

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Chuck Hagel does NOT get high marks before the Senate…It probabably doesn’t manner

I watched part of this specitical….

His fellow Republican’s grandstanded on him heavy today about things he said back in the day….

He even had a few Democrats not happy….

But that said….

He still has the votes….

Maybe it was ther fact that Chuck Hagel has been cozy with the nation’s Democratic Prsident….

The long pauses and agonizingly careful answers held up for the most part when it came to substance—though he did fumble once on whether he supported “containment” against Iran—but Hagel was moving at the pace of a tortoise while some of his harshest critics, like Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., were darting around him like hares.

Graham’s cross-examination was particularly devastating. For all the world, Hagel looked like the guilty suspect who is nailed in the final minutes of Matlock or Perry Mason. He started off badly, and then things got worse, when Graham began by asking him if the nation was at war, and the nominee responded, “I’m sorry, what?” The South Carolina senator hammered Hagel on his previous criticism of the “Jewish lobby’s” influence in Washington—which Hagel had partially taken back—asking the former senator if he could “name one person intimidated” by the Israeli lobby. Hagel couldn’t. “I didn’t have in mind a single person,” he said. Graham followed up by asking Hagel if he could name “something that was dumb” that the Israeli lobby had forced U.S. legislators to do, and Hagel said he couldn’t say what that was either. Graham, dripping contempt, then declared that Hagel’s combined votes over the years—against harsher unilateral sanctions on Iran, against designating Iran’s Revolutionary Guard a terrorist group, among others—“send the worst possible signal to our enemies and friends at the worst possible time in world history.”

Perhaps one of the worst moments in a fairly bad day for Hagel came when even one of his apparent supporters, committee Chairman Carl Levin, D-Mich., was forced to restate his position for him after Hagel twice misspoke about a critical issue: whether the Obama administration would accept mere “containment” of Iran’s nuclear program, rather than prevention of it. Hagel, handed a piece of paper, said, “I misspoke and said I supported the president’s position on containment. If I said that, I meant to say we don’t have a position on containment,” Hagel said. That’s when Levin interjected: “We do have a position on containment, and that is we do not favor containment.”

Not good. Hagel’s biggest problem was that many of his past positions were well-thought-out, but he was not given much of a chance to explain them, and he rarely seized the moment to do so aggressively…..

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Rebound or Recession?

A comment on the last Quarter Economy drop of .1%….

The economy will bounce back in the current quarter after plunging defense spending and dwindling inventory growth swamped gains for consumers and businesses in the final three months of 2012, according to economists at JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Morgan Stanley. Businesses probably will rebuild stockpiles while consumers and companies keep on spending.

“It would be a mistake to view this drop in GDP — driven by temporary corrections in defense spending and inventories — as a possible harbinger of recession,” Nigel Gault, chief U.S. economist for IHS Global Insight in Lexington, Massachusetts, said in an e-mail. “We expect GDP growth to rebound to around 2 percent in the first quarter.”

The expansion will stay on course thanks to a “mounting” housing recovery, a steadily improving job market and reviving demand for U.S. exports, said Mark Zandi, chief economist inWest Chester, Pennsylvania, for Moody’s Analytics Inc. He sees GDP expanding 2.1 percent in 2013, after rising 2.2 percent last year.

The 0.1 percent decline in output in the final three months of the year was the economy’s worst performance since the second quarter of 2009, when the U.S. was still mired in a recession, according to figures from the Commerce Department in Washington. It followed a 3.1 percent annualized pace in the third quarter.

Positive Tone

After stripping out the inventory and defense data, the “tone of the report was positive,”

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Redistricting helped the GOP hold on even though Democrats got More Overall House votes nationally….

….from Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball…..

In 2012, Republicans ran up a 24-seat advantage across the Midwest (59 to 35). Add in a lopsided GOP edge in neighboring Pennsylvania (13 to 5), and the Republican spread in this portion of the Frost Belt swelled to 32 seats. Combined with their dominance in the South, it provided House Republicans with their comfortable majority in the new Congress.

