News

Elections 2012
6:03 pm
Tue October 23, 2012

Suzan DelBene Brings Business Experience, Money To Congressional Race

Democratic Congressional candidate Suzan DelBene on primary night.
KUOW/Deborah Wang

On the campaign trail, Suzan DelBene tells the story of how her family struggled when she was a kid. Her father was laid off from his job when she was nine, and the family moved all over the country as her parents looked for work. “They never got back to a situation where they were financially stable,” she explains.

She recounts that despite her family's financial difficulties, she was able to go to college on student loans. “I was in a position to take care of my family,” she says. “I’m not sure I could tell that story today.”

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International Law
9:31 am
Tue October 23, 2012

Jason Puracal Still Fighting 22-Year Drug Sentence

Jason Puracal before he spent nearly two years in a Nicaraguan prison. Photo courtesy Puracal family/Seattle University.

Tacoma resident Jason Puracal says his fight against the Nicaraguan justice system is still not over. Puracal was recently exonerated of drug charges in Nicaragua and returned to the Northwest. Now, Nicaraguan prosecutors are appealing his case to that country’s high court.

Jason Puracal arrived in Nicaragua about a decade ago as a Peace Corps volunteer. He left there last month from a maximum security prison. He was serving a 22-year sentence following a conviction for drug trafficking and money laundering. He was freed in September after winning an appeal.

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Elections 2012
9:20 am
Tue October 23, 2012

Grading The Charter School Claims

I-1240 class is in session.
Flickr Photo/ccarlstead

This fall, voters in Washington will decide whether to legalize charter schools in the state for the first time. Washington voters have considered charters three times before. But the details of charter school funding, oversight and independence can be confusing. So we took a red pen to claims by supporters and opponents of Initiative 1240, and gave each claim a grade to see who gets to go to the head of the class – and who needs to go back and check their work.

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Elections 2012
7:28 pm
Mon October 22, 2012

Civil Liberties And The Race For Supreme Court: McCloud Vs. Sanders

Richard Sanders and Sheryl Gordon McCloud take questions from King County Bar Association president Richard Mitchell.
(Photo / Amy Radil)


The race for the open seat on the Washington Supreme Court has drawn two staunch defenders of individual rights. One is former justice Richard Sanders, who hopes to return to the court after losing his seat two years ago. The other is appellate lawyer Sheryl Gordon McCloud. Both are passionate about constitutional issues, and even praise one another’s work. But they cite important differences in their positions and personalities.

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Special Education
7:07 pm
Sat October 20, 2012

Special Ed In Seattle Public Schools "Atrocious," "Heartbreaking," Say Parents

Ryder on his first day of third grade.
Bridget Ambrose

Two-and-a-half years ago, KUOW brought you the story of Bridget Ambrose and her son Ryder. Ryder was in kindergarten at the time. He’s on the autism spectrum. At Ryder’s preschool, he’d gotten special education services like speech therapy and the social skills training that many kids with autism need to teach them how to interact with other kids.

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Media
12:19 pm
Fri October 19, 2012

The Seattle Times' Political Ads Cause Controversy

A distribution box for The Seattle Times.
Flickr photo/Mr. T in D.C.

The Seattle Times Company began running its own political ads on Wednesday in support of Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna and same-sex marriage.

Industry observers are questioning this new move.

Alan Fisco, an executive with The Seattle Times, says print newspapers miss out on the millions of dollars in campaign spending that go to broadcast television.

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Boy Scouts
5:34 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Boy Scouts’ List Of Alleged Child Abusers Opened To Public

Boy Scout badges.
Flickr photo/rocket ship

A court-ordered release of the Boy Scout’s so-called “perversion files” lists 25 men in Washington state.  The complete files identify more than 1,200 Scout volunteers who were accused of child abuse and banned from the organization. These once-secret documents give the pubic an unprecedented look inside the scouting organization.

