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Both pot propositions pass by a large margin

With the passage of two marijuana-related initiatives Tuesday, Columbia voters have placed the city on the progressive edge of drug-law reform in the United States.

With more than half the ballots tallied, voters were approving Proposition 1 69 percent to 31 percent as of press time. The measure makes it legal for chronically ill patients to possess and use marijuana with a doctor’s consent. Physicians who prescribe marijuana to patients will no longer face arrest and prosecution.

Renewable energy measure approved

Columbians conveyed their support for limiting the city’s dependence on fossil fuels, joining a growing number of cities across the nation including Chicago; Fort Collins, Colo.; and Austin, Texas — by passing a renewable energy standard for the local power supply.

The measure, with well more than half the ballots counted by press time, was passing with an impressive 78 percent of the vote.

Boone County voting observed

David MacDonald was surprised by how smoothly the election process ran its course at the Boone County polling places he visited Tuesday.

MacDonald, a Canadian election expert, and Norman Du Plessis of South Africa came to Columbia as international election observers representing Global Exchange, a human rights organization based in San Francisco. The organization also observed polling places in St. Louis, Ohio and Florida.

It’s time for Columbia

No matter how the election swings, life in Columbia, and thousands of other small towns across America, will go on.

Over the past year, the election, branded with “choose or lose” or “vote or die” sucked the energy from our souls. We drank morning cups of news, speculation and suggestion. But the polls are closed now and we should take a breather from relentless partisanship.

Bush wins race as Kerry concedes

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush won a second term from a divided and anxious nation, his promise of steady, strong wartime leadership trumping John Kerry's fresh-start approach to Iraq and joblessness. After a long, tense night of vote counting, the Democrat called Bush Wednesday to concede Ohio and the presidency, The Associated Press learned.

Kerry ended his quest, concluding one of the most expensive and bitterly contested races on record, with a call to the president shortly after 11 a.m. EST, according to two officials familiar with the conversation.

The victory gave Bush four more years to pursue the war on terror and a conservative, tax-cutting agenda - and probably the opportunity to name one or more justices to an aging Supreme Court.

He also will preside over expanded Republican majorities in Congress.

"Congratulations, Mr. President," Kerry said in the conversation described by sources as lasting less than five minutes. One of the sources was Republican, the other a Democrat.

The Democratic source said Bush called Kerry a worthy, tough and honorable opponent. Kerry told Bush the country was too divided, the source said, and Bush agreed. "We really have to do something about it," Kerry said according to the Democratic official.

Kerry placed his call after weighing unattractive options overnight. With Bush holding fast to a six-figure lead in make-or-break Ohio, Kerry could give up or trigger a struggle that would have stirred memories of the bitter recount in Florida that propelled Bush to the White House in 2000.

© 2004 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

NCAA to announce sanctions today

The National Collegiate Athletics Association will announce this afternoon whether and how it will sanction the MU men's basketball team for alleged violations. Thomas Yeager, chairman of the Division I Committee on Infractions, will hold a teleconference with reporters at 2 p.m. MU officials -- including University of Missouri system President Elson Floyd, coach Quin Snyder, Director of Athletics Mike Alden and Chancellor Brady Deaton - will follow with their own press conference at 3:30 p.m. in the Reynolds Alumni Center. Highlights of the NCAA's final report will be posted online as they become available.

NCAA announces sanctions

The National Collegiate Athletics Association will announce this afternoon what sanctions it will impose on MU for violations on the men's basketball team. Those most intimately involved with the team knew sanctions were coming today.

MU sanctioned by NCAA over men's basketball violations

MU will be placed on probation for three years for violations committed by the

men's basketball program, the NCAA said Wednesday.

The sanctions will include limits on scholarships, recruiting and official visits

by coaches. Post-season play and television appearances will not be affected.

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