News In Brief

Limited statistical sampling may not be used for the 2000 census, the Supreme Court ruled. In a stinging defeat for the Clinton administration, the high court rejected a Census Bureau plan to use statistical sampling in an effort to make up for millions of people allegedly missed by traditional head-counting. Meanwhile, the court revived Federal Communications Commission rules designed to promote competition in local telephone markets. The ruling, overturning a lower-court decision, was a defeat for the regional Bell companies.

The Senate faced crucial votes on abruptly dismissing or calling some witnesses in its impeachment trial. House prosecutors held an informal inter- view with Monica Lewinsky that she did not want and that Senate Democrats denounced as an act of desperation. Afterward, Rep. Bill McCollum (R) of Florida said "she might be a very helpful witness to the Senate if she is called." Her lawyer said she said nothing new.

President Clinton was expected to announce that welfare roles had fallen to their lowest levels in 30 years. Nationally, just under 8 million people remained on welfare at the end of September - down 44 percent from 14.3 million in 1994. The new figures also indicated that the dramatic decline in the number of people on welfare during recent years is beginning to slow in certain states. Clinton was also expected to unveil some proposals designed to help more people leave welfare.

The epic war drama "Saving Private Ryan" took two top Golden Globe honors during a ceremony in Beverly Hills, Calif. - including Best Motion Picture Drama and Best Director, which went to Steven Spielberg (above with the awards). Other prominent winners included: Cate Blanchett ("Elizabeth") for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture Drama; Jim Carrey ("The Truman Show") for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture Drama; "Shakespeare In Love" for Best Motion Picture Musical or Comedy; Gwyneth Paltrow ("Shakespeare in Love") for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy; Michael Caine ("Little Voice") for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy; Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard ("Shakespeare in Love") for Best Screenplay Motion Picture; "The Practice" for Best TV Series Drama; and "Ally McBeal" for Best TV Series Musical or Comedy.

Nine Protestant denominations voted to move toward a broad affiliation of churches. They agreed to share one baptism, to recognize one another as "authentic expressions of the one church of Jesus Christ," to fully accept one another's ministers by 2007, regularly celebrate Eucharist together, and join forces to fight racism. Participants include the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Episcopal Church, the Presbyterian Church, the International Council of Community Churches, the United Church of Christ, the United Methodist Church, the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, and the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church.

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