ABC7 WEATHER: Mostly sunny with highs near 70. http://wj.la/72e8x6
‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the reports – Continuing coverage of the flooding; Wizards, NBA investigating Twitter threats; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.
SEEMS LIKE OLD TIMES: What’s in a name?, per the Baltimore Sun, “The Maryland men's basketball team will host Virginia in next season's ACC-Big Ten Challenge, the Terps' first since switching conferences.
“After playing the last two years of the event on the road as a lame-duck ACC team, Maryland gets a home date against the longtime rival Cavaliers on Dec. 3. Maryland beat then-No. 5 Virginia in overtime, 75-69, in its final ACC regular season game at Comcast Center on March 9.” http://bsun.md/1iFVYZ1
WELLNESS: Quite appealing, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “More than 216,000 Virginians have enrolled in health insurance plans on the new federal marketplace, more than twice as many as the government’s initial target and more than doubling the number who had signed up through March 1.
“Since then, almost 113,000 people selected health plans in the marketplace in Virginia in the final month and a half of enrollment, including those who were in line for coverage when the sign-up period ended officially March 31, according to enrollment figures federal officials released Thursday.” http://bit.ly/1miaLHm
SMART GUNS: Or not, per the Washington Post, “A Rockville gun store owner who said he would sell the nation’s first smart gun — even after a California gun store removed the weapon from its shelves to placate angry gun-rights activists — backed down late Thursday night after enduring a day of protests and death threats.
“Andy Raymond, the co-owner of Engage Armament, a store known for its custom assault rifles, had said earlier this week that offering the Armatix iP1 handgun was a “really tough decision” after what happened to the Oak Tree Gun Club near Los Angeles. Oak Tree was lambasted by gun owners and National Rifle Association members who fear the new technology will be mandated and will encroach on Second Amendment rights.
“Electronic chips in the gun communicate with a watch that can be bought separately. The gun cannot be fired without the watch.” http://wapo.st/1fUXkJI
MILITARY MEDS: Shop wisely, per the Virginian-Pilot, “Starting this spring, more than 400,000 military retirees and senior dependents in the Tricare for Life program will owe the full amount for certain prescription refills if they use a retail pharmacy rather than a military pharmacy or a mail service. The change, part of a pilot program created by Congress, is meant to help control the cost of military health care. In its first year, it is expected to cut $120 million from the $3.3 billion that the U.S. Department of Defense pays annually for Tricare For Life pharmacy needs.” http://bit.ly/1kq64J4
DOG POOP: And DNA, per the Dallas Morning News, “Warning to dog owners who don’t pick up what their pets leave behind: Your dastardly deeds may no longer go undetected. A growing number of North Texas apartment complexes are using DNA testing to trace pets and fine owners who ignore poop-scooping regulations.
“. . .The results of the simple cheek swab will be kept in a database by a private lab. Any pet waste found on the property will be matched to its pooch. Owners face fines ranging from $200 to $350. The approach is being embraced by private dog parks, homeowner and condominium associations, RV parks and apartment complexes throughout the U.S. and Canada, according to PooPrints, a Tennessee-based company that has about 30 customers, mostly apartment complexes, in the Dallas area.” http://bit.ly/1i4T8XQ
UKRAINE: The latest, per the New York Times, “As it tries to punish Moscow for its intervention in Ukraine, the White House asserts that the sanctions it has imposed have had a “significant impact” on Russia’s economy, but their real effect so far, according to economic specialists, appears to be more psychological than tangible.
“White House officials have pointed to the fall of the Russian ruble and Moscow stock markets as evidence of the success they have had in pressuring the Kremlin. Yet the ruble and Russian markets fell before President Obama began imposing sanctions. Today, in fact, both the ruble and the markets are slightly stronger than they were before the first sanctions were announced.” http://nyti.ms/1lG6Zcz
DONALD STERLING: Lots of talk, per the Los Angeles Times, “In an expected move, the 10 NBA owners on the advisory/finance committee unanimously agreed Thursday to “move forward as expeditiously as possible” to terminate Donald Sterling’s ownership of the Clippers, according to a statement released by the NBA. The committee meets occasionally throughout the year and had scheduled a conference call to specifically address Sterling’s ownership. The 10 owners agreed to talk again next week, though it was not known when the 30 owners would take an official vote to try to oust Sterling.
“Three-fourths of the owners -- 22 in this case -- would have to agree to terminate Sterling’s ownership of the Clippers to begin the process of forcing the franchise’s sale. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver expressed confidence Tuesday that he would have full support of the owners, and the 10-person committee’s unanimous action Wednesday reinforced that notion.” http://lat.ms/1lG7Dqs
BENGHAZI: Whatever, per The Hill, “Republicans are turning up the heat on the White House over the terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, questioning whether the administration violated a congressional subpoena by withholding documents. GOP lawmakers on both sides of the Capitol have assailed the administration over emails obtained by Judicial Watch under a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.
