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Bill filed to add rape and incest exemption to Texas’ new abortion restrictions

AUSTIN, Texas — Calling it a “common-sense fix” in response to criticism about the state’s new abortion restrictions, Republican Rep. Lyle Larson of San Antonio has filed a bill to add an exemption to the Texas “Heartbeat Act” for rape and incest ...Read more

Leigh Vogel/Getty Images North America/TNS

Interior's Haaland hints at limits on fossil fuel extraction

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WASHINGTON — Interior Secretary Deb Haaland suggested a sharply limited role for fossil fuel extraction on U.S. federal lands and waters in her most expansive comments yet on the administration’s overhaul of oil and gas leasing.

She said the review would seek to restore balance on uses of 245 million acres (99 million hectares) of ...Read more

Antonio Perez / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Defense and federal prosecutors in R. Kelly case spar over whether singer's sex habits were legal spoils of fame or predatory criminal conspiracy

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NEW YORK — R&B superstar R. Kelly was an international sex symbol known for his playboy lifestyle, but his relationships were consensual and the women who lined up to testify that he sexually abused them are lying to get a payday, Kelly’s lawyer told a federal jury in New York on Thursday.

Pacing the floor of the Brooklyn federal courtroom ...Read more

PAUL RATJE/AFP/Getty Images North America/TNS

'They shouldn't be here': Texas border town reckons with Haitian influx

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DEL RIO, Texas — At the dusty Border Taxi parking lot Thursday, owner Juan Dehoyos wondered aloud when the nearby bridge to Ciudad Acuña, Mexico, would reopen.

The border bridge closed Sept. 17, after U.S. Customs and Border Protection was overwhelmed by the arrival of thousands of Haitian migrants. Each day, Dehoyos loses about $1,000.

He ...Read more

Octavio Jones/Getty Images North America/TNS

Floridians plan memorial service for Gabby Petito in town where she once lived with missing boyfriend

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A weekend memorial for Gabby Petito, featuring the lighting of candles and the release of a single butterfly, was slated for Saturday in the Florida city where her boyfriend returned home alone after the couple’s their cross-country road trip.

Residents of North Port will gather outside City Hall near a tree that has served as the spot for ...Read more

Australian plan to bring back foreign students to exclude Chinese

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A pilot program to allow some international students to return to Australia’s most populous state is likely to exclude Chinese nationals because of rules surrounding vaccination status.

The phased plan was approved by the federal government and the first flight carrying 500 fully-vaccinated international students will arrive in New South ...Read more

Chris Kleponis/Pool/Abaca Press/TNS

Former Trump aides subpoenaed by Capitol riot probe panel

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WASHINGTON — Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and three other of former President Donald Trump’s advisers were subpoenaed Thursday by the select House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

Along with Meadows, subpoenas were sent to former Trump political adviser Steve Bannon, former deputy chief ...Read more

Detroit Free Press/Detroit Free Press/TNS

Will Michigan let 300K doses of COVID-19 vaccines expire?

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DETROIT — More than 300,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines are on the verge of expiring in Michigan as demand for shots wane right as the state stares down what appears to be a fourth surge of cases.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services estimates that about 161,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and between 143,000 and 146...Read more

FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images North America/TNS

Alaska reports a daily record 1,330 coronavirus infections

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Alaska’s unprecedented COVID-19 crisis escalated Thursday with the state reporting seven new deaths, a record 1,330 new cases and a near-record 209 hospitalizations.

It’s the third time in two weeks that the daily record has been broken: The previous highs were recorded Wednesday, with 1,251 cases, and Sept. 15, with 1...Read more

Silas Walker/Lexington Herald-Leader/TNS

COVID-19 appears to plateau in Kentucky but at a rate hospitals can't sustain, Gov. Beshear warns

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19, the week-over-week volume of new cases, and the rate of Kentuckians testing positive for the virus appear to have plateaued, Gov. Andy Beshear said Thursday.

