News Wrap: Obamas release federal tax returns

In our news wrap Friday, the Obamas released their federal tax returns for the past year, revealing that they paid $81,000 in taxes on an income of $436,000, and donated 15 percent of what they made to charity. Also, Brazilian lawmakers began debates over whether to impeach President Dilma Rousseff, whose high-profile corruption allegations have all but paralyzed the nation.

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    Good evening. I'm Judy Woodruff.

    On the "NewsHour" tonight: A Greek island that has welcomed thousands of migrants prepares to welcome the pope. But some question whether his trip will do any good.

    PANAYOTIS TSAGARIS, General Secretary, Panhellenic Union of Theologians (through interpreter): We consider that the pope's visit is little more than a public relations exercise, which will not provide any real solution to the refugee problem facing not only my island and country, but also extending to Europe.


    And it's Friday. Mark Shields and David Brooks are here to analyze last night's fiery Democratic debate, as is the chairman of the Republican National Committee, Reince Priebus, to discuss the strains in the GOP.

  • Then:

    Violinist Rachel Barton Pine takes classical music to unexpected places and people.

  • RACHEL BARTON PINE, Violinist:

    If we only played for the converted, we would be not honoring our gifts to the fullest extent.


    All that and more on tonight's "PBS NewsHour."



    In the day's other news, President and Mrs. Obama released their federal tax return for this past year. They paid $81,000 in taxes on income of $436,000. The couple donated 15 percent of what they made to charity.

    Lawmakers in Brazil began debate today on whether to impeach President Dilma Rousseff. She's accused of corruption in a political drama that's all but paralyzed the country. Impeachment proponents argued today that Rousseff's political maneuvering has led to Brazil's high inflation and currency devaluations.

    MIGUEL REALE JUNIOR, Author of Impeachment Legislation (through interpreter): Which is the most serious crime, a crime where a president puts in her pocket a sum of money, on that president which, due to the hunger for power, in search of maintaining power, sees no limits in destroying the Brazilian economy?


    The impeachment charges allege that Rousseff doctored her government's financial accounting to win public support. But defenders, including former President Lula da Silva, insisted today she has done nothing wrong.

  • LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA, Former President, Brazil (through interpreter):

    I am convinced that the impeachment will not be approved. To topple a government that was democratically elected without any proof of any fiscal crime is not going to fix anything. All it will do is make the crisis even worse. Nobody will be able to govern a country with 200 million people without being legitimized by the popular vote.


    The house vote there is slated for Sunday. If it passes, the Brazilian senate would decide whether to hold a trial of Rousseff.

    North Korea tried today to launch a mid-range missile, one with a capacity to reach U.S. bases in Japan and Guam, but it blew up. The Pentagon called it a catastrophic failure. The missile test came as the North celebrated the birthday of the late Kim Il-Sung, founder of the communist state. His grandson, Kim Jong-un, is the current leader of North Korea.

    A powerful new earthquake has hit Southern Japan, on the heels of one that killed nine people Thursday night. There were no immediate reports of casualties this time. NHK television showed the moment the shaking began, early Saturday morning, and triggered a tsunami advisory. The alert was later lifted, but the quake did leave collapsed buildings and cracked roads.

    One hundred and fifty countries geared up today for a final push to eliminate polio around the world. The effort begins Sunday, and the World Health Organization says it is possible to stop all transmission of the crippling disease within a year. To do that, the campaign will target the last few areas of risk.

    MICHEL ZAFFRAN, Director of Polio Eradication, World Health Organization: The virus travels without any barrier, so if we do not eradicate the virus, if we don't get rid of it, we will quite rapidly go back to the situation we had before we started the eradication program. And we could have hundreds of thousands of cases of the polio disease around the world.


    There have been only 12 cases of polio reported worldwide this year, in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Islamist militants there have attacked immunization teams, accusing them of being Western spies.

    Back in this country, the governor of Mississippi signed a law permitting guns in churches. A holstered gun sat on top of a Bible as Governor Phil Bryant held the signing ceremony. Designated church members may be trained to provide armed security for their congregations.

    President Obama announced today that he will support giving cable TV customers more choices on cable boxes. As it is, most people lease the boxes from a cable company. The Federal Communications Commission wants to let them buy elsewhere and possibly get a better price. The president also today ordered up a report on increasing competition in the industry.

    On Wall Street today, the Dow Jones industrial average lost about 29 points to close at 17897. The Nasdaq fell seven, and the S&P 500 slid two. For the week, all three indexes added nearly 2 percent.

    And it is must-see TV in Norway for those seeking relief from fast-paced daily life. On May 20, public broadcaster NRK will televise the world's strongest tidal current for 12 hours live and uninterrupted. It is a strait just north of the Arctic Circle where seawater flows at 25 miles an hour. Previous shows included footage of a train ride, a canal cruise and a knitting tutorial, and all were viewer hits.

    Maybe we should try those in the United States.

    Still to come on the "NewsHour": Microsoft's president explains why his company is suing the U.S. government; GOP Chair Reince Priebus on the rules for selecting a presidential nominee; Mark Shields and David Brooks take on the week's news; a preview of the pope's visit to a refuge camp in Greece — can he make a difference?; and how violinist Rachel Barton Pine became an evangelist for classical music.

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