Nation & World


Buzz Aldrin expected to be no-show at Apollo gala

Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin is expected to be noticeably absent from a gala kicking off a yearlong celebration of the 50-year anniversary of the first moon landing even though his foundation is a sponsor and he typically is the star attraction. Organizers haven't heard one way or another if Aldrin is attending Saturday evening's Apollo Celebration Gala at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida,...


Family, home still unfamiliar to Honduran baby

Family, home still unfamiliar to Honduran baby

Baby Johan spent his first day home chasing his family's kitten, bouncing to music and playing like any 15-month-old boy. But his mom said Saturday he also seemed lost in his own home — not recognizing his favorite aunt and only able to sleep with the lights on after spending five months in U.S. custody forcibly separated from his parents. "We have to give him time, be patient," his...
The Latest: Trump says lawyer taping him may be 'illegal'

The Latest: Trump says lawyer taping him may be 'illegal'

The Latest on President Donald Trump and his onetime personal attorney (all times local): 4:20 p.m. Donald Trump says he finds it "inconceivable" that a lawyer would tape a client, as the president weighed in on a report of a taped conversation. In the weeks before the 2016 election, his then-personal attorney secretly recorded their discussion about a potential payment for a former Playboy...
Kavanaugh: Watergate tapes decision may have been wrong

Kavanaugh: Watergate tapes decision may have been wrong

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh suggested several years ago that the unanimous high court ruling in 1974 that forced President Richard Nixon to turn over the Watergate tapes, leading to the end of his presidency, may have been wrongly decided. Kavanaugh was taking part in a roundtable discussion with other lawyers when he said at three different points that the decision in U.S. v. Nixon, which...
National GOP reluctant to weigh in on Trump's Russia swirl

National GOP reluctant to weigh in on Trump's Russia swirl

There was no sign of shock or outrage in the hotel hallways and conference rooms where Republican officials gathered to discuss party business even as politicians on both sides and foreign policy experts fretted about President Donald Trump's cozy relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The men and women from all 50 states who run the Republican National Committee did their best to avoid...
Trump finds it 'inconceivable' lawyer would tape a client

Trump finds it 'inconceivable' lawyer would tape a client

Donald Trump said Saturday he finds it "inconceivable" that a lawyer would tape a client, as the president weighed in after the disclosure that in the weeks before the 2016 election, his then-personal attorney secretly recorded their discussion about a potential payment for a former Playboy model's account of having an affair with Trump. The recording was part of a large collection of documents...
CIA: China is waging a 'quiet kind of cold war' against US

CIA: China is waging a 'quiet kind of cold war' against US

China is waging a "quiet kind of cold war" against the United States, using all its resources to try to replace America as the leading power in the world, a top CIA expert on Asia said Friday. Beijing doesn't want to go to war, he said, but the current communist government, under President Xi Jingping, is subtly working on multiple fronts to undermine the U.S. in ways that are different...
Democratic socialism surging in the age of Trump

Democratic socialism surging in the age of Trump

A week ago, Maine Democrat Zak Ringelstein wasn't quite ready to consider himself a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, even if he appreciated the organization's values and endorsement in his bid to become a U.S. senator. Three days later, he told The Associated Press it was time to join up. He's now the only major-party Senate candidate in the nation to be a dues-paying democratic socialist...
The problem of Kavanaugh's lengthy paper trail

The problem of Kavanaugh's lengthy paper trail

Judge Brett Kavanaugh has a long record of judicial and executive branch service to recommend him as President Donald Trump's nominee to the Supreme Court. And that's part of the problem in getting him confirmed by the Senate. Democrats are demanding to see the conservative appellate court judge's lengthy paper trail before they even start meeting with him, let alone casting their votes on a lifetime...
Trump missteps fuel new energy in Democrats' campaigns

Trump missteps fuel new energy in Democrats' campaigns

As Democratic congressional candidate Abigail Spanberger mingled with supporters at a Richmond brewery, one person hung like a shadow over the gleaming brew tanks and grilled food truck pizza. As they watched their kids play with Legos in the corner of the bar Wednesday night, Kristen Martin and William Caulder grumbled about President Donald Trump's latest scandal, a controversial news conference...
Two democratic socialists rally voters in deep-red Kansas

Two democratic socialists rally voters in deep-red Kansas

The new face of an emerging democratic socialist movement joined its patriarch in the most unlikely place Friday, calling on Kansans unhappy with the direction of the country to get off the sidelines in a pivotal Republican-held congressional district. "We know that people in Kansas, just like everywhere else in this country, just like families in the Bronx, just want a fair shake," Alexandria...
Survivor recounts boat accident that killed 9 family members

