Sun News Digest


April 24, 2006


Report critical of FDA

More than a year after the Food and Drug Administration announced that it had strengthened its drug safety system, the agency still lacks a reliable way to keep track of emerging problems, congressional investigators conclude in a report. pg 1a

Nagin has tough challenger

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin may have led Saturday's mayoral primary, but he faces a popular and better-financed opponent on a political landscape utterly changed by Hurricane Katrina. pg 3a


Decline in death sentences

Throughout Maryland's legal community, Baltimore County is known as the capital punishment capital of the state, but it has been six years since prosecutors have won a death sentence that is still standing, and even that case is in limbo. Legal experts say that Baltimore County's decline in death sentences mirrors a national decrease. pg 1a

Candidates criticize donations

Two leading U.S. Senate candidates in Maryland are stepping up their attacks on each other's big-ticket campaign donors, starting a debate that could make political contributors a centerpiece of a contentious election. As Democrats continue to criticize Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele for fundraisers featuring Bush administration officials, Republicans are raising concerns that Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin takes an inordinate share of his campaign cash from special-interest groups. pg 1b


Human-trafficking in Iraq

The top U.S. commander in Iraq has ordered sweeping changes for privatized military support operations after confirming violations of human-trafficking laws and other abuses by contractors, involving possibly thousands of foreign workers on American bases, according to records obtained by the Chicago Tribune. pg 1a

New bin Laden audiotape

Osama bin Laden denounced what he called a Zionist crusader's war on Islam in an audiotape broadcast yesterday, pointing to the isolation of the Hamas-led Palestinian government, talk of a Western peacekeeping force in Sudan and the Muslim outrage over Danish cartoons mocking the Prophet Muhammad as new evidence of a clash of civilizations. pg 7a


Springsteen goes eclectic

Bruce Springsteen's new album, We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions, arrives tomorrow, with a tour to follow. Springsteen compares its variety with his second album, The Wild, The Innocent & the E Street Shuffle, where the music veered from straight rock ("Rosalita") to jazz ("New York City Serenade") to oompah ("Wild Billy's Circus Story"). pg 1c

`Silent Hill' leads at box office

Although not screened for critics, the fright flick Silent Hill, set in an eerie ghost town, made its debut with $20.2 million at the box office. It took over the top spot from Scary Movie 4, which slipped to No. 2 with $17 million in its second weekend, according to studio estimates yesterday. pg 3c


Yankees rout Orioles, 7-1

The Yankees defeated the Orioles, 7-1, backed by eight innings of three-hit ball by Randy Johnson. Jason Giambi homered twice off Orioles starter Bruce Chen. Miguel Tejada had all four of the Orioles' hits. The victory secured a series win for the Yankees and sends the Orioles to Toronto with two straight losses. pg 1d


"This report provides solid evidence that everything is not all right. ... The FDA's problems are systemic and cultural, not isolated or easily fixed."

Sen. Charles E. Grassley on a report that says the FDA lacks a reliable way to keep track of emerging drug safety problems Article, PG 1A

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