The challenge for the Democrats in the years ahead is to make major inroads in this part of the country. But it will not be easy, as district lines in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin were carefully crafted by Republican state governments after the 2010 census.

The result was that even though the Democrats won more aggregate House votes last fall in all of these states except Ohio, the GOP won the bulk of the House seats in each — 9 of 14 in Michigan, 12 of 16 in Ohio, 13 of 18 in Pennsylvania, and 5 of 8 in Wisconsin. Add the totals together and that is a count of 39 seats for the Republicans and 17 for the Democrats in the Frost Belt “four” — all states carried by Democrat Barack Obama in the presidential voting.

The Republican formula for congressional success in these and other states that they control has been clear cut — pack Democratic voters into as few districts as possible, and spread out Republican-leaning voters in the rest. In Pennsylvania, for instance, most of the Republican congressional winners in November drew less than 60% of the vote, and three won with less than 55%.

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Rep. Lynch (D-Mass) annouces a run for Kerry’s seat….

Mass Rep. Ed Markey has company even if the Mass Democratic establishment ain’t that happy about it…..

As expected, Rep. Stephen F. Lynch on Thursday launched a bid for Senate, releasing a YouTube video and barnstorming around the state. The official announcement is scheduled for Thursday afternoon at a hall at Ironworkers Local 7 in South Boston, Lynch’s home turf.

The Web video telegraphed some themes voters can expect to to hear from the congressman as he takes on his colleague, Rep. Edward J. Markey in the Democratic primary for the special election being held to replace resigning Sen. John Kerry, who will be soon be sworn in as the secretary of State.

“Lynch has never forgotten where he came from,” a male narrator with a syrupy voice says of the congressman, a former ironworker. “Stephen Lynch for Senate. He’ll go to Washington to stand up, not to fit in.”

Markey has the backing of the Democratic establishment in Washington, D.C., along with the endorsement of Kerry and others….

Source….

Voters will make their choice April 30.

Former Sen. Scott Brown, a Republican who lost to now-Sen. Elizabeth Warren in November, has not yet said whether he’ll enter the race.

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George Bush would have voted for Immigration Reform…

photo…hw.org

He tried to advance Immigration Reform and receieved a beat down on it…..

But as a Governor from Texas he saw the issue up close and didn’t agree about NOT dealing with it….

Bush came up in politics in Texas where, even 15 years ago, Latinos were transforming the state and its electorate.  He — and his senior team including the likes of Karl Rove — understood the looming (and growing) political power of Hispanics innately and worked very aggressively during his 2000 and 2004 campaigns to court Latinos.

Bush won 35 percent of the Hispanic vote in 2000 and 43 percent four years later, a high water mark for a Republican presidential nominee since exit polling began in 1972.

Repeatedly during his presidency, Bush tried to reform the immigration system in hopes of proving to Hispanics that they could find a home in the GOP. In 2004 and 2007 Bush attempted to push for changes on immigration, and both times it was foiled by opposition from his party’s conservative wing. (Check out Rachel Weiner’s terrific post detailing the long history of failure when it comes to the White House and Congress trying to reform the immigration system.)

Had Republicans — led by Bush — found a way to get behind even some sort of small reform of the immigration system back in 2004 or 2007, it’s uniquely possible that they might find themselves in a very different position when it comes to solving their Hispanic problem. (Heck, they might not even have a “Hispanic problem” at all.)

They didn’t.  John McCain, once a leading voice for immigration reform, abandoned his position in order to save his bid for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008. (McCain’s journey on immigration reform is fascinating in its own right.) It worked as conservatives held their nose and voted for him in the primary but, not surprisingly, backfired in the general election as McCain won just 31 percent of Hispanic voters — a double-digit dip from Bush’s performance four years earlier.

