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Congress and State Department at odds over $55 million in aid for Honduras

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WASHINGTON -- The State Department appears headed for a showdown with Congress over the department's decision to approve more than $50 million in aid for Honduras despite the Central American nation's poor human rights record.

The money is part of a $750 million aid package for Central America's so-called Northern Triangle -- Honduras, El ...Read more

Face-biting slayings suspect gave interview to 'Dr. Phil' before arrest

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PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Before Austin Harrouff was arrested and charged with the fatal stabbings and infamous face-biting of a Martin County couple in their home in August, he gave a bedside interview with the "Dr. Phil" TV show, the Palm Beach Post has learned.

The sheriff's office said there's no legal way it could have prohibited the interview, ...Read more

Zika virus: 'We will see this become endemic,' CDC says

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MIAMI -- The nation's highest-ranking infectious disease expert delivered some sobering news on Zika to a Miami audience on Tuesday, saying that the mosquito-borne virus is more widespread than Florida health officials have reported and that the rapid spread of pathogens such as Zika represents "the new normal" in an age of global travel and ...Read more

Reading tea leaves on early presidential voting, here's who's gaining so far

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ORLANDO, Fla. -- The surge of early voting -- which could see one-third of the nation's voters turn out before Election Day -- is giving Hillary Clinton an important boost in swing states.

"All the data we are seeing suggests that Clinton is doing as well, if not better, than Obama in many, if not most, places," said Patrick Murray, director of...Read more

'It's going be a close election,' Clinton tells South Florida crowd

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COCONUT CREEK, Fla. -- With polls suggesting she's pulling ahead of Donald Trump in Florida, Hillary Clinton traveled to South Florida Tuesday and delivered her strongest pitch yet for U.S. Senate candidate Patrick Murphy while urging voters not to grow over-confident.

"It's going to be a close election," she said at Broward College's Coconut ...Read more

Political news briefs

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Trump 'makes me fear for the ultimate well-being of the country,' says Libertarian Bill Weld

Bill Weld, the Libertarian vice presidential nominee, explicitly warned Tuesday against the dangers of a Donald Trump presidency in a message aimed at voters torn between the two major parties' nominees.

The Republican nominee, he warned, would not be ...Read more

4 reasons Trump won't be able to pull off a Brexit-like surprise victory

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WASHINGTON -- As a majority of public polls paint a bleak picture for Donald Trump's path to the White House, he is giving his supporters hope with a single word: Brexit.

The Republican is predicting that a silent majority of supporters not reflected in polls will deliver him a surprise victory, much like the result of the British referendum in...Read more

Task force: Too many moms stop breast-feeding too soon and doctors should change that

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Too many mothers stop breast-feeding their babies too soon, and a panel of experts says doctors, nurses and other health professionals should do more to change that.

In light of the "convincing evidence that breast-feeding provides substantial health benefits for children," primary care providers should discuss breast-feeding with women when ...Read more

Tour bus in crash that killed 13 did not comply with safety standards, officials say

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LOS ANGELES -- Federal officials announced Tuesday that the tour bus that crashed in Desert Hot Springs on Sunday, killing 13, was out of compliance with vehicle safety standards because two of its eight tires did not have enough tread.

Officials released the findings after a preliminary examination of the motor coach body and wheels, said Earl...Read more

Biden speaks on behalf of Hillary Clinton, Katie McGinty in Pittsburgh

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PITTSBURGH -- Speaking before 600 people at Chatham University, Vice President Joe Biden said he didn't want to devote much attention to the Republican presidential nominee.

"I'm so tired, and so disturbed, quite frankly, because of ... all the attention has been drawn to this ridiculousness," he said.

Yet Biden's 40-minute speech did launch ...Read more

Trump says he has no interest in launching Trump TV

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Tamping down speculation about what he will do if he loses the election, Donald Trump said Tuesday he has no intention of starting a media empire.

"I have no interest in Trump TV," Trump told an Ohio radio host. "I hear it all over the place, and you know, I have a tremendous fan base. ... But I just don't have any interest in that. I have one ...Read more

Largest auto-scandal settlement in US history approved

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A federal judge has approved a $14.7 billion settlement in the Volkswagen emissions-cheating case, the largest auto-scandal settlement in U.S. history.

The deal, approved Tuesday, gives about 475,000 owners of Volkswagens and Audis with 2-liter diesel engines the opportunity to have their cars bought back or modified by Volkswagen and to seek ...Read more

France crews begin clearing encampments as migrants leave Calais

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CALAIS, France -- French crews began disassembling makeshift shelters Tuesday, removing tarpaulins and scrap materials that made up the so-called "Jungle" migrant camp near Calais.

On the second day of a week-long operation to remove the squalid camp and encourage migrants gathered near the port city to stay in France, hundreds of people ...Read more

Parole board decides Hambali too dangerous to go from Guantanamo

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MIAMI -- The Guantanamo parole board has re-branded the Indonesian former CIA captive known as Hambali as a "forever prisoner," declaring him too dangerous to release from U.S. military custody.

The Periodic Review Board said in a decision released Tuesday that Encep Nurjaman Hambali, with a "lengthy history as a jihadist," has no real remorse ...Read more

Who's bankrolling Murphy and Rubio?

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Florida's Senate race is becoming one of the most expensive in the state's history, with Sen. Marco Rubio raising about $20 million and his Democratic opponent Rep. Patrick Murphy raising about $11 million.

Rubio also had almost twice as much cash on hand as of Sept. 30 according to Federal Election Commission documents, with Murphy having $2.8...Read more

Mushroom cloud reappears in anti-Trump ad from Bill Bradley-backed PAC

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NEW YORK -- Bill Bradley, the former Democratic senator from New Jersey and a long-time vociferous critic of super PACs, has formed just such a group to go after Donald Trump in the final weeks before Election Day with a TV ad that invokes one of the most powerful political attacks in American history.

In September 1964, Lyndon B. Johnson's ...Read more

Philly Checkers closed after video about worker's video goes viral

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PHILADELPHIA -- A Checkers restaurant in Philadelphia was shut down and several employees were fired after a worker posted a video describing how he wiped the floor and blew his nose using hamburger buns, spit and sneezed on food, and claimed workers were having sex with customers in the kitchen.

The drive-thru, on the 7100 block of Stenton ...Read more

Democrats draw line over LGBT provision in defense authorization bill

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WASHINGTON -- Senate Democrats are drawing a line in negotiations over a defense authorization bill, signaling strong opposition to a provision they say would allow for discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

The issue has emerged as one of the hurdles in the negotiations over the National Defense Authorization Act. An ...Read more

Is the US trade embargo risking lives in Cuba?

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WASHINGTON -- Despite the improved ties between the United States and Cuba, the United Nations is expected to again condemn the American trade embargo against the communist island.

For the 25th year in a row, Cuba has called for the United Nations to issue a resolution against the U.S. "blockade," as the Cubans refer to the U.S. embargo against...Read more

The controversial DNA search that helped nab the 'Grim Sleeper' is winning over skeptics

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He roamed the streets of Sacramento for six years, raping women as they walked to work or headed home from parties in the dark.

To keep them from fighting back, he smashed their heads with rocks and wrapped his hands around their necks. Sometimes he threatened them with a gun.

Police became frustrated, unable to identify him even though they ...Read more