Survivor recounts boat accident that killed 9 family members

"Grab the baby!" Those were the last words Tia Coleman recalls her sister-in-law yelling before the tourist boat they were on sank into a Missouri lake, killing 17 people, including nine of Coleman's family members. A huge wave hit, scattering passengers on the vessel known as a duck boat into Table Rock Lake near Branson, Coleman said. When the Indianapolis woman came up for air, she was...
Putin idea for Ukraine referendum rejected by White House

Putin idea for Ukraine referendum rejected by White House

The White House has rejected a Vladimir Putin-backed effort to hold a referendum in eastern Ukraine on the region's future, distancing itself from the idea in the aftermath of President Donald Trump's controversial summit with the Russian leader. Russia's ambassador to the U.S., Anatoly Antonov, said the two leaders had discussed the possibility of a referendum in separatist-leaning eastern Ukraine...
Worries of violence accompany 2020 GOP convention choice

Worries of violence accompany 2020 GOP convention choice

Charlotte, the North Carolina city selected for the 2020 Republican national Convention, has a history of diversity and inclusiveness that has sometimes been difficult to achieve. The Democratic-leaning city was chosen over Las Vegas at the summer meeting of the GOP's national committee Friday. In 2012, North Carolina's largest city hosted the Democratic National Convention. The city hopes to present...
Man suspected of shooting officer found, killed by police

Man suspected of shooting officer found, killed by police

A man suspected of gunning down a Hawaii police officer was killed during a shootout with officers Friday after a three-day search across the Big Island, authorities said. Justin Waiki was killed and an officer was injured during the shootout, Hawaii County Managing Director Wil Okabe told The Associated Press after receiving confirmation from the police chief. The officer was taken to Hilo Medical...
WW2 soldier is buried in California 74 years after battle

WW2 soldier is buried in California 74 years after battle

Nearly 74 years after he was killed in a ferocious World War II battle, Staff Sgt. David Rosenkrantz has been laid to rest in Southern California. Flags were lowered to half-staff as relatives gathered Friday for Rosencrantz's funeral at Riverside National Cemetery, where four of his brothers are also buried. The U.S. Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced in March that Rosenkrantz's body was...
Judge: 'Great progress' reuniting families split at border

Judge: 'Great progress' reuniting families split at border

A federal judge on Friday applauded Trump administration efforts to meet a deadline to reunite more than 2,500 children with their families after they were separated at the border. Justice Department attorneys said in federal court in San Diego that 450 children 5 and older had been reunified, up from 364 a day earlier. "I'm just very impressed with the effort that has been made," U.S. District...
Kavanaugh's lengthy paper trail becomes flashpoint

Kavanaugh's lengthy paper trail becomes flashpoint

Judge Brett Kavanaugh has a long record of judicial and executive branch service to recommend him as President Donald Trump's nominee to the Supreme Court. And that's part of the problem in getting him confirmed by the Senate. Democrats are demanding to see the conservative appellate court judge's lengthy paper trail before they even start meeting with him, let alone casting their votes on a lifetime...
Lawyers: Asylum seekers endure horrible conditions in prison

Lawyers: Asylum seekers endure horrible conditions in prison

Strip searches. Overcrowded cells with open toilets. Scant meals that violate religious restrictions. Federal public defenders say 120 asylum seekers are enduring those conditions at a federal prison in Oregon where some have considered suicide and at least one has attempted it. "We are dying day by day inside here," one detainee said, William Teesdale, chief investigator for the federal...
Putin soccer ball gift to Trump gets routine security check

Putin soccer ball gift to Trump gets routine security check

The red-and-white soccer ball tossed to President Donald Trump by Russia's Vladimir Putin is undergoing a routine security screening. The U.S. Secret Service says that's standard for all gifts to the president. During a joint news conference after their summit this week in Finland, Putin used soccer metaphors and was handed a soccer ball that he tossed to Trump. Russia hosted the 2018 World Cup. Trump...
Duck boats linked to more than 40 deaths since 1999

Duck boats linked to more than 40 deaths since 1999

Duck boats like the one that sank in Branson, Missouri, killing 17 people, have a long history of safety problems and have been linked to the deaths of more than 40 people since 1999. The deadly sinking in Missouri brought back painful memories of a similar accident nearly two decades ago in Arkansas. Both duck boats had overhead roofs or canopies that the National Transportation Safety Board warned...
Congress abandons bid to reverse Trump deal with ZTE

Congress abandons bid to reverse Trump deal with ZTE

Congress is abandoning an effort to clamp down on the Chinese telecom giant ZTE in a defense bill, essentially green-lighting the Trump administration's deal to save a company that was accused of selling sensitive information to hostile regimes, aides said Friday. Senators from both parties expressed outrage Friday that the revised defense legislation, which will be unveiled early next week, guts...
MGM turns to never-tested law to sue Vegas shooting victims

