News Briefs – Dec. 6

By Nick Fiorillo

White House Shooting

Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez is the man charged with trying to assassinate President Barack Obama with an AK-47 assault rifle at the White House on Nov. 11. Police arrested Ortega on Nov. 15 in Pennsylvania. If convicted, he could receive life in prison. Ortega said President Obama “needed to be taken care of,” according to FBI special agent Chris Ormerod. Court documents showed that Ortega called Obama “the devil” and the “anti-Christ.” However, President Obama and the First Lady were in no harm when the shooting occurred. Both were out of the White House.

Gingrich soars

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich is one of the front-runners in the Republican presidential primary. According to a recent USA Today Gallup Poll of likely voters, Gingrich has 23 percent and Mitt Romney is close behind Gingrich with 21 percent. However, problems are already showing for Gingrich. He reportedly made $1.6 to $1.8 million from mortgage company Freddie Mac, a government-controlled company he heavily criticized Democrats for supporting. He made comments during the CNN national security debate on Nov. 23 that suggested a more moderate stance on some illegal immigrants, sparking criticism from the other Republican presidential candidates.

Pepper spraying at UC-Davis

The University of California-Davis is under fire for how university police controlled protesters on its campus. On Nov. 18, police pepper sprayed student protesters in the face at point-blank range. According to university officials, nine protesters were pepper sprayed and two protesters had to be hospitalized. The protesters were pepper sprayed because they refused to disperse after police told them. Two officers have been placed under administrative leave. The UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi called the video “chilling” and said, “I feel horrible for what happened Friday,” referring to the pepper spraying incident. Protesters and the school’s faculty association are calling for her resignation.