News In Brief
Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore was to name Joseph Lieberman as his running mate, party sources said. The two-term senator from Connecticut would be the first Jew to run on a major national ticket. Known for his centrist positions and moral rectitude, Lieberman made national headlines last year as the first Democratic official to publicly criticize President Clinton's behavior with Monica Lewinsky. As chairman of the Democratic Leadership Council, he shares Gore's New Democrat philosophy and brings pro-business and pro-defense credentials to the ticket.
Republican presidential nominee George W. Bush's lead in the polls has grown to 17 points, a USA Today/CNN/ Gallup survey found. Bush made his strongest gains with women and seniors. But analysts noted that 1988 Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis led eventual winner George Bush by the same 54-to-37 margin at this point in the campaign.
The Republican Party plans to spend $100 million during the presidential campaign to boost turnout of voters more likely to favor George W. Bush, The Washington Post reported. Dubbed Victory 2000, the program will support Bush's candidacy through issue ads on radio and television that reinforce Bush campaign themes without endorsing the candidate. Additional money will be used in a grass-roots effort to identify unenthusiastic Bush supporters and mobilize them on election day. Party officials said they will focus attention on 18 states where the election seems most competitive.
Two years after the bombings of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, the State Department reported Clinton administration plans to begin the construction of between 60 and 100 embassies and improve security features to ensure the safety of US diplomats. At least $1.4 billion over the next decade must be spent to enhance embassy security, a commission headed by retired Adm. William Crowe said. The Clinton administration has estimated that 85 percent of overseas facilities don't meet security standards.
Picket lines and demonstrations resumed across the East Coast as 85,000 telephone operators began the second day of their strike against Verizon Communications, the nation's largest local telephone company. Officials said operator assistance services, repairs, and installation could be disrupted during the strike, but that 30,000 Verizon managers had begun substituting for striking employees. Nevertheless, about 3,100 customers in New York reported losing service Sunday night. Verizon serves 27 million customers in 13 states.
Astronomers were set to announce the discovery of 10 new planets, including one close enough to allow direct study. Four teams were to outline their findings at the International Astronomical Union meeting in Manchester, England. Most of the planets resemble Jupiter in size but follow eccentric orbits that limit their capacity to support life, scientists said.
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