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NASA sends Beatles' song into space

NASA planned to beam a song into deep space for the first time ever today &

and quite appropriately it was the Beatles' "Across the Universe."

The transmission was scheduled to take place over the space agency's Deep Space Network to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the day the Beatles recorded the song, as well as the 50th anniversary of NASA's founding. The song will travel across the universe at a speed of 186,000 miles per second and will be aimed at the North Star, Polaris, which is 431 light-years from Earth. Sir Paul McCartney said he is excited that the tune, written primarily by fellow Beatle John Lennon, is being beamed into the cosmos.

"Amazing! Well done, NASA!" McCartney said in a message to the space agency. "Send my love to the aliens. All the best, Paul."

Searchers hunt for missing skiers


Fresh snow added to the pressure on rescuers hoping today to find two skiers who have been lost near Lake Tahoe through two nights of plunging temperatures.

Patrick Frost, 35, and Christopher Gerwig, 32, both of San Francisco, were reported missing Saturday night at the Alpine Meadows resort just north of Lake Tahoe, said Placer County sheriff's Sgt. Allan Carter. Frost and Gerwig were described as expert skiers. "I would say if they sought shelter, and they're not wet and not caught in an avalanche zone, then their chances are good," Placer County sheriff's Sgt. John Giovannini said.

In Southern California, meanwhile, rescuers searched for 53-year-old Ellen Coleman of Riverside, who was reported missing Sunday after attempting to summit Mount Jacinto, authorities said.

Candidates seek Super Tuesday votes


Sen. John McCain defended his conservative credentials today as rival Mitt Romney claimed he was true to core Republican values in the final push before Super Tuesday. Democrats Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton, locked in a tight race, searched for support in the delegate-rich Northeast.

Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, told voters in a series of coast-to-coast stops that Republicans were telling him, "We don't want Senator McCain; we want a conservative."

McCain leads Romney in national polls and has seized the momentum and major endorsements after two straight wins in South Carolina and Florida. Yet, some conservatives are uneasy with the four-term Arizona senator who has backed a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants, campaign finance reform and opposed President Bush's tax cuts although he now wants to make them permanent.

Some two dozen states vote on Tuesday, from New York to California to Alaska. At stake for the Republicans were 1,023 delegates, up for grabs on the Democratic side &

1,681 delegates to the national convention.

Monson to lead Mormon church


Thomas S. Monson has been selected as the 16th president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the church announced today.

Monson, 80, succeeds Gordon B. Hinckley, who died Jan. 27 at age 97. Out of respect for the deceased president, the Mormon church never names a successor until after funeral services. Hinckley was buried Saturday.

"" The Associated Press

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