MGM turns to never-tested law to sue Vegas shooting victims

The unprecedented move from MGM Resorts International to sue hundreds of victims of last year's mass shooting in Las Vegas using an obscure U.S. law never tested in court has been framed by the casino-operator as an effort to avoid years of costly litigation — but the legal maneuver may not play out that way. The company is not seeking money in the lawsuits filed in at least seven states over...
Democrats find not-so-secret weapon in Trump controversies

Democrats find not-so-secret weapon in Trump controversies

As Democratic congressional candidate Abigail Spanberger mingled Wednesday night with supporters at a Richmond brewery, one person hung like a shadow over the gleaming brew tanks and grilled food truck pizza. As they watched their kids play with Legos in the corner of the bar, Kristen Martin and William Caulder grumbled about President Donald Trump's latest scandal, a controversial news conference...
Authorities: Close to $100K found after deadly bus crash

Authorities: Close to $100K found after deadly bus crash

Authorities investigating a deadly commercial passenger bus crash along a New Mexico highway said Friday that one of the passengers was carrying a backpack filled with almost $100,000 in cash. Sandoval County Sheriff's Lt. Keith Elder confirmed during a news conference that the money was discovered after the passenger was transported to an Albuquerque hospital, where numerous other people and their...
Colorado VA hospital plagued by delays, high costs to open

Colorado VA hospital plagued by delays, high costs to open

It's more than $1 billion over budget and five years behind schedule, but an elaborate new veterans hospital is finally ready to open in suburban Denver with the promise of state-of-the-art medical care. The $1.7 billion Rocky Mountain Regional VA Medical Center made it through nearly a decade of management blunders, legal battles, federal investigations and congressional hearings. Lawmakers were...
'Suffering' ends with Honduran baby back in parents' arms

'Suffering' ends with Honduran baby back in parents' arms

For months, a Honduran couple watched their only son grow up in videos while he was kept in U.S. government custody. That's where he took his first steps and spoke his first words. The parents got to embrace the 15-month-old boy again Friday, five months after U.S. immigration officials forcibly separated the baby from his father at the Texas border. Johan, who grabbed the world's attention when he...
Soaring temperatures, humidity bring dangerous heat in South

Soaring temperatures, humidity bring dangerous heat in South

Scorching heat was spreading Friday across much of the South, where temperatures are expected to soar over 100 degrees (37.8 Celsius) and persist into next week. The National Weather Service posted heat advisories and warnings from the New Mexico-Texas border eastward to parts of Alabama. Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, west Tennessee and parts of Kansas, Missouri and Kentucky were...
The Latest: Cohen lawyer: 'Spin' can't change what's on tape

The Latest: Cohen lawyer: 'Spin' can't change what's on tape

The Latest on a recording of Donald Trump and his former lawyer discussing payments to an ex-Playboy model (all times local): 6:10 p.m. An attorney for President Donald Trump's former lawyer says "any attempt at spin cannot change what is on" a recording of Trump discussing a potential payment for a former Playboy model's account of having an affair with him years ago. Attorney Lanny Davis...
New Jersey bans smoking on beaches and in parks, butt ...

New Jersey bans smoking on beaches and in parks, butt ...

Gov. Phil Murphy has signed a bill banning smoking at the state's public beaches and parks, but local communities can opt out and set aside small smoking sections. The Democratic governor on Friday signed a measure that was passed by the state Legislature last month. While advertised as a ban, it still leaves room for towns to permit smoking in designated areas of their beaches and parks. Like previous...
Ohio State: 100 ex-students report sex misconduct by doctor

Ohio State: 100 ex-students report sex misconduct by doctor

More than 100 former students have provided firsthand accounts of sexual misconduct by the now-dead Ohio State University team physician at the center of an ongoing investigation, the university said on Friday. Over 200 former students and university employees have been confidentially interviewed by independent investigators reviewing allegations against Richard Strauss involving male athletes from...
Smithsonian gallery explores diversity in US lynchings

Smithsonian gallery explores diversity in US lynchings

The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery acknowledges that people of color have long been missing in the works it exhibits. Now the museum is tackling the issue in an unusual way. The Portrait Gallery is currently showing about 20 works by Los Angeles-based artist Ken Gonzales-Day that examine lynchings, mostly in the American West, and probe the history of racial violence in the United States...
Republicans pick Charlotte to host 2020 convention

