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Originally published September 25, 2008 at 12:00 AM | Page modified September 25, 2008 at 10:41 AM

Live inauguration coverage: AP | Washington Post | KUOW

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Campaign Notebook

Obama effigy hung at Oregon college

Officials of a small Christian university say a life-size cardboard reproduction of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama was hung from a tree on the campus, an act with racial undertones that outraged students and school leaders.

NEWBERG, Ore. — Officials of a small Christian university say a life-size cardboard reproduction of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama was hung from a tree on the campus, an act with racial undertones that outraged students and school leaders.

George Fox University President Robin Baker said a custodian discovered the effigy early Tuesday and removed it. University spokesman Rob Felton said Wednesday that the commercially produced reproduction had been suspended from the branch of a tree with fishing line around the neck.

Taped to the cardboard cutout of the black senator from Illinois was a message targeting participants in Act Six, a scholarship program geared toward increasing the number of minority and low-income students at several Christian colleges, mostly in the Northwest.

The message read, "Act Six reject."

Newberg police Sgt. Tim Weaver said officials are working to find out who was responsible for hanging the effigy. He also said the police department has notified the U.S. Secret Service, although it's not clear yet whether the act was a crime.

Obama spokeswoman Sahar Wali said the effigy hanging was "an unfortunate incident, but you know we have had a very positive response from Oregonians across the state."

About 1,800 students are enrolled at the campus in Newberg, southwest of Portland. It also has centers in Portland, Salem and Boise.

Lieberman faces censure by party

HARTFORD, Conn. — Connecticut Democrats, angry that Sen. Joe Lieberman is campaigning for the Republican presidential candidate and criticizing his party's nominee, agreed Wednesday to circulate a resolution to censure the veteran politician but won't consider acting on it until after Election Day.

The resolution condemns Lieberman for speaking at the Republicans' convention and backing John McCain.

Lieberman was re-elected to the Senate as an independent after losing the Democratic primary in 2006 to businessman Ned Lamont. While he calls himself an "independent Democrat" in the Senate, he remains a registered Democrat and has said he has no plans to change his party affiliation.

Lieberman, speaking Wednesday to a radio station, said he was surprised by the move to censure him. "Honestly, I thought that was the kind of thing that happened only in the former Soviet Union."

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Luke Russert sorry

for Obama remark

NEW YORK — NBC News reporter Luke Russert said he made a "dumb" misstatement on the "Today" show Wednesday when he suggested that smart people supported Barack Obama for president.

Almost immediately, Russert took a hazing in the Web world. Wrote Tim Graham of the conservative Media Research Center on the NewsBusters blog: "Out of the mouths of young, untrained reporters come the unspoken beliefs of the liberal media."

Russert, son of the late "Meet the Press" host Tim Russert, is covering youth issues for NBC News. He filed a report for "Today" about campaign activity at the University of Virginia.

Russert, 23, said about the university: "The smartest kids in the state go there, so it is leaning a little bit toward Obama."

Oops. Now he's either implied that students at other colleges in Virginia aren't as smart as those at the University of Virginia or that you have to be dumb not to support Obama. Or both.

He said in a blog later that he misspoke and "made what is without a doubt, quite simply a dumb comment. ... Today was one of my first lessons in the perils of live television. Lesson learned."

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