"We are hoping that in the very least we are plateauing," the governor said during his twice-weekly update in Frankfort....Read more

Octavio Jones/Getty Images North America/TNS

Brian Laundrie charged with bank-card fraud in state where Gabby Petito was found

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Florida man Brian Laundrie, whose dead girlfriend’s body was found in a Wyoming park after he returned home alone from a cross-country road trip the two had taken, has been charged with bank-card fraud in that state.

A federal grand jury indictment alleges Laundrie, 23, withdrew or spent more than $1,000 using a Capitol One card after Gabby ...Read more

Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images North America/TNS

McConnell says Democrats have time for go-it-alone vote on debt

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WASHINGTON — Democrats have plenty of time to use a partisan approach to raise the debt ceiling without Republican votes, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said, challenging the argument of a senior House Democrat that the clock had likely run out on that option.

McConnell said on the Senate floor Thursday it would take Democrats “...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS/The Columbus Dispatch/TNS

2 dead, 12 injured in Kroger grocery store shooting in Tennessee, police say

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A shooter killed one person and at least a dozen others were injured Thursday inside a grocery store in Tennessee, officials said.

The shooting happened at a Kroger grocery store in Collierville, a city about 25 miles east of Memphis, about 1:30 p.m., police said during a news conference broadcast by Fox 13. The shooter died from a self-...Read more

Myung J. Chun/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Appeals court strikes down sweeping order to house LA's skid row homeless

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LOS ANGELES — A federal appeals court on Thursday unanimously overturned a judge’s decision that would have required Los Angeles to offer some form of shelter or housing to the entire homeless population of skid row by October.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that U.S. District Judge David O. Carter, who ...Read more

Carlos Gonzalez/TNS/TNS

Minnesota State Patrol disputes accusations of deleting critical records after riot

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MINNEAPOLIS — In a new court filing, the state Department of Public Safety disputes claims that Minnesota state troopers purged critical records to intentionally obscure the behavior of law enforcement's response to last summer's riots.

The state agency also plans to ask a judge to issue a protective order that would stop attorneys for ...Read more

Miami-Dade Corrections/TNS/TNS

Online review leads to arrest of doctor accused of molesting boys in late 1970s in Miami

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MIAMI — Gentry Fry says that he’s suffered childhood post-traumatic stress disorder, all stemming from being molested by a neighbor in his Southwest Miami-Dade neighborhood in the late 1970s. He’s spent decades battling addiction to food and alcohol, he says, and has been sober for four years.

Now 49, he recently Googled that neighbor, ...Read more

Governor's Office photo/Governor's Office photo/TNS

New Florida surgeon general often takes contrary positions on COVID policy, treatment

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — For the first year and a half of the coronavirus pandemic in Florida, it was difficult to heed the advice of Florida’s top health official — Dr. Scott Rivkees — because he rarely publicly shared his views.

That won’t be a problem for Rivkees’ successor. On Tuesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis replaced Rivkees with a new ...Read more


More air rage incidents spur calls for criminal enforcement

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The chair of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee called Thursday for unruly airline passengers to be prosecuted for misbehavior, arguing that fines aren’t doing enough to prevent such incidents.

“We need more prosecutions when there are serious violent incidents on airplanes,” Oregon Democrat Peter A. DeFazio said.

His ...Read more

Drew Angerer/Getty Images North America/TNS

Americans have negative views of all 3 branches of government

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Public opinion of the Supreme Court dropped to its lowest point in two decades after the justices declined to block Texas' controversial abortion law, new polling shows, echoing poor marks for the other branches of government.

Two-fifths of Americans approve of the job the Supreme Court is doing — a sharp decline from July when 49% of people ...Read more

PAUL RATJE/AFP/Getty Images North America/TNS

No more horse patrols in Del Rio, Texas, where Haitian migrants are staying under bridge

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The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has temporarily halted the use of a horse patrol unit along the Del Rio, Texas, border with Mexico amid public outrage over a photo of a mounted U.S. Custom and Border Protection agent chasing Haitian migrants.

The image showed the agent on a horse wielding what appeared to be ropes or reins while ...Read more