“One of the emails details national security adviser Ben Rhodes’s “goals” for the talk-show appearances of Susan Rice the weekend after the deadly assault in Libya. In the email, Rhodes said Rice should “underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy.” Rice argued in series of Sunday show appearances that the violence in Benghazi appeared to have happened spontaneously following protests over an anti-Islam YouTube video. The administration later conceded that the Benghazi attack, which left four Americans dead, was preplanned.” http://bit.ly/1kq7IKI
POLITICO PLAY: “Sen. Lindsey Graham on Thursday again went after the Obama administration on Benghazi, calling White House officials “scumbags” that “lied about” the September 2012 attacks.
“Our Democratic friends, for the most part, have been in the tank over Benghazi. They think it’s to get me reelected,” the South Carolina Republican said on The Mike Gallagher Show on Thursday morning. “Some guy said this about me yesterday on the left: The only reason I cared about this was because I have six tea party opponents. Well, if that’s true, I’m the biggest scumbag in America. I don’t think that’s true. I know it’s not true. It would be almost impossible for Lindsey Graham — given who I am and what I’ve been doing for the last 20 years — not to care about those in harm’s way, who get killed, and not go on to hold the administration accountable that lied about it.” http://politi.co/1iQgEg0
MARION: Dim the lights, per City Paper, “Heads up, Tinseltown: Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry is looking for someone to tell his story in celluloid. The mayor-for-life told LL earlier this week that he's in a race against time to get a film about his life made. Dedicated Barry watchers will remember that HBO Films is already working on a Barry biopic. Unhappy about how he thinks he'll be portrayed in the HBO movie, Barry says he wants someone else to release a film version more to his liking first.
“At one point I was trying to kill it," Barry says of the HBO movie. "But I’m going another route now, because I'm going to sell my movie rights in the next two or three months." Barry says he turned against the HBO project after having dinner with John Ridley, the Oscar-winning screenwriter of 12 Years a Slave who was attached to the project with Spike Lee as the director. Barry says he was unhappy with how Ridley planned to portray his arrest at the Vista Hotel for smoking crack.” http://bit.ly/1fxGAxM
LION MAN: Just the facts, per Gazette.Net, “A bank robber the FBI has nicknamed the “Lion Man” tried to rob a SunTrust Bank in Silver Spring on Thursday. Montgomery County police spokeswoman Janelle Smith said it is probably the same person who wore a Detroit Lions hat, dark sunglasses, and dark clothes to disguise himself in two other bank robberies in Montgomery County and an attempted robbery in Baltimore in April.
“Montgomery County police and the FBI are working together on the investigation, Smith said. At around noon on Thursday, a man dressed in a similar manner as in the other incidents went to a SunTrust inside a Safeway at 11261 New Hampshire Ave. and slid the teller a note. But he grabbed the note back and left the bank when the bank employee hesitated, Montgomery County police said in a news release.” http://bit.ly/1rVNHBR
IMMIGRATION: And enforcement, per the Frederick News-Post, “A study of the Secure Communities immigration enforcement program has cast doubts on its effectiveness, doubts shared by the Frederick County sheriff and area immigrant rights advocates. After examining millions of deportation records since the start of Secure Communities, the report released last month by the Transactional Records Access Clearing House, a data analysis group, concluded that the program has not met its stated objective of removing serious criminals who are in the country illegally.” http://bit.ly/1rVOxhQ
TAXI WARS: Or something like that, per ARLnow, “Nearly a hundred Arlington (Va.) taxi drivers crowded into the County Board offices Thursday afternoon, asking county policymakers to take action against UberX. UberX, which launched in D.C. last summer, is a smartphone app that connects users with drivers who use their personal vehicles to give on-demand rides. It presents itself as a “better, faster, cheaper” alternative to taxis.
“But in Arlington, taxi drivers and companies are becoming more vocal in their criticism of UberX. They say it’s unregulated, dangerous and illegal. That, and it’s hurting their bottom line. Red Top Cab, the largest taxi company in Arlington, told ARLnow.com that the number of trips it dispatches is down 5-10 percent compared to 2012 — a drop that it attributes in part to UberX and similar services, like Lyft. Drivers told us there are other signs that UberX is siphoning off riders: full taxi stand lines and some drivers defecting to Uber.” http://bit.ly/1miPA88
TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: “Approximately 638 suspected gang members have been arrested by ICE in Homeland Security's latest crackdown on street gangs called "Project Southbound." According to the Associated Press, more than 400 of those arrested had violent criminal histories, including seven wanted on murder charges.” http://wj.la/1kytNtJ
NEWSTALK: Among today’s topics (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) -- Is D.C. becoming a "police state"? ANC Commissioner Jack McKay talks about the city's supposed over-reliance on speed cameras, many of which he considers "gotcha" cams.