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tv   America This Morning  ABC  August 25, 2010 3:00am-3:30am PST

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making news on this wednesday, august 25th. a political cliff-hanger in alaska between republicans who want to be senator. but elsewhere, incumbents buck the trend. a fire's fury in oregon, as fast-moving flames roar through nearly a dozen houses. and hungup. the skydive that definitely did not end as planned. and good morning, everyone. thanks for tuning in. a major political upset can be in the making this morning in alaska. lisa murkowski is in a tough primary battle. the latest count shows murkowski behind by a few thousand votes. >> she is losing to joe miller.
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a conservative, miller has the backing of sarah palin and tea party activists. other incumbents fared much better in races across the country. voters chose veteran politicians in many key states. e of theravers has some of the other election results. >> reporter: senator john mccain won big in his republican primary, after a fierce challenge from former congressman, j.d. hayworth. >> i promise you, i take nothing for granted. i'll fight with every ounce of strength and conviction i possess to make the case for my continued service in the senate. >> reporter: hayworth slammed mccain on immigration and spending. and questioned his conservative credentials. mccain's win did not come cheap. the defending senator spent $21 million to defend hayworth. in florida, kendrick meek
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defeated jeff green. >> to make me the democratic nominee. and eventually the next senator of the state of florida. >> reporter: meek enters a three hof way battle between marco rubio, and charlie crist, who left the republican party to run as an independent. rob and vinita? fire crews have finally got under control a wildfire that destroyed 11 homes in ashland, oregon. the blaze tore through a neighborhood that borders an interstate. homeowners called 911 as they watched one home after another go up in flames. >> all of a sudden, someone knocked on the door and said evacuate. as soon as she stepped out, she saw embers. and she saw popping in the house, what she thinks was four or five houses down that was burning. she said what do i do? i said get in the car and go. >> crews ignited a grass fire that started yesterday
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afternoon. thick, gray smoke from that fire was visible across the san francisco bay area. the justice department is rushing to appeal a court decision that blocks all federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. the funding was brought by adults who want the stem cells instead. >> reporter: it's a showdown taking place on the cutting edge of science. those advocating for embryonic stem cell research, including the obama administration, is suffering a serious setback. >> we're reviewing what is most important. so keep this important, potentially life-saving work as soon as possible. >> reporter: not long after taking office, president obama expanded stem cell research. but now u.s. district judge, royce lamberth has blocked its funding. it bans a law that finds funding for research in this a human
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embryo or embryos are discarded. >> we are thrilled with the decision because we believe that life begins at fertilization. and so, we see an embryo as being a human being. >> reporter: susan soloman is the ceo of the new york stem cell foundation. >> you don't want to run, you know, a won-legged potato sack race. you really want to have every, possible tool you can in your arsenal. >> reporter: don reid, whose son, roman, is paralyzed from the waist down, promises to keep fighting. >> people are suffering now. we've got to get this political nonsense out of the way. >> reporter: late tuesday, the justice department announced it mbert. by judge lambert.test t.j. winick, abc news, new york. a new report says the pentagon needs to do a better job of preventing military suicides. it calls for a new office to set
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strategy across all service branches. more than 1,100 troops committed suicide between 2005 and 2009. most are in the army and marines, the two branches most stretched by the wars in iraq and afghanistan. we have details this morning about some of the more serious war crimes cases in afghanistan. five forces from a stryker brigade is now charged with murder for allegedly trying to kill three afghan civilians. anyone who dared say anything about the alleged killings was threatened with violence. the lobbying to get shirley sherrod to return to work for the federal government, went all the way up to the president. at a news conference in washington, the woman who was fire affidavit being smeared on the internet, delivered her answer. emily schmidt reports. >> reporter: shirley sherrod lost her usda job very publicly. just as publicly, she chose not to take the new job they offered. >> i just don't think at this
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point, with all that has happened, i can do that. >> reporter: the controversy began in july, when conservative blogger andrew breitbart posted a clip to sherrod speaking to the naacp. in it, she shared her mixed emotions, helping a white farmer 25 years ago. >> i was helping a white person save their land. so, i didn't give him the full force of what i could do. >> reporter: secretary of agriculture, tom vilsack, immediately fired sherrod. then, apologized, when it blame clear the tape was taken out of context. sherrod had gone on to say that she helped the farmer. vilsack says he is at fault. >> i disappointed the president. i disappointed the country. i disappointed shirley. i have to live with that. >> reporter: president obama said there was blame to go around during an appearance last month on "the view." >> a lot of people over reacted, including people in my administration. >> reporter: shirley sherrod was
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in the newly created civil rights role. but would rather wait, perhaps consulting in the feature.roces. and i hope that it works. i don't want to be the one t it. test it. >> reporter: shirley sherrod has said she plans to sue the internet blogger who posted her speech on the internet. but said she didn't want to go into details about that lawsuit. emily schmidt, abc news, washington. and now, for this morning's weather. another soggy day in the east. isolated thunderstorms in florida, with heavy rain around the tampa area. rain across south texas. thunderstorms in new mexico, arizona, colorado and utah. hot and dry along the pacific coast. >> 103 in sacramento. 91 in portland. and 80 in seattle. 70s in minneapolis and chicago. just 67 in boston. and 76 here in new york. and when we come back, new evidence of just how bad the housing market really is. that's in your business news straight ahead. and lindsay lohan. word is that she is out of
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rehab. we'll be right back. [ sighs ] morning! mor-ning? i'm your genie. you're wishing for a deliciously, nutritious fiber cereal. i am. well, you don't want that one. new kellogg's fiber plus cereal®. the delicious taste of berries, plus yogurty clusters, plus 40% of your daily fiber... plus wait for it... antioxidants! so, two more wishes. mmmm. maybe later, then. [ female announcer ] new kellogg's fiber plus cereal®. positively delicious.
