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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

NORTH CAROLINA

Grand jury probes spending by Edwards

A federal criminal investigation targeting John Edwards is examining how much the two-time presidential candidate knew about money used to cover up his extramarital affair and out-of-wedlock child and whether other money practices violated campaign finance laws, people involved in the case have told the Associated Press.

A federal grand jury in Raleigh, N.C., is sifting records and testimony involving several political organizations and individuals connected to Edwards to determine whether the former senator from North Carolina and 2004 vice presidential nominee broke any laws.

Investigators are looking chiefly at whether funds paid to Edwards's mistress Rielle Hunter and former campaign aide Andrew Young - from outside political groups and Edwards's political donors - should have been considered campaign donations since they arguably aided his presidential bid, according to several people involved in the case who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the ongoing probe.

Edwards's attorney, Wade Smith, would not discuss specifics but said, "We do not believe there is evidence that John has violated any election laws."

- Associated Press

POLITICS

Palin says Democrats used target maps

Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin defended herself from criticism Monday by saying Democrats have used maps with targets to identify congressional districts they wanted to win.

The Republican appeared on Fox's Sean Hannity show, following the shooting in Arizona that killed six people and wounded 13, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D).

Critics have noted that Palin's political action committee used crosshairs to identify congressional districts, including that of Giffords. Palin said the graphic was not original. As she spoke, a Democratic map appeared on the screen that had circular targets on congressional districts.

Palin said she and other conservatives were being falsely accused of murder.

- Associated Press

NORTH CAROLINA

NAACP calls for boycott of Charlotte

At a Martin Luther King Jr. Day protest over school policies, the head of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg NAACP on Monday announced a campaign to urge the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association basketball tournament and other groups to boycott Charlotte.

Pledging to "expose Charlotte for the racist bastion it is," the NAACP chapter's president, Kojo Nantambu, announced a drive to keep the CIAA, NCAA, PGA "and any other 'A' " from coming to the city.


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