Republicans pick Charlotte to host 2020 convention

As Charlotte, North Carolina, celebrates being chosen Friday to host the 2020 Republican National Convention, an undercurrent of concern about the potential for violence runs through the Democratic-leaning city. The GOP's national committee selected North Carolina's largest city over Las Vegas as hundreds of party activists gathered in Austin, Texas, for the committee's summer meeting. "The city...
Trump was taped talking of paying for Playboy model's story

Trump was taped talking of paying for Playboy model's story

President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer secretly recorded Trump discussing a potential payment for a former Playboy model's account of having an affair with him, people familiar with an investigation into the attorney said on Friday. The recording by attorney Michael Cohen adds to questions about whether Trump tried to quash damaging stories in the run-up to his 2016 election. Trump's campaign...
Immigrant parents have trouble reaching separated children

Immigrant parents have trouble reaching separated children

An immigrant father from Guatemala dotes over his despondent teenage daughter during a weekly 10-minute phone call, while other parents wait weeks for the phone to ring. A mother in Louisiana has phone video chats with her detained 5-year-old son in Texas, while a Honduran asylum-seeker had actual face time with his little girl, visiting her in person. He made sure to bring along a McDonald's hamburger...
Bayer to stop sales of birth control device tied to injuries

Bayer to stop sales of birth control device tied to injuries

The maker of a permanent contraceptive implant subject to thousands of injury reports and repeated safety restrictions by regulators said Friday that it will stop selling the device in the U.S., the only country where it remains available. Bayer said the safety of its Essure implant has not changed, but it will stop selling the device at the end of the year due to weak sales. The German company had...
Newton's 'Principia' among items in alleged $8M book scheme

Newton's 'Principia' among items in alleged $8M book scheme

An archivist and an antique bookseller were charged Friday with stealing millions of dollars' worth of rare books, illustrations, maps and photographs from a Pennsylvania library over a 20-year period, including Isaac Newton's "Principia," considered a watershed of science. In some cases, the archivist used an X-Acto knife to cut potentially valuable maps and illustrations out of books in...
Trump heightens China tariff threat with no deal in sight

Trump heightens China tariff threat with no deal in sight

With President Donald Trump intensifying his rift with U.S. trading partners, economists are growing more doubtful that any deal that might benefit American workers and companies is in sight. Instead, many analysts say they expect the Trump administration to impose more tariffs on China and potentially other key U.S. trading partners. With those nations almost certain to retaliate, the result could...
The Latest: Trump slams media for coverage of Putin summit

The Latest: Trump slams media for coverage of Putin summit

The Latest on President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin (all times local): 6 p.m. President Donald Trump is again lashing out at media coverage of his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. After arriving Friday at his New Jersey home for the weekend, Trump tweeted: "I got severely criticized by the Fake News Media for being too nice to President Putin. In the Old Days...
Ohio killer spared after extent of childhood abuse revealed

Ohio killer spared after extent of childhood abuse revealed

Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Friday spared a condemned killer whose sentence was challenged after a juror came forward and said information about the extent of the inmate's tough childhood wasn't properly presented at trial. The Republican governor commuted the sentence of death row inmate Raymond Tibbetts to life without the possibility of parole, citing "fundamental flaws" in the sentencing...
US presses China and Russia to enforce sanctions on NKorea

US presses China and Russia to enforce sanctions on NKorea

The United States on Friday welcomed the U.N. Security Council's united support for the fully verified denuclearization of North Korea and pressed China and Russia to strictly enforce U.N. sanctions to get Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused North Korea of violating an array of tough sanctions imposed by the council. He warned that "when sanctions...
Worker killed in Army depot explosion died of burns

Worker killed in Army depot explosion died of burns

A civilian worker killed in a fire and explosion at an Army facility in Pennsylvania died from burns, officials announced Friday. The Lehigh County coroner's office identified the victim as Eric Byers, a resident of central Pennsylvania. Byers was pronounced dead just after 7 p.m. Thursday at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest. The coroner's office said Byers, 29, of Satillo, was handling chemicals...
Japan's Abe: US auto tariffs will cost US jobs, harm economy

Japan's Abe: US auto tariffs will cost US jobs, harm economy

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe warned the U.S. on Friday that higher tariffs on auto imports would backfire and harm not only America's jobs and economy but also devastate the global economy. Abe told a news conference marking the end of a Diet session that Japan's auto and auto parts industry has never threatened America's national security and it never will. Abe said he will keep explaining that...
NYC releases documents connected to Central Park 5 case

NYC releases documents connected to Central Park 5 case

A lawyer for five men wrongly convicted in the vicious 1989 rape of a Central Park jogger said Friday that the release of investigative records leaves them "reliving the horror" of their experiences. "The stigma that they were these horrible animals engaged in wilding has followed them through their life," said Jonathan Moore, one of several attorneys who secured a $41 million...
Civil rights legend Meredith says he's on a mission from God

