WASHINGTON – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid turned heads this week by suggesting that Mitt Romney is withholding his tax returns because he didnt pay taxes over a 10-year stretch.
In doing so, the Nevada Democrat burnished his reputation for lobbing occasional stinging insults – and seized on a Democratic attack line that seems to be resonating with voters.
Reid said Tuesday in an interview with the Huffington Post that he had learned of Romneys tax history from a person who had invested with Bain Capital. But when pressed, he declined to identify the investor or cite any proof for his allegation.
Just over half of voters in the swing states of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania think candidates should publicly release several years of tax returns, according to a poll released Wednesday by Quinnipiac University, the New York Times and CBS News.
And a USA Today-Gallup poll published last month found that a majority of Americans – and almost a third of Republicans – think Romney should release more tax information.
Mistrial threatened in Peterson case
A visibly angry judge said Wednesday he will consider declaring a mistrial at Drew Petersons murder trial in Joliet, Ill., after a second major blunder by prosecutors in as many days, once again illustrating how the high-profile case has been beset by problems from the outset.
Judge Edward Burmilas blistering rebuke came after prosecutors second witness suggested Peterson may have put a .38-caliber bullet in his driveway to intimidate him, which prompted Burmila to worry aloud in court whether the former police officer could get a fair trial.
The 58-year-old Peterson is charged with first-degree murder in 2004 death of his third wife, 40-year-old Kathleen Savio.
It was the latest twist in a case plagued by problems for years – including a botched initial investigation that left prosecutors with no physical evidence and forced them to hang their case on hearsay evidence, which is typically barred.
Northern seal takes long trip to Hawaii
A seal that would normally live in waters around the Aleutian Islands and California has shown up thousands of miles away on a beach in Hawaii.
David Schofield, a marine mammal response coordinator at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, says people found the emaciated northern fur seal near Sunset Beach on Oahus North Shore.
Schofield said Wednesday this is the first time on record that a wild fur seal has come to Hawaii. Hawaiis only native seal is the endangered Hawaiian monk seal.
Thousands mark completion of study
MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., has been transformed into what organizers are saying is the worlds largest synagogue, with tens of thousands of people gathering to celebrate the completion of the reading of the Talmud, the book of Jewish laws and traditions.
The faithful streamed into the stadium for hours Wednesday night. Audio of the program, which included speeches, prayers and videos, streamed throughout the stadiums concourses.
France offering to pay for shark kills
French fishermen will be on the hunt for a vulnerable shark species off the coast of the French Indian Ocean island of Reunion soon – and will pocket government cash for their kills after a dramatic rise in deadly attacks pushed Paris to take unprecedented measures.
Financial incentives will come into force as early as next week – and its provoked an outcry from animal rights groups, who call it a legalized extermination.
The sharks to be targeted are bull sharks, a large and aggressive species common in the Indian Ocean widely believed to be behind several recent attacks on people.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature, a leading conservation group that produces the worlds main list of endangered species, the so-called Red List, designates the bull shark as near threatened, meaning it could face the threat of extinction in the near future.