The Plot Thickens in News Corp. Hacking Scandal; Debt Ceiling Battle Continues

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Monday, July 18, 2011

Arrests and Resignations continue in U.K. Phone Hacking Scandal; Japan Wins the World Cup in Penalty Kicks; Debt Talks Continue in Washington; This Week's Agenda: Dodd-Frank Anniversary, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Launches, and Gay Marriage in New York; Summer Book Club: S.J. Bolton's 'Blood Harvest'; How Murdoch's Phone-Hacking Scandal Affect the US?; Rep. Hayworth Says Tax Increases are Non-Starter in Debt Talks; Rep. Chris Van Hollen on 'Cap, Cut and Trade'; Deadly Heat Waves Expected in the Midwest

Top of the Hour: Major Developments in the News Corp. Scandal, Morning Headlines

News Corporation shares hit a two-year low this morning after Sir Paul Stephenson stepped down as head of Scotland Yard. Britain's top police official resigned hours after former News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks was arrested, becoming the tenth person arrested in the phone hacking and police bribery scandal that continues to grow.

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Arrests and Resignations Continue in News Corp. Hacking Scandal

It has been another another weekend of unbelievable twists and turns in the News Corporation phone-hacking scandal. On Friday, Les Hinton, chairman of Dow Jones, publisher of The Wall Street Journal and a decades-long News Corporation employee, resigned hours after Rebekah Brooks, News International's chief executive, also stepped down. 

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Japan Wins the World Cup in Penalty Kicks

Japan and the United States butted heads yesterday in a World Cup final match that stretched into overtime. The U.S. women's team, though ranked number one going into the tournament, was unable to outscore Japan during the final penalty kick shootout. This is Japan's first World Cup victory.

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This Week's Agenda: Dodd-Frank Anniversary, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Launches, and Gay Marriage in New York

This week marks the one-year anniversary of President Obama signing the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Bill into law. A key component of that bill was the establishment of a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which will open its doors on Thursday. Yesterday, Obama announced Elizabeth Warren — the progressive icon who was charged with setting up the CFPB — will not be heading the new agency. In other news, the first legal same-sex marriages will take place in New York next weekend, and the nation's biggest banks will release their latest quarterly earnings statements.

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Debt Talks Continue in Washington

Another weekend has passed with little progress made on reaching a compromise to raise the nation's debt ceiling. This week, Republicans say they'll vote on their new "cap, cut and balance" plan. The plan may get enough support to get past the House, but it's looking less likely in the Senate. Todd Zwillich, Takeaway Washington correspondent, previews what we can expect in the budget battle this week.

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Summer Book Club: S.J. Bolton's 'Blood Harvest'

Our book club continues today with Celeste Headlee's second pick of the summer. S.J. Bolton is one of the most successful mystery authors writing today. Her third novel "Blood Harvest" is everything Celeste thinks a summer book should be: intriguing, suspenseful, fun — and, of course, well-written. The book centers on the mysterious disappearance and death of several young girls in a town in the British Moors.

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Top of the Hour: Lawmakers Vow Not to Default, Morning Headlines

Despite the continuing stalemate in Washington over the federal budget and debt ceiling, lawmakers on both side of the aisle insisted an agreement would be reached, and the U.S. would not default on its debt.

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News Corp. Hacking Scandal Comes Stateside

Rupert Murdoch's global media empire is coming under further pressure this morning as the scandal starts to affect his interests in other countries. Our partner, the BBC has learned U.S. federal investigators have contacted British police to discuss the probe into allegations against journalists working for the News of the World newspaper. Some are alleged to have paid police officers for information. Murdoch's News Corporation is based in the U.S., and the law here can impose serious penalties on companies guilty of bribing foreign officials. In the country of Murdoch's birth, Australia, the value of News Corporation shares has plunged more than six percent to a two-year low.

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Rep. Nan Hayworth Says Tax Increases are Non-Starter in Debt Talks

After a weekend of relatively little progress on the debt-ceiling negotiations, Congress is still far away from any sort of compromise. This week, Republicans intend to vote on a "cap, cut and balance" plan, aimed at capping federal spending, cutting the deficit and amending the Constitution to require a balanced budget. They would also lift the debt limit. The deal may get enough support in the House, but it's less likely to pass the Senate.

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Rep. Chris Van Hollen on 'Cap, Cut and Balance'

With just over two weeks left until the August 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling, Congress is expected to vote on the Republican "cap, cut and balance" plan, which would cut spending and raise the debt ceiling, while amending the Constitution to require a balanced budget. And while the measure may pass in the House, few expect it to get through the Senate. 

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Nelson Mandela Turns 93

Over 12 million people sang "Happy Birthday" to Nelson Mandela today, challenging a world record. The former South African president and human rights icon turns 93 today. His foundation has urged people to mark the second annual "Mandela Day" by devoting 67 minutes of volunteer work today, representing the 67 years he devoted to South Africa's political struggle. Nomsa Maseko of the BBC reports from Johannesburg.

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Deadly Heat Waves Expected in the Midwest

This week, meteorologists are predicting that heat waves will hit hard and heavy in the midwest. Though many consider them to be merely a nuisance, heat waves are among the deadliest natural disasters in the U.S. So why don’t we treat heat waves with more concern?

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News Corp. Legal Troubles Come Under New Scrutiny

As a phone-hacking scandal extends from British tabloids to Scotland Yard, Rupert Murdoch's history of dealing with legal challenges in the U.S. has come under scrutiny. In the past five years, Murdoch's company News America, a subsidiary of News Corp., has been accused of unfair trade practices by the state of Minnesota and yet another hacking charge from a company in New Jersey.

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