WASHINGTON -- Sen. Tim Johnson, the South Dakota Democrat who suffered a major brain hemorrhage a month after his party retook the Senate in 2006 and recovered enough to run again two years later, announced Tuesday that he will not seek re-election in 2014.
"I will be 68 years at the end of this term, and it's time for me to say goodbye," Mr. Johnson said during a brief news conference in Vermillion, S.D.
Mr. Johnson's decision, coming on the heels of a spate of retirement announcements from Democrats, opens up a potential new opportunity for Republicans in the state that President Barack Obama lost by a large margin last year. Further, the retirement of Mr. Johnson, a moderate who is chairman of the powerful banking committee, will open up that slot, should Democrats maintain a majority.
Military sex assaults
WASHINGTON -- A new report required by Congress recommends that the Defense Department assess how well commanding officers handle sexual assault and harassment complaints when reviewing their job performance.
The Institute of Medicine said in the report released Tuesday that military sexual assault appears to be an important factor in the development of post-traumatic stress disorder. It cited previous research indicating that female veterans with a reported history of military sexual trauma were nine times more likely to have PTSD compared with other female veterans.
Voter ID required in Va.
RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia law will require all voters to have photo IDs beginning next year.
Gov. Bob McDonnell signed a bill Tuesday that his fellow Republicans said was a safeguard against voter fraud. Democrats bitterly denounced the legislation as a Jim Crow-era tactic to suppress votes. The legislation provides for a free valid ID with the bearer's photo to any registered voter who lacks one.
Monitor wasn't inspected
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- A large cabinet housing flight monitors that toppled on a 10-year-old Kansas boy, killing him and seriously injuring his mother at Birmingham's newly renovated airport, wasn't inspected by the city after installation, the city said Tuesday.
Steve Stine, an assistant city attorney, said the 300- to 400-pound flight information display that killed Luke Bresette was a movable cabinet containing video monitors that didn't require inspection under municipal codes.
Climate change plan
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration on Tuesday announced a nationwide plan to help wildlife adapt to threats from climate change.
Developed along with state and tribal authorities, the plan establishes priorities over the next five years, for what will likely be a decadeslong effort. One key proposal is to create wildlife "corridors" that would let animals and plants move to new habitats.
EPA: River quality 'poor'
NEW YORK -- The water quality in most U.S. rivers and streams required to support aquatic life is "poor," with species endangered by increasing pollution and erosion, according to an Environmental Protection Agency survey.
Data from 2,000 rivers and streams in 2008-2009, the most recent figures available, showed 55 percent of waterways to be in "poor condition for aquatic life" with a dearth of vegetation worsening erosion, according to the EPA statement.