Today is Wednesday, Jan. 7, the seventh day of 2004. There are 359 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Jan. 7, 1789, the first U.S. presidential election was held. Americans voted for electors who, a month later, chose George Washington to be the nation's first president.

On this date:

In 1610, the astronomer Galileo Galilei sighted four of Jupiter's moons.

In 1800, the 13th president of the United States, Millard Fillmore, was born in Summerhill, N.Y.

In 1927, commercial trans-Atlantic telephone service was inaugurated between New York and London.

In 1942, the World War II siege of Bataan began.

In 1953, President Truman announced in his State of the Union address that the United States had developed a hydrogen bomb.

In 1955, singer Marian Anderson made her debut with the Metropolitan Opera in New York, in Verdi's "Un Ballo in Maschera."

In 1959, the United States recognized Fidel Castro's new government in Cuba.

In 1972, Lewis F. Powell Jr. and William H. Rehnquist were sworn in as the 99th and 100th members of the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 1979, Vietnamese forces captured the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh, overthrowing the Khmer Rouge government.

In 1989, Emperor Hirohito of Japan died in Tokyo at age 87; he was succeeded by his son, Crown Prince Akihito.

Ten years ago: The government reported the unemployment rate fell to a three-year low of 6.4 percent in December 1993. Nancy Kerrigan withdrew from the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Detroit, a day after her right leg was severely bruised in an attack following a practice session.

Five years ago: For the second time in history, an impeached American president went on trial before the Senate. President Clinton faced charges of perjury and obstruction of justice; he was acquitted.

One year ago: President Bush unveiled his $674 billion economic expansion plan. Police in London announced they had found traces of the deadly poison ricin in a north London apartment and arrested six men in connection with the virulent toxin that has been linked to al-Qaida terrorists and Iraq.

Today's Birthdays: Author William Peter Blatty is 76. Country singer Jack Greene is 74. Pop musician Paul Revere is 66. Magazine publisher Jann Wenner is 58. Singer Kenny Loggins is 56. Singer-songwriter Marshall Chapman is 55. Actress Erin Gray is 54. Actor Sammo Hung is 52. Actor David Caruso ("CSI: Miami") is 48. "Today" show co-host Katie Couric is 47. Country singer David Lee Murphy is 45. Rock musician Kathy Valentine (The Go-Go's) is 45. Actor David Marciano is 44. Actress Hallie Todd is 42. Actor Nicolas Cage is 40. Actor Doug E. Doug is 34. Actor Kevin Rahm ("Judging Amy") is 33. Country singer-musician John Rich is 30. Actor Dustin Diamond is 27. Actor Liam Aiken is 14. Actress Camryn Grimes is 14. Actor Max Morrow is 13.

Thought for Today: "Whether women are better than men I cannot say - but I can say they are certainly no worse." - Golda Meir, Israeli prime minister (1898-1978).


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