Grapevine: Education Troubles in Hawaii?

Federal funding cut to Aloha State?


And now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine...

Trouble in Paradise

The Aloha State might have to say goodbye to millions in federal Race to the Top dollars due to its unsatisfactory performance.

The Education Department told the state it was being placed under high risk status over concerns Hawaii will not be able to fulfill its commitments within the agreed terms.

Hawaii still has most of the $75 million grant left to spend.

State officials say they are committed to resolving these issues, but note a complication with the teachers union has slowed progress.

The union president says it is unfair to blame his group for the position the state is in.

On the Naughty List

Wisconsin Republican Congressman James Sensenbrenner might be trying to get off the naughty list before Christmas.

He says he will apologize to first lady Michelle Obama after being overhead making some unkind remarks about her figure.

A media site reported Sensenbrenner was overhead in the airport telling someone on the phone -- quote -- "She lectures us on eating right while she has a large posterior herself."

Mourning Sickness

Finally, if you believe North Korean state media, it isn't just distraught citizens who are mourning Kim Jong Il's death.

Lakes, mountains, and the weather are all marking the solemn occasion.

State media reported ice on a famous lake cracked so loud it seemed to shake the heavens and the earth.

There was also a snowstorm that hit as Kim died.

After the storm suddenly ended at dawn, a message with Kim's name, reportedly, glowed brightly in the mountain where they say he was born.

A humorous news compilation site snarked -- quote -- "Apparently Satan was preparing the VIP entrance."