A cornerstone of U.S. politics since the 1970s, public funding of
presidential campaigns may soon go the way of other relics of the era
like long sideburns and lava lamps. Neither President Barack Obama nor
any of the leading 2012 Republican contenders is expected to accept
federal matching funds and the limits they impose.
Returning home to some messy politics, President Barack Obama is
confronting a battery of challenges, from a spending standoff that
threatens to shut down the government to congressional angst over the
U.S.-led attacks on Libya. Foreign crises rage across Africa and the
Middle East, and Americans still want the economy to improve more
The NAACP's newly revived Worcester chapter elected a 28-year-old openly
gay black man as its president this month. In New Jersey, a branch of
the organization outside Atlantic City chose a Honduran immigrant to
lead it last year. And in Mississippi, the Jackson State University
chapter recently turned to a 30-something white man.
Hammered by the auto industry's slump, Detroit saw its population
plummet 25 percent over the past decade, according to census numbers
released Tuesday that reflect the severity of an economic downturn in
the only state where overall population declined.