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Week In The News: Sequester, Pope Out, Aid To Syrian Rebels

Sequester: day one. The Pope, now emeritus. US aid to Syrian rebels. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Free Syrian Army fighters, take their positions as they observe the Syrian army forces base of Wadi al-Deif, at the front line of Maarat al-Nuaman town, in Idlib province, Syria, Tuesday Feb. 26, 2013. (AP)

Free Syrian Army fighters, take their positions as they observe the Syrian army forces base of Wadi al-Deif, at the front line of Maarat al-Nuaman town, in Idlib province, Syria, Tuesday Feb. 26, 2013. (AP)

Cue the Jaws music.  It is sequester day.  The week the cuts are cast in stone.  Friday at midnight, barring a miracle. Ok, the world won’t fall apart tomorrow.  But nobody calls this good government.  And here we are.

In Rome, the Pope has left the building.  Choppered out of the Vatican.  There is no Pope.  In the Supreme Court, conservative justices express skepticism over the need for the Voting Rights Act.

In Syria, new US funds will flow to rebels, to balance Islamic radical strength.  Bradley Manning makes his plea.

This hour, On Point:  our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Nancy Cordes, congressional correspondent for CBS News. (@nancycordes)

Robert Costa, Washington editor for the National Review. (@robertcostanro)

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal “With mandatory across-the-board spending cuts set to begin Friday, the White House and congressional Republicans are poised to let the deadline pass, each calculating that their hand in negotiations only grows stronger if they scorn a quick compromise.”

Christian Science Monitor “In keeping with his shy and modest ways, there will be no public ceremony to mark the first papal resignation in six centuries and no solemn declaration ending his nearly eight-year reign at the head of the world’s largest church.”

Reuters “The United States will send non-lethal aid directly to Syrian rebels for the first time, Secretary of State John Kerry said on Thursday, disappointing opponents of President Bashar al-Assad who are clamoring for Western weapons.”

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ONPOINT
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No campaigners celebrate as results come in at the Scottish independence referendum count at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh,Scotland,Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. Scottish voters have rejected independence and decided that Scotland will remain part of the United Kingdom. The result announced early Friday was the one favored by Britain's political leaders, who had campaigned hard in recent weeks to convince Scottish voters to stay. It dashed many Scots' hopes of breaking free and building their own nation. (AP Photo/David Cheskin)

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