The CNN Washington Bureau’s morning speed read of the top stories making news from around the country and the world. Click on the headlines for more.
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CNN: Senate to vote on GOP debt measure; Obama pushes compromise plan
The Senate is set to vote Friday on the "cut, cap and balance" deficit reduction plan backed by tea party conservatives but dismissed by President Barack Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said. This plan, which calls for cutting the nation's debt by about $3.7 trillion over the next 10 years, was passed by the Republican-led House of Representatives on Tuesday.
CNNMoney: Debt ceiling: House GOP gets lowdown on fallout
More than 40 House Republicans on Thursday met with a top official from Standard & Poor's and representatives of other Wall Street groups to hear what could trigger a downgrade of the U.S. credit rating. "It was a lively discussion," said the meeting's organizer, Rep. Nan Hayworth of New York, who characterized the information the lawmakers were given as "nonpartisan," "dispassionate" and "objective."
CNN: Official: Pentagon set to certify repeal of 'don't ask, don't tell'
The Pentagon is set to certify that the U.S. military is prepared to accept openly gay and lesbian service members, and doing so will not harm military readiness, a U.S. official told CNN on Thursday. According to the official, who spoke on condition of not being identified, an announcement of that certification - which is required to repeal the "don't ask, don't tell" policy - is likely to come Friday.
Wall Street Journal: Justice Department Prepares Subpoenas in News Corp. Inquiry
The U.S. Justice Department is preparing subpoenas as part of preliminary investigations into News Corp. relating to alleged foreign bribery and alleged hacking of voicemail of Sept. 11 victims, according to a government official.
CNN: Pawlenty hits Bachmann and Romney in single slam
On Thursday, Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty put a fresh twist on his recent tactic of calling out his GOP opponents – in this case lumping Mitt Romney and Michele Bachmann together in a single slam. The former Minnesota governor also talked about the political perils of chronically ranking "sixth or seventh place" in recent polls.
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CNN: Extreme heat settles over portions of East Coast
A heat wave blamed for as many as two dozen deaths settled over portions of the East Coast as the National Weather Service issued an extreme heat warning for much of the Mid-Atlantic, saying Friday would be the hottest day in the region. The highest heat index values - how hot it feels - could reach 115 degrees in some locations, the weather service said.
CNN: Authorities arrest dozens in 'surgical strike' against Mexican cartel
U.S. federal authorities arrested more than 70 people this week in the United States as part of what one official called a "successful, strategic and surgical strike" against a notoriously violent Mexico-based drug cartel.
CNN: Tears, congratulations as Atlantis lands, shuttle program ends
Soaring across the predawn haze, the space shuttle Atlantis glided back to Earth early Thursday - capping a 30-year program that saw hundreds of astronauts go into space. The landing at 5:57 a.m. ET went off without a hitch at Florida's Kennedy Space Center.
CNN: NFL owners agree to deal with players
National Football League owners approved a 10-year labor and revenue-sharing agreement with players, who late Thursday discussed key elements but did not vote on it. Owners, meeting in Atlanta, agreed by a 31-0 vote to end the current lockout. Team facilities could be open by Saturday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said, if players approve the deal.
New York Times: Debt Ceiling Uncertainty Puts States at Risk
States whose economies rely on the federal government — including Maryland and Virginia, home to many federal employees and contractors — are at the greatest risk if there is no agreement and Washington has to decide which payments to make and which to skip.
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CNN: Ex-News of the World editors call James Murdoch 'mistaken'
Two former top editors of News of the World have accused James Murdoch of having given "mistaken" evidence to a parliamentary committee about a settlement to Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers Association, the Guardian reported.
CNN: European leaders reach deal to resolve Greek debt crisis
European leaders agreed on Thursday to provide a second bailout package for Greece and drastically expand rescue funds to prevent financial crisis spreading through the eurozone. European Union president Herman Van Rompuy said the rescue deal would be financed by both the EU and the International Monetary Fund.
CNN: More killings in Syria's Homs, group says
Syrian government forces killed about 10 people Thursday in the besieged western city of Homs, according to a statement from the Local Coordination Committees of Syria, an affiliation of groups that organizes and reports on protests in Syria. In the Bab Sbaa neighborhood near the center of Homs, shooting continued for hours before tapering off, the statement said.
CNN: Amid famine, Somalis flock back to the war-torn city they fled
War forced tens of thousands of Somalis to flee their capital, Mogadishu. Famine is bringing them back. Hungry and sick Somalis are trekking from their homes in famine-struck southern areas in search of food, water and medicine. More than 50,000, by a July 18 United Nations count, have arrived in Mogadishu, a city destroyed by two decades of conflict.
CNN: Mexican attorney general shakes up her ranks
Less than four months in office, Mexico's attorney general has overseen the firing of 140 police officers and investigators, and has more than 280 others under investigation. …The shake-up at the attorney general's office, which plays a pivotal role in the country's fight against the drug cartels, is the most public show of transparency in recent history.
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CNNMoney: U.S. loses $1.3 billion in exiting Chrysler
U.S. taxpayers likely lost $1.3 billion in the government bailout of Chrysler, the Treasury Department announced Thursday. The government recently sold its remaining 6% stake in the company to Italian automaker Fiat. It wrapped up the 2009 bailout that was part of the Troubled Asset Relief Program six years early.
Wall Street Journal: Morgan Stanley Comes Up Golden
After a series of missteps, Morgan Stanley found its footing in the second quarter, generating its highest quarterly revenue since 2007 and overtaking rival Goldman Sachs Group in bond trading for the first time since the financial crisis.
Bloomberg: Apple Said to Consider Making Bid for Hulu
Apple Inc., with $76.2 billion in cash and securities on its books, is considering making a bid for the Hulu online video service, two people with knowledge of the auction said. …Hulu would give Apple a new subscription service and represent a possible challenge to Netflix Inc.
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