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Manic Monday Markup 9/28/15…

…And the World:

We begin today at the United Nations, which kicked off its annual session of the General Assembly with speeches from world leaders. On Friday, Pope Francis addressed body while today President Barack Obama spoke. The president emphasized the need to combat poverty, sexism and climate change, but he and Russian President Vladimir Putin also jousted over Syria.

Russia recently inked an intelligence deal with Syria, Iraq and Iran, complicating US efforts to find a solution to the Syrian crisis. On 60 Minutes, Putin called US policy in Syria a failure. At the UN he called for a broad coalition, including Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Obama and Putin are expected to meet on Syria today.

In other reports ahead of the UN session, NPR interviews Iranian President Hassan Rouhani who says his country will stick the nuclear deal it signed with P5+1 countries. Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has committed her country to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, leaving only India as the only major economy not to put forward a plan. Even so, scientists say the plans put forward would only limit, not stop or reverse steep rises in global temperatures.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said his country is on board with developing a climate plan, sharing an “uncompromising” commitment to tackle the issue. Modi’s US tour included stops in California, where he told a forum organized by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg that social media stops governments from committing errors.

Pope Francis has returned to Rome after an intense six-day trip to the United States. He took questions from reporters on the plane ride back, including on the sexual abuse scandal in the church, and expressed deep appreciation for the welcome he received. Francis’ whirlwind tour included his historic speech to Congress, visits to Ground Zero in New York, and a trip to a prison in Philadelphia before saying mass before a crowd of hundreds of thousands on Benjamin Franklin Parkway in the City of Brotherly Love.

The Taliban takes a northern city in Afghanistan.

The new leader of the UK’s Labour party, Jeremy Corbyn, suffered a setback when a party governing body rejected his call for ending Britain’s nuclear deterrent, the submarine-based Trident missile program. But broadly speaking, Corbyn’s enemies within the party held their fire at the party conference this weekend.

The Feds:

More on Francis in America. Philadelphia Magazine argued that the pope “stuck it” to American prisons for not doing enough to heal during his visit to a criminal detention center in Philadelphia. While some read a defense of some officials like Rowan County, Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, others disagree. has amassed an alternative retrospect of the pontiff’s trip along with The Philadelphia Inquirer‘s assessment.  The New York Times wraps up Francis’ visit with a favorable review of the trip.

Senator Elizabeth Warren gave a speech in Boston likening Black Lives Matter to the Civil Rights Movement. She urged reform in police training and oversight.

John Boehner unplugged: Appearing on Face the Nation he criticized the crazies in his party and Sen. Ted Cruz.

Hillary Clinton discussed her email account and other issues on Meet the Press this weekend saying she has been doing all she can to be transparent, but admits she has relied on others’ technical expertise regarding her private email server.

The Washington Post writes that Jeb Bush, who has sat is fourth or fifth place in most polls, and his campaign are facing a do or die period in the coming weeks.

Following John Boehner’s surprise resignation announcement, all eyes turn to House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy who confirms he is running for speaker, but may not have an obstacle-free path. But while Boehner’s resignation just deflated chance of a shutdown, it could be Ted Cruz’s time to shine.

The State of Things:

Gov. Charlie Baker announced changes at the ever-embattled Department of Children & Families, including a reopened Worcester office, but Democrats sense the only solution may be the “m” word: money. Meanwhile the AP notes that problems with DCF are nothing new for Baker.

Ex-Springfield Mayor Mary Hurley is running for Governor’s Council whether incumbent Michael Albano vacates the seat to run for Hampden Sheriff or not.

ICYMI: The Massachusetts Gaming Commission rake MGM officials over the coals for their proposed changes to their Springfield casino (more in city slickers).

Holyoke City Clerk Brenna Murphy McGee has delegated all responsibility in the Ward 7 Council election, where her husband is a candidate.

City Slickers:

The Springfield City Council has appealed to the state Supreme Judicial Court to stop the biomass plant slated for Page Boulevard.

Also in the Council, tomorrow it will consider a nonbinding question on MGM’s changes to the casino. Approving the railcar tax deal is also on the docket.

The Reminder’s take on changes to the casino plan including a surprised Springfield Redevelopment Authority hearing about the Court Square Hotel as the potential spot for MGM’s now off-site market rate housing.

While The Republican editorial board does its best to criticize those who are questioning MGM’s changes, Masslive’s Dan Glaun, while answering readers’ questions, maintains reportorial skepticism of the gaming company.

The Reminder also talks to Ward 5 Councilor Clodo Concepcion who is running for a fourth term. His challenger is Marcus Williams.

At-large Council candidate will debate October 6.

Twitter Chatter:

In a world with so much wrong with it, there is often the temptation to highlight tweets that emphasize the darkness or lampoon it. Today, in light of Pope Francis’ visit the US, which was followed by millions, it seems only appropriate to award the tweet prize to His Holiness. Whether you agree with everything he said or did, his humility and his humanity are so refreshing amid the problems we face both in church and in state. His scholarship in picking American icons to highlight in his Congressional speech, his self-awareness in revisiting the issue with abuse in the church, and his warmth wherever he went is a model for all people. Today we award the tweet prize to Pope Francis. One need not believe in Christ to accept Francis’ thanks, as it can be a model for how we want to treat one another both as people and as a nation.