In other news Thursday, Senate Democrats rejected a key Republican amendment to the financial reform bill aimed at the Consumer Financial Protection Agency. Also, Nigeria's acting head of government officially became president of Africa's most populous nation following the death of his predecessor.
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Democrats in the U.S. Senate rejected a key amendment to the financial reform bill today. Republicans said a proposed consumer financial protection agency would have too much power over banking. Instead, they proposed reining in that power and making new rules subject to review. Democrats and President Obama said that would have gutted consumer protections. The amendment lost 61-38.
Nigeria's acting head of government officially became president today of Africa's most populous nation. Goodluck Jonathan was sworn into office a day after his predecessor, Umaru Yar'Adua, died from a lengthy illness. Jonathan promised to work for peace and electoral reform. One challenge will be stabilizing the Niger Delta. Militants there have repeatedly disrupted oil production.
Russian special forces today freed an oil tanker hijacked by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean. The vessel, named Moscow University, had been seized on Wednesday, along with 23 Russian crew members. It carried a cargo worth $52 million. Russian force — Russian forces killed one of the pirates in the rescue operation. Ten more were captured.
In India, the only surviving gunman from the attacks on Mumbai in 2008 was sentenced to be hanged. Mohammed Ajmal Kasab is the Pakistani man caught on camera storming a train station during the Mumbai assault — 166 people died in the three-day siege. Luxury hotels, a train station, and a Jewish center were the targets. Kasab can still appeal his sentence and apply for clemency.
Those are some of the day's main stories. I will be back at the end of the program with a preview of what you will find tonight on the "NewsHour"'s Web site — but, for now, back to Judy.