letter to shareholders.

“I’ll venture a rare prediction,” he wrote in February. “BNSF will be a key asset for Berkshire and our country a century from now.”

Peter S. Goodman and Clifford Krauss contributed reporting.

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Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee Narrowly Wins Democratic Primary

McKee edged out former CVS executive Helena Foulkes, who saw a late surge in the polls and won an endorsement from The Boston Globe’s editorial board.

Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee eked out a victory in his Democratic primary on Tuesday, beating back strong challenges from a pair of opponents as he seeks his first full term in office.

McKee, the former lieutenant governor who became the state’s chief executive a year and a half ago when two-term Gov. Gina Raimondo was tapped as U.S. commerce secretary, will be the heavy favorite in the liberal state in November against Republican Ashley Kalus, a business owner and political novice.

McKee edged out former CVS executive Helena Foulkes, who saw a late surge in the polls and won a last-minute endorsement from The Boston Globe’s editorial board. Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea, who was seeking to become the first Latina governor in New England, finished a close third.

“I’m proud to be here,” the 71-year-old governor said in his victory speech. “Because Rhode Island is positioned in a way where we’ve never had this momentum before and we’re going to take full advantage of it.”

In an awkward moment, a phone was handed toward McKee during the speech. When he was told it was Foulkes, McKee said, “No, that’s not going to happen.” As the crowd chanted “four more years,” McKee said, “Hang up on them, hang up on them.”

Foulkes told her supporters she was unhappy McKee wouldn’t answer her call.

In the last primaries before the November general election, voters in Rhode Island were choosing nominees for statewide offices, U.S. House, the state Legislature and local positions. New Hampshire and Delaware also held primaries on Tuesday.

With his victory, McKee avoided becoming the first governor to lose his primary since 2018, when Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer narrowly lost the Republican nomination to Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who went on to lose the general election to Democrat Laura Kelly. Like McKee, Colyer took over when the sitting governor resigned for another job.

In his campaign, McKee touted his leadership in navigating the state’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic after he was sworn in as governor in March 2021. Foulkes said she would work to find new ways for companies to invest in Rhode Island and help existing companies find new markets. Gorbea argued the state needed better leadership on issues like housing, education and climate change.

Besides McKee, Foulkes and Gorbea, two other Democrats were also seeking the nomination: former Secretary of State Matt Brown, a progressive; and community activist Dr. Luis Daniel Muñoz.

Kalus easily defeated her lone Republican rival, Jonathan Riccitelli, whom the Globe reported had been arrested dozens of times since 2000 under a different name, on charges ranging from obstructing police officers to assault, according to court records.

Kalus, who owns a COVID-19 testing company that’s in a dispute with the state over a canceled contract, moved to Rhode Island last year from Illinois and previously worked for former Illinois Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner. She said Rhode Island needs a fighter like her, now more than ever, because every day gets harder for working families.

In another top race on Tuesday, voters were choosing nominees in the 2nd Congressional District for the seat being vacated by Democratic Rep. Jim Langevin, who is retiring after more than 20 years representing the district. Langevin was the first quadriplegic to serve in Congress.

State Treasurer Seth Magaziner, who was endorsed by Langevin, won the crowded Democratic primary. Republican Allan Fung, the former mayor of Cranston, was unopposed in his bid for the Republican nomination. National Republican leaders think this is their best chance to flip the seat in more than three decades. House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy visited Rhode Island in August to raise money for Fung.

Magaziner had been running for governor but switched races after Langevin’s announcement to try to keep the seat in Democratic control. Magaziner told supporters Tuesday night that the election is about values and preserving democracy for the next generation.

In the 1st Congressional District, Democratic U.S. Rep. David Cicilline will face Republican Allen Waters in November. Both were unopposed Tuesday. Cicilline is seeking his seventh term.