Civil rights legend Meredith says he's on a mission from God

James Meredith is a civil rights legend who resists neatly defined narratives. He integrated the University of Mississippi while braving mob violence in 1962 — yet he worked in the late 1980s for archconservative Sen. Jesse Helms, considered a foe by many in the civil rights movement. Wounded by shotgun fire while marching for voting rights in 1966, Meredith also shuns the title of "civil...
Owners may demolish pyramid home in Illinois after fire

Owners may demolish pyramid home in Illinois after fire

An estimated $3 million in fire and water damage following a fire at a pyramid home guarded by a pharaoh statue in suburban Chicago may force the owners to knock the tourist attraction down. Spokeswoman Yolanda Fierro says if the Gold Pyramid House's owners decide to demolish, they will replace the structure in Wadsworth with a "bigger and better" pyramid. Fierro says the owners have determined...
Hundreds at vigils mourn victims of Branson boat accident

Hundreds at vigils mourn victims of Branson boat accident

A Missouri town known for its country shows and entertainment mourned Friday after 17 people — including nine from one family — were killed when a tourist boat sank on churning water in a sudden storm. The grief-stricken community hosted two separate vigils Friday night. In one, about 300 people gathered in the parking lot of Ride the Ducks of Branson and sang "Amazing Grace."...
Trump criticizes Federal Reserve, breaking long-standing practice

Trump criticizes Federal Reserve, breaking long-standing practice

President Donald Trump on Thursday said he's "not thrilled" the U.S. central bank under Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is continuing to raise interest rates, suggesting the Fed may be undercutting his efforts to grow the economy.  "I don't like all of this work that we're putting into the economy and then I see rates going up," he said.  Presidents have long declined to comment...
Democrats seize on failure of judicial pick to demand all of Supreme Court nominee’s documents

Democrats seize on failure of judicial pick to demand all of Supreme Court nominee’s documents

The forced withdrawal Thursday of a Trump judicial nominee over his college writings inflamed the battle over Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, with Democrats escalating their demands to see all of his past documents, even though that could top 1 million pages.  The failure of Ryan Bounds' nomination to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals was a major blow to the Trump administration and Senate...
Trump says ‘I told you so!’ after Europe fines Google $5 billion

Trump says ‘I told you so!’ after Europe fines Google $5 billion

President Donald Trump on Thursday attacked the European Union over its decision to fine Google $5 billion for harming its competitors, tweeting that the incident proved the regional bloc has "taken advantage of the U.S., but not for long!"  To Trump, the fine appeared to be the latest evidence of Europe's exploitation of the United States on a variety of matters, including trade and...
Who heard what Trump said to Putin? Only one other American

Who heard what Trump said to Putin? Only one other American

Marina Gross, the only other American in the room during President Donald Trump’s meeting on Monday with President Vladimir Putin of Russia, was the interpreter for Laura Bush at the Russian resort of Sochi in 2008 and interpreted for former Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson in Moscow in 2017. She appears to live in an apartment in Arlington, Virginia, is an employee of the State Department...
Could the Trump hotel lose its liquor license because of the president’s character?

Could the Trump hotel lose its liquor license because of the president’s character?

Last week, an Advisory Neighborhood Commission voted unanimously to support a petition that seeks to revoke the Trump International Hotel's liquor license on the grounds that its owner - you know, the president of the United States - is not of "good character."  The ANC is not even the one where the luxury hotel is located.  During its July 11 meeting, the commissioners of ANC...
Putin appears to be targeting U.S. officials who worked to sanction Russia

Putin appears to be targeting U.S. officials who worked to sanction Russia

Almost from the day he arrived in Moscow as the U.S. ambassador in 2012, Michael McFaul and his family were subjected to a campaign of surveillance and harassment.  According to McFaul's book, "From Cold War to Hot Peace," Russian authorities followed him to his son's soccer game and outings to McDonald's. They trailed his children's bus to school and sat behind the family at church...
Putin invited to U.S. amid growing furor over summit

Putin invited to U.S. amid growing furor over summit

The White House announced Thursday that Vladimir Putin has been invited to Washington this fall, even as leaders in Washington tried to fully understand what happened when President Donald Trump and the Russian leader met earlier this week in Helsinki.  White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced the planned visit in a tweet, saying that national security adviser John Bolton...
Justice Department plans to alert public to foreign operations targeting U.S. democracy

Justice Department plans to alert public to foreign operations targeting U.S. democracy

The Justice Department plans to alert the public to foreign operations targeting U.S. democracy under a new policy designed to counter hacking and disinformation campaigns such as the one Russia undertook in 2016 to disrupt the presidential election.  The government will inform American companies, private organizations and individuals that they are being covertly attacked by foreign actors attempting...
Tornado stuns Iowa town but residents say they'll rebuild