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Government
5:16 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Heated Words Over Seattle Police Monitor Selection

Seattle Police officers at a memorial for an officer killed in 2006.
Kevin P. Casey AP Photo

The war of words stemming from the effort to reform the Seattle Police Department is heating up.  At issue is the selection of an independent monitor who would oversee the reforms.

The Justice Department and the city are supposed to jointly select the monitor, but city officials can't agree on whom that monitor should be.

Mayor McGinn opposes the selection of a Los Angeles police consultant named Merrick Bobb, who has been described as being one of the country’s preeminent police reform experts. McGinn said he had questions about whether Bobb would be fair.

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Military
4:58 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Wash. Senator Patty Murray Wants Timeline For DoD Mental Health Diagnosis Reviews

US Senator Patty Murray.

Washington Senator Patty Murray has asked Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to provide a timeline for a review of how the military diagnoses PTSD and other behavioral health issues.

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History
4:49 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Souvenirs Of Seattle’s World’s Fair

Six-year-old Paula Jones was the 9-millionth visitor to the Seattle World's Fair. She was given free admission to all of the rides, as long as she wore this sign around her neck.
Courtesy/Washington State Archives, Puget Sound Regional Branch

Ten million people attended the Seattle World’s Fair over the course of its six month run. Jean Roth was one of them and she was there on opening day: April 21, 1962.

That day was also Roth’s 18th birthday and she and some friends thought it would be great to be the first through the turnstiles.

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Food Labelling
9:53 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Researchers: King County Menu Labeling Reduces Overeating

There are no signs on the menu encouraging super-sized portions at this McDonald's.
KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

It’s been more than two years since King County required chain restaurants to post nutrition information on their menus.  The goal was to help customers make healthy choices. 

Seattle researchers wanted to see if the regulation has changed the way restaurants market their meals.  One change the study found is it seems restaurants are no longer promoting supersized portions or overeating. 

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Referendum 74
9:08 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Campaigns For And Against Gay Marriage Bank On Opposite Strategies

Kyle Bain volunteers at a phone bank to urge voter support for Referendum 74.
Liz Jones/KUOW

Washington is one of four states that will vote on same-sex marriage in just a few weeks. History is on the line, as one of these states could be the first to approve gay marriage by a vote of the people. The campaigns on both sides are intensifying efforts to connect with voters but there’s a stark contrast in their strategies.

Here, gay marriage opponents have set up their campaign headquarters in a quiet strip mall just off I-5 in Lynnwood. Their office is tucked in next to a hair salon, a dry cleaners and a chain pizza restaurant.

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Elections 2012
8:52 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Seattle School Board Says "No" To Charter Initiative

Seattle School Board, 2012
Seattle Public Schools

The Seattle School Board said a unanimous "no" to charter schools last night. The board members approved a resolution against Initiative 1240, which would bring up to 40 charter schools to Washington over five years.

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Elections 2012
5:54 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

10 Donors Funded 91 Percent Of Charter Schools Campaign

Wal-Mart heiress Alice Walton at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, AR, Monday, Oct. 24, 2011.
(AP Photo/April L. Brown)

The campaign to bring charter schools to Washington state has now raised more cash than any other measure on the ballot. Donors have contributed more than $8.9 million to the Yes on 1240 campaign. Of that, 91 percent came from just ten people, according to the Public Disclosure Commission website.

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Election 2012
5:35 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Republican John Koster Focuses On Economy To Woo Moderates

John Koster in his Snohomish County Council office
(KUOW photo/Deborah Wang)

If Republican congressional candidate John Koster has a signature campaign issue, it’s the country’s ballooning national debt.

The website for his 1st Congressional District campaign features a national debt clock ticking away. The total now stands at more than $16 trillion.

“I think one of the greatest things that we could do for our constituents and our future generations is not hamstring them with huge debt and huge deficits that they will have to pay off,” he said.

In his two decades in politics, Koster has been a staunch advocate of limited government.

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