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Falcon to challenge Maduro's re-election in Venezuela

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CARACAS, Venezuela -- Venezuelan presidential candidate Henri Falcon will legally challenge the victory of President Nicolas Maduro in the weekend elections, his representative said Wednesday.

Falcon will make the move in the next few days, Claudio Fermin said at a news conference.

Falcon will argue that Maduro violated agreements sealed by ...Read more

Parkland victims sue, calling gun maker and seller complicit in massacre

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- The families of two victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting on Wednesday sued the maker and seller of the weapon used in the rampage, claiming they should be held partially responsible for what Nikolas Cruz did with it.

The parents of Jaime Guttenberg and Alex Schachter want a judge to clear the way for them to...Read more

Border Patrol agent fatally shoots female migrant, official says

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EDINBURG, Texas -- A Border Patrol agent shot and killed a female migrant while patrolling the border town of Rio Bravo, Texas, late Wednesday afternoon, officials said.

The agent was responding to reports of activity in the town about 15 miles south of Laredo when he encountered a group of migrants who he said beat him with two-by-fours, ...Read more

Trump again assails 'animals' at NY forum on immigrant gang violence

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BETHPAGE, N.Y. -- President Donald Trump on Wednesday reaffirmed his condemnation of immigrant gang members as "animals" as he pressed his call for tougher border security at a Long Island forum with public officials and victims' parents.

He also threatened to cut foreign aid to the immigrants' countries of origin unless those nations do more ...Read more

Trump blocking his critics on Twitter violates First Amendment, judge rules

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President Donald Trump has made directing scorn on Twitter a defining feature of his presidency. But when the animus is leveled back at him, the nation's leader has a habit of silencing those critics by blocking them.

Now a federal judge says Trump has to face the heat, ruling that the president and his staff blocking anyone on Twitter is ...Read more

Parkland student David Hogg calls for 'die-in' protest at Publix supermarkets

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- One of the most visible Parkland activists is calling for a "die-in" at Publix supermarkets Friday to protest its donations to Florida gubernatorial candidate Adam Putnam, whose pro-gun stance gets him a top rating from the National Rifle Association.

David Hogg, who helped galvanize the "March for Our Lives" movement ...Read more

Anti-Castro militant Luis Posada Carriles is dead at 90

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MIAMI -- Luis Posada Carriles, the Cuban exile militant who left no bomb or bullet unturned in a fruitless four-decade-long series of attempts to kill Fidel Castro, died early Wednesday after a long battle with throat cancer.

Probably the last of an aging cadre of Miami exiles who pursued Castro with a violent vengeance -- at first with the not...Read more

Obama Presidential Center gets green light from full Chicago City Council

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CHICAGO -- Culminating a three-year campaign by the Obama Foundation, the Chicago City Council on Wednesday approved measures to allow construction of the Obama Presidential Center.

The approval, which came on a 47-1 vote, means the foundation can move forward into federal reviews of the project with city support as a badge of endorsement.

No ...Read more

Democratic Party operatives craft Trump-Mueller message for 2018 elections

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WASHINGTON -- How can Democrats most effectively rally support for Robert Mueller's investigation of the Trump team's ties to Russia?

Remind the public -- which mostly thinks the probe has failed to uncover potential crimes -- that the monthslong investigation has yielded almost two dozen indictments so far, a group of top Democratic operatives...Read more

Judge orders top Pentagon lawyer to testify about alleged meddling in the 9/11 case

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The judge in the Sept. 11 trial ordered the Pentagon's top lawyer and the fired Guantanamo war court overseer on Wednesday to testify in July in a defense bid to get the death-penalty case dismissed for alleged outside meddling by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

At issue is whether Mattis' surprise firing on Feb. 5 of Harvey Rishikof, the ...Read more

Democrats join Koch group to revamp veterans programs

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WASHINGTON -- Democrats for years have seen the conservative Koch Brothers as political enemies. Former Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid even called them "un-American."

But Wednesday, Senate Democrats teamed up with Republicans to pass major veterans health care legislation championed by the Kochs.

The Koch-funded Concerned Veterans for ...Read more

Voters challenge Ohio congressional map as partisan gerrymander

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WASHINGTON -- Civil rights groups and Ohio voters filed a lawsuit Wednesday challenging the state's congressional districts as unconstitutional, as the Supreme Court readies decisions in similar cases about whether maps can be rejected if they entrench an advantage for one party.

The lawsuit, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union in U.S. ...Read more

After nipple controversy, Florida school district wants dress-code change

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BRADENTON, Fla. -- The School District of Manatee County will recommend a slight revision to its dress code after a high school student went to class without a bra and was then told to cover her nipples on April 2, according to a letter sent to the American Civil Liberties Union on Wednesday.

In a letter dated April 30, members of the ACLU ...Read more

Iran's Khamenei says US will lose like cat in Tom and Jerry

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei expressed defiance of the U.S. with a side order of American pop culture, invoking the cat-and-mouse adventures of Tom and Jerry.

"The U.S. has tried various political, economic, military and propaganda undertakings to hit the Islamic Republic" throughout its four ...Read more

Capitol Police officer indicted on rape, child abuse, assault charges

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WASHINGTON -- A United States Capitol Police officer has been indicted on 11 charges including rape, child abuse and assault.

The officer, William Wright, 46, his 67-year-old father, Joshua Wright, and his 40-year-old brother-in-law, Donald Jackson, sexually abused four females between the ages of 15 and 18 from 2001 to 2008 who were involved ...Read more

Pentagon bars China from joining naval exercise in the Pacific

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WASHINGTON -- The Pentagon on Wednesday withdrew an invitation to China to participate in a major Pacific naval exercise, citing Beijing's "continued militarization" of the South China Sea, adding another irritant to relations between the two nations as they jostle over trade and North Korea.

The Trump administration move comes days after China...Read more

3 people found dead in South LA home

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LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles police were searching for a person of interest Wednesday morning after the bodies of three people were found in a home in the Leimert Park neighborhood the night before, authorities said.

Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department's Southwest Division found the bodies of two men and one woman at a home on South ...Read more

Authorities arrest dozens in probe of Mexican Mafia control in LA County jails

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LOS ANGELES -- Federal authorities Wednesday unveiled a sweeping investigation into the Mexican Mafia and the control the criminal organization wields inside Los Angeles County jails, arresting dozens of the groups' members and associates for a litany of crimes.

Hundreds of local police and federal agents carried out coordinated morning raids, ...Read more

Kushner finally gets full White House security clearance after downgrade

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WASHINGTON -- Jared Kushner has received his full security clearance after more than a year of delay and controversy, removing a hurdle to his continued service as a key adviser to President Donald Trump, his father-in-law.

Kushner lost his access to top-secret intelligence in February, an embarrassing setback for a senior White House official ...Read more

More Sandy Hook families, FBI agent file lawsuit against Infowars' Alex Jones

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HARTFORD, Conn. -- An active FBI agent who responded to the Sandy Hook Elementary School during the December 2012 school shooting is joining a group of families of children killed inside the school in suing controversial talk show host Alex Jones for claiming the shooting was a hoax.

The defamation lawsuit filed in Connecticut Wednesday mirrors...Read more