In 2012, Republicans fell even further with Hispanic voters as Mit Romney, like McCain trying to protect his ideological right flank in a primary, advocated “self deportation” as the answer to the problem of the 11 million people in the country illegally. Romney won just 27 percent of the Hispanic vote last November, the lowest share since Bob Dole took 21 percent among that voting bloc in 1996.

Now, to be clear, simply following George W. Bush’s lead on immigration reform would not have been a panacea for the Republican party…

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A Rejoinder to Senator Rubio on Illegal Immigration…Red State…

By: Daniel Horowitz (Diary)  @ Red State

Senator Marco Rubio was gracious enough to engage our conservative community with his thoughtful comments on his framework for immigration reform.  I’d like to respond to some of the points made in his post.

  • “and we have by some estimates as many as 11 million human beings living in the United States without the proper immigration documents in a state of de facto amnesty.”

The first step in proposing a solution is being honest about the problem.  If someone feels that granting amnesty, or even more – full blown citizenship – to illegal immigrants is a prudent idea, then admit that is what you’re doing and be forthright about it.  By consistently using the parlance of the left – “undocumented “ –  as if it were some natural disaster, is disingenuous.

In the very first line describing the Gang of 8’s “four legislative pillars” it says their plan would “create a tough but fair path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants currently living in the United States…”  That means amnesty. Those words—“path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants” mean amnesty.  Again, you might feel it’s a prudent idea, but it is amnesty nonetheless.

  • “On the political front, a growing number of voters of Asian and Hispanic descent have been convinced by the left that conservative opposition to immigration reform equates to being anti-immigrant. This is unfair, and it is untrue. But they have pulled it off and, as a result, our ability to convince these fast-growing communities that the principles of limited government and free enterprise are better for them than big government and collectivism has been impaired.”

I’d like to talk about sound policy, but if we are going to do this for political reasons, does Senator Rubio have any evidence to show that the new amnestied immigrants will not vote at least 80/20 Democrat?  Is there any evidence that we will enjoy a net gain with the current Latino voting population?  Remember, Democrats have signed onto this plan precisely because they believe it will create a permanent Democrat majority.  Yes, we need to articulate our message for limited government to all people.  But let’s not fool ourselves, it’s an uphill battle fighting through the allure of the dependency state.  Let’s deal with those we already have, instead of granting voting rights to millions more low-skilled immigrants, who are strongly predispositioned  to vote Democrat, irrespective of how enthusiastically we embrace a path to citizenship.

  • “The economic ramifications, however, are even more serious. For example, our technology sector creates roughly 120,000 computer engineering jobs a year, but our universities only graduate about 40,000 students a year in that field. The long term answer, of course, is to get more American students to graduate in this field. But the immediate problem is that, in the absence of an immigration system where these workers can be brought here, these jobs are sent overseas to them.”

If this is truly a bipartisan concern, why don’t we fix that now?  Why do the legal immigration reforms have to be held hostage for a “comprehensive” amnesty bill?  Let’s first pass the things we all agree upon.

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As the US Military leaves Afghanistan…So do Afghans….

In a tacit acknowledgement that things will probably go a bit sideways when the US Military cuts back  drastically after 2014…..

Afghans who can afford it…

Are leaving….

Two decades after Afghanistan witnessed one of the 20th century’s most dramatic refugee crises, a quieter exodus is gaining momentum. Zia Ahmadi was part of the first generation of Afghan refugees. His cousin aspired to be part of the second.

Last year, at least 50,000 Afghans fled to Europe and Australia, more than twice as many as the previous year, according to the Afghan Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations. With U.S. and many other foreign visas nearly impossible to obtain, the majority of those refugees hired human smugglers. Even more left for Pakistan and Iran. One-third of the world’s refugees are Afghans, according to the United Nations.

