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House Democrats float tax compromises in coronavirus relief talks

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WASHINGTON - House Democrats are offering several concessions to Republicans on pandemic-related tax items, including a temporary fix to the thorny problem of how teleworkers and others who work in multiple states during the pandemic should be taxed.

That pitch is part of a collection of tax proposals in a document obtained by CQ Roll Call that...Read more

Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times/TNS

California has escaped the national surge in coronavirus cases. But new dangers lie ahead

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SAN FRANCISCO - California has largely avoided a new wave of coronavirus cases that has sparked alarm elsewhere in the country, but the state faces new dangers in the coming weeks as key businesses reopen and the holidays arrive.

In what health experts describe as a significant achievement, California over the last two months has managed to ...Read more

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Can ordinary COVID-19 patients get the Trump treatment?

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When Terry Mutter woke up with a headache and sore muscles on a recent Wednesday, the competitive weightlifter chalked it up to a hard workout.

By that evening, though, he had a fever of 101 degrees and was clearly ill. "I felt like I had been hit by a truck," recalled Mutter, who lives near Seattle.

The next day he was diagnosed with COVID-19...Read more

Liz O. Baylen/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Purdue Pharma to pay $8 billion to settle US opioid probe

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Purdue Pharma LP has agreed to an $8 billion settlement with the U.S. Justice Department to resolve federal probes of how it marketed OxyContin, the addictive painkiller blamed for helping to spark the opioid epidemic, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The Justice Department is expected to hold a morning press conference to ...Read more

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Doctors fight 'infodemic' with Americans seeing virus as a hoax

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There's a no shortage of what President Donald Trump might call fake news about the coronavirus floating around social media, with plenty of it coming from his own Twitter account. That's a problem for a growing number of U.S. doctors.

When the virus first hit the U.S., Trump said it would disappear "like a miracle." He's since touted unproven ...Read more

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A jailed Philippine activist is forced to attend her infant's funeral in handcuffs and a hazmat suit

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MANILA, Philippines - The infant girl lay in a white coffin adorned with purple and yellow flowers, a ceramic bunny and pink slippers.

Her name was River. She was born into poverty, the daughter of Reina Mae Nasino, a 23-year-old activist in one of Manila's most desperate slums, who was arrested last year as part of the Philippine government's ...Read more

Francine Orr/Los Angeles Times/TNS

California's homeless students could fill Dodger Stadium 5 times, study finds

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LOS ANGELES - There were at least 269,000 K-12 students in California experiencing homelessness at the end of the 2018-19 school year - enough children and teens to fill Dodgers Stadium five times over - and that number was likely a gross underestimate, a UCLA report said.

In the face of pandemic-related job losses and economic instability, ...Read more

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Postal Service didn't examine service impacts before making cuts, IG report says

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WASHINGTON - The independent watchdog of the U.S. Postal Service has issued a report criticizing service reductions implemented in June and July under Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, asserting that there was no consideration of the effects the cutbacks would have before they were put in place.

"No analysis of the service impacts of these ...Read more

Youngrae Kim/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Chicago 7 prosecutor: 'They were going to try to destroy our trial. And they did a damn good job'

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CHICAGO - Even five decades later, former federal prosecutor Dick Schultz has a pretty good idea of when the legendary Chicago 7 trial started to go off the rails: during the testimony of the very first witness.

That day in September 1969, U.S. District Judge Julius Hoffman halted the trial after he was informed that a juror had received a ...Read more

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Activists brace for voter intimidation efforts on Election Day

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WASHINGTON - As a young lawyer for the New Jersey Democratic Party, Angelo Genova quickly realized something was amiss on Election Day in 1981.

"Our team was getting calls left and right," he said. "A lot of it was a blur."

In urban Black communities across New Jersey, large signs had appeared warning that polling places were "patrolled by the...Read more

Pope Francis calls for civil union laws for same-sex couples: 'They are children of God and have a right to a family'

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Pope Francis says same-sex unions need to be legally protected in a stunning departure from the Vatican on the issue.

"Homosexuals have a right to be a part of the family. They're children of God and have a right to a family," Francis said in a new documentary that premiered in Rome Wednesday.

"Nobody should be thrown out, or be made miserable...Read more

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COVID-19 patients swamp rural hospitals

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The nation's pandemic hot spots have shifted to rural communities, overwhelming small hospitals that are running out of beds or lack the intensive care units for more than one or two seriously ill patients.

And in much of the Midwest and Great Plains, hospital workers are catching the virus at home and in their communities, seriously reducing ...Read more

Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Trump California nemesis Nichols on short list to run Biden EPA

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WASHINGTON - If Joe Biden wins the presidency, his EPA chief could be a clean air champion from California who has fought President Donald Trump on automobile pollution or an environmental justice activist from Mississippi.

Biden's campaign has heard recommendations for both California air regulator Mary Nichols and Mississippi's Heather McTeer...Read more

DAVID SANTIAGO/Miami Herald/TNS

Politicians, philanthropists latest working to assure public that election is fair

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WASHINGTON - In the latest in a string of such efforts, a group of prominent political leaders and one of leading philanthropists are trying to spread the word that this election is safe and secure - and will be accurate.

The organizers of these and other campaigns are facing a much more skeptical and worried electorate than usual - thanks to ...Read more