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Conn. governor has surgery

Connecticut Gov. M. Jodi Rell underwent breast cancer surgery yesterday after doctors discovered the disease in its early stages, the governor's office said. The governor was recovering last night after being in surgery for much of the afternoon. [Page 3a]

Storm snarls post-holiday travel

A storm that dumped freezing rain and as much as 18 inches of snow on the East Coast spoiled post-holiday travel yesterday, stranding hundreds of drivers and reducing Boston's Logan Airport to a single major runway. [Page 3a]


Tsunamis' death toll rises

Desperate searches continued for thousands of missing people yesterday as the death toll climbed past 22,000 and fears of an epidemic grew a day after a gigantic undersea earthquake sent tsunamis crashing into the shorelines of nearly a dozen nations. [Page 1a]

Yushchenko faces challenges

Viktor Yushchenko, the apparent winner of Ukraine's presidential runoff with Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, has survived a government-rigged election, months of exhausting campaigning, personal attacks by his opponent and an apparent assassination attempt with poison. If he is confirmed as president, he'll face severe challenges in office. [Page 1a]

Events cloud Iraqi elections

In separate events yesterday that clouded prospects for next month's Iraqi elections, a car bomber killed 15 people in an attack against the main Shiite Muslim party. The most prominent Sunni Muslim party also said it was dropping out of the race. Meanwhile, the Arabic Al-Jazeera satellite television broadcast an audiotape purportedly from al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in which he called on Iraqis to boycott the election. [Page 1a]


Special session opens today

A special session of the General Assembly opens today with the House of Delegates and Senate debating their versions of medical malpractice reform plans, despite the governor's warning yesterday that major deviations from the legislation he released last week were unacceptable. [Page 1a]

Arson suspect on home detention

A second suspect in the arson fires that caused $10 million in damage to a Charles County housing development was ordered released to home detention yesterday. Michael M. Everhart, 20, of Waldorf must wear an electronic monitoring bracelet and will not be allowed to leave his parents' home without permission from authorities. Four suspects remain in custody. [Page 1b]

Towson U. project approved

A project designed to bring the vitality of Towson University into the downtown business district was granted preliminary but expedited approval from Baltimore County officials yesterday. [Page 1b]


Ponson to face prosecutor today

Sidney Ponson and his attorney will make an appearance before the public prosecutor in Aruba today in relation to a fight on Christmas Day that allegedly caused injuries to a local judge and led to the Orioles pitcher's detainment by police. [Page 1c]

Rams win, stay in playoff race

Rookie Steven Jackson's best NFL performance carried St. Louis to a 20-7 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles that kept the Rams in the NFC playoff race. Jackson rushed for 148 yards and a touchdown, but he also limped off the field with a bruised right knee. The Eagles, now 13-2, played it safe, resting several injured regulars. [Page 3c]

Milton, Reds agree to contract

Free-agent pitcher Eric Milton agreed to a three-year, $25.5 million deal with the Cincinnati Reds. Milton, 29, a University of Maryland alumnus, was 14-6 with a 4.75 ERA last season with the Philadelphia Phillies. [Page 6c]


Retailers cash in on late shoppers

Last-minute shoppers may have helped retailers save a holiday shopping season that got off to a sluggish start as they crammed stores the week before Christmas and continued their buying frenzy Sunday. Many stores won't release final sales numbers until next week, but early indications are that retailers will meet their goals thanks to the late surge.[Page 1d]

Towson doctor is an activist

Towson obstetrician Carol Ritter spent two decades delivering babies, earning a reputation as one of Baltimore's top female doctors. Then she was sued three times in 10 months. Now she is one of Maryland's most visible physician activists, testifying at hearings and speaking at rallies. Today, she plans attend the special legislative session on medical malpractice reform, where she expects to film the final shots of a documentary in which she is the producer and a central character. [Page 1d]


Exhibit pinpoints letter writing

Letterwriting in Renaissance England, an exhibit at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, makes the point that to do it right, one needed a sharp quill, an imaginative approach to spelling and a keen awareness of one's station in life in relation to the person to whom the letter was written. [Page 1e]

An arthouse movie night at home

A former movie producer, Larry Meistrich, has founded Film Movement, which will mail DVDs of arthouse movies - still playing in theaters -to subscribers' front doors. [Page 1e]



Several Baltimore area charitable organizations are at the center of relief efforts for the tsunami victims. For links to these groups and others, plus developing coverage of the disaster, go to www.baltimoresun.com/tsunami


For coverage of the special legislative session on medical malpractice and to read Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.'s reform bill, go to www.baltimoresun.com/malpractice


"I am an obstetrician. I have a skill to serve women. But, I feel very restricted in Maryland." Carol Ritter, Towson obstetrician who is doing a documentary to call attention to medical malpractice reform. (Article, Page 1D)














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