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National News

Congress votes to avert rail strike amid dire warnings

WASHINGTON (AP) — Legislation to avert what could have been an economically ruinous freight rail strike won final approval in Congress on Thursday as lawmakers responded quickly to President Joe Biden's call for federal intervention in a long-running labor dispute. The Senate passed a bill ...

White House state dinner draws names from arts, fashion, biz

WASHINGTON (AP) — The first White House state dinner of President Joe Biden's administration drew big names Thursday from fashion, entertainment, politics and business who turned out to help celebrate French President Emmanuel Macron and the return of large social events after the ...

Biden to Dems: Scrap caucuses, promote diversity in primary

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden says Democrats should move past "restrictive" caucuses and embrace diversity in the order of its presidential nominating calendar, dealing a major blow to Iowa's decadeslong status to hold its leadoff spot in the process. In a letter to the rulemaking ...

Rhode Island latest state to allow recreational pot sales

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Customers started lining up to buy recreational marijuana in Rhode Island on Thursday, a little more than six months after Gov. Dan McKee signed legislation permitting such sales to people 21 and older. Five stores are currently allowed to sell recreational cannabis ...

Royals tour US green tech incubator, meet at-risk youth

SOMERVILLE, Mass. (AP) — The Prince and Princess of Wales got a first-hand look at some groundbreaking innovations at a green technology startup incubator in suburban Boston on Thursday, then made a visit to an organization that for decades has worked to raise up young people struggling amid ...

Groups sue Florida officials over migrant relocation program

MIAMI (AP) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and other officials are being sued in federal court by immigrant rights groups who challenge the constitutionality of the state's migrant relocation program. The suit was filed Thursday by three groups — Florida Immigrant Coalition, Americans for ...

Election certification delays few, but a ‘test run’ for 2024

Before November, election officials prepared for the possibility that Republicans who embraced former President Donald Trump's lies about voter fraud would challenge the verdict of voters by refusing to certify the midterm results. Three weeks after the end of voting, such challenges are ...

Treasury making Trump taxes available to House committee

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Treasury Department said Wednesday it has complied with a court order to make former President Donald Trump's tax returns available to a congressional committee. The Supreme Court last week rejected Trump's request for an order that would have prevented the Treasury ...

Deep South tornado outbreak: 2 dead from twister in the dark

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A twister roaring out of the darkness smashed through a small Alabama community early Wednesday during an outbreak of tornadoes across the Deep South, killing a 39-year-old woman and her 8-year-old son on a street where generations of one family lived. One of dozens ...

Obama historical marker now at Illinois’ Old State Capital

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — A historical marker dedicated Wednesday on the grounds of Illinois' Old State Capitol commemorates the date when then-U.S. Sen. Barack Obama announced his 2008 presidential bid there. The marker standing on the southeast corner of the grounds in downtown Springfield ...

Worker pleads guilty in election equipment tampering case

DENVER (AP) — A former elections manager who prosecutors say assisted in a security breach of voting equipment in a Colorado county pleaded guilty on Wednesday under a plea agreement that requires her to testify against her former boss. Sandra Brown is one of two employees accused of helping ...

Report: California gun data breach was unintentional

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California's Department of Justice mistakenly posted the names, addresses and birthdays of nearly 200,000 gun owners on the internet because officials didn't follow policies or understand how to operate their website, according to an investigation released ...

Hogan raises money amid speculation of White House bid

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Term-limited Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan raised money and launched a political action committee on Wednesday amid speculation he will run for president in 2024, telling hundreds of supporters he'll make a decision after he leaves office in January. Hogan has positioned ...

Amazon says it had its biggest Thanksgiving shopping weekend

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon said Wednesday it had its biggest ever Thanksgiving holiday shopping weekend, aided by a record number of consumers looking for deals online amid high inflation. The e-commerce company does not typically share how much it earns during its sales events and did not ...

DoorDash cuts 1,250 jobs after pandemic hiring surge

DoorDash is eliminating about 1,250 corporate jobs, or about 6% of its workforce, saying it hired too many people when delivery demand surged during the COVID-19 pandemic. CEO Tony Xu said in a message to employees Wednesday that DoorDash was undersized before the pandemic and sped up hiring ...

Higher food prices worsen hunger crisis this holiday season

WASHINGTON (AP) — Staffers at Bread for the City, a venerable charity in the nation's capital, thought they were prepared for this year's annual pre-Thanksgiving Holiday Helpers food giveaway. The pandemic had faded, but inflation was high, so they budgeted to give out 12,000 meals, 20% ...

Puerto Rico extends power contract amid outages, objections

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A heavily criticized private company that operates the transmission and distribution of power in Puerto Rico secured a last-minute extension on its contract Wednesday despite widespread objections. Luma Energy obtained the extension following a 4-1 vote by the ...

Powell: Fed to keep rates higher for longer to cut inflation

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve will push rates higher than previously expected and keep them there for an extended period, Chair Jerome Powell said Wednesday in remarks likely intended to underscore the Fed's single-minded focus on combating stubborn inflation. Yet in a speech at the ...

Police: Deputy posed as teen online to sexually extort girl

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) — A Virginia sheriff's deputy posed as a 17-year-old boy online and asked a teenage California girl for nude photos before he drove across the country and killed her mother and grandparents and set fire to their home, authorities said Wednesday. Austin Lee Edwards, 28, ...

Ex-FTX CEO says he didn’t ‘knowingly’ misuse clients’ funds

NEW YORK (AP) — The former CEO of the failed cryptocurrency exchange FTX said Wednesday that he did not "knowingly" misuse customers' funds, and said he believes his millions of angry customers will eventually be made whole. The comments from Sam Bankman-Fried came during an interview with ...