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Thumbs up: Coal plant to shut down

Hoosiers living near the Illinois border can breathe a bit easier. Chicago Tribune reported Thursday that State Line Power Station, a coal-fired plant that's been clogging the air around Hammond, Ind., since the 1920s, is slated to close as early as next year. The decision falls in line with a recent trend among utility leadership across the country. It's a promising step toward embracing cleaner energy sources like wind farms and natural gas, a move President Obama endorsed in his speech Friday at Allison Transmission. Let's just hope Gov. Daniels or his predecessor doesn't try to fill the void with so-called "clean coal."

Thumbs up: A healthy dose of common sense

Striking out against WellPoint/Anthem, Hoosiers for a Commonsense Health Plan is hosting a rally at City Market on Tuesday, May 17, 11:30 a.m. — an afterparty to the 8 a.m. protest planned for that morning outside of the shareholders meeting at the Hilton. Donna Smith, featured in Michael Moore's SiCKO, is scheduled to speak. Tuesday's organizers hope to bring attention to the questionable business practices and outright corruption they allege are rampant in profit-driven insurance companies. It's no secret our health care system is in need of reform; cheers to HCHP for sounding the alarm.

Thumbs down: Gov'na Pence?

Indiana can't catch a break. U.S. Rep. Mike Pence announced his gubernatorial intentions in an online video last Thursday. The congressman, who describes himself as "a Christian, a conservative and a Republican, in that order," says he'll focus on maintaining traditional family values in addressing social issues. Why, oh why, couldn't Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly, who will instead seek Republican Richard Lugar's seat in the U.S. Senate, follow through on that rumored bid for governor? We tremble at the thought of ultra-conservative Pence gaining free reign over our fair state.

Thumbs up: Stop the Hate, Start the Healing

Roughly 60 undocumented youth and allies gathered at the Capitol Building downtown Monday afternoon for a town hall meeting, pleading with Gov. Daniels to veto pending immigration legislation. Organized by members of The Dream is Coming , students tried to emphasize SB 590's wasteful use of state resources in criminalizing families, and pointed out that HB 1402 would hurt Indiana universities by impeding undocumented students' pursuit of higher education. Five demonstrators were arrested. Here's hoping Daniels takes heed, especially if immigration watchdog Pence is next to take office.

Update: Just after press time, news broke that Daniels signed both HB 1402 and SB 590 into law. Further, the Associated Press reported this morning: "Federal authorities lifted detention orders Tuesday for five young illegal immigrants arrested during a protest at Gov. Mitch Daniels' office, and they apparently will not face deportation hearings."


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