But the top race in Rhode Island on Tuesday was the Democratic gubernatorial primary. Both McKee and Gorbea benefited from the base of support and name recognition they have gotten since both were elected to statewide office in 2014. Foulkes proved to be an adept fundraiser and spent heavily on the race in her first bid for public office.

Late in the primary, Gorbea’s campaign aired an attack ad to criticize McKee over the awarding of a controversial state contract that the FBI is now investigating. It had to pull the ad because of errors in it, including featuring an article by a conservative commentator who was criticizing McKee on another issue. McKee’s campaign said the governor would continue to rise above dirty politics and false attacks, and show “leadership when it matters most.”

McKee was endorsed by a host of large unions, including those representing teachers, firefighters, building trades and auto workers. He highlighted his efforts to help the state’s economy recover from COVID-19, the gun control bills he signed into law and his efforts to protect access to abortion care.

He had a memorable ad of his own, called “motha,” featuring his 94-year-old mother. As he plays cards with her, he discusses the state’s economic recovery from COVID-19, eliminating the state’s car tax, creating affordable housing and passing gun safety laws to keep families safe.

“Not bad for a year and a half,” the governor says.

His mother, Willa, replies, “Not bad for a governor that lives with his motha.”

During his victory speech, McKee ticked off his accomplishments and asked the crowd, “Are you ready?” He said, “Not bad for 18 months.” Laughing, some of his supporters said Willa’s line, “Not bad for a governor that lives with his mother.”

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Stocks Edge Higher On Wall Street After Painful Sell-Off

The broader U.S. economy has been slowing, but consumers have remained resilient and the job market remains strong.

Stocks edged higher in morning trading on Wall Street Wednesday following the market’s worst day in two years on fears about higher interest rates and the recession they could create.

The S&P 500 rose 0.4% as of 10:13 a.m. Eastern. The benchmark index is coming off its biggest drop since June 2020, which ended a four-day winning streak.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 68 points, or 0.2%, to 31,169 and the Nasdaq rose 0.5%.

Energy stocks had some of the biggest gains as U.S. crude oil prices rose 2.2%. ExxonMobil rose 2.6%.

Bond yields remained relatively stable after leaping on Tuesday. The yield on the two-year Treasury rose to 3.79% from 3.75% late Tuesday, when it soared on expectations for more aggressive interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury, which helps dictate where mortgages and rates for other loans are heading, rose to 3.43% from 3.41%.

A report on inflation at the wholesale level showed prices are still rising rapidly, with pressures building underneath the surface, even if overall inflation slowed. It echoed a report on inflation at the consumer level Tuesday, which raised expectations for interest-rate hikes and triggered a rout for markets.

Traders now see a 1-in-3 chance the Fed may hike its benchmark rate by a full percentage point next week, quadruple the usual move. The central bank has already raised its benchmark interest rate four times this year, with the last two increases by three-quarters of a percentage point.

The Fed is taking the aggressive action on interest rates to try to cool the hottest inflation in four decades. Tuesday’s report on high prices jolted the market with signs that inflation is entering a more stubborn phase that could require an already resolute Fed to become more aggressive.

Wall Street is especially worried that the rate hikes could go too far in slowing the economy and send it into a recession. The Fed is trying to avoid that outcome, but the latest inflation reports reveal that is becoming a more difficult task.

The broader U.S. economy has been slowing, but consumers have remained resilient and the job market remains strong. Wall Street will get another update on inflation’s latest impact on spending when the government releases its retail sales report for August on Thursday.

The market is also monitoring U.S.-China tensions and war in Ukraine, while business and government officials are bracing for the possibility of a nationwide rail strike at the end of this week that could paralyze an already discombobulated supply chain.

The railroads have already started to curtail shipments of hazardous materials and have announced plans to stop hauling refrigerated products ahead of Friday’s strike deadline. Businesses that rely on Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific, BNSF, CSX, Kansas City Southern and other railroads to deliver their raw materials and finished products are planning for the worst.

