Bush names new counterterror chief
President Bush yesterday nominated retired Vice Adm. John Redd, who was executive director of the presidential commission on intelligence...
WASHINGTON — President Bush yesterday nominated retired Vice Adm. John Redd, who was executive director of the presidential commission on intelligence, to run the National Counterterrorism Center in McLean, Va.
Bush said Redd is a "man of enormous experience" who will be a "good boss" at the center. Redd, 60, is a 36-year Navy veteran and was commander of the Navy's 5th Fleet in the Middle East. Most recently, he was deputy administrator and chief operating officer of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad.
The center, which is part of the domain of John Negroponte, the new director of national intelligence, will draw information from 26 government networks, including air-traffic control. The CIA, the FBI and other government law-enforcement units are expected to carry out anti-terrorism operations based on information collected by the center.
The nomination is subject to confirmation by the Senate.
Redd recently served as executive director of the Silberman-Robb presidential commission on U.S. intelligence in Iraq, which concluded that the intelligence was "dead wrong."
Tax revenues trim
May's federal deficit
The government ran a deficit of $35.3 billion in May, a little more than half the imbalance of a year ago, thanks to a continuing surge in tax revenues, the Treasury Department said yesterday.
The government's monthly budget report showed the May imbalance was down from an imbalance of $62.5 billion in May 2004. This year's deficit was the smallest May imbalance since a deficit of $27.9 billion in May 2001, the last year the government ran a budget surplus.
Through the first eight months of this budget year, which began Oct. 1, the deficit totals $272.2 billion, an improvement from the $346.3 billion in red ink run up through the first eight months of the 2004 budget year.
The Congressional Budget Office says it expects this year's deficit to decline to about $350 billion, a significant improvement from the all-time high in dollar terms of $412.8 billion set last year.
Va. governor eyes
Virginia Gov. Mark Warner, 50, a Democrat, is forming a federal political-action committee (PAC) and has hired a top aide to former Vice President Al Gore to advise him on national politics, a top adviser said.
The new PAC will allow Warner to begin raising money for a possible run at the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008 while he finishes his term in Virginia, said Mame Reiley of Alexandria, director of a state political-action committee the governor controls.
Warner also has hired Monica Dixon, Gore's former deputy chief of staff, to be the federal PAC's first part-time consultant.
Warner has not said whether he is going to run for president, although he is mentioned frequently among Washington observers as a centrist Democrat who might win in conservative states that Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., lost to President Bush in 2004.
The Virginia governor also has not said whether he will challenge Sen. George Allen, R-Va., next year. Warner would need a federal PAC to raise money for a Senate race.
Vehicle donations off
since new tax rules
Vehicle donations to charity have plunged by as much as half since tougher tax rules took effect in January, and fund raisers said they fear things will get worse if Congress cracks down on deductions for gifts of clothing and household goods.
The sale of vintage suits, used appliances and old sofas that donors clear out of their closets make up core revenues for charities such as Goodwill Industries, The Salvation Army and Volunteers of America.
But Congress this summer is expected to consider capping deductions from such donations to $500 a year, as recommended by the Joint Committee on Taxation. Currently, donors can claim deductions of up to $5,000 without a certified appraisal.
Compiled from The Associated Press, The Washington Post and Reuters.
Sam and Sara Lucchese create handmade pasta out of their kitchen-garage adjacent to their Ballard home. Here, they illustrate the final steps in making pappardelle pasta.