Tornado stuns Iowa town but residents say they'll rebuild

With the scope of the devastation still sinking in, business owners and residents of the central Iowa city of Marshalltown on Friday began picking up bricks from collapsed buildings, dragging away downed trees and trying to return to the lives they knew before a powerful tornado roared through their community. Structures throughout Marshalltown were hit by the Thursday afternoon tornado but some of...
The Latest: Boat victims mourned

The Latest: Boat victims mourned

The Latest on a deadly tourist boat accident in Missouri (all times local): 9:35 p.m. About 300 people gathered in a parking lot outside a tourism business to remember the 17 people killed when one of its duck boats capsized in storm-tossed water. The mourners Friday night sang Amazing Grace and prayed, some of them holding candles. Another 75 gathered at Brookside Church in Branson to pray. The Ride...
Liberal icon, new Democratic star wade into GOP-heavy Kansas

Liberal icon, new Democratic star wade into GOP-heavy Kansas

The new face of an emerging democratic socialist movement joined its patriarch in the most unlikely place Friday, calling on Kansans unhappy with the direction of the country to get off the sidelines in a pivotal Republican-held congressional district. "We know that people in Kansas, just like everywhere else in this country, just like families in the Bronx, just want a fair shake," Alexandria...
Democrats wrestle with election-year message on health care

Democrats wrestle with election-year message on health care

Ringed by a handful of cheering activist supporters, liberal House Democrats gathered outside the Capitol this week to announce they were forming a caucus to seek "Medicare for All" — shorthand for government-financed health care. At the same time Thursday, Democratic senators were focused in a different direction. They were introducing a resolution aimed at rocking Republicans onto...
White House rejects Putin idea for Ukraine referendum

White House rejects Putin idea for Ukraine referendum

The White House rejected on Friday a Vladimir Putin-backed effort to hold a referendum in eastern Ukraine on the region's future, distancing itself from the idea in the aftermath of President Donald Trump's controversial summit with the Russian leader. Russia's ambassador to the U.S., Anatoly Antonov, said the two leaders had discussed the possibility of a referendum in separatist-leaning eastern...
Rosenstein defends charging Russians as a deterrent

Rosenstein defends charging Russians as a deterrent

The top law enforcement official overseeing the probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 election is defending the prosecution of foreign agents who may never see the inside of a U.S. courtroom. Speaking Thursday at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein also said the Justice Department will notify the U.S. public when it identifies efforts by foreign government...
US, allies set to evacuate Syrian aid workers from southwest

US, allies set to evacuate Syrian aid workers from southwest

U.S. officials say the United States is finalizing plans to evacuate several hundred Syrian civil defense workers and their families from southwest Syria as Russian-backed government forces close in on the area. Two officials familiar with the plans said Thursday that the U.S., Britain and Canada are spearheading the evacuation that would transport members of the White Helmets group to transit camps...
What did Trump and Putin talk about? Only they know

What did Trump and Putin talk about? Only they know

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin may have reached several historic agreements at their summit in Finland this week. Or, they may not have. It depends on who you talk to. Three days later no one was quite sure. With no details emerging from the leaders' one-on-one discussion on Monday — other than the vague outline they offered themselves — officials, lawmakers and citizens in the U.S. in...
Sheriff: 11 people dead after Missouri tourist boat accident

Sheriff: 11 people dead after Missouri tourist boat accident

At least 11 people, including children, died after a boat carrying tourists on a Missouri lake capsized and sank Thursday night, the local sheriff said. Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said five people remain missing and seven others were hospitalized after a Ride the Ducks boat sank on Table Rock Lake in Branson. A spokeswoman for the Cox Medical Center Branson said four adults and three children...
Contrasting Virginia campaigns could affect control of House

Contrasting Virginia campaigns could affect control of House

Some GOP congressmen in Virginia want nothing to do with their own party's provocative candidate for Senate, Corey Stewart, an outspoken acolyte of President Donald Trump and defender of Confederate monuments. Stewart says he's fine with the cold shoulders if it helps Republicans win. By contrast, Democrats appear to be one big happy family, with down-ballot Democrats eager to campaign with incumbent...
US, allies set to evacuate Syrian aid workers from southwest

US, allies set to evacuate Syrian aid workers from southwest

U.S. officials say the United States is finalizing plans to evacuate several hundred Syrian civil defense workers and their families from southwest Syria as Russian-backed government forces close in on the area. Two officials familiar with the plans said Thursday that the U.S., Britain and Canada are spearheading the evacuation that would transport members of the White Helmets group to transit camps...
Tornadoes sweep through Iowa; major damage and some injuries

