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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Obama: Deficit may hit $1 trillion

Advertiser News Services

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

President-elect Barack Obama has asked Dr. Sanjay Gupta to be the next U.S. surgeon general. Best known as a health and medicine correspondent for CNN and CBS, Gupta, 39, is a practicing neurosurgeon and a member of the faculty at the Emory University School of Medicine.

Associated Press

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WASHINGTON Slowing tax revenues and a historic bailout of the U.S. financial system will send the budget deficit soaring toward $1 trillion this year, President-elect Barack Obama said yesterday, and the red ink stands to get substantially deeper if he wins approval of a massive economic stimulus plan.

Even if the package of spending and tax cuts helps restore the nation's immediate economic health, Obama said, the government is likely to be left with "trillion-dollar deficits for years to come" unless policymakers "make a change in the way that Washington does business."

BURRIS PREDICTED TO GET SENATE SEAT

WASHINGTON Roland Burris failed to capture President-elect Barack Obama's old Senate seat yesterday, but the Democrats' opposition cracked when a key chairwoman said seating him was the legal thing to do.

Democratic leaders are scheduled to meet with Burris today. Senate officials of both parties predicted that the saga would end with Burris being seated.

Seating Burris seemed more likely late yesterday, when Sen. Dianne Feinstein rejected the reasoning that corruption charges against Burris' patron, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, tainted his appointment.

ANTI-WHALERS HEAD TO AUSTRALIA

SYDNEY, Australia Radical conservationists who have been chasing Japanese whalers in the Antarctic Ocean said today they were heading to Australia to refuel their ship, a day after Japan argued they were pirates who should be barred from refueling.

Paul Watson, captain of the Sea Shepherd's ship, said he doubted Australia would block his ship when it lands in Tasmania next week. Japan said yesterday it plans to ask Australia to bar the Sea Shepherd ship from its ports.

FORMER GUARDS PLEAD NOT GUILTY

WASHINGTON Five former Blackwater Worldwide security guards pleaded not guilty yesterday to federal manslaughter and gun charges resulting from a 2007 shooting in a Baghdad square that killed 17 Iraqi civilians and injured dozens of others. The five all decorated military veterans stood behind their lawyers as their not guilty plea on all charges was entered in front of U.S. District Judge Ricardo M. Urbina. Urbina set a Feb. 1, 2010, hearing date.