The New York Times reported Thursday that lawyers for I. Lewis Libby Jr., the indicted former aide to Vice President Dick Cheney, had subpoenaed the Times and former reporter Judith Miller. Libby faces charges of lying to a grand jury about how he learned the identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame. Miller's lawyer said she would contest the subpoena in court. Time magazine's Matthew Cooper and NBC's Tim Russert were also subpoenaed.

The House Wednesday postponed its vote on the Online Freedom of Speech Act, a bill that would exempt blogs from campaign-finance laws, until after Congress reconvenes March 27. Critics say the measure would open up a loophole for soft-money campaign donations.

Stock futures were up on news of a sharp inflation decline in February. A leveling-off of food prices - and lower costs for gasoline, natural gas, and other energy products - caused the consumer price index (CPI) to creep up by only 0.1 percent last month, the Labor Department reported Thursday. The report may vindicate the Federal Reserve's steady interest rate increases since June 2004.

Scientists have identified some of the genetic mutations that they say would allow bird flu to be transferred between humans. Doctors at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif., said Thursday that the same tests they used to discover the potentially threatening genetic mutations could be used to monitor the virus's genetic evolution. The possibility that bird flu might combine with conventional human influenza to spark a global pandemic has been a fear of the medical community since 2003. So far, only people who had direct contact with birds have been diagnosed with the disease.

The Dominican Republic will face off against Caribbean rivals Cuba in San Diego Saturday at the inaugural World Baseball Classic semifinals. The championship game is on Monday.

Eleventh-hour political wrangling will keep the largest bond measure in California's history off the June ballot. The proposed $50 billion float is a pet project of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R), who hopes to use the loan to revitalize highways, levees, schools, reservoirs, and mass transit. To make the June ballot, the initiative had to be approved by the Democratic-controlled Legislature by midnight Wednesday.

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