Noontime News is a snapshot of the news from the past 24 hours.  (More)

How Romney’s Voucher System Could Unravel Medicare

The premise of the Romney-Ryan plan to convert Medicare into a voucher system is that private insurance plans would compete with traditional government-run Medicare to drive down costs and improve care for seniors.

The Real Threat To The Economy Next Year Isn’t The Fiscal Cliff

No matter who wins the presidency in November, the government’s budget deficits will likely contract in a way that harms economic growth and employment in 2013.

Nine States; Near-Unlimited Cash; A Flurry Of Ads

Democrats and Republicans are on track to spend about $1 billion each on television advertising in the presidential race. Most of it is negative, and almost all of it is concentrated in nine battleground states.

New York Times blocked by China after report on wealth of Wen Jiabao’s family

China‘s foreign ministry has accused the New York Times of smearing the country by reporting that the premier Wen Jiabao‘s extended family has controlled assets worth at least $2.7bn (£1.67bn).

Barack Obama casts ballot in Chicago in push to secure early voters

Barack Obama became the first president to take advantage of early voting by casting his ballot in Chicago on Thursday, which he hopes will inject urgency into his campaign’s relentless push to lock up early voters, a major part of a strategy designed to deliver a second White House term.

Fighting ruptures ragged Syrian ceasefire

(Reuters) – Fighting erupted in a Damascus suburb and around an army base in northern Syria on Friday, opposition sources said, as a truce marking a Muslim holiday crumbled almost before it had begun.

Californians asked to end death penalty – to save money

(Reuters) – Convicted murderer Douglas Stankewitz, who has spent more than three decades on death row, isn’t pinning his hopes of survival on a referendum next month to abolish the death penalty in California – he knows that even if voters reject the measure, he may never be executed.

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