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Posted at 6:04 AM ET, 09/17/2010

Lori's A.M. Buzz: Happy sunny weekend

By Washington Post editors

Good morning. It's Friday and the weather forecast for the weekend is just fabulous (knock wood.) If you need any help with weekend plans, you can always turn to our Going Out Guide. Lots of headlines today, including Oprah's sitdown with the Discovery hostages and news of some complications involving Metro's SmarTrip card program. Read on.

Coming up:

More sunshine. Okay, so for some folks (including me) that was more than a light spinkle yesterday evening. And it turned out to be hotter than predicted -- it was 92 at Reagan National! But the Capital Weather Gang's forecast today is for a breezy day with temperatures in the low-to-mid-80's. More importantly, I hope their prediction for the weekend -- two very nice days in the 80's -- is exactly what we'll see.

Officer involved shooting reported We're looking into reports of a shooting early this morning near the U.S. Capitol involving a Capitol Police officer. The shooting happened at around 5 a.m. this morning near 2nd and C streets, SW.

Death row case. We may also get word on whether Teresa Lewis, the only woman on Virginia's death row, will be granted clemency. If neither the U.S. Supreme Court nor Gov. Bob McDonnell intervenes, she will be executed on Sept. 23. She would be the first woman in nearly 10 years to be executed in Virginia. Lewis, 41, was convicted of conspiring with two men to kill her husband and her stepson for insurance money in 2003.

Today's headlines:

Discovery hostages speak. Two of the three men held hostage by James Lee at Discovery headquarters in downtown Silver Spring appeared on "Oprah" yesterday. Jim McNulty and Chris Wood told Oprah they they used hand signals with each other before fleeing from the gunman. Wood said he was able to send a text message to his boss telling him what was happening. The three men, including a security guard, were held hostage for about four hours before police killed Lee.

Shooting at Johns Hopkins. The Discovery hostages' appearance on Oprah was almost overshadowed by a crisis at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. Paul "Warren" Pardus, allegedly shot a doctor before barricading himself in his mother's hospital room. Pardus, who is from Arlington, was apparently distraught over news about his mother's condition. After about a two-hour standoff, SWAT team members stormed the room and found Pardus and his mother dead.

SmarTrip complications. That plan to cut the cost of a SmarTrip card in half? Not as straightforward as Metro officials had thought. During a committee meeting yesterday, agency officials outlined reasons the plan could end up costing WMATA millions in lost revenue each year. Metro staff members grew concerned that some riders would take advantage of the cheaper SmarTrip cards, which allow customers to exit the system once with a negative balance, by buying cards at $2.50 and using them for more expensive trips. Metro officials are now reviewing other options.

Rhee and Nickles likely leaving. They won't meet until next week, but it appears that when they do, D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray -- the man who will most likely be D.C.'s new mayor -- and Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee will discuss the terms of her departure. Another member of the Fenty Administration, Attorney General Peter Nickles, also has o said he plans to submit his resignation within the next 30 days.

A Fenty victory? Turns out Mayor Adrian Fenty won at least one contest Tuesday. It seems that 822 Republicans penned in Fenty's name on the write-in spot on the GOP ballot, according to unofficial results released Friday morning by the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics. With no declared Republican candidate competing for the mayoral nomination in the primary, that's enough to put Fenty--a lifelong Democrat--on November's ballot as a Republican. But Fenty has said repeatedly that he will not accept the Republican nomination.

Other items:

Truthiness comes to D.C. The Twitterverse was all abuzz yesterday with news that Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert plan to hold opposing rallies on the National Mall, Oct. 30. Stewart has dubbed his "A Rally to Restore Sanity" while Colbert's dubbed his the "March to Keep Fear Alive."

'American Idol' online. If you've ever dreamed of becoming the next Kelly Clarkson or Clay Aiken but didn't have the money to travel for a tryout, "American Idol" producers have announced they'll accept auditions via YouTube. (WTOP)

That's it for today. Have a good Friday and a great sun-filled weekend. We know you're hard at work finishing that last task on your to-do list, but be sure to check back with us for more news throughout the day.

By Washington Post editors  | September 17, 2010; 6:04 AM ET
Categories:  DC, Loris AM Buzz, Maryland, Virginia, Weather  | Tags:  loris am buzz  
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Next: Police shoot armed man near U.S. Capitol

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