2:51pm

Tue February 28, 2012
The Salt

Weird Winter Has Gardeners Itching To Plant, Despite The Risks

Plant now, and in a month your spinach might look like this. It's a hardy plant that can survive late frost.
iStockPhoto.com

Right about now, gardeners are aching to get out and plant. Usually, in the February dregs of winter, that desire is dashed by cold, wet, maybe even frozen soil. But this year is different.

Here in Washington, D.C., snowdrops came up almost a month ago, and the daffodils have been blooming for two weeks. It's tempting to think that if these harbingers of spring showed up three weeks ahead of schedule, it's safe to plant early, too.

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2:48pm

Tue February 28, 2012
Lexington/Richmond

Blue Grass Airport Installs Scanners

A crew delivered a body scanner to the security checkpoint at Blue Grass Airport on Monday. It will be installed this week and should be fully operational by early next week.
Lexington Herald-Leader file photo

Body scanners at Blue Grass Airport will replace metal detectors as the primary passenger screening method. The "advanced imaging technology" scanners are being installed and workers are being trained this week. Some passengers might go through them later this week, but the new machines should be fully operational at the Lexington airport by early next week, said Jim Fotenos, Transportation Security Administration spokesman.

2:48pm

Tue February 28, 2012
State Capitol

Tougher Penalties for Makers, Users of Synthetic Drugs

Kentucky lawmakers are doubling down on efforts to fight synthetic drugs. Synthetic drugs are chemically-altered substances meant to simulate other drugs. House Bill 481 would drastically increase penalties for crimes related to synthetic drugs. The measure is the General Assembly’s latest attempt to catch up with increasingly-popular methods of getting high.

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2:47pm

Tue February 28, 2012
Law

Is The Voting Rights Act Endangered? A Legal Primer

South Carolina is one state that requires special clearance from the Justice Department to change its election laws. Here Charles Monnich casts his vote in the GOP primary at Martin Luther King Memorial Park in Columbia, S.C. on Jan. 21.
Gerry Melendez MCT /Landov

The roiling legal battles over election laws passed in various states have potentially far-reaching consequences: the fate of a key section of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

The landmark legislation requires the Justice Department to "pre-clear" any changes to election laws in some or all parts of 16 states, mostly in the South, because of their histories of racially discriminatory voting practices. The Justice Department recently used the mandate to block a voter identification law in South Carolina on grounds that it would harm minority voter turnout.

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2:43pm

Tue February 28, 2012
Environmental Watchdog

Warm Front Brings Storms Wednesday

You won't need a coat to keep you warm the next few days, with highs in the 50s and 60s. But thunderstorms are on the way. After a frosty morning, today's high temperature will warm to a mild, spring-like 55 degrees under a mostly sunny sky. Tonight, thunderstorms with high winds and soaking rains will set in with a low only around 47 degrees.

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2:37pm

Tue February 28, 2012
All Politics are Local

Gaming Bill's Defeat Worries Turfway

David England, a horse trainer from Union, has stopped training horses at Turfway Park because the purses are too small.
Patrick Reddy/The Kentucky Enquirer

Last week’s defeat of an expanded gambling amendment in the Kentucky Senate has some who rely on Turfway Park's business concerned. The Senate on Thursday voted 21-16 against putting the amendment before the voters in November. Turfway Park President Robert N. Elliston has said repeatedly that the inability to compete with nearby casinos and racetracks in neighboring states that allow gaming is slowly killing Northern Kentucky’s racetrack. Some horsemen and business owners fear the ripple effect if Turfway fails.

2:12pm

Tue February 28, 2012
The Two-Way

Report: The Remains Of Some Sept. 11 Victims Were Dumped In Landfill

Originally published on Tue February 28, 2012 2:13 pm

In a report released by the Pentagon today, the government admits that a contractor dumped some of the remains of Sept. 11 victims in a landfill.

According to the report, the remains "that could neither be tested nor identified" from victims of the attack on the Pentagon and the Shanksville, Pa. crash were first taken to Dover Air Force Base, cremated by a contractor, returned to the base, where they were handed over to a "biomedical waste disposal contractor," which incinerated the remains.

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2:09pm

Tue February 28, 2012
It's All Politics

Obama Gives Eventual GOP Nominee Taste Of Michigan Campaign Ahead

Originally published on Tue February 28, 2012 9:03 pm

President Obama appears to check smartphone as he heads for the Oval Office after speaking to the UAW, Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012.
Susan Walsh AP

President Obama never mentioned Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum or the other Republican presidential candidates by name in his speech before the United Auto Workers Tuesday.

He didn't need to; everyone knew whom he had in mind when he accused some critics of the federally financed auto industry bailout of peddling distortions.

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2:07pm

Tue February 28, 2012
The Commonwealth

Expanded Gambling: Still an Issue

The second item on page 16 of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce’s 2012 Legislative Agenda reads, “Expand Gaming to Support Kentucky’s Equine Industry.” Chamber members can now take a red marking pencil and draw a line through that initiative for this session of the General Assembly. As we discussed Monday on Kentucky Tonight, the effort to put a constitutional amendment on the November ballot to approve expanded gambling failed to pass the state Senate last week. But, according to Dave Adkisson, president of the Kentucky Chamber, there is still time left in the session to pass meaningful and important legislation his members are supporting.

1:57pm

Tue February 28, 2012
All Politics are Local

Santorum Shows Solid Lead in Ohio

The latest Ohio Poll shows Rick Santorum with an eleven point lead over Mitt Romney among Republican primary voters. But Co- Director of the U-C poll, Eric Rademacher says that could be different by Tuesday's election because the poll also shows 47% say they may change their vote between now and the election. 

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