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it is time, now, for a check of market activity starting overseas. tokyo's nikkei average lost almost 150 points today. hong kong's hang seng is down in late trading. in london, the ftse opened on an up note. wall street starts the day with the dow jones industrial average industrial at 1040, after dropping 134 points yesterday. the nasdaq lost 35 points to
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goes at 2123. the markets were lower due to grim news in the housing market. sales of existing homes fell to report lows in july. and investors are bracing for the release of new homes numbers later today. john hendren is in washington with more. >> reporter: good morning, vinita and rob. if you're like many homeowners, your he bedrock of your family's wealth. well, now, that bedrock is a little shaken. the nation's housing market was hit with the worst news in months. sales of existing homes collapsed in july, down more than 27%. a record drop in the lowest sales pace ever. >> the days of a house being an atm machine for a typical homeowner, are over. >> the president is doing everything we think is appropriate to continue to move the economy in the right direction. >> reporter: there are 4 million homes on the market. enough to satisfy demand for a year.
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unemployment at 9.5% is stagnant. tax credits for home buyers is running out. and republicans are calling for heads to roll. >> president obama should ask for and accept, the resignation of his economic team, beginning with secretary geithner, and larry summers, the head of the economic council. >> reporter: the median home price stands at $182,600. nearly flat from a year ago. >> if you're a first-time home buyer that plans to be in the house at least five years, five to ten years, it's almost a no-brainer that now is a good time to be in the marketplace. we haven't seen rates that low in the last 30, 40 years. >> reporter: but nothing is certain in a country suffering a housing hangover. the latest associated press poll finds 56% of americans of the way president obama is handling the economy. but republicans, in the same poll, fared just as badly. >> john hendren in washington, thank you. americans seem to be reacting to the uncertain
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economy by paying off debt. the credit reporting sgs, transunion said the average credit card user owed $5,000 in the second quarter of this year. that may sound like a lot, but actually is an eight-year low. the congressional budget office said that the stimulus cost was more than expected. it will top expectations by $27 billion, totalling $814 billion. the stimulus saved or created as many as 3.3 million jobs. chrysler says it will start taking orders for its new police car next month. the dodge charger pursuit comes with a special stability control system to keep it stable during high-speed crashes. chrysler says it hopes to capture a large share of the police car market, which ford usually dominates. and when we come back this morning, some jeep cherokees are now being investigated. the reason why, coming up next. and what made one of baseball's best players lose his cool last night?
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that's in sports.
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14 now, for a look at your morning road conditions. wet on i-95, from maine to south carolina. flooding in central florida on i-75, from tampa to sarasota. slick on i-35 in texas. and on 25, 40 and 70 in the four corners region. >> if you're flying today, you can expect airport delays in boston, new york, philadelphia, washington and miami. federal safety officials have opened an investigation into the jeep grand cherokee. a consumer group asked the agency to determine if gas tanks on older models of the popular
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suv contain a potentially fatal design flaw. lisa stark has the story. >> reporter: the government defect investigation, involves 3 million older chrysler jeep grand cherokees, models 2004 and earlier. you can see the fuel tank the below the rear bumper. a little bit of it sticks out. and the center for auto safety is concerned that in rear-end crashes or in rollovers, this tank can rupture. that consumer group says it's counted some 254 fatalities that may be blamed on this fuel tank placement. now, chrysler changed the design of the car in 2005 and moved that fuel tank forward. the carmaker said it wasn't for safety, but for redesign. and it says the vehicle is perfectly safe, and meets or exceeds all government safety standards. the government isn't sure. that's why it's investigated. it wants to know if this is a safety defect and whether there
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needs to be a recall. lisa stark, abc news, washington. a runaway truck in southern california has killed three members of one family. the truck was hauling tons of gravel, when it flew off an embankment and crushed a home in santa barbara. inside that house, a father, mother and their 7-year-old son. the truck's brakes apparently failed. the death of pro golfer erica blasberg has been ruled a suicide. and the coroner's office said blasberg suffocated herself. but a mix of prescription drugs played a large role. there's reports that lindsay lohan is out of rehab, more than two months early. a hearing in the troubled stars probation case is set today. although, she's not required to be there. lohan spent 13 days in jail. then, checked into a rehab facility about two weeks ago. it is time for sports this morning. that means steve bunin at espn
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news. >> the philadelphia phillies got roy oswalt to help their starting rotation at the trade deadline. they no idea he would have to help them with the bat. it should have happened last night. but jimmy rollins had other ideas. the fans are happy. going to extra ins. to the 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th. no change in the score. ryan howard up, with two men on. check swing, for strike two. okay. not happy. but can live with it. checked swing. called strike three. can't live with that. howard was 0 for 7, with 5 strikeouts. maybe that's part of the reason he went off. had to be nearly tackled by his teammate to prevent being thrown out. because he was thrown out and because the phillies used too many players before, they had to put roy oswalt in left field. ield to first base. oswalt got tested early. came up fine defensively.
