The Wider World

Biden calls for triumph of liberty

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN (White House photo).

President Joe Biden condemned Russian President Vladimir Putin and the invasion of Ukraine during a visit Saturday to Poland.

Citing the human cost of the month-old war, Biden said of Putin, “For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power.” The president’s blunt words were “clarified” by the White House to say that Biden was not calling for a change now in Moscow.

According to the Associated Press, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov replied that “it’s not up to the president of the U.S. and not up to the Americans to decide who will remain in power in Russia.”

Biden cast the invasion as a contest “between liberty and repression, between a rules-based order and one governed by brute force,” reports The New York Times.

In a related development, The “liberation of Donbas” will now be the “core focus” of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Russian Defense Ministry announced on Friday, according to United Press International. Donbas is a province of eastern Ukraine where Russia has supported separatist forces. The announcement could signal admission that the invaders are stalemated in their attacks on major Ukrainian cities.

Congressman resigns after conviction

REP. JEFF FORTENBERRY

In the wake of his conviction for lying to federal authorities about an illegal campaign donation from a foreign country, Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Nebraska) announced Saturday he would resign from the House of Representatives effective March 31.

Fortenberry received a $30,000 donation from a Nigerian billionaire. It’s illegal for a candidate for federal office to take donations from a foreigner.

Despite the resignation, the House seat is likely to remain in Republican hands as the GOP has a large edge in registered voters.

Sports: Villanova knocks off Houston

One more spot in the NCAA Men’s Basketball FInal Four was filled Saturday as the Villanova Wildcats defeated the Houston Cougars 50-44 in a South Regional. In the other regional, Duke is leading Arkansas in the 45-33 at halftime of the West Regional game.

In the women’s tournament, Michigan defeated South Dakota 52-49 today. Connecticut bested Indiana 75-58 and North Carolina State won 66-63 over Notre Dame 66-63 in Sweet 16 play.

Weather: It’s back to the Sixties

The temperatures, not the decade. The forecast for the West Orange County area calls for daytime highs in the 60s all the way through Friday. Sunday should be 69 (58 overnight) under partly cloudy skies. Monday will see rain (a 98 percent chance) with a high of 64 (low of 53) with winds up to 15 miles an hour. Mostly sunny conditions should return on Tuesday with a high of 66 (54).

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