Biden administration officials are scrambling to develop a plan to keep goods moving if the railroads shut down. The White House is also pressuring the two sides to settle their differences, and a growing number of business groups are lobbying Congress to be prepared to intervene and block a strike if they can’t reach an agreement.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Defending Super Bowl Champion Rams Open NFL Season Against The Bills

By Associated Press

and Newsy Staff
September 8, 2022

The Los Angeles Rams will kickoff the 2022 NFL Season against the Buffalo Bills Thursday night at 8:20 p.m. ET on NBC.

Matthew Stafford, Aaron Donald and the Los Angeles Rams will raise their Super Bowl banner Thursday night before kicking off the NFL season at home where they became the second straight team to hoist the Vince Lombardi trophy in their own stadium.

Somehow, they’re underdogs against the Buffalo Bills.

“It’s going to be fun,” Rams All-Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald said. “I’m pretty sure it’s going to be loud. … We definitely got to go out there and play a good team and try to find a way to win.”

The Bills are preseason favorites to win the Super Bowl after falling short in the AFC divisional round against the Kansas City Chiefs last January. Josh Allen leads a dynamic offense and the Bills had the league’s stingiest defense in 2021.

“Going to play the defending Super Bowl champs and watching them raise their banner, that’ll be an interesting feeling for sure,” Allen said. “And I’ve talked to a few people who have played and coached in this game before, and just really the unanimous thing that they were talking about was it feels like playoff atmosphere. So, we got to understand that going in, not get too high, not get too low. Understand the flow of the game and just try to put our best foot forward.”

Under Sean McVay, the Rams are 5-0 in season openers. Defending champions are 19-3 in Week 1 since 2000.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Abortion Driving More Women To Vote In Midterm Elections

Without any federal protection for reproductive rights, it’s votes for state and local officials that can have the biggest impact.

The topic of reproductive rights will be a defining issue in the 2022 midterms.  

A recent analysis from the Democratic-leaning TargetSmart found women have been registering to vote at a higher rate than men since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. 

“I’ve never seen anything quite as dramatic as the gender gaps we’re seeing in this voter registration,” said Tom Bonier, the CEO of TargetSmart. 

The increase was first noticed after the Kansas primary. Bonier said the difference is easiest to spot in states where abortion access is most at risk.   

“You’ve got these competitive states, like Wisconsin, like Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, that have a lot of very important statewide and down-ballot elections this year. And where choice is very much either literally on the ballot or potentially on the ballot,” Bonier said.  

It’s not unusual for women to vote at higher numbers than men. But this surge is happening at a time when experts wouldn’t usually expect it.  

“If those voters, those women voters get energized, get highly motivated, see that they really have a stake in the outcome of an election, their potential to be a force in elections goes up exponentially,” said Debbie Walsh, the director for the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University. 

In recent polls, more Americans have said abortion is an issue that will impact their vote.  

An August Wall Street Journal poll found registered voters said abortion was the second-most important issue, ranking only behind the economy. 

“It’s one thing when a right is denied. It’s another thing when a right is taken away. And I think you can’t overstate the impact of losing something that you thought you had, and the implications of that for the future,” said Walsh. 

This year’s primaries have shown that reproductive rights can bring voters to the polls. 

In the Kansas primary, where a state constitutional amendment on abortion was on the ballot, voter turnout was 48% — about double the typical primary turnout in Kansas.

“Particularly after the Kansas vote, Democratic and pro-choice candidates are seeing that this can be a motivator. This can increase turnout. This can energize voters to show up,” said Walsh.  

And without any current federal protection for reproductive rights, it’s votes for state and local officials that can have the biggest impact on a woman’s access to abortion.

Source: newsy.com

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New Data Shows How Americans Are Handling Inflation

As inflation rises, consumer confidence has risen, housing prices have slowed and there are now more job openings.

A slew of reports released Tuesday gave us an idea of how consumers are handling inflation.

