A challenge to the governorship of Christine Gregoire in Washington was to go to trial Monday. Republican Dino Rossi, who lost a disputed gubernatorial election in a hand recount of 2.9 million ballots, is challenging Gregoire's 2004 victory in the closest statewide election in national history, alleging widespread problems, including illegal votes cast by felons and dead people. Gregoire, a Democrat, was declared the winner by just 129 votes and inaugurated in January. Democrats have countered that votes in Rossi-friendly areas were counted without the proper signature verification and should be thrown out.
The Supreme Court narrowly ruled Monday that the government was within its rights to force beef producers to pay for a multimillion-dollar "Beef: It's what's for dinner" marketing program, even when individual cattle producers disagreed with the initiative. The campaign is a form of "government speech" immune to First Amendment challenge, the court said in defeating a challenge by farmers in several agricultural sectors who oppose having to pay for generic advertising.
In a letter to readers in Monday's edition, Newsweek announced plans to limit the magazine's use of anonymous sources following a scandal in which one of its stories was blamed for deadly protests in Afghanistan. The disputed article said US investigators had found evidence that interrogators had flushed a copy of the Koran down a toilet to get inmates to talk.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, on a three-day US visit to bolster ties with American Jews, was forced to interrupt a speech at Baruch College in Manhattan Sunday by several hecklers, who yelled "Jews don't expel Jews" in complaining of his Gaza disengagement plan. Sharon later received a warm ovation from the crowd. He has called for "full quiet" in the disputed area and said that Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, who will meet with President Bush on Thursday, "knows what he has to do."
The divorced parents of Army Ranger Pat Tillman, who walked away from a $3.6 million National Football League contract to sign up for the elite force, told The Washington Post Monday that they are angered by the military's investigation of their son's 2004 death in Afghani-stan. They said they do not believe they will ever get the full story. The Army determined days after his death that Tillman had been killed mistakenly by fellow Rangers but did not tell his family or the public for weeks and even destroyed evidence, according to a Special Operations Command report.