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Ten years ago: Democrat John Kerry defeated John Edwards by large margins in Utah and Idaho, and also won in Hawaii, where Edwards ran third behind Dennis Kucinich. President George W. Bush urged approval of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages. A 6.5-magnitude earthquake devastated an isolated region of northern Morocco, killing more than 600 people. Character actor John Randolph died in Hollywood at age 88.
Five years ago: In the first prime-time speech of his term, President Barack Obama appeared before Congress to sketch an agenda that began with jobs, then broadened quickly to include a stable credit system, better schools, health care reform, reliable domestic sources of energy and an end to the war in Iraq. Earlier in the day, President Obama held an 80-minute private talk with Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso.
One year ago: Pope Benedict XVI bestowed his final Sunday blessing of his pontificate on a cheering crowd in St. Peter's Square. At the Academy Awards, "Argo" won best picture while Ang Lee was named best director for "Life of Pi"; Daniel Day-Lewis won best actor for "Lincoln" while Jennifer Lawrence received the best actress award for "Silver Linings Playbook." Jimmie Johnson won his second Daytona 500, beating his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr., who made a late move to finish second. Danica Patrick, the first woman to win the pole, finished eighth.
Today's Birthdays: Actor Abe Vigoda is 93. Actor Steven Hill is 92. Actress Emmanuelle Riva is 87. Actor-singer Dominic Chianese (kee-uh-NAY'-see) is 83. Movie composer Michel Legrand is 82. Opera singer-director Renata Scotto is 80. Former Sen. Joseph Lieberman, I-Conn., is 72. Actor Barry Bostwick is 69. Actor Edward James Olmos is 67. Singer-writer-producer Rupert Holmes is 67. Rock singer-musician George Thorogood is 64. Actress Debra Jo Rupp is 63. Actress Helen Shaver is 63. News anchor Paula Zahn is 58. Baseball Hall of Famer Eddie Murray is 58. Country singer Sammy Kershaw is 56. Actor Mark Moses is 56. Singer Michelle Shocked is 52. Movie director Todd Field is 50. Actor Billy Zane is 48. Actress Bonnie Somerville is 40. Rhythm-and-blues singer Brandon Brown (Mista) is 31. Rock musician Matt McGinley (Gym Class Heroes) is 31. Actor Wilson Bethel is 30.
Thought for Today: "It is the individual who is not interested in his fellow men who has the greatest difficulties in life and provides the greatest injury to others. It is from among such individuals that all human failures spring." — Alfred Adler, Austrian psychoanalyst (1870-1937).
(Above Advance for Use Monday, Feb. 24)
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