JIM LEHRER: And in the other news today, U.S. consumer confidence slipped in June after two months of gains. The business research group the Conference Board reported the drop, and that finding weighed down Wall Street. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 82 points to close at 8,447. The Nasdaq fell 9 points to close at 1,835.
The Food and Drug Administration may move to ban some painkillers that use acetaminophen. The goal is to prevent overdosing and liver failure. An agency committee today recommended banning Vicodin and Percocet. Both are widely prescribed. The committee also wants lower doses for Tylenol and related medicines sold over the counter.
The ousted president of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya, has announced he means to return and to regain the presidency. He told a news conference in New York today he wants to serve the last few months of his current term and then retire. He said he’ll fly back on Thursday, with several regional leaders joining him to ensure his safety.
MANUEL ZELAYA, president of Honduras (through translator): Today, the president of Argentina, Cristina Kirchner, said she would accompany me on the aircraft. The secretary general of the OAS, Miguel Insulza, will be with me. President Rafael Correa will accompany me on the airplane. So this is the struggle of all of us, a struggle for the respect for others’ rights, which is peace.
JIM LEHRER: Earlier, the exiled leader won a standing ovation at the U.N. General Assembly. The world body acknowledged him as the rightful president of Honduras.
But the country’s interim leaders warned he’ll be arrested and face 20 years in prison if he does return. They accused him of drug trafficking and violating the constitution.
A plane from Yemen carrying 153 people crashed into the Indian Ocean early today. The only reported survivor so far was a 14-year-old girl. The Airbus jet went down in bad weather off the island nation of Comoros, a former French colony. Most of the passengers were from there.
A search was underway for other survivors. Aviation officials had reported problems with the aircraft two years ago.
The state of California has won approval to impose tougher gas mileage standards on automakers; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency gave the go- ahead today. It means cars and trucks sold in California have to average more than 35 miles a gallon by 2016. That’s in line with President Obama’s plans to raise standards nationwide.