ABC7 TRAFFIC: 'Good Morning Washington' has updates every 10 minutes beginning at 4:30 a.m. http://tbd.ly/95jmWZ
ABC7 WEATHER: Partly cloudy with highs in the mid 50s. http://wj.la/72e8x6
'GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON': Among the stories - Comprehensive coverage of sequestration, which goes into effect today; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m.
TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: Some parents in Massachusetts are still smarting after receiving letters from their children's schools saying that their kid was obese. Do you think this is an appropriate course of action by these schools and the Department of Public Health? http://on.fb.me/jvt9JE
SHOULD HE OR NOT?: Bolliing emails his supporters the same question, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, "Political fence-sitting Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling is sure sounding like a candidate for governor in 2013. Bolling sent out an email (Thursday) asking supporters whether they think he should run as an independent candidate against GOP rival Ken Cuccinelli and Democrat Terry McAuliffe. "I think there is an opportunity to make history in Virginia this year," the two-term Republican said in the email. "We can send a message about the need to return to more civility and a more mainstream approach to politics and governing," Bolling said. http://bit.ly/XdxB9A
GOTTA KNOW WHEN TO HOLD 'EM: Especially in Virginia, per the Virginian-Pilot, "Card sharks hoping game rooms would soon become commonplace received bad news Thursday when the Supreme Court failed to deliver a ruling on the legality of playing poker for money in Virginia. The justices did, however, leave the door open for future challenges, which means at least one Hampton Roads man will face felony gambling charges in Circuit Court." http://bit.ly/XJXvON
SEQUESTRATION: It's here, per the Washington Post, "One day before automatic spending cuts were due to hit the Pentagon and other federal agencies, Congress on Thursday abandoned efforts to avert the reductions and left town for the weekend. The sequester is here, and policymakers have no plans to end it. President Obama is scheduled to meet Friday at the White House with congressional leaders, but expectations for the meeting are low." http://wapo.st/ZEUAZP
VATICAN VOID: Issues and more issues remain, per the New York Times, "As the sun set on Rome and on his turbulent eight-year papacy, Pope Benedict XVI, a shy theologian who never seemed entirely at home in the limelight, was whisked by helicopter into retirement on Thursday. But while Benedict, 85, retires to a life of prayer, study, walks in the garden and piano practice, he leaves in his wake a Vatican hierarchy facing scandals and intrigue that are casting a shadow over the cardinals entrusted with electing his successor in a conclave this month." http://nyti.ms/Y2u1uL
POLITICO PLAY: "Bob Woodward has suggested that the White House threatened him. Many of his colleagues in the press corps aren't buying it. By the standards of this White House, a statement like the one senior White House official Gene Sperling wrote to Woodward last week -- "I think you will regret staking out that claim" -- is both mild and familiar, reporters who have dealt with the Obama administration say." http://politi.co/XKpGgh
FATAL CRASH: Just the facts, per ABC7 - WJLA, "A 17-year-old Osbourn Park High School student was killed Thursday in a single-car crash in Manassas, officials say. The crash happened in the 10600 block of Lake Jackson Drive in Manassas just after 11 a.m. Thursday. Prince William County Police say that the 2008 Ford Mustang, driven by Michael Murphy Schmelzinger, was driving southbound when the car left the road and hit a tree." http://wj.la/VeQoBe
NABBED: Just the facts, per the Los Angeles Times, "The man suspected in a shooting and chain-reaction car crash on the Las Vegas Strip is a self-described pimp who was previously arrested on sexual assault and pandering, or pimping, charges, law enforcement sources said. Ammar Harris, 26, was taken into custody by FBI agents and Los Angeles police about midday Thursday in the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles police Cmdr. Andrew Smith confirmed to The Times." http://lat.ms/WuAcYY
BLACK-MARKET HOUSING: Of a tricky issue, per the Washington Examiner, "A lack of affordable housing in Fairfax County has spawned a black market for studio apartments and county officials are now scrambling to shut down the illegal apartment business without undermining the supply of cheaper housing. Responding to a jump in demand for studio apartments, county residents have started building illegal studio apartments in their homes, renting them to people who, struggling with the recession, have been shunning the more expensive one- and two-bedroom apartments that dominate the local rental market." http://bit.ly/ZNozCK
HIM, TOO: But with a harsher sentence, per City Paper, "The U.S. Attorney's Office wants Che Brown, brother of former D.C. Council Chairman Kwame "Fully Loaded" Brown to spend six months in prison for committing bank fraud, according to a recent court filing. Che Brown pleaded guilty in December to falsifying his income on bank documents. It was the same felony charge that Kwame Brown pleaded guilty to last summer after resigning from the Council." http://bit.ly/XGHAnx
MARYLAND LOVES ITS GUNS: We kid, per the Washington Times, "The Maryland Senate voted Thursday to approve Gov. Martin O'Malley's gun control legislation, clearing the bill's biggest hurdle and sending it to the House where its passage would make Maryland's gun laws among the strictest in the nation. The Senate voted 28-19 in favor of the Democratic governor's proposal." http://bit.ly/XedSXb
SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Virginia upsets Duke 73-68.
MATH LESSON: And a strange one, at that, per ARLnow, "Arlington Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Patrick Murphy's recommended FY 2014 budget would keep class sizes steady, would add new school buses and would provide for merit pay increases for school employees, despite a $23.5 million budget shortfall." http://bit.ly/VRRcuN
NEWSTALK: Among today's guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) is Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) and POLITICO's Roger Simon, who will be asked about the sequester and the impact it will have on the economy, federal agencies and the workforce. Also, D.C. Councilman Jim Graham will be asked about the reprimand he received this week from his colleagues.
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