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The Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy meet Sunday in California for the first of two games in Major League Soccer’s Western Conference Finals.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this series is not the MLS Championship, but it might as well be.

Kyle Stokes / KPLU

In Washington, D.C., there’s a waiting period before members of Congress and their staffers can work as lobbyists.

And unlike Oregon and 31 other states, Washington state does not require a waiting or “cooling off” period to slow the revolving door. You can leave state service on a Friday and start lobbying on a Monday.

Anna King

The 104th anniversary of the Mexican Revolution drew hundreds of protestors outside the Mexican consulate in Seattle.

The demonstration called for answers in the disappearance of 43 Mexican students in September. Protestors also want the release of a Renton woman who has ties to the students. 

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Gov. Jay Inslee has challenged two Republican senators to "do more than just criticize and mischaracterize actions" being considered to reduce carbon pollution.

This January, Washington State University plans to ask lawmakers for permission to open a medical school in Spokane.

The question is whether the University of Washington, which currently runs the state's only medical school, will oppose that effort.

smithsonianjazz.org

Three groups with ties to the Hanford Nuclear Reservation announced Thursday they intend to sue the federal government and its contractor.

They say Hanford leaders aren’t doing enough to protect workers from harmful radioactive tank vapors.

smithsonianjazz.org

Employers added 5,600 more jobs in Washington state last month. But the statewide unemployment rate as reported by the state Wednesday rose by three-tenths of a point to 6.0 percent. 

BirdNote: The Eagle Eye

21 hours ago
Don Baccus

The eye of an eagle is one of the most sensitive of any animal, and may weigh more than the eagle's brain.

The secret to the exceptional vision lies in its retina. The density of rods and cones within a raptor's eye may be five times that of a human's.

As the Golden Eagle rides hot-air thermals high into the air, it can spot even the slightest movement of its favorite prey, a rabbit, over a mile away. Learn more about this far-seeing raptor at Cornell's AllAboutBirds.  

Tim Durkan

Thanksgiving week marks the opening of the holiday travel rush. And foolishly, Ed booked a flight to Michigan on the day before Thanksgiving.

“Don’t do that,” said KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley.

 

Workers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation have been complaining of vapors from radioactive sludge for decades. They say the fumes give them sore throats, headaches and dizziness. 

Now Washington state says it intends to sue the U.S. Department of Energy in 90 days if more isn’t done to protect these workers.

 

To raise taxes, or not raises taxes? That is the question. Washington Democrats have been hinting at yes. Republicans like Senate budget chair Andy Hill say it’s a last resort.

Hill started the toothpaste analogy.

Rae Ellen Bichell / KPLU

State child welfare workers have outlined plans to implement new training and data management practices, hoping to finally push Washington's foster care system into full compliance with a decade-old legal agreement.

But state officials also say they'll realistically need nearly $7.8 million more from lawmakers' next two-year budget to hire back the staff they need to meet all 21 benchmarks for improving foster care laid out in the 2004 settlement of the Braam v. Washington case.

    

The group Omaha Diner is made up of four of the most gifted and adventurous musicians in jazz: drummer Bobby Previte, trumpeter Steven Bernstein, guitarist Charlie Hunter and saxophonist, Skerik.  

Along with the almost scary level of talent, the other thing that makes Omaha Diner unique is their musical repertoire.  They won’t even think about playing a song unless it has reached #1 on the Billboard Pop Music chart.

That’s right, Omaha Diner is a jazz band that plays only pop music. But boy, do they turn that pop music inside out.  

Woodland Park Zoo has announced it will phase out its elephant program by moving its two remaining females to a larger herd.

Birds chasing other birds is a natural part of the avian world. But when you add a skilled falconer, that pursuit can disperse pest birds from airports and amusement parks, and protect a farmer's fields.

A blueberry farmer in Washington pays a licensed falconer to scare birds, mainly starlings, away from his crops. 

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