September 5, 2003 – News at a glance

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Democrats debate in New Mexico
Howard Dean took criticism on his trade policies and health care plan Thursday night in the Democratic presidential debate held in Albuquerque, New Mexico. But Dean’s rivals for the nomination were mostly subdued in their criticism of the former Vermont governor, who is now considered a frontrunner the race. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Interview: Rutland’s biggest pumpkin
Mitch Wertlieb talks with Peggy Stattel, a master gardener and judge of the pumpkin contest at the Vermont State Fair in Rutland. (Listen to the interview online.) (VPR)

Interview: Democratic candidates prepare for debate
The Democratic candidates for president will meet in their second Thursday night in New Mexico. VPR’s John Dillon reports on expectations for the debate and candidate Howard Dean’s status as a frontrunner in the race. (Listen to the interview online.) (VPR)

Governor announces heroin task force
Governor Jim Douglas has announced the formation of a special undercover heroin task force to crack down on drug dealers in the state. Public Safety Commissioner Kerry Sleeper says the task force is needed because heroin is a major problem in every region of Vermont. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Physician-assisted suicide
The Vermont Medical Society is beginning a series of forums this week to give doctors a chance to discuss physician assisted suicide. This fall, the society will consider changes to its current policy on assisted suicide legislation. Lawmakers plan to consider a Death with Dignity bill when they convene in January. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

New Supreme Court justice soon
Governor Jim Douglas says he hopes to fill a vacancy on the Vermont Supreme Court in the near future. Douglas has received a second list of potential nominees from the state’s Judicial Nominating Board. (VPR)

Estrada withdraws from consideration
Vermont U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy says President Bush has no one but himself to blame for the impasse over the nomination of Miguel Estrada to a federal appeals court post. Bush is blasting Senate Democrats for what he calls the “disgraceful treatment” of Estrada. (AP)

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