Tom Cross (left) the House Republican leader in the Illinois legislature, filed a bill Wednesday to probe a "charitable interpretation" of state law that granted at least eight Chicago labor officials eligibility for both city pensions and union pensions covering the same work periods. A Chicago Tribune/WGN-TV investigation discovered that some of these union officials await millions of dollars more in retirement due to double and even triple dipping on pensions.

The political climate surrounding the GOP presidential nomination has changed dramatically over the course of the last few months. Months ago, when Texas Governor Rick Perry entered the race, he virtually skated into the frontrunner position. However, in the weeks that followed, and after a few failed debates, Perry has quickly fallen, and former Godfather Pizza CEO Herman Cain has emerged as a new top tier candidate. In fact, according to a new poll, Cain is the man to beat at the moment.

The announcement on Wednesday that the City Council of Pennsylvania's capital city, Harrisburg, voted to file for bankruptcy was the latest in a long series of federal mandates, bad luck, and poor planning that has plagued the city since the early 1970s.

When news broke yesterday that U.S. intelligence agencies thwarted an Iranian government-sponsored assassination plot against the Saudi Arabian ambassador, the blogosphere immediately leaped into a frenzy, sifting through the information released by the Justice Department. And a number of experts have come forward questioning the data provided by the federal government, suspicious that there might be some underlying intent at play.

On Wednesday, the trial of former Soviet military officer and arms dealer Viktor Bout, 45, opened in the U.S. district court in Manhattan with a strong assertions from Assistant Attorney Brendan McGuire.

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