Sacramento Snoozes while Budget Deficit Oozes

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With a budget gap of $35 billion that-s growing everyday, California-s financial state has been called a -train wreck- and -a plane flying into a mountain.- Although Republicans and Democrats in the Legislature found time to debate the war in Iraq, they left for two weeks of spring break without doing anything about their own crucial job of solving the state-s monumental financial crisis. Wall Street has threatened to withhold more loans, but Republicans won-t raise taxes and Democrats won-t make more spending cuts. Is the political system broken? We hear from veteran Capitol pundits Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee and Bill Bradley of the LA Weekly on the lack of urgency about what everyone agrees is a -looming catastrophe.-
  • Making News: Baghdad Rebounding from Looting and Violence?
    The Pentagon says the major battles are over in the war on Iraq, and that next on the agenda is restoring civic order in that devastated country. In Baghdad, religious clerics have started doing the job at the point of a gun. We get an update tonight from Anthony Shadid, who-s in Baghdad for the Washington Post. (A portion of this interview was originally broadcast earlier today on To the Point.)
  • Reporter's Notebook: Secretary Paige on Religion in Public Education
    Speaking to the Baptist Press last week, Secretary of Education Rod Paige caused some consternation when he said that, all things considered, he prefers schools with Christian values. Jewish and Muslim groups and civil rights organizations raised an outcry. Does he advocate the teaching of Christianity in public schools? Last week, Paige set the record straight. (A shorter version of this interview was originally broadcast February 11 on To the Point.)

Shadid-s article, -Shiite Clerics Move to Assume Control in Baghdad-

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