Tornadoes sweep through Iowa; major damage and some injuries

A flurry of tornadoes that formed unexpectedly swept through central Iowa Thursday, injuring at least 17 people, flattening buildings in three cities and forcing the evacuation of a hospital. The tornadoes hit Marshalltown, Pella and Bondurant as surprised residents ran for cover. The storms injured 10 people in Marshalltown and seven at a factory near Pella, but no deaths were reported. Marshalltown...
Big move for Big Bird: Sesame Street is entering classrooms

Big move for Big Bird: Sesame Street is entering classrooms

Sesame Street is taking its beloved, critically acclaimed brand of educational television into the highly profitable world of classroom curriculum — a move that experts say could open the door for other companies to move into the sensitive learning space with possible influence on children. Sesame Workshop, the company behind Big Bird and Elmo, and McGraw-Hill Education, a billion-dollar for-profit...
More than 300 older children split at border are reunited

More than 300 older children split at border are reunited

The Trump administration said Thursday that it has reunified 364 children ages 5 and older with their families after they were separated at the border, still leaving hundreds to go before a court-imposed deadline a week away. The Justice Department reaffirmed in a court filing that it has identified 2,551 children who may be covered by U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw's order. More than 900 are either...
Kin say Scout leader who drowned saving boy loved children

Kin say Scout leader who drowned saving boy loved children

A 22-year-old Boy Scout leader who drowned saving a struggling young boy during a practice exercise in a Utah pond was a lifelong Scout himself who loved helping kids learn the wilderness skills he treasured, his family said Thursday. Younger children had always looked up to Wesley Robert Kratzer, who had blonde hair, a wide smile and dreams of becoming a successful entrepreneur. "He was very...
California sues over Trump halt to truck pollution rule

California sues over Trump halt to truck pollution rule

California and 14 other states sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Thursday over its decision to suspend an Obama-era rule aimed at limiting pollution from trucks. The July 6 decision by the Trump EPA was illegal and could put thousands of additional highly polluting trucks on the roads, the states and the District of Columbia said in the lawsuit filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...
Rosenstein defends charging foreign agents US can't arrest

Rosenstein defends charging foreign agents US can't arrest

The top law enforcement official overseeing the probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 election is defending the prosecution of foreign agents who may never see the inside of a U.S. courtroom. Speaking Thursday at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein also said the Justice Department will notify the U.S. public when it identifies efforts by foreign government...
Famed scholar explains his Trump defense to Vineyard crowd

Famed scholar explains his Trump defense to Vineyard crowd

Former Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz has doubled down on his defense of President Donald Trump to the Martha's Vineyard crowd that he says has shunned him. The Boston Globe reports Dershowitz hosted a talk at a local theater Wednesday night where he explains his past comments and says his job is to "provoke conversation." Dershowitz has been criticized for arguing that a special...
In reversal, Pentagon now says it backs GOP measure on birds

In reversal, Pentagon now says it backs GOP measure on birds

In an abrupt reversal, the Pentagon said Thursday it supports a Republican proposal in a defense policy bill that would bar the Fish and Wildlife Service from using the Endangered Species Act to protect two chicken-like birds in the western half of the U.S. In an email to Congress, a top Pentagon official said the proposal could help avoid any "negative readiness impacts on military facilities"...
The Latest: Intel chief surprised to hear of Putin invite

The Latest: Intel chief surprised to hear of Putin invite

The Latest on National Intelligence Director Dan Coats (all times local): 2:45 p.m. National Intelligence Director Dan Coats was surprised to learn Thursday that Russian President Vladimir Putin had been invited to the White House this fall. A moderator at the Aspen Security Forum, where Coats was speaking in Colorado, broke into their conversation to describe the invitation. "Say that again...
Minnesota congressman faces questions over dismissed staffer

Minnesota congressman faces questions over dismissed staffer

Retiring Minnesota Rep. Rick Nolan is facing questions surrounding his handling of a former top staffer accused of harassing and groping young female staffers. MinnPost reported Thursday that the Democrat's former legislative director, Jim Swiderski, was allowed to leave the job rather than be fired after women came forward with complaints about his conduct. Several former staff members, requesting...
Attacking 'hysterical' media a go-to segment at Fox

Attacking 'hysterical' media a go-to segment at Fox

What do the phrases "blind hatred," ''frothing," ''hysteria," ''meltdown," ''freak-out" and "derangement" have in common? They've all been used by Fox News Channel personalities this week to describe media coverage of President Donald Trump's Helsinki summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Both Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham denounced the media at the...
Did Trump and Putin agree to anything? Only they know

