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Democrats set Jan. 3 caucus

MONDAY, OCT. 29, 2007

Iowa Democrats voted Sunday to move their leadoff precinct caucuses to Jan. 3, the same date Republicans picked earlier this month, letting both parties continue the tradition of meeting on the same night.

The state’s precinct caucuses had been scheduled for Jan. 14, but the parties decided to move them up under pressure from other states rushing to the beginning of the primary calendar.

The move, confirmed by party spokesman Chris Allen, means the major remaining question about the calendar is the New Hampshire primary, originally scheduled for Jan. 22. New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner has said that he would schedule that primary no later than Jan. 8.


Alaskan elephant moving south

Alaska’s only elephant is getting a one-way ticket out of town.

After months of a tug-of-war between those wanting Maggie to stay and those advocating for a warmer climate where she could be in the company of other female elephants, the 25-year-old African elephant at The Alaska Zoo is heading to sunny California on Thursday.

Her new home will be at the Performing Animal Welfare Society in San Andreas.

There, Maggie – who now lives in an elephant house with concrete floors and has access to a small outside enclosure – will live with nine other elephants on 30 acres.

The move became reality after retired game show host Bob Barker promised to donate $750,000 for her care there.


School principal bans costumes

Call it the Misadventure of Captain Underpants and the Peeved Principal.

A Long Island high school has banned all Halloween costumes after three senior girls showed up last year dressed as the underwear- baring subject of a series of best-selling children’s books.

Long Beach High School Principal Nicholas Restivo, who sent the three seniors home to change last year, said the episode solidified his sense that the school’s costume tradition was disruptive.

For the Captain Underpants costumes, the three girls donned beige leotards and nude stockings under white briefs and red capes to portray the superhero. To Restivo, the appearance was that the girls were naked.


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