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Obama reprises State of the Union themes, praises Intel (access required)

With Intel’s Chandler factory serving as a backdrop and an example of the kinds of high-tech manufacturing jobs he wants to bring back to the United States, President Barack Obama reprised much of his State of the Union address in Arizona during a speech today.

Standing before thousands of cheering supporters and Intel employees, Obama praised the microprocessor manufacturer as the type of company that will help create an “America built to last” – the title and theme of his State of the Union address Tuesday night.

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Burges sworn in as newest senator (access required)

Won over by her legislative experience, Maricopa County’s supervisors today picked Rep. Judy Burges to replace former Sen. Scott Bundgaard.

Burges, who has been a lawmaker since 2005, became the Senate’s newest member later in the afternoon, when she took her oath of office and was promptly escorted to her new seat.

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No relief for hospitals in Brewer’s budget (access required)

With an uptick in state revenues, Gov. Jan Brewer is proposing to alleviate some of the pain the state’s Medicaid providers have been experiencing.

The governor wants to give a 3 percent rate increase to state health care providers, including physicians, behavioral health professionals and nursing facilities.

But one group that is among the worst hit by years of incessant budget cutting would be left out — hospitals.

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