USA

The White House is ready to make "course adjustments" in Iraq, chief of staff Joshua Bolten told CNN Sunday, adding that the administration looked forward to recommendations from the Iraq Study Group, an independent, government-sanctioned task force. Meanwhile, US Sen. Carl Levin (D) of Michigan, who is expected to become chairman of the Armed Services Committee, told ABC's "This Week" that Democrats will push for a four-to six-month phased withdrawal of US troops from Iraq.

US Sen. John McCain (R) of Arizona plans to launch a presidential exploratory committee this week, the Associated Press reported, citing unnamed GOP officials. The step, considered the first formal one candidates take, would allow the four-term senator to raise money for a White House run. McCain ran unsuccessfully for his party's nomination in 2000.

US Sen. Russ Feingold (D) of Wisconsin won't seek the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination, according to his political action committee's website. Although Feingold said running as an underdog appealed to him, he also indicated that he preferred to focus on his work in the Senate, especially after the gains made by Democrats last week in midterm elections.

Negotiators for 12,000 striking union steelworkers will sit down with Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. Tuesday in Cincinnati for the first time since their walkout began Oct. 5, a spokesman said. The union wants a 1,100-worker plant in Tyler, Texas, which is slated to close, left open.

The National Gallery and a future Arkansas museum funded by Alice Walton, the daughter of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, plan to buy and share a famous 19th-century Thomas Eakins painting for $68 million, according to reports. The sum sets a record for a work created in the US before World War II. "The Gross Clinic" depicts a medical school surgery room. The National Gallery is in Washington.

The Navy will attempt to dislodge the USS Intrepid aircraft carrier, a World War II veteran, from Hudson River, N.Y., mud sometime during the next several weeks, it was announced over the weekend. An attempt to tug the carrier, now a museum, to a New Jersey shipyard last week for refurbishing failed.

Andrew Fastow, the former Enron Corp. chief financial officer at the center of the company's scandalous collapse was assigned to serve his six-year prison term in a low-security Oakdale, La., facility, according to the US Bureau of Prisons.

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