The Short List: No escaping #blizzardof2015; White House drone crash; Alleged … – USA TODAY
Get your snow shovels ready because there’s no escaping #blizzardof2015
It’s a whopper of a storm, and it’s coming for us. If you’re an airline traveler, you’re going nowhere fast. If you’re a car commuter in New York City, you’d better park it. The best plan for most of the Northeast is to stay home. Let us say that again: Seriously, stay home if you can, because it’s going to be a monster storm. A blizzard warning is in effect for the New York and Boston areas. Travel bans, flight cancellations, power outages and school closures are the future for New England. Sporting events were canceled, and Broadway was going dark. More than 6,100 flights have been canceled. The storm will impact more than 40 million people, according to the National Weather Service. Here’s what people are saying about #blizzardof2015. You can share your weather photos with us here. Here’s what you need to know about taking an Uber. Stay up-to-date on closings here. Stay safe!
Mystery of the drone that crashed on the White House lawn looks to be solved
Overnight, something went up and over the White House fence. This time, though, it crashed on the White House lawn instead of through the front doors. A drone, or a “quad copter,” flitted up and over into the highly restricted grounds of the White House shortly after 3 a.m. We learned this afternoon that a man, possibly a government employee, told the Secret Service that it was his drone. Investigators believe he was flying it for recreational purposes. President Obama and the first lady weren’t home at the time, although it was unclear if Sasha, Malia and their grandmother were in the residence. This is the latest in a string of security breaches involving the White House. The FAA is hashing out rules on drones, which can range in size from a few ounces to as big as an airliner. Some guidelines are expected to be released Friday.
Charges filed in alleged Cold War-style Russian spy ring
It’s like an episode of The Americans, that spy thriller on FX. Three Russian nationals are accused of spying on behalf of their government and attempting to recruit New York City residents as intelligence sources in the United States, according to charges filed in federal court today. Not since the U.S. expelled a group of Russian spies nearly five years ago posing as American citizens has the U.S. moved in such a major way in a espionage case involving Russia. The alleged spy ring dates back to as early as 2010. One person has been arrested; two others were believed to no longer be in the U.S.
Lance Armstrong: I would probably dope again
If Lance Armstrong could do it all over again, he would probably still do it using performance-enhancing drugs. The fallen cycling great made the admission in an interview with BBC Sports. “If I was racing in 2015? No, I wouldn’t do it again,” he said. “Because I don’t think you have to do it again. If you take me back to 1995 when it was completely and totally pervasive? (I’d) probably do it again.” The cyclist was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and barred from Olympic sports for life in 2012. He also returned his bronze medal from the 2000 Sydney Olympics and is facing lawsuits related to doping that could cost him his personal fortune. Armstrong, as he has done in the past, blamed his actions on the culture of cycling at the time. Read more in For The Win.
Federal deficit falls to lowest in Obama presidency
CBO was trending on Twitter in Washington today. Why? The Congressional Budget Office predicted the federal government’s 2015 budget deficit will fall slightly this year to $468 billion, the lowest it’s been since President Obama took office, according to the agency’s annual budget outlook. The estimates were released today. The government had a shortfall of $483 billion in 2014. A combination of federal spending cuts and a strong economy will contribute to the deficit’s decline, CBO said. In other news, the CBO also projects the unemployment rate will fall further this year as more people are encouraged to enter or stay in the workforce.
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