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Controlled burns prevent California wildfires, study says. Why aren't there more?

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Experts from Stanford University are calling for more prescribed burns to prevent devastating wildfires in California, pointing to new research that asks why the approach hasn't been pursued more aggressively in the fire-plagued state.

"We need a colossal expansion of fuel treatments," said Stanford doctoral student Rebecca ...Read more

4th person dies of China virus as human transmission is confirmed

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The outbreak of a virus originating in central China entered a new phase of severity as multiple medical workers were reported to have been infected and the death count grew to four people.

The spread to medical workers indicates that the illness is more easily transmitted than previously thought, bringing it to a higher risk level reminiscent ...Read more

Caravan of 3,000 tests Mexico's pact with Trump to stop migrants

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MEXICO CITY -- A caravan of as many as 3,000 migrants is testing Mexico's pledge to President Donald Trump to halt undocumented arrivals to the U.S.

For the first time since Mexico began its full-scale crackdown against migrants, a caravan is clashing with Mexican security forces at the country's southern border. After being turned away at a ...Read more

Feds investigate causes of a norovirus outbreak at Yosemite

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YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. -- Eric Reynolds was sleeping after a day supervising middle-schoolers in Yosemite Valley when he was startled awake by the sound of someone pounding on his cabin door.

"Mr. Reynolds!" one student said. "My roommate just threw up all over the place!"

At first, he assumed it was food poisoning from chicken nuggets...Read more

Nation and world news briefs

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Arrest made in San Antonio bar shooting that killed 2, injured 5

A suspect has been arrested in connection with a deadly shooting at a San Antonio bar on Sunday night that left two dead and five injured, according to police.

Kiernan Christopher Williams, 19, was arrested on Monday afternoon and faces capital murder charges.

San Antonio Police...Read more

Prince's estate quietly dismisses wrongful-death claims

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MINNEAPOLIS -- Prince's estate has dismissed wrongful-death claims against Walgreens pharmacy and a doctor who had prescribed pain medications for the musician before he died of an accidental overdose of fentanyl nearly four years ago.

The dismissals, filed in Carver County District Court over the past several months, almost certainly resulted ...Read more

McConnell's impeachment rules would condense opening arguments, limit evidence

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WASHINGTON -- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday released a resolution setting time limits on the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, and is specifically seeking to limit the number of session days for opening arguments that would begin on Wednesday.

Under text of a procedural resolution that the Senate would vote on ...Read more

Trump's legal team urges Senate to 'swiftly reject' impeachment

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WASHINGTON -- Lawyers for President Donald Trump, who initially sought a lengthy impeachment trial so he could mount a robust public defense, instead urged the Senate on Monday to "swiftly reject" impeachment charges, calling them "deficient on their face" and an "affront to the Constitution."

One day before the impeachment trial begins in ...Read more

Anger grows in Puerto Rico over hidden emergency aid, government corruption

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SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- In a scene reminiscent of Puerto Rico's turbulent summer of 2019, a few hundred protesters gathered on the streets of Old San Juan Monday, banging pots and pans, waving signs and demanding that Gov. Wanda Vazquez step down as anger grows over the botched delivery of emergency aid in the wake of this months' earthquakes. ...Read more

MLK service in Atlanta: Calls for unity, peace amid political discord

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ATLANTA -- The strained politics of 2020 were on full display Monday as Atlanta's African American, religious and political leaders gathered to commemorate what would have been the Rev. Martin Luther King's 91st birthday at his spiritual home of Ebenezer Baptist Church.

That political tension was clear in speeches from members of the King ...Read more

'We've had it in Virginia': Thousands rally against proposed new gun control measures

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RICHMOND, Va. -- Gun rights advocates filled the streets of downtown Richmond and the area around the Virginia statehouse Monday, demanding that lawmakers drop their consideration of several measures to limit gun rights and saying they will not comply with the new laws if passed.

"We ain't going to turn our guns over. We ain't going to register...Read more

2020 Democrats march on MLK Day before renewing campaign battles

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WASHINGTON -- The top Democratic presidential candidates walked arm in arm on Monday to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day in South Carolina, a brief show of unity in an increasingly contentious race.

Standing behind an NAACP banner, the candidates led hundreds down Main Street in Columbia, marching and singing as they headed to the ...Read more

Third person arrested in connection with video of assault on Baltimore police officer

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BALTIMORE -- Baltimore police on Monday said they'd arrested a third person in connection with an assault on a city police officer that was captured on video, showing citizens kicking the officer while he was detaining another man.

In a news release Monday, police said they had arrested 23-year-old Zayne Abdullah of Dundalk in connection with ...Read more

Trump's lawyers say ouster from office would violate Constitution

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WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump's lawyers argued in a trial brief filed Monday that the House of Representatives failed to show a criminal violation and that his conviction in the Senate impeachment trial would fundamentally change the separation of powers outlined in the U.S. Constitution.

The 171-page document, filed with the Senate ...Read more

'I still have hope that she's alive,' mother of missing 5-year-old New Jersey girl says

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BRIDGETON, N.J. -- After walking one more time through the playground where she last saw her 5-year-old daughter, Noema Alavez Perez wondered aloud about her disappearance. She knows so little.

All she knows is that her daughter, Dulce, raced off to play, ran toward someone -- and then she was gone.

There was a witness: Dulce's 3-year-old ...Read more

Fallout from Silicon Valley mobile home eviction threats — widespread fear

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SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The letters warning of a possible eviction that circulated around Westwinds Mobile Home Park this month shook more than homeowners -- fear has rippled out to residents in other parks.

Mobile home owners, worried about their parks closing, flooded local officials and real estate agents with calls, texts and emails.

Martha O'...Read more

Putin outlines sweeping new powers for State Council in shakeup

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President Vladimir Putin proposed giving broad new authority to set the direction of foreign, domestic and economic policy to the State Council as part of the constitutional overhaul he announced last week.

Putin laid out the details of the plan -- widely seen as the Kremlin's effort to lay the groundwork for Putin extending his rule beyond the...Read more

Supreme Court to weigh Pennsylvania, New Jersey challenge to Trump efforts to roll back birth control mandate

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The U.S. Supreme Court will review a Philadelphia federal judge's decision last year to block new Trump administration rules that would have let almost any employer deny female workers no-cost birth control coverage by citing religious and moral objections.

In an order late Friday, the justices said they would consider an appeal from White ...Read more

New Jersey Rep. Andy Kim narrowly flipped a Trump district in 2018. It could be just as close this year

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WASHINGTON -- A few blocks from the Capitol, Andy Kim settled into a small, quiet campaign office, minutes after casting his vote last week to formally send articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate. It was a place for the New Jersey Democratic congressman to reflect.

"I did what I thought was right," said Kim, who ...Read more

How to watch the Senate impeachment trial: Viewer's guide

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The Senate will begin hearing the House impeachment managers' case against President Donald Trump this week on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

In a trial set to begin Tuesday at 1 p.m. EST, the seven Democrats will argue that the president committed "high crimes and misdemeanors" by withholding military aid to pressure ...Read more