Below is an overview of Obama’s top 14 selections to date. When considering their collective histories, a trend becomes clear, proving that the more things change under Obama, the more they stay the same.
A divided Supreme Court ruled Monday that smokers can sue tobacco companies in state court for making fraudulent claims.
The surprising 5-4 ruling was a victory for the court's liberals, who in recent years have seen conservatives systematically curtail courtroom access. The ruling also drove down tobacco company stocks, on the prospect that multibillion-dollar lawsuits seeking class-action status may proliferate.
Iraqis and other Arabs erupted in glee Monday at the shoe attack on George W. Bush. Far from a joke, many in the Mideast saw the act by an Iraqi journalist as heroic, expressing the deep, personal contempt many feel for the American leader they blame for years of bloodshed, chaos and the suffering of civilians.
Images of Bush ducking the fast-flying shoes at a Baghdad press conference, aired repeatedly on Arab satellite TV networks, were cathartic for many in the Middle East, who have for years felt their own leaders kowtow to the American president.
Three men who claim they were abused by Catholic clergy in America have succeeded in naming the Vatican as sole defendant in a lawsuit and are hoping to force Pope Benedict XVI to give evidence in the case.
The 6th US circuit court of appeal recently ruled that although the Holy See, as a sovereign state, was immune from most lawsuits, the plaintiffs could proceed with their argument that its officials were involved in a deliberate effort to cover up evidence of sexual abuse by American priests.
Their case centres on a 1962 directive from the Vatican telling church officials to hide sex abuse complaints against clergy.
An Iraqi television station on Monday demanded the immediate release of one of its journalists who caused a furore when he hurled shoes at visiting US President George W. Bush.
Muntazer al-Zaidi jumped up as Bush was holding a press conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Sunday, shouted "It is the farewell kiss, you dog" and threw two shoes at the US leader.
An alleged $50 billion fraud by Wall Street financier Bernard Madoff has caused deep ripples in the Jewish philanthropic world, forcing the closure of two prominent U.S.-based charities and threatening the financial lifeline of a slew of other groups.
The huge alleged fraud - possibly the largest in history - has reached Israel, too. Among those invested in Madoff's funds and Ponzi scheme are an impressive list of Israeli insurance companies: Harel, Clal and the Phoenix.
Congress wanted to guarantee that the $700 billion financial bailout would limit the eye-popping pay of Wall Street executives, so lawmakers included a mechanism for reviewing executive compensation and penalizing firms that break the rules.
But at the last minute, the Bush administration insisted on a one-sentence change to the provision.
A surprise visit by US President George Bush to Iraq has been overshadowed by an incident in which two shoes were thrown at him during a news conference.
An Iraqi journalist was wrestled to the floor by security guards after he called Mr Bush "a dog" and threw his footwear, just missing the president.
Israel has proposed annexing 6.8 per cent of the illegally occupied West Bank, the chief Palestinian negotiator has said in his first detailed comments about the stalled US-backed negotiations.
Israel proposed a swap of some of its own territory in return for the annexed area but the Israeli land was not an equal trade in size and quality, Ahmed Qurei said, adding that the Palestinians rejected the offer.
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