Starting things off is the Case-Shiller Index on real estate, which indicated that single-family home prices are still high, but increasing at a slower rate.

Home prices in June were 18% higher than in the same month of 2021.

But the year-to-year gain was close to 20% in May.

Analysts say that cooling reflects the impact of rising interest rates.

In Las Vegas, broker Dawn Houlf says she’s felt a change in the last three months.

“There is going to be that negotiation between buyer and seller whereas three, four, five months ago it was all sellers and there were no negotiations, I have never seen it where people are waving appraisal contingencies, waiving appraisals, inspections, just to get into a house,” said Houlf. 

The new Consumer Confidence Index is showing an improvement.

The index came in at 103.2 in August. That’s up from 95.3 in July, and higher than what most economists expected at 98.

Experts point to lower gas prices as a key driver of that progress.

Meanwhile, the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey shows almost 1 million more job openings than expected in July —11.24 million total. That’s 200,000 more openings than the month before and now two openings for every job seeker.

In Kansas City, Waldo’s Pizza is struggling to fill positions.

“It’s just a continuing battle. We’ll go through 100 applications and get maybe four to work here. And we’re lucky if all four of them stay the month,” said Aaron Kanatzar, the owner of Waldo’s Pizza. 

The tight labor market means employers are still competing for workers, and will likely have to raise wages to attract talent. That can add inflationary pressure to the economy which is something the Fed doesn’t want to see right now.

Fed officials will meet again in three weeks and another interest rate hike to keep cooling prices is expected.

Source: newsy.com

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Chiefs Hall Of Fame Quarterback Len Dawson Dies At 87

Dawson’s family announced his death in a statement through KMBC, the Kansas City-based TV station where he worked as a broadcaster.

Hall of Fame quarterback Len Dawson, whose unmistakable swagger in helping the Kansas City Chiefs to their first Super Bowl title earned him the nickname “Lenny the Cool,” died Wednesday. He was 87.

Dawson’s family announced his death in a statement through KMBC, the Kansas City-based television station where he starred in his second career as a broadcaster. No cause was given, though Dawson had been in declining health for years.

AP / File

“With wife Linda at his side, it is with much sadness that we inform you of the passing of our beloved Len Dawson,” the family’s statement read. “He was a wonderful husband, father, brother and friend. Len was always grateful and many times overwhelmed by the countless bonds he made during his football and broadcast careers.”

The MVP of the Chiefs’ victory over the Vikings in January 1970, Dawson had entered hospice care on Aug. 12.

“He loved Kansas City,” his family said, “and no matter where his travels took him he could not wait to return home.”

Dawson personified the Chiefs almost from the start, when the suave standout from Purdue lost out on starting jobs in Pittsburgh and Cleveland and landed with the nascent franchise, then located in Dallas. There, Dawson reunited with Hank Stram, who had been an assistant with the Boilermakers, and together they forever changed the franchise.

The coach and quarterback won the AFL championship together in 1962, their first year together, and became bona fide stars the following year, when club founder Lamar Hunt moved the team to Kansas City and rechristened it the Chiefs.

AP

They proceeded to win two more AFL titles, one in 1966 when they lost to the Packers in the first Super Bowl, and the other in ’69, when Dawson came back from an injury to help beat the Vikings at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans.

“Looking back on my career, I’ve been blessed for what I had the opportunity to do,” Dawson told The Associated Press in 2017, shortly after he announced his retirement from his second career as a Hall of Fame broadcaster.

“I could not have accomplished so much without my teammates and colleagues, and I’m grateful for each of them.”

Dawson always remained a beloved figure in Kansas City, even though he cut back on public appearances several years ago when his health began to fail him. But he always had time for fans, whether it be a photograph or signature, the latter often on an iconic black-and-white photo from halftime of that first Super Bowl: the exhausted quarterback, white uniform caked with mud, sitting on a folding chair with a cigarette in his mouth and a bottle of Fresca at his feet.

