National briefs: Texas plans an execution

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HUNTSVILLE, Texas -- If Texas executes Robert James Campbell as planned today, for raping and murdering a woman, it will be the nation's first execution since Oklahoma's bungled attempt at lethal injection two weeks ago left a convicted murderer writhing and moaning before he died.

Lawyers for Campbell are trying to use the Oklahoma debacle to stop the Texas execution. But many in this state and in this East Texas town north of Houston, where hundreds have been executed in the nation's busiest death chamber, like to say they do things right.

For two years now, Texas has used a single drug, the barbiturate pentobarbital, instead of the three-drug regimen used in neighboring Oklahoma. Prison administrators from other states often travel to Huntsville to learn how Texas performs lethal injections and to observe executions. Texas officials have provided guidance and, on at least a few occasions, carried out executions for other states.

IMF chief skips address

BOSTON -- The managing director of the International Monetary Fund backed out of giving this year's commencement address at Smith College in the wake of protests from faculty and students, the school announced Monday.

Christine Lagarde, who has headed the IMF since 2011, told the women's college over the weekend that it was clear her presence on the Northampton campus was not welcomed. Many of those who opposed Ms. Lagarde said they were attacking the IMF for being "a corrupt system" that fuels the oppression and abuse of woman worldwide. A spokeswoman from the IMF declined to comment on those allegations.

Condom seizures curbed

NEW YORK -- The New York Police Department will no longer confiscate unused condoms from suspected sex workers to be used as evidence of prostitution, ending a long-standing practice that had been criticized by civil rights groups for undermining efforts to combat AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections.

Under the new policy announced Monday, officers may continue to seize condoms as evidence in sex-trafficking and promotion of prostitution cases, but they will not use them in support of prostitution cases. Critics had said the previous policy amounted to police harassment, and noted that New York City spends more than $1 million a year to distribute free condoms.

We carry little cash

WASHINGTON -- Almost nobody carries cash anymore, a new study shows, and those who do, don't carry much.

Roughly 8 in 10 people carry less than $50 cash in their wallets on a regular basis, according to a new report from Bankrate.com. Close to 50 percent of Americans carry $20 or less each day, including 9 percent who don't carry any cash at all. And only 7 percent carry more than $100 each day.

House hopeful in N.C. dies

WASHINGTON -- The Democratic candidate who was narrowly trailing Clay Aiken in a North Carolina congressional primary election died Monday, a day before election officials were to determine whether a runoff election was required.

Keith Crisco, who co-founded an elastics business in Asheboro and served in local and state government, died at home, according to the North Carolina Democratic Party. The Asheboro Courier-Tribune reported that the 71-year-old candidate died from a fall.

Mr. Crisco trailed Mr. Aiken, the former "American Idol" runner-up making his first bid for public office, by just 369 votes after last Tuesday's primary election. County election officials are scheduled to hold vote canvassing today to help determine whether a runoff election would have been triggered.

AT&T woos DirecTV

NEW YORK -- AT&T is in advanced talks to acquire DirecTV, the largest U.S. satellite-TV provider, for about $100 per share, people familiar with the matter said Monday.

Under the plan being discussed, DirecTV management will continue to run the company as a unit of AT&T and DirecTV CEO Mike White plans to retire after 2015, the sources said.

The $100 per-share price values El Segundo, Calif.- based DirecTV at about $50 billion. That's about 29 percent above DirecTV's price on April 30, before initial reports of the talks. DirecTV rose 6 percent to $92.50 as of 5:15 p.m. in New York, after closing regular trading at $87.16 a share earlier Monday.


-- Compiled from news services


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