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Filed under: Uncategorized — Ryann Hayman @ 6:33 pm
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Fox411 columnist Roger Friedman is reporting that Oprah Winfrey, an outspoken supporter of Barack Obama, “accepted at least $5 million” for her girls school in South Africa from Harold Simmons.”       

       Simmons is described by Friedman as a “Dallas billionaire” and “a leading Republican donor and supporter of John McCain.”      

       “This past August it was revealed that Simmons was the single donor to a 527 committee called American Issues Project,” wrote Freidman in his Tuesday column. “Its only issue: to run ads linking Obama to William Ayers, the political activist who was once part of the Weather Underground. Simmons paid $2.9 million to try and make Ayers the Obama campaign’s ‘Swift Boat,’ an issue that might have sidelined permanently the Illinois senator’s chances and advance John McCain — Simmons’s candidate — to the White House.      

       “Nevertheless, Winfrey has cultivated her friendship with Simmons on many social fronts since 2001, resulting in his being second only to her in donating funds to her Leadership Academy in Johannesburg, South Africa.      

       “According to the 2006 federal tax filing for the Oprah Winfrey Operating Fund, Winfrey accepted a $1 million donation to the school from Simmons. That amount, The Dallas Morning News reported in 2007, was only part of a $5 million pledge to the Academy. Simmons is considered Dallas’s leading philanthropist to worthy causes. In this case, though, it might have been unnecessary, since Winfrey herself has donated over $60 million to the school.”      

       Continue reading Friedman’s column here 



Filed under: Entertainment — Ryann Hayman @ 11:42 am
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MTV.com points out that the theme music used to close speeches given Tuesday night by both President-elect Barack Obama and former GOP nominee John McCain were from films starring Oscar winner Denzel Washington.


      The Web site reported:


      McCain left the Arizona stage to part of Hans Zimmer’s score from “Crimson Tide.” The 1995 Tony Scott film focused on a career Navy man (Gene Hackman), labeled a maverick by some, who is stripped of his authority and ultimately beaten by a young black guy, somewhat new to the scene (Washington).

      Then there was Obama, who left the stage to the strings of Trevor Rabin’s score from “Remember the Titans.” The 2000 Disney/Bruckheimer joint? It followed an African-American coach who brought together whites and blacks to win a championship.



Filed under: General News — Ryann Hayman @ 11:50 am
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ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” ran taped interviews with presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain during halftime of last night’s matchup between the Washington Redskins and the Pittsburgh Steelers.      

       Below are some highlights from the separate conversations with ESPN’s Chris Berman:


On one thing you would change in sports:

• Obama: “I think it is about time that we had playoffs in college football. I’m fed up with these computer rankings and this and that and the other. Get eight teams – the top eight teams right at the end. You got a playoff. Decide on a National Champion.”

• McCain: “I’d take significant action to prevent the spread and use of performance-enhancing substances. I think it’s a game we’re going to be in for a long time. What I mean by that is there is somebody in a laboratory right now trying to develop some type of substance that can’t be detected and we’ve got to stay ahead of it. It’s not good for the athletes. It’s not good for the sports. It’s very bad for those who don’t do it and I think it can attack the very integrity of all sports going all the way down to high school.”


On what you learned about yourself over the campaign:

• Obama: “What I learned about that I think was positive was that I don’t get too high when things are going well and I don’t get too low when things are going tough. I think that has helped me and the organization stay steady.”


On the best piece of advice from the sports world:

• McCain: “I have to go all the way back to high school. I had a football coach who was a football star himself…The most important lesson he taught me was you’ve always got to do the honorable thing, even when nobody’s looking because maybe nobody will know, but you’ll know.”



Filed under: General News — Ryann Hayman @ 11:15 am
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On the eve of the presidential election, tonight’s Monday Night Football game on ESPn will originate from the nation’s capital when the Pittsburgh Steelers meet the Washington Redskins. 


      ESPN’s audience will hear from the candidates when Chris Berman interviews both major party presidential nominees, Republican Senator John McCain and Democratic Senator Barack Obama, during halftime.


      The candidates will be on the campaign trail and have agreed to participate one-on-one, pending last-minute schedule changes, via satellite with Berman from the ESPN studios in Bristol, Conn.  The conversations will be taped earlier in the day and will air at approximately 10:15 p.m. ET. 