Did Trump and Putin agree to anything? Only they know

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin may have reached several historic agreements at their summit in Finland this week. Or, they may not have. It depends on who you talk to. Three days later no one was quite sure. With no details emerging from the leaders' one-on-one discussion on Monday — other than the vague outline they offered themselves — officials, lawmakers and citizens in the U.S. in...
The Latest: Trump: US needs 'people with training' for jobs

The Latest: Trump: US needs 'people with training' for jobs

The Latest on President Donald Trump's job training initiative (all times local): 3:40 p.m. President Donald Trump says nearly two dozen companies and trade organizations are signing his pledge to provide job training and apprenticeship programs as a way to boost the U.S. economy. Trump said Thursday at an event at the White House that the pledge will help train about 3.8 million students and workers...
McConnell withdraws Trump judicial pick minutes before vote

McConnell withdraws Trump judicial pick minutes before vote

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday abruptly withdrew one of President Donald Trump's appellate court nominees when it became apparent he did not have enough support to pass. The decision came just minutes before the confirmation vote and after senators voiced concerns about his college writings. McConnell indicated that the administration would be withdrawing the nomination of Ryan...
New York City steam pipe explosion injures 5, sends massive plume over Manhattan

New York City steam pipe explosion injures 5, sends massive plume over Manhattan

A steam pipe explosion in Manhattan’s Flatiron District sent massive plumes into the sky Thursday morning over New York City. Update 3:05 p.m. EDT July 19: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said tests have confirmed that an 86-year-old steam pipe that exploded in Manhattan early Thursday was lined with asbestos. The explosion, reported just before 6:40 a.m. near the intersection of 21st...
US political spending getting more secretive with IRS change

US political spending getting more secretive with IRS change

Political spending in the U.S. is about to become even more secretive after the IRS this week dropped a requirement that many nonprofits have to provide lists of their major donors. The federal government will stop collecting donor information from certain types of nonprofit groups, including business associations, labor unions and "social welfare" organizations, which have become major...
Flint water crisis prompts call for more federal oversight

Flint water crisis prompts call for more federal oversight

A federal watchdog is calling on the Environmental Protection Agency to strengthen its oversight of state drinking water systems nationally and respond more quickly to public health emergencies such as the lead-in-the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In a 74-page report released Thursday, the EPA's inspector general report pointed to "oversight lapses" at the federal, state and local levels...
VP Pence set to attend Georgia rally in governor's race

VP Pence set to attend Georgia rally in governor's race

Vice President Mike Pence is set to attend a rally in Macon, Georgia, Saturday to support Secretary of State Brian Kemp's bid for governor, days before the contentious GOP runoff is decided. The White House confirmed the news to The Associated Press on Thursday, one day after President Donald Trump tweeted his "full and total endorsement" for Kemp in the runoff against Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle...
Ambiguous comments from homeland chief on election meddling

Ambiguous comments from homeland chief on election meddling

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen says she has not seen evidence that the Russians meddled in the 2016 election to help elect Trump, countering the U.S. intelligence agencies assessment on the issue. Intelligence agencies concluded in early 2017 that President Vladimir Putin ordered "an influence campaign" aimed at helping the Trump campaign and harming his Democratic opponent...
Melania Trump listens to students talk about online civility

Melania Trump listens to students talk about online civility

Melania Trump spent part of Thursday listening to more than a dozen teens talk about their best practices for being civil online. The first lady made the short trip to Microsoft's Innovation and Policy Center in Washington as part of a nationwide child well-being campaign she launched this year called "Be Best," which includes teaching children and youth to be good citizens online. The 15...
Nevada's path forward unclear after twice-delayed execution

Nevada's path forward unclear after twice-delayed execution

Nevada twice has come close to carrying out its first execution in 12 years. And twice it failed. Condemned killer Scott Raymond Dozier says he wants to die, but the state has no clear path forward after courts blocked it from using a never-tried combination of drugs that it created after struggling to get lethal injection supplies. The delays are raising questions about whether Nevada can overcome...
Trump promotes job training as employers search for workers

Trump promotes job training as employers search for workers

Promoting a robust economy, President Donald Trump pressed U.S. companies and trade associations on Thursday to enhance their job training programs as employers search for qualified skilled workers to fill vacancies. "We need people with training," Trump declared. At an event in the East Room, Trump told corporate leaders and workers that the nation's students and workers need more opportunities...
Montenegro more puzzled than affronted by Trump's attention

Montenegro more puzzled than affronted by Trump's attention

World War III? Not us, say the puzzled people of Montenegro. Public officials in this tiny European nation didn't know what to say initially when U.S. President Donald Trump suggested that NATO's newest and smallest member, which has a military with fewer than 2,000 members, could be the spark that sets off a global Armageddon. That the leader of the world's dominant superpower would characterize...
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