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Friday, 13 December 2013 14:18 Published in Local News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - State Sen. Ryan McKenna has been appointed director of the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.
Gov. Jay Nixon announced McKenna's appointment Friday and said it will take effect next Wednesday.
Like Nixon, McKenna is a Democrat from Jefferson County. McKenna served eight years in the House before winning election to the Senate in 2006. He would have been prohibited by term limits from seeking re-election next year.
The labor department has been under an acting director since March, when director Larry Rebman was appointed by Nixon to new job as an administrative judge. The department's former employment security director, Gracia Backer, also was replaced in March. She has alleged discrimination by Rebman, who has denied that.
Nixon on Friday appointed Nia Ray as the department's employment security director.
CHICAGO (AP) - Federal judges considering an appeal by imprisoned former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich have pressed lawyers to differentiate between run-of-the-mill politics and political corruption.
The U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals panel repeatedly pressed a prosecutor during Friday's hour-long hearing to explain how Blagojevich's actions were criminal.
Prosecutor Debra Bonamici explained that Blagojevich never sought favors to help his political causes but always to profit himself personal.
A jury convicted Blagojevich of wide-ranging charges, including for trying to profit from his power to name someone to President Barack Obama's old Senate seat.
The defense wants his convictions overturned, arguing he was engaging in legal "political horse trading."
Blagojevich is serving a 14-year prison sentence.
Friday, 13 December 2013 14:11 Published in National News
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Authorities say a Kansas man accused of planning to detonate a car bomb at the Wichita airport has been arrested.
U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said 58-year-old Terry Lee Loewen was arrested Friday morning at Mid-Continent regional airport.
Grissom said the man planned to drive a car that he believed was full of explosives into a terminal at the airport.
Loewen was charged with one count each of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to damage property and attempting to provide support to the terrorist group al-Qaida.
Investigators say Loewen is an avionics technician who lives in Wichita and works at the airport. He had been under investigation for about six months after he made statements about wanting to commit "violent jihad" against the U.S.