      The Steelers-Redskins game will kickoff at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN and ESPN HD with the Spanish-language telecast on ESPN Deportes.


      “We worked with our partners at the NFL to schedule a Monday Night Football game in Washington on this special night, and this presents a unique opportunity for John McCain and Barack Obama to reflect upon the last few months and address a large primetime audience on the final day of the campaigns,” said Norby Williamson, ESPN executive vice president, production.



Filed under: General News — Ryann Hayman @ 11:10 am
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Democrat Barack Obama’s lead over Republican rival John McCain firmed marginally to 6 points with support for both candidates steady before Tuesday’s U.S. presidential election, according to a Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby poll released on Sunday.


     Obama leads McCain by 50 percent to 44 percent among likely voters in the three-day national tracking poll, up from a 5-point advantage on Saturday. The telephone poll has a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points.


     “There are two full days to go before Election Day and obviously anything can happen, but it is hard to see where McCain goes from here,” pollster John Zogby said.


     He said the polling data over the weekend showed that both candidates appeared to be consolidating support among their core supporters — women and independents for Obama, older voters and conservatives for McCain.


     National opinion polls all give the lead to Obama, who also appears to be outflanking McCain in a number of the battleground states that will end up deciding the election.


     The poll showed Obama well ahead among voters who had already participated in early balloting, leading McCain in this group by 56 percent to 39 percent.


     Women and independent voters, groups that are expected to play an important role in this election, continue to back Obama although his margin is not as wide as it was late last month.


     Obama enjoys an 8-point lead among women voters and a 10-point lead among independents.


     For MORE of this story, go here.

Sarah Palin


     *Meanwhile, Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin got “punked” over the weekend.     



     In an over-the-top French accent, a member of the Quebec comedy duo “The Masked Avengers,” famous for tricking celebrities and politicians including Sarkozy himself, asked if Palin would take him on a hunting trip by helicopter, and then in French said they could also go kill baby seals.



     An apparently oblivious Palin said she thought that would be fun.


     “We could have a lot of fun together as we’re getting work done,” she responded. “We could kill two birds with one stone that way.”


     The prankster also got Palin to reveal a potential ambition for the top job in Washington. Asked if she would like to eventually become president, the Alaska governor responded, “Well, maybe in eight years.”


     For MORE of this story, go here.


Watch/listen as Sarah Palin gets punked (via MSNBC):




Filed under: Entertainment — Ryann Hayman @ 2:40 pm
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Barack Obama supporter Ne-Yo says he was all too happy to be in the presence of Republican presidential nominee John McCain when both appeared last week on the “Late Show with David Letterman.” 


       “I had a big Barack Obama sign on the back of my jacket,” the singer-songwriter told the New York Daily News. “I’m sure he saw it, but I didn’t go over and introduce myself or anything. I have nothing to say to that guy.”


      As previously reported, Ne-Yo is set to star in, executive produce and write the soundtrack for Fox Atomic’s romantic feature “Venice Beach.”      

       The film centers on an 18-year-old Manhattan Beach woman who, after her talented older sister dies in a car accident, represses her own singing talent until she meets a gifted musician-singer (Ne-Yo) from Venice Beach. A budding romance between the two turns into a quest for musical careers, which meets resistance from his friends and her family.



Filed under: Entertainment — Ryann Hayman @ 1:49 pm
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       “Whether Obama’s president or McCain’s president, it’s still important for people to be just as passionate and just as involved in moving and shaping their communities,” he told E! Online at the SHIN restaurant grand opening. “I’m going to do that regardless of who is president. You don’t just bail the f*** out.”      

       He added, “This political cycle isn’t like Christmas. On Nov. 4, it isn’t like I got my presents, and now I’m not gonna pay attention anymore.”      

       So will the Black Eyed Peas frontman create more of his celeb-filled pro-Obama music videos, such as “Yes, We Can” and “We Are the Ones?”      

      “Not anytime soon. If I start making songs just like a factory, then they’re not the truth,” said the rapper. “You have to be inspired to do that kind of stuff, and when an inspiration calls, I’ll answer it and do it again.”