USA

Senate leaders met with President Bush at the White House to discuss possible nominees to replace Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who is retiring. Bush has been reviewing more than half a dozen potential candidates for the post. "I feel comfortable and good that we're going to be able to have someone that is a consensus candidate," said Senate minority leader Harry Reid (D) about the bipartisan consultation. Other senators involved in the huddle were majority leader Bill Frist (R) of Tennessee, Judiciary Committee chairman Arlen Specter (R) of Pennsylvania, and that committee's top Democrat, Patrick Leahy of Vermont. Although Bush has said he'd like a new nominee confirmed by October, he indicated a desire to proceed deliberately.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan turned aside media questions Monday about presidential adviser Karl Rove because they related to an "ongoing investigation." The probe, aimed at determining who leaked the identity of CIA officer Valerie Plame, might look closer at Rove's role after Time magazine revealed that he'd told one its reporters that Plame "apparently works" for the CIA.

Injurious crashes are four times as likely to occur when drivers are using cellphones, according to a new study released by the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety and published in the British Medical Journal. The report indicates that whether a driver uses a hand-held phone or a hands-free phone makes no difference: Both are major distractions.

The Labor Department said Monday that Enron Corp. has agreed it owes $356 million in government and employee pension claims, but only "tens of millions" may be available since such claims far exceed assets. The settlement must still be approved by a federal bankruptcy court in New York, where Enron filed for protection after its stock collapsed in 2001 and the energy trader was charged with violating federal retirement law.

Singer Frances Langford, who died Monday in Jensen Beach, Fla., is best known for joining with Bob Hope to help entertain American troops during World War II USO tours. Her performances earned her a reputation as the "Sweetheart of the Fighting Fronts."

Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Bobby Abreu won baseball's annual Home Run Derby Monday by putting a record 41 drives over the fence during three rounds - one of them a staggering 517-foot blast. The competition was held at Detroit's Comerica Park, the site of Tuesday night's All-Star Game.

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