US News

US News
1:37 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

Hagel 'leader our troops deserve'

President Barack Obama to Arizona speaking at Intel's Fab 42, a state of that art chip manufacturing plant under construction in Chandler, AZ on January 25, 2012.
Credit Nick Knupffer / Flickr

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says Chuck Hagel, his choice as the new secretary of defense, is "the leader that our troops deserve."

Obama formally announced his choice of Hagel in the White House East Room on Monday even as critics questioned the pick over issues including Hagel's views on Israel and Iran.

Facing a potentially tough fight to get Hagel confirmed by the Senate, Obama praised the former Nebraska senator's independence and bipartisan approach, and said that Hagel, a Vietnam veteran, understands war is not an abstraction.

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US News
10:07 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Court won't hear campaign finance arguments

US Supreme Court
Credit Rob Crawley / Flickr

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court will not hear an appeal from an anti-abortion group that wanted to be exempted from campaign finance disclosure regulations.

The high court on Monday refused to hear an appeal from The Real Truth About Abortion, Inc., which was formerly called The Real Truth About Obama, Inc. The group wanted to stop the Federal Election Commission and the Justice Department from enforcing fundraising and advertising regulations against it.

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US News
9:57 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Murphy praises Hagel, but balks at how he'll vote

Senator Chuck Hagel speaks as he introduces Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey shortly before they deliver remarks as the keynote speakers at the Forum on the Law of the Sea Convention held at the Willard Intercontinental Washington Hotel, Washington D.C, May 9, 2012.
Credit DoD Photo By Glenn Fawcett

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy has taken a pass on committing to whether he'll vote to confirm President Barack Obama's nomination of Chuck Hagel as Pentagon chief while offering strong praise for the ex-senator.

Murphy said Monday morning that Hagel, a former Republican senator from Nebraska, is a very strong pick. He cited Hagel's service in Vietnam and foreign policy experience.

However, he said he will take his time researching Hagel's record and examine his positions.

Murphy was interviewed on CNN.

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US News
3:19 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

Congress approves $9.7 billion in Sandy flood aid

US Capitol Building, Washington, D.C.
Credit Abir Anwar

WASHINGTON (AP) — The new Congress has passed a $9.7 billion bill to help pay flood insurance claims to homeowners, renters and businesses damaged by Superstorm Sandy.

The bill cleared the Senate following passage earlier Friday by the House. It replenishes the National Flood Insurance Program that was due to run out of money next week with some 115,000 Sandy-related claims as well as 5,000 from other floods unresolved.

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US News
9:46 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Conn. lt. gov.'s office: Giffords meeting planned

Barack Obama with Gabrielle Giffords at the 2012 State of the Union
Credit Pete Souza / White House

NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) — A spokesman says Connecticut's lieutenant governor has been invited to attend a meeting between former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and families of the victims of the deadly Newtown elementary school shooting.

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US News
9:31 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Ex-Rep. Frank on Senate seat: Put me in, governor

WASHINGTON (AP) — Just-retired Rep. Barney Frank says he'd like to serve as a temporary successor to Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry, the secretary of state nominee.

Frank tells MSNBC's "Morning Joe" that he's asked Gov. Deval Patrick to appoint him.

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US News
5:39 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

113th Congress Votes to Curb Filibusters

The House has adopted Republican-written rules for the chamber as partisan differences surfaced on the first day of the 113th Congress.

The Senate put off discussion of its rules so that the Democratic leader could develop a proposal to curb filibusters, and try to win support from minority Republicans.

Traditionally, the House rules package reflects the majority party's legislative positions and is opposed by the minority. The package passed Thursday in a mostly party-line vote of 228-196.

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US News
4:32 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

New tax law packed with breaks for businesses

US Capitol Building

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tucked into the "fiscal cliff" tax package approved by Congress are billions of dollars in tax breaks that should make the new year a lot happier for businesses of many stripes, including film producers, race track owners and the makers of electric motorcycles.

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US News
4:22 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

No TV broadcast of Guantanamo 9/11 trial

Credit The National Guard

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A military judge has denied a request to allow television broadcast coverage of the Guantanamo Bay war crimes tribunal for five men charged in the Sept. 11 attacks.

Defense lawyers requested TV coverage of proceedings at the U