Saturday, April 18, 2015

California’s Measles Outbreak Is Over, But Vaccine Fight Continues

By Rong-Gong Lin II and Patrick McGreevy, Los Angeles Times (TNS)

LOS ANGELES — California officials on Friday declared the end of the Disneyland measles outbreak, but the political battle over immunization that it sparked continues to rage on.

In announcing that the health scare had passed, state medical authorities warned that California remains at high risk of another outbreak because immunization levels in some communities remain so low.

The state epidemiologist, Dr. Gil Chavez, said immunization rates in some schools are at 50 percent or lower, creating an ideal environment for the virus to spread quickly. A study published in JAMA Pediatrics last month calculated that the measles virus in California spread in areas where vaccination rates were less than 86 percent.…

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In New Hampshire, Christie Inches Closer To Saying He’ll Run For President

By Melissa Hayes, The Record (Hackensack, N.J.) (TNS)

LONDONDERRY, N.H. — He didn’t walk out from behind a large blue curtain to the sounds of Bruce Springsteen. He didn’t recite his “rules” for a town hall meeting. When it came time for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to remove his suit coat, he handed it to an aide, forgoing the signature toss.

And in a tightly packed room where aides couldn’t always reach the people asking questions, Christie did something he seldom, if ever, has done in New Jersey. He offered his own microphone.

The differences in stagecraft between Christie’s first town hall event in New Hampshire on Wednesday and the 134 he’s held so far in New Jersey — 135 counting Friday’s event in Hasbrouck Heights — were mostly subtle.…

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Parents Of Child Killed In Boston Bombings Ask To Drop Death Sentence

New York (AFP) — The parents of an eight-year-old boy killed in the Boston Marathon attacks have asked prosecutors to take the death penalty off the table for convicted bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, in a letter published Friday.

Bill and Denise Richard said instead they want to see Tsarnaev, 21, sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole.

A jury unanimously convicted Tsarnaev of carrying out the worst attack in the United States since the 9/11 hijackings and is set to deliver his sentence Tuesday.

The Muslim immigrant of Chechen descent, who became a US citizen in 2012, faces either life in prison or the death penalty for the April 15, 2013 attack.…

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