Legislation would have restored collective bargaining rights in the Homeland Security Department.
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To attract intelligence officers, bill also would allow Homeland Security secretary to issue recruitment bonuses.
Group of more than 50 former and current officials wants Congress to pass legislation empowering them to sue individual government managers.
The Defense Department has called on the president to appoint a senior official to promote the learning of foreign languages across all sectors of society.
Pentagon worries about leaks and Friday the 13th; Bush says closed bases could be used for oil refineries.
Letter to agency chief comes days after blistering IG report reveals waste and abuse.