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Presidential field: The 700 club?

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There is just about every shade of politics you can imagine represented by the people who run for president.

There is Vermin Supreme, the perennial candidate who wears a boot for a hat and wants to give everyone free ponies. Or 89-year-old Mike Gravel, a former senator from Alaska who allows two teens to run his antiwar candidacy. And there's ...Read more

How the Apollo program turned military pilots into lunar rock experts

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Step through the Cinder Lake Crater Field roughly 12 miles outside Flagstaff, Ariz., and you might encounter a white crystal-filled rock that has absolutely no business being there.

The chunks of anorthosite weren't deposited there by nature -- they were trucked in from the mountains around Pasadena, Calif. And the craters were carved not by ...Read more

What's behind Iran's aggression in the Strait of Hormuz?

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The seizure of a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps is the latest example of how tensions between the U.S. and Iran have spilled into one of the world's most strategic and vital waterways for oil. Since May, Iran has been accused of harassing and attacking oil tankers in the strait.

As the ...Read more

Tension rises as Iran seizes tanker

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WASHINGTON -- Iran's detention of two British-owned oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz sharply escalated tensions with London and Washington on Friday, increasing the odds that the two allies would undertake new military steps to protect shipping in the strategically important Middle East waterway.

Naval forces from the Iranian Revolutionary ...Read more

Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon. Who will be the first woman?

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Fifty years after a military test pilot made the first striated boot prints in the thick gray powder of the lunar surface, NASA has an ambitious plan to send humans back to the moon by 2024.

But this time there's a twist.

The next time a pair of astronauts set foot on the moon, the space agency has vowed that at least one of them will be a ...Read more

LA police ticketed drivers on streets with expired speed limits, lawsuit says

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LOS ANGELES -- Police officers in Los Angeles wrongly ticketed motorists on streets with expired speed limits, violating a law that bans the use of speed traps in California cities, according to a lawsuit filed this week in Los Angeles County Superior Court.

The lawsuit, which is seeking class action status, says the Los Angeles Police ...Read more

Sheriff Alex Villanueva's son was hired to be a deputy seven months after his father took office

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LOS ANGELES -- When Alex Villanueva appeared onstage in December to be sworn in as Los Angeles County sheriff, his son was standing nearby cheering him on.

Now, 33-year-old Johannes Jared Villanueva is working for the department as a deputy sheriff trainee, on track to graduate from the academy in November.

The son, an Army veteran, was hired ...Read more

Trump seeks Supreme Court help on building border wall quickly

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WASHINGTON -- Trump administration officials want the Supreme Court to help them hurry up and spend up to $2.5 billion to construct a barrier on the U.S.-Mexico border before Congress thwarts them with new spending legislation on Oct. 1.

The administration argues it needs a ruling from the Supreme Court by July 26 so it can spend money on ...Read more

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to cut print edition to 3 days

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PHILADELPHIA--The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, one of Pennsylvania's largest newspapers, will cut its print edition to three days as it grapples with declining advertising and digital threats, according to newsroom sources and widely published reports.

A Post-Gazette memo distributed to employees said the newspaper would be printed only for ...Read more

Mueller's testimony the latest in long line of Trump-era hearings

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WASHINGTON -- Robert S. Mueller III wanted to keep a low profile.

The former special counsel -- who famously avoided cameras for nearly two years when he led the Russia investigation -- made clear he did not want to testify to Congress beyond what he wrote in his 448-page report.

"It is important that the office's written work speak for itself...Read more

Trump to push Pakistan's Imran Khan for permanent Taliban ceasefire

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WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump will push Pakistan's prime minister, Imran Khan, to pressure the Taliban into signing a permanent ceasefire in Afghanistan, an administration official said.

Trump will also demand that Pakistan's government free Shakil Afridi, a physician imprisoned after helping the U.S. government locate and kill Osama bin...Read more

US plans for post-Maduro future with team to send to Venezuela

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ASPEN, Colo. -- The U.S. State Department is setting up a 13-person Venezuela unit that will be based in Colombia for now and deploy to Caracas once security allows, as the Trump administration continues to exert pressure on President Nicolas Maduro to step down.

The Venezuela Affairs Unit, based at the U.S. embassy in Bogota, will allow the ...Read more

US imposes more sanctions on Venezuela's military intelligence agency

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BOGOTA, Colombia -- The U.S. Treasury Department on Friday imposed sanctions on four senior officials of Venezuela's military intelligence agency, DGCIM, following the death of a navy captain who was allegedly tortured to death.

The four were named as Division Gen. Rafael Ramon Blanco Marrero, Col. Hannover Esteban Guerrero Mijares, Major ...Read more

British Foreign Office confirms seizure of second vessel

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LONDON -- The British Foreign Office has confirmed that a second naval vessel has been seized in the Strait of Hormuz by Iranian authorities.

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said Friday he was "extremely concerned" by the incident, the latest in weeks of tensions centered on the key shipping lane in the gulf.

Earlier Thursday, Iran's ...Read more

Despite opposition, University of South Carolina board hires retired general as school's next president

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COLUMBIA, S.C. -- A divided University of South Carolina board of trustees voted Friday to hire retired Army Gen. Robert Caslen as its next president.

After a rare contentious meeting, the school's board of trustees rejected protests from faculty, some students and several politicians in choosing Caslen, the former superintendent of the U.S. ...Read more

Iran's Revolutionary Guard seizes UK tanker as tensions soar

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NEW YORK -- Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps seized a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz amid soaring tensions in one of the world's critical energy chokepoints. Brent climbed more than 1% on the news.

A spokesperson for the British government said it was urgently seeking further information and assessing the situation following reports...Read more

Omar's office facade gets covered with notes of support

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WASHINGTON -- Rep. Ilhan Omar's congressional office facade grew more colorful as people walked by her office Friday and posted blue, purple, pink and yellow notes of encouragement in the form of a heart. It's a show of support after a long week of back-and-forth with President Donald Trump and his supporters, who chanted "send her back" at a ...Read more

Two riots in two days at California prison involve 183 inmates

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Thursday morning's riot was the second in two days at Pleasant Valley State Prison, where 142 inmates rioted at noon Wednesday, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

The two riots, which were in different facilities at the prison, were unrelated, said Lt. Jose Benavides, a corrections ...Read more

Conservative group paid for pro-fur testimony at state Capitol, California activists charge

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A bill to outlaw the sale and manufacture of fur products drew few opponents in its early hearings at the California Capitol.

That changed on June 25, when animal rights advocates supporting the measure noticed there were more critics in the room.

"In previous hearings, it was less than five people," said Matt Johnson, ...Read more

Accusations in viral San Ysidro High valedictorian speech unfounded, district says

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SAN DIEGO -- The San Ysidro High School valedictorian whose graduation speech went viral -- calling out a supposedly intoxicated teacher and absentee guidance counselor -- was celebrated by some for offering a frank moment of truth instead of a litany of platitudes.

But how true was it?

A U-T Watchdog request under the California Public ...Read more

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