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Republican Rep. Tom Rooney of Florida not running for re-election

Current News / News & Features /

WASHINGTON -- Florida Rep. Tom Rooney announced Monday he will not seek a sixth term in November.

"After what will be 10 years in the United States Congress representing the good people of Florida's Heartland, it's time to 'hang 'em up,' as my old football coach used to say," the Republican congressman said in a statement.

First elected in ...Read more

Trump backs Romney in Utah Senate race, embracing GOP critic

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WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump endorsed former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for a U.S. Senate seat in Utah, setting aside longstanding differences with a GOP critic as the party looks to preserve its narrow majority in the chamber.

"He will make a great Senator and worthy successor to @OrrinHatch, and has my full support ...Read more

Mourners flock to vigils, Stoneman Douglas campus to pay respects to those killed

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CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. -- They held candles to remember the victims of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas and pledged to do what they could to try to prevent another tragedy.

Rain occasionally poured down on the vigil at Betti Stradling Park in Coral Springs Monday evening, with one rabbi saying, "God is crying with us."

Local elected ...Read more

Ex-Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori to be tried over 1992 massacre

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LIMA, Peru -- Peru's recently pardoned ex-President Alberto Fujimori must stand trial over the 1992 massacre of six farmers, a court ruled Monday.

The ruling comes just weeks after Fujimori was controversially pardoned and released from a 25-year prison sentence for human rights abuses committed during his 1990-2000 term in office.

But the ...Read more

Nation and world news briefs

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Pa. gerrymandering case: State Supreme Court releases new congressional map for 2018 elections

PHILADELPHIA -- The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Monday released a new congressional district map, upending familiar boundaries, renumbering districts across the state and giving a potential boost to Democrats in the 2018 House elections.

Its plan ...Read more

Pa. gerrymandering case: State Supreme Court releases new congressional map for 2018 elections

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PHILADELPHIA -- The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Monday released a new congressional district map, upending familiar boundaries, renumbering districts across the state and giving a potential boost to Democrats in the 2018 House elections.

Its plan splits only 13 counties. Of those, four counties are split into three districts and nine are ...Read more

Loved ones remember Luke Hoyer, the Parkland victim who loved basketball and chicken nuggets

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CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. -- On the last day of his life, Luke Hoyer found a Valentine's Day card and some of his favorite chocolates sitting by his bathroom sink. He called downstairs, "Thanks, Mom."

When his mother, Gena Hoyer, dropped her 15-year-old son off at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that morning, she told him, "I love you, Lukey ...Read more

'Devastated' Kansas chemist arrested by ICE can only see family through jail windows

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The day had finally arrived that jailed Syed Ahmed Jamal thought he'd get to talk to his wife and three children after nearly a month of being shuffled around the country by the U.S. immigration enforcement system.

But another snag left him and his family "devastated" Sunday afternoon.

His family was not aware of the Platte...Read more

Alaina Petty 'just wanted to be your friend,' dad says at funeral

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CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. -- Alaina Petty surprised her family when she joined the JROTC at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School because she had not expressed much interest in it.

But she was a natural at it, just as she was at volunteering to help families in Everglades City dig out of Hurricane Irma.

On Monday morning, about 1,500 people attended ...Read more

Judge OKs release of social services file on school shooter Cruz

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MIAMI -- In an unusual move, the Florida Department of Children & Families will release 22 documents, generally kept confidential due to privacy concerns, pertaining to a 2016 case involving Nikolas Cruz, the 19-year-old school shooter charged with 17 counts of first-degree murder.

DCF attorney John Jackson successfully petitioned a court to ...Read more

9-year-old boy shot while waiting at St. Louis bus stop with his mother

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ST. LOUIS -- A 9-year-old boy was conscious and breathing at a hospital after he was shot Sunday afternoon in St. Louis.

The boy's mother said she was waiting with her three sons -- ages 1, 3 and 9 -- at a bus stop near the intersection of North Grand Boulevard and Montgomery Street about 3 p.m. when she heard gunshots.

The 9-year-old boy was ...Read more

Street sweeper hits, kills pedestrian near construction site

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SEATTLE -- A street sweeper Monday morning backed over and killed a pedestrian who was walking on the side of the road because of construction, Bellevue, Wash., police said.

There is no sidewalk at 120th Avenue Northeast near Northeast 12th Street, where a large apartment building, taking up a city block, is being built, according to Officer ...Read more

Parkland school shooter makes first live appearance in court

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Shackled and wearing a red jump suit, school shooter Nikolas Cruz made his first live appearance in a Broward County circuit court five days after he walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High and fatally shot 17 people in the worst school shooting in Florida history.

Cruz, a slightly built teen, did not say anything and...Read more

Inyo County fire grows to 2,800 acres; evacuation orders still in place

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Evacuation orders were still in effect Monday morning as firefighters tried to gain ground on a wind-fueled, 2,800-acre blaze burning in rural Inyo County.

About 400 firefighters worked to contain the so-called Pleasant fire, which broke out Sunday afternoon near the Pleasant Valley Reservoir and Highway 395. But Monday's forecast -- ...Read more

Should National Guard patrol N.C. prisons? Lawmakers urge Gov. Cooper to consider it

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper should consider deploying the North Carolina National Guard to provide emergency help for the state's critically understaffed prisons, two lawmakers say.

A recent Observer investigation found that staff shortages in the state's prisons have climbed to dangerous levels over the past two years, ...Read more

White House: Trump 'supportive' of better background checks for gun buyers

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WASHINGTON -- The White House said Monday that President Donald Trump was "supportive" of efforts to improve the system of background checks for people who seek to buy guns in the United States.

In a statement, the White House said Trump spoke to Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) on Friday to discuss a bipartisan bill Cornyn is co-sponsoring that ...Read more

Nikolas Cruz's defense team seeks to keep court filings sealed

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Defense lawyers for Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz attempted to keep documents sealed Monday, in a Fort Lauderdale court hearing held without the defendant's presence.

At issue was a motion filed under seal Friday by Cruz's defense team, two days after the shooting that left 17 dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas ...Read more

California Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia encouraged game of 'spin the bottle' among staffers, ex-employee says

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A former staffer to Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) said the lawmaker discussed vulgar topics in the office and once encouraged her aides to play "spin the bottle," according to a filing submitted to the state.

David Kernick alleged in a complaint to the state's Dept. of Fair Employment and Housing that he was terminated from his...Read more

Climate rulebook likely done this year — with or without US

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VIENNA -- The climate rulebook being drafted to keep a lid on Earth's rising temperatures should be finished by the end of the year -- with or without the U.S. government's help.

Countries that ratified the Paris climate agreement meet in Poland in December, where they're expected to put the finishing touches on transparency and verification ...Read more

Trump announces support for improved background check system for gun buyers

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President Donald Trump on Monday announced willingness to consider a modest gun-control proposal introduced last year to strengthen the federal background-check system.

The White House said Trump would consider backing a bill, which had not been opposed by the National Rifle Association, that would require states and federal agencies to produce...Read more