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Obama agenda: Mark your calendars for Aug. 31

The Boston Globe: “President Obama will deliver a major speech August 31 to mark the reduction of US troops in Iraq to below 50,000, and the shifting mission of US forces from combat to support of Iraqi forces, White House staff said this morning.”

“Promising medical research is in disarray as scientists await an appeal by the Obama administration of a judge's ruling that undercuts taxpayer-funded research using human embryonic stem cells,” the AP reports. “The Justice Department said Tuesday it will appeal later this week a federal judge's order temporarily halting such research money, a block that scientists and patient advocates said could irreparably set back the hunt for needed new treatments.”