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By Ross AtkinCompiled from wire service reports / April 30, 2007



Virtually all the Democratic presidential candidates made weekend appearances in San Diego took turns sharing their antiwar sentiments and wooing more than 2,000 California convention delegates. The candidates are expected to do more campaigning in California now that the state has moved up its primary to Feb. 5, 2008, so that it coincides with a number of others.

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A wildfire that has consumed 100 square miles of tinder-dry forest in southeastern Georgia since April 16 is expected to burn for at least another week, "and maybe another month," a state emergency official said Saturday. Firefighters continued to battle the blaze along a closed 16-mile stretch of US 1 that runs between Waycross, Ga., and Jacksonville, Fla.

World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz will go before a special panel of the international financial body Monday to counter calls for his resignation. The committee was formed to determine if Wolfowitz breached ethical or other rules by approving the promotion of woman friend Shaha Riza.

Gen. George Casey, the Army's new chief of staff, said Saturday he wants the time frame for boosting the number of active-duty soldiers by 65,000 to 547,000 moved up two years, to 2010. The Army is stretched and will remain so until the additional troops are trained and equipped, he said during a stop at Schofield Barracks, a base in Hawaii.

Environmental groups on Monday will keep a close eye on what federal waters the US Interior Department will include in its oil and natural gas drilling plan through 2012. The department is required every five years to indicate where it expects drilling on the Outer Continental Shelf. In particular, environmentalists are concerned about Bristol Bay in Alaska, the eastern Gulf of Mexico, and offshore Virginia.

During a commencement speech at Miami Dade College in Florida Saturday, President Bush appealed to graduates to help push ahead mired immigration reform by urging action by Washington lawmakers. First lady Laura Bush, meanwhile, gave the Seaver College commencement address at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif.

As expected, the Oakland Raiders made quarterback JaMarcus Russell the first player selected in Saturday's NFL draft. Three Louisiana State teammates joined him as first-round picks. Notre Dame's Brady Quinn, the only other QB taken in the opening round, went to the Cleveland Browns with the 22nd pick.

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