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Congress: Ricin scare

“An envelope addressed to Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi tested positive Tuesday for ricin, a potentially fatal poison, authorities said, heightening concerns about terrorism a day after a bombing killed three and left more than 170 injured at the Boston Marathon,” the AP writes. “One senator, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, said authorities have a suspect in the fast-moving ricin case, but she did not say if an arrest had been made. She added the letter was from an individual who frequently writes lawmakers.”

“State pride in the award to the ‘Green Mountain Boys,’ as the Vermont Air National Guard calls itself, has been clouded by the Air Force’s failure to fully take into account the thunderous noise the F-35s would generate in densely populated communities around its base at Burlington International Airport,” The Boston Globe writes. “That failure and other flaws in its selection process are raising questions about whether the Air Force deliberately sought to reward a key friend in Congress [Sen. Patrick Leahy] with a squadron of advanced fighter jets for his state, and whether residents near the airfield might fall victim to Washington’s system of political spoils.”

More: “A Globe examination of records, and interviews with Pentagon officials directly involved with the review, show the Air Force — in select-ing Vermont over competing locations — relied on inaccurate, excessively low estimates of the impact of the jet blast on the local population. One of the Pentagon officials said in an interview that the lengthy base-selection process was deliberately ‘fudged’ by military brass so that Leahy’s home state would win.”

On April 30, the USC Schwarzenegger Institute will hold an immigration-reform event to be attended by Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Michael Bennet (D-CO), as well as former Mexico President Vicente Fox and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Speaking of immigration, a new report by the Democratic-leaning group Business Forward notes that immigration reform for high-skilled workers is leading to lead to significant job creation.