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the problem was the infield. we're at the top of the 16th. bases loaded for the astros. chriolancon to polanco. can't get the force at second nor the out at first. the run scores. it's 3-2 houston. the astros make it 4-2. it's oswalt up at bat to try to win it with two men on and two out. but he grounds out. game over. phillies go down. a much more one-sided affair in san francisco. mike leake of the reds came straight from college to the majors. was great before the all-star break. was an all-star. has been horrible after. faced eight batters, including buster posey. giants win it big. i'm steve bunin with this espn news update. now, back to you. tense moments at a texas rangers game last night, even before the first pitch. an army skydiver snagged his parachute during a pregame show and ended up dangling from a
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flag pole. he managed to free himself. and jump on to a platform over the scoreboard. and walked away unharmed. lucky guy. coming up, the stories we'll be following today, including the tight senate race in alaska. and they brought down the heavy equipment to get to the trapped miners in chile. we'll be bngngngngngngngngngngnc
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now, a look ahead to the stories we'll be watching on this wednesday. u.s. senator lisa murkowski is locked in a tight battle for the republican nomination in alaska. challenger joe miller was heavily backed by sarah palin and tea party activists.
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former president jimmy carter has arrived in the capital of north korea. mr. carter is on a humanitarian mission there, to free an american being held by the communist nation. wikileaks promises to release information to the cia today. that's the website that posted secret information about the war in afghanistan, setting off that firestorm at the pentagon. they're setting up a massive piece of machinery near the mine in chile, where 33 miners are trapped. that will be used to dig a rescue tunnel for the men, which could take weeks, possibly months. aviation officials are investigating the crash of a plane in northeast china. the plane crashed and burst into flames during a foggy nighttime landing. and tiger woods is facing reporters today for the first time.ivorce. he's speaking in new jersey, ahead of a tournament, where he'll need a good performance to extend his pga tour season..... wowowowowowowowowowowowowowowowo
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and finally this morning, the president's not-so-summery family vacation. the obamas have just four more days to enjoy martha's vineyard before heading home. >> for much of the first family's stay, the weather has been dreadful. but jake tapper tells us there's mrentdty of reporters to liven things up.
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>> reporter: the vacationers and residents of martha's vineyard has welcomed the obamas with giddiness. with banners heralding the president's accomplishments. with t-shirts, yes, we candy and rocky road fudge. and the obamarita. 76% of the folks here on martha's vineyard voted for the president. so, even if he'sar in your neck of the woods, he remains a rock star on this progressive island. the wind and rain swept in sunday and have been relentless. knocking out power in some parts of the island. not to sorry, the president tells us. the first family is safely ensconced at the blue heron farm. an estate that the first family rented, at a cost of up to $50,000 a week. the obamas hit the aptly-named sweet life cafe, where the president had the new pasta
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appetizer with lobster and tenderloin. >> they're having a great time, actually. the rain has not dampened spirits there. they're playing board games. >> reporter: a customer shot this at a local bookstore. but there's few imageses of the first vacationers. it's almost true with almost 10% unemployment and troops in harm's way in iraq and afghanistan, there's an extra sensitivity to images of the president having fun in the sun. or the rain. after all, the president is briefed every day on the economy and on national security by this guy, counterterrorism adviser, john brennan. >> anytime i have to convey to the president, i can do it quickly. >> reporter: this is jake tapper on martha's vineyard. >> that's what's making news on "america this morning."
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aa . > in the news this wednesday morning, firefighters make progress in the battle to control a 375 acre wildfire burning in contra costa county, now 50% contained. >> we still have dangerous heat


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