Top 5 Live-WURD Thursday May 28
1. Texas floods: Cleanup continues — and so does the search for bodies
At least 34 people — 14 in northern Mexico, 14 in Texas plus six in Oklahoma — have died in tornadoes and flooding from raging rivers. Another 10 people are missing.
“It’s just very heartbreaking, that we have this loss of life,” said Kristi Wyatt, city spokeswoman in San Marcos, Texas — one of the hardest hit areas. “Some of those people were in a home together, celebrating the holidays, and they were swept away in the stormwater. … It’s just a terrible situation.”
And it’s not over yet.
More rain is coming, with the National Weather Service noting a chance of storms for at least the next six days in Houston. Areas farther north are expected to get 2 to 4 inches through Sunday. And parts of eastern Oklahoma will get 4 to 6 inches of rain.
River levels remain high, and the ground is already saturated from the recent torrential rains.
2. Will black voters give Hillary Clinton a second chance?
Hillary Clinton’s road to redemption among black voters began yesterday in South Carolina.
Rita Outen remembers everything that happened here the last time Clinton made her case for the presidency, slogging through a bitter and racially charged primary contest against Barack Obama in 2008.
Standing in the aisle of Reid Chapel A.M.E. church one recent afternoon, the retired nurse ticked off the lowlights: the “Jesse Jackson thing,” when Bill Clinton seemed to dismiss Obama’s victory in the state by noting the reverend won South Carolina twice without making it to the White House. And the time when Hillary Clinton accused Obama of working closely with a slumlord.
“There was also that fairy tale comment,” Outen said, recalling yet another Bill Clinton gaffe from the campaign that was interpreted as an effort to diminish Obama.
Obama routed Clinton in the 2008 primary, when she won just one of South Carolina’s 46 counties — a drubbing that sparked fears of a permanently fractured party. It left many African-Americans feeling disenchanted about the Clintons.
3. Rick Santorum Announces New Presidential Bid, and New Focus on Middle Class
Rick Santorum, the runner-up in the Republican nomination race four years ago, announced his second presidential bid on Wednesday, pledging to restore a middle class “hollowed out” by government policies.
A former United States senator from rural western Pennsylvania, he appealed primarily to social
conservatives four years ago. But he has donned a new mantle of economic populism, one he calls “blue-collar conservatism.”
“Working families don’t need another president tied to big government or big money,” he said, criticizing Hillary Rodham Clinton and “big business” for pro-immigration policies he said had undercut American workers.
Santorum, 57, was the surprise winner of the Iowa caucuses in 2012, thanks to evangelical Christian voters, and he went on to win 10 other states, dragging out Mitt Romney’s quest for the nomination.
4. Tracy Morgan settles with Walmart over car crash
Comedian Tracy Morgan has settled with Walmart for an undisclosed amount over the deadly car crash that left him seriously injured.
“Walmart took full responsibility for the accident, which we greatly appreciate,” said Morgan’s attorney Benedict Morelli in a statement.
The collision killed Morgan’s friend and fellow comedian James McNair. His family settled with Walmart earlier this year, also for an undisclosed amount.
The Walmart truck was traveling 20 mph over the speed limit and its driver Kevin Roper was almost at his drive time limit, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. Officials say Roper had been awake for more than 24 consecutive hours before the crash.
5. Philadelphia School District employee indicted for allegedly steering contracts to family, friends
A grand jury has approved charges against a Philadelphia School District employee for allegedly steering $900,000 in contracts to her friends and family.
The grand jury has recommended charging Priscilla Wright, a Manager of Small Business Development, with conflict of interest and perjury.
District Attorney Seth Williams alleges that in March of 2013, when the school district was in the process of closing 23 schools, Wright used her position to hire friends and family as vendors to move school property to other locations across the district.
Williams says, “Priscilla Wright used her employment at the School
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Solomon Jones is an Essence bestselling author and award-winning columnist. He is the creator and editor of Solomonjones.com and morning host on 900 am WURD radio. Click here to learn more about Solomon