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Trump was present for National Enquirer hush-money plan, source says

Current News / News & Features /

NEW YORK -- Federal prosecutors said this week that at least one unidentified member of Donald Trump's campaign joined his lawyer Michael Cohen and the publisher of the tabloid National Enquirer, David Pecker, in a 2015 scheme to kill unflattering news stories about the then-candidate as he sought the presidency.

The other individual present ...Read more

Trump increasingly isolated as aides leave, friends flip and investigations advance

Current News / News & Features /

WASHINGTON -- It was almost noon Thursday when a Marine suddenly appeared outside the West Wing doors, a sign that President Donald Trump had belatedly reported to the Oval Office.

For the second day in a row, the president had been in the White House residence all morning, fuming about federal investigations that have moved closer to him -- ...Read more

Mongols biker gang found guilty in racketeering case, moving government closer to seizing trademark

Current News / News & Features /

SANTA ANA, Calif. -- A jury found the Mongols motorcycle club guilty in a federal racketeering case, a verdict that moves the U.S. government a step closer to its goal of seizing the gang's trademarked insignia.

The jury reached its decision Thursday after deliberating for six days over evidence heard in a monthlong trial in a Santa Ana ...Read more

What do dying people really talk about at the end of life?

Current News / News & Features /

It is common wisdom that nobody ever wished he'd spent more time at the office when he's at death's door.

That certainly makes sense, but Michael Ent, a social psychologist at Towson University, did what researchers do when confronted with unproven beliefs. He wondered if it was true. Then he tried to find out.

He and Mary Gergis, a nurse who ...Read more

Nation and world news briefs

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White House to officially delay China tariff hike to March, sources say

WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration is making official its decision to delay until March 1 a tariff hike on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25 percent from 10 percent, according to two people familiar with the matter.

A notice in the Federal Register is expected ...Read more

High-level Russian spy or hapless collateral damage? The curious case of Maria Butina

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WASHINGTON -- Even after she pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiring to help the Russian government exert influence over American politicians and operatives, the question remains open whether the case against Maria Butina is the stuff of a James Bond script or just the story of a naive Russian grad student.

Either way, the 30-year-old gun rights ...Read more

In Honduras, crime is down but life is hard and jobs are few

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SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras -- Less than a decade ago, when Honduras was the homicide capital of the world and this industrial city was the homicide capital of Honduras, the neighborhood of Rivera Hernandez was usually deserted after dark. Residents cowered in their homes, hiding from murderous gangs.

Today, there is less to fear. On a recent warm...Read more

Broward County sheriff: 'I have done nothing that would warrant my resignation'

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Despite growing calls in Tallahassee for his resignation, Broward Sheriff Scott Israel is adamant -- he's not going anywhere.

"I have done nothing that would warrant my resignation and have absolutely no intentions of resigning," he said. "I am committed to BSO and the safety of Broward County. I will remain sheriff for...Read more

PG&E highlights bullet-riddled equipment and downed tree branches near Camp fire in letter to state regulators

Current News / News & Features /

LOS ANGELES -- Just days after a lawsuit blamed a utility giant's faulty equipment for California's deadliest wildfire on record, the company has submitted a letter to regulators saying it found bullet-riddled equipment and felled branches on power lines elsewhere within the fire's massive footprint.

In a letter sent to the California Public ...Read more

Many victims of California's worst wildfire were elderly and unable to escape

Current News / News & Features /

LOS ANGELES -- Rose Farrell is the oldest victim of the devastating Camp fire to be identified so far. She was 99, and she died inside her home on Herman Road in Paradise.

Evva Holt, 85, died inside a pickup truck after she was evacuated from Feather Canyon Gracious Retirement Living. She made it only a mile.

Richard Brown, who was 74 when the...Read more

Quoting 'The Lorax,' judges reject pipeline's effort to cross Appalachian Trail

Current News / News & Features /

A federal appeals has thrown out another key permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, increasing the likelihood that work on the 604-mile multistate project could be held up until this summer if not longer.

The appeals court in Richmond, Va., on Thursday invalidated a federal permit for the planned pipeline to cross 21 miles of national forest ...Read more

EU to step up plans for no-deal Brexit as bloc plays hardball with May

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BRUSSELS -- European leaders rebuffed Theresa May's pleas to help her sell the Brexit agreement to a skeptical U.K. Parliament, toughening their stance as they stepped up planning for a chaotic no-deal divorce.

May had come to Brussels hoping to secure some additional "assurances" on the most controversial part of her Brexit deal -- the so-...Read more

Angry over Khashoggi killing, Senate demands end to US role in Yemen war

Current News / News & Features /

WASHINGTON -- The Republican-controlled Senate on Thursday took the rare step of defying President Donald Trump, invoking its war powers authority for the first time to demand a halt to U.S. participation in the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

Seven Republicans joined all Senate Democrats to demand, by a vote of 56-41, ending U.S. support for Saudi ...Read more

In Michigan, Wisconsin and elsewhere, losers seek to undermine election results

Current News / News & Features /

Democrat Gavin Newsom has yet to become California governor, but already a candidate for state Republican Party chairman is promoting a recall effort.

In Michigan and Wisconsin, GOP lawmakers have rushed through legislation to thwart their incoming Democratic governors and hamper others in the opposing party from doing the jobs voters chose ...Read more

Nationwide email bomb threat prompts wide-reaching evacuations and police responses

Current News / News & Features /

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- A bomb threat email sent far and wide, threatening massive destruction unless the sender was paid in bitcoin, has prompted building evacuations across the country even as several authorities declared it is likely a hoax.

San Francisco police were among the agencies responding to several threats received via email Thursday, ...Read more

White House to officially delay China tariff hike to March, sources say

Current News / News & Features /

WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration is making official its decision to delay until March 1 a tariff hike on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25 percent from 10 percent, according to two people familiar with the matter.

A notice in the Federal Register is expected to be published on Friday, the people said. The decision cements an ...Read more

Senate has 'too many embarrassing uncles,' McCaskill says in farewell speech

Current News / News & Features /

WASHINGTON -- In her final floor speech, Sen. Claire McCaskill said Thursday that her surviving colleagues should stop calling the Senate "the world's greatest deliberative body" because so much power has been concentrated in the leadership.

In a sometimes teary 10-minute speech, the Missouri Democrat said the Senate had "too many embarrassing ...Read more

9th Circuit backs injunction on rules excusing nonprofits from providing contraceptive coverage

Current News / News & Features /

SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court in a 2-1 decision Thursday upheld an injunction preventing the Trump administration from broadly excusing nonprofits and others from having to provide contraceptive coverage to workers, but limited the order to five states.

The Trump administration, responding to myriad lawsuits challenging the ...Read more

Unveiling new Africa strategy, US blasts 'predatory' practices of China, Russia

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WASHINGTON -- The White House on Thursday accused China and Russia of using "predatory" practices to exploit Africa, a part of the world that President Donald Trump has largely ignored and frequently mocked.

John Bolton, Trump's national security adviser, said China lures African governments into expensive infrastructure projects that hide the ...Read more

Suspected France gunman killed; Islamic State claims responsibility for attack

Current News / News & Features /

STRASBOURG, France -- The gunman who carried out the deadly shooting at a Christmas market in the French city of Strasbourg was an Islamic State soldier, the terrorist group's Amaq news agency said late Thursday.

The report came hours after police confirmed the death of Cherif Chekatt, the suspected gunman in Tuesday's shooting.

Chekatt, a 29-...Read more

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