News In Brief
Liberal stalwarts of the Democratic Party attacked Republican programs and urged support for presidential candidate Al Gore. Among the highlights of the convention's second day:
*President John F. Kennedy's daughter, Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg, invoked her father's "New Frontier" theme in her rare public speaking engagement.
*Former presidential contender Bill Bradley put behind him months of lukewarm support for Gore by giving a hearty endorsement to his former rival, and advocated greater healthcare insurance.
*The Rev. Jesse Jackson exhorted the crowd in a thundering address to "stay out [of] the Bushes."
*Vice presidential candidate Joseph Lieberman, who was to speak last night, tried to quell black voters' concerns by assuring the Congressional Black Caucus that he supports affirmative action.
*Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union denounced heavy-handed police tactics against convention protesters and said they'd file a lawsuit on behalf of reporters who claim they were targeted by police during a concert skirmish.
*Republican nominee George W. Bush, meanwhile, has raised a record $100 million for his campaign, The Wall Street Journal reported.
At least 62 deaths have now been potentially linked to Bridgestone/Firestone tire failures, a government agency reported. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration raised the figure after additional accident reports followed Bridgestone Corp.'s 6.5 million tire-recall announcement. All but six of the deaths involved Ford Explorer vehicles.
Proposed government rules limiting truck drivers' time behind the wheel will cost $15.4 billion over 10 years, a trucking industry group reported. The American Trucking Association challenged the net benefits cited by the Department of Transportation, saying the regulations would lead to more trucks on the road during peak hours, faster driving, and many new, less-experienced drivers. Transportation Secretary Rodney Slater has extended the comment period on the rules from July 31 to Oct. 30.
Consumer prices rose slightly in July, as higher food, housing, airfare, and medical costs offset cheaper gasoline and clothes, the Labor Department reported. The consumer price index's 0.2 percent gain was welcomed by analysts, who said the slightly higher-than-expected figure suggests a mild level of inflation that won't spur the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates next Tuesday.
Housing starts, meanwhile, fell for the third straight month, the Commerce Department reported. The 3.3 percent drop, analysts said, signaled that the Fed's six recent interest-rate hikes are finally starting to cool the housing market.
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