News in Brief: GOP House Candidate Claims Muslims Want “Victory Mosque” Near Ground Zero, and More

GOP House Candidate Claims Muslims Want “Victory Mosque” Near Ground Zero

The Hill reports that a Republican House candidate’s newest ad calls a controversial mosque and Islamic cultural center near ground zero a “victory mosque.” “After the Muslims conquered Jerusalem and Cordoba and Constantinople, they built victory mosques,” the narrator says. “And now, they want to build a mosque by ground zero.” The ad is run by Republican Renee Ellmers, who is challenging seven-term Rep. Bob Etheridge (D-North Carolina). While her campaign expects to face an uphill battle against Etheridge, Ellmers touts the backing of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Supreme Court Denies Mentally Ill Woman’s Stay of Execution

The New York Times reports that a Virginia woman’s stay of execution has been denied by the Supreme Court in a 7-2 vote. Teresa Lewis of Virginia is scheduled on Thursday night to be the first woman executed in the United States since 2005 and the first in Virginia since 1912. While Lewis’s lawyers stated that her 72 IQ shows she is borderline retarded and evidence against her has been “bungled,” many courts have continually shot down stays of her execution. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell called her double homicide murder of her husband and his son “heinous crimes.”

TARP Head Resigning, Touts Success of Returning Majority of Taxpayer Money

Herb Allison, head of the controversial Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, is resigning, Talking Points Memo reports. He said that the bank bailout fund has played its role “in achieving its goal of stabilizing the nation’s financial system and laying the groundwork for an economic recovery” and that he believes he “has accomplished a great deal.”

He will be replaced on an interim basis “by Tim Massad, the financial stability office’s chief counsel,” Bloomberg reports. On the heels of this announcement and that White House’s National Economic Council chief Larry Summers is leaving, Treasury Secretary Geithner defended the program on Wednesday, stating that taxpayers will get the majority of their money back.

Iran Attack Kills Ten, Blamed on Kurdish Separatists

In Mahabad, Iran, an attack on a parade killed ten people and injured 57, the AP reports. The parade in Mahabad, commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Iraq-Iran War, put it within close proximity to Iraq and Turkey and thus made it a prime target by suspected Kurdish separatists, said one state official. Mahabad, once the capital of the self-proclaimed republic of Kurdistan in Iran, was recaptured by Iranian forces in 1946.