It perfectly captured a time and place. And it perfectly captured a man who embodied poise and self-assurance.

“Next to my father, few people have had a more lasting impact on the Kansas City Chiefs than Len Dawson,” Chiefs owner Clark Hunt said a few years ago. “Over the course of a legendary career, first as a player and later as a broadcaster, Len has been a part of every major moment in franchise history.”

Dawson was born June 20, 1935, the ninth of 11 children who filled the house of James and Annie Dawson in the blue-collar manufacturing town of Alliance, Ohio. He was a three-sport athlete at Alliance High School, setting records in both football and basketball, and turned his success on the gridiron into a scholarship offer from Purdue.

There, Dawson led the NCAA in passing efficiency as a sophomore while also playing defense and kicking, and he helped lead a memorable upset of Notre Dame during that 1954 season. By the end of his college career, Dawson had thrown for more than 3,000 yards, despite playing in an era that favored ground-and-pound football.

Dawson was chosen by the Steelers in the first round of the 1957 draft, but he wound up riding the bench behind Earl Morrall as a rookie and then failed to beat out Bobby Layne for the starting job the following season. The Steelers ultimately traded him to the Browns, where Dawson was unable to beat out Milt Plum for the job and was released.

One of the great disappointments of Dawson’s career wound up being one of the best things to ever happen to him.

Robert Scott / AP

With newfound freedom to sign anywhere, Dawson jumped to the upstart AFL and the Texans, lured in part by the chance to play for one of his old coaches at Purdue. Stram was able to finally tap into his talent, helping Dawson to quickly become one of the league’s prolific passers as the Texans went 11-3 and won the first of three championships.

The second came in 1966, when Dawson led the Chiefs to an 11-2-1 record and a 31-7 blowout of the Bills in the AFL title game. That earned the Chiefs the chance to face the powerhouse Green Bay Packers — and coach Vince Lombardi — in the inaugural Super Bowl, where Dawson threw for 210 yards and a touchdown in a 35-10 defeat.

It was the 1969 season that proved to be the most memorable of Dawson’s career, though. He sustained a serious knee injury against the Patriots in Week 2, forcing him to miss the next five games, but went on a tear once he returned to the field. Dawson led the Chiefs to victories over the defending champion Jets and bitter rival Raiders to reach what would be the final Super Bowl before the AFL-NFL merger, where he threw for 142 yards and a score in a 23-7 triumph.

“It was overwhelming,” Dawson said afterward. “It’s just, you know how that relief comes with you know it’s over with, and we’ve been successful? That’s the feeling that I had when I came off the field.”

Dawson continued to play for six more seasons in Kansas City, setting many franchise records that stood until a youngster named Patrick Mahomes came along, before hanging up his helmet after the 1975 season.

Along the way, Dawson parlayed what began as a publicity stunt into a second career in broadcasting.

In 1966, then-Chiefs general manager Jack Steadman wanted to drum up support for the franchise in Kansas City and convinced Dawson to anchor a sports segment on the nightly news. His natural charisma and folksy style made Dawson a natural, he turned his attention to TV and radio on a full-time basis after his playing career had finished.

Dawson continued to work in local TV for several decades, adding game analysis for NBC from 1977-82 and hosting HBO’s iconic “Inside the NFL” from 1977-2001. He also served more than three decades on the Chiefs’ radio broadcast team.

After going into the Hall of Fame as a player in 1987, Dawson was inducted as a broadcaster in 2012.

“It’s been a true privilege and honor to have Len at the center of our broadcast team for the last 33 years,” said Dan Israel, the executive producer of the Chiefs’ radio network, upon his retirement a few years ago. “His contributions to not only this sport, but our industry, are incredibly profound.”

Dawson was married to his high school sweetheart, Jackie, from 1954 until her death in 1978, and together they had two children. His second wife, Linda, remained by his side even when Dawson was forced to enter hospice care.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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