The flight reflects a growing fear that security will worsen after NATO’s military withdrawal by the end of 2014, a date that has taken on near-apocalyptic symbolism in parts of the country. Afghan officials have launched a campaign to warn against illegal migration, distributing brochures nationwide that feature photos of capsized boats and drowning Afghans.

Foreign donors are planning to fund cricket matches and celebrity-filled television spots that convey the same message: Don’t risk your life to leave your country. Despite those efforts, Afghan officials expect the trend to grow.

“It tells you how much progress we’ve made as a nation,” said Zia Ahmadi, 42. “People are still doing whatever it takes to get out.”

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2014 GOP Hopes could be hurt by primaries…..

The Conservatives continue to try to knock off fellow Republican’s that could be amenable to Compromise. in Congress…. 
High-Risk Primaries Could Cost Republicans in 2014

By NATE SILVER @ FivethirtyEight

The impending retirement of Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa creates the opportunity for Republicans to pick up a seat that Democrats have held since 1985. But if they aren’t careful in selecting their candidate, it could represent another opportunity forsaken by the party.

The leading G.O.P. candidates are thought to be the two Republicans who currently serve in Iowa’s delegation to the House, Steve King and Tom Latham. Mr. Latham has repeatedly been elected from swing districts, and has a relatively moderate track record. According to the statistical system DW-Nominate, he was more moderate than about 80 percent of Republicans in the House based on his voting record through 2010.

Mr. King, in contrast, rated in the 90th percentile for conservatism among Republican representatives, according to the same system. He also has a history of drawing attention to himself with provocative statements on issues ranging from gay marriage to immigration.

Can we say how much of a difference this might make? The model that FiveThirtyEight uses to forecast Senate races relies in part on evaluating candidates’ ideology as determined by DW-Nominate and other systems.

DW-Nominate scores are on a scale that runs from negative 1 for an extremely liberal candidate to positive 1 for an extremely conservative one. A score of zero represents a candidate who is exactly in the middle of the ideological spectrum.

What matters for the FiveThirtyEight model is not what the candidate’s ideology is in an absolute sense, but how it compares to the voters in his state. In a red-leaning state like Indiana, for example, the ideal candidate is slightly right of center. But his advantage can be overcome if the Republican candidate is extremely conservative, while the Democrat is a moderate. Such an outcome transpired during the Senate race in Iowa in 2012, when a moderate Democrat, Joe Donnelly, beat a very conservative Republican, Richard Mourdock.

In Iowa, which sits right at the middle of the ideological spectrum, a candidate like Mr. King would have even more problems. Specifically, the model estimates that Mr. King would run a net of six percentage points weaker than Mr. Latham, controlling for other factors. For example, in a race in which Mr. Latham would be favored to beat the Democratic candidate by two percentage points, Mr. King would be expected to lose by four. Since the race in Iowa is otherwise likely to be close, this could easily cost Republicans a Senate seat.

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The House Republicans continue to play chicken on Sequester cuts….

While a whole lot of ‘other’ things are going on in the nations Congress….

The Massive Cuts in store for the Defense Department, and the entire Government, are set to go into effect soon….

The President has had the Pentagon making cuts already….

Republican’s have argued strenuously that they want to keep the countries military strong….

But right now the politics of the whole ‘cuts’ thing has the President making cuts and the GOPer’s

threatening to let even MORE cuts kick in that would cost jobs across the country…

(Across the ENTIRE Government Operations)

And this Dog thinks that will make people come together in the end….

And….

Not about letting the cuts start and then point at the President (Politically) as the ‘bad guy’….

Welcome to the new “dare you, double dare you” school of deficit politics — just a taste of what’s to come March 1 when much deeper spending cuts take effect under the sequester mechanism dictated by the 2011 debt accords.

House Republicans seem determined to let the cuts take effect if only as payback to President Barack Obama for humiliating them over taxes. The White House and Senate Democrats are so far feigning indifference. And while “the boys” play tough, much could depend on two women thrust into Senate committee chairmanships this year: Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) on Appropriations and Patty Murray (D-Wash.) on the Budget panel.

Mikulski’s role lies more in the gritty short term. “If they are going to cut, learn math and how to read the bills. Math is good. I like math,” Mikulski bluntly told her colleagues this week. And she is planning her own tutorial Feb. 14 with a major Appropriations hearing on the sequester’s impact.

“I am going to do everything I can to have a balanced approach to vitiate sequester,” she told POLITICO. “But you can’t go to the solutions until people understand the consequences.”

Defense will again be on the block, faced with an estimated 7.3 percent reduction, which is really double that given the Pentagon is almost halfway through the fiscal year. Domestic programs face a 5.1 percent cut under the same rules. And for all the talk of immigration reform this week, thousands of Border Patrol agents could face furloughs or outright job losses.

Compounding the problem is the fact that the entire government — including the military — is operating under an outdated continuing resolution due to expire March 27.

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Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest 1/31/13: Patrick taps Cowan, and PPP finds a tossup in Massachusetts

Reposted from Daily Kos Elections by David Nir

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Leading Off:

• MA-Sen: With John Kerry now confirmed as Secretary of State, Dem Gov. Deval Patrickhas selected his former chief of staff, Mo Cowan, to serve as Massachusetts’ interim senator until a replacement is chosen in a special election in June. Cowan is a well-connected attorney who worked for Patrick for many years before returning to the private sector last November. He will become the second African American member of the Senate, along with Republican Tim Scott of South Carolina, who was appointed to fill a vacancy earlier this month. (This is the first time in American history that two black senators have served simultaneously.)

Many progressives had hoped Patrick might select ex-Rep. Barney Frank, who had openly lobbied for the job. But while Frank’s personal advocacy may have displeased Patrick, I suspect he was more interested in appointing someone he had a personal relationship of trust with. What’s more, Patrick had the opportunity to appoint someone young and who was, frankly, not another white guy career politician, and so he understandably seized it. In any event, Cowan said he would not run in the special (even though he is allowed to by law), saying that he is not a “candidate today or any time in the future.” However, he’s only 43 years old, so that’s the kind of thing that could always change.

Meanwhile, PPP is out with their first poll of the election to succeed Kerry. In short, it contradicts all the Tom Menino-style anti-progressive “conventional wisdom” that seems to have congealed about this race. Not only is Ed Markey a stronger candidate against Scott Brown than Stephen Lynch, he also crushes Lynch in a hypothetical Democratic primary. Here are the numbers:

Brown: 48
Markey: 45Brown: 48
Lynch: 39

Markey: 52
Lynch: 19

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Hagel goes before the Senate Armed Services Committee today…..

ex-Senate Memeber Chuck Hagel has being making all the stops , working Senators for his confirmation hearing….

Should I say doing a LOT of job interviews….(Pandering?)

He’s gonna have a bumpy ride but should be confirmed….

(Lindsey Graham withstanding)

The effort to vilify Hagel and his record, which began when his name was first floated for the job in December, has remained at a buzz but has not reached the type of crescendo that has doomed high-profile political nominations in the past.

“We’ve had a very aggressive strategy for tackling some of the issues that have been raised,” the Hagel aide said Wednesday, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss the nominee’s outlook. “I think we’re in a good place.”

That’s not to say Hagel’s confirmation is a forgone conclusion, supporters concede. Critics have piled onto the initial critiques with charges that Hagel’s ties to defense contractors and other private-sector firms may create conflicts of interest. They also have criticized his support for a global movement to eliminate nuclear weapons.

Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said Hagel will face tough questions about his past statements. Democrats outnumber Republicans on the panel 14 to 12, but committee insiders say they are not assuming that Hagel will get the vote of every Democrat.

“The confirmation will not be an easy one,” Levin said in a recent interview. “On the other hand, a lot of people who have worked with Hagel remember him as someone who was effective here, involved in foreign affairs, well-qualified.”

Hagel, 66, a Vietnam veteran, is counting on those bonds, the aide said.

“If you read the tea leaves, I think he might get more Republican votes than people might think,” the official said. “Those relationships are important.”

After Thursday’s hearing, senators can submit additional written questions to Hagel. The committee and the full Senate could vote next week…..

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photo…theatlanticwire.com

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Political Roundup for January 31, 2013…Red Racing Horses

by: shamlet
After the giant glut of the past few days, we seem to be back to a more manageable amount of news.

Senate:

NJ-Sen ’18: Things are not looking so good for Sen. Bob Menendez (D). FBI agents raided the office of a South Florida doctor linked to the new Foreign Relations committee chair and his… well, Foreign Relations. For his part, Menendez says the allegations are politically motivated, which tends to be the kind of thing you say when there’s no good answer to give. The timing of these investigations can be very unpredictable, but if the hammer comes down before summer, a special election would be scheduled for this November… which means it would occur on a ballot topped by Christie.

MA-Sen: Poor Barney. Patrick appoints random hack and his crony indisputably qualified public servant Mo Cowan to Kerry’s Senate seat. Cowan, of Stoughton, previously served as Patrick’s Chief of Staff, and now becomes one of two African-Americans in the Senate.

More MA-Sen: PPP (D): Brown 48 Markey 45, with most undecideds Warren voters, under a 2012-style electorate.

GA-Sen: Some unorthodox R candidates are floated, including Atlanta Dream co-owner Kelly Loeffler.

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Comparing Smartphones January 2013

from the WSJ…..

Re-Entering the Phone Fray

Research In Motion, which is changing its name to BlackBerry, released its touch-screen Z10 on Jan. 30 in the hopes that the phone will help re-establish its place as the go-to business device amid stiff competition.

BlackBerry Z10

iPhone 5

Galaxy S III

Key Facts

WSJ review >> WSJ review >> WSJ review >>    
U.S. carriers AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon AT&T, Sprint, Verizon AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon
U.S. release date March 2013 September 2012 July 2012
Starting price (with contract) $199 $199 $199
Staring price (without contract) $599 $649 $549 to $599
Operating system BlackBerry 10 IOS 6 Android (versions vary according to carrier)
Wireless LTE/HSPA+ LTE LTE

More Information Here….

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The South East has terrible storms…..

…from the Washington Post….

WSB-TV in Atlanta aired footage showing an enormous funnel cloud bearing down on Adairsville, about 60 miles northwest of Atlanta, as the storm ripped through the city’s downtown area. The system flattened homes and wiped out parts of a large manufacturing plant. Pieces of insulation hung from trees and power poles, while the local bank was missing a big chunk of its roof.

One person was killed and nine were hospitalized for minor injuries, state emergency management officials said. Residents said no traces remained of some roadside produce stands — a common sight on rural Georgia’s back roads.

One other death was reported in Tennessee after an uprooted tree fell onto a storage shed where a man had taken shelter.

In Adairsville, the debris in one yard showed just how dangerous the storm had been: a bathtub, table, rolls of toilet paper and lumber lay in the grass next to what appeared to be a roof. Sheets of metal dangled from a large tree like ornaments.

“The sky was swirling,” said Theresa Chitwood, who owns the Adairsville Travel Plaza. She said she went outside to move her car because she thought it was going to hail. Instead, the passing storm decimated a building behind the travel plaza.

“It sounded like a freight train coming through,” she said. “It looks like a bomb hit it.”

Powerful winds ripped through the entire region, with gusts powerful enough to topple tractor-trailers in several places.

In Adairsville, several were flipped on their side in the parking lot of the travel plaza. Danny Odum and Rocky Depauw, both truckers from Marion, Ill., had stopped for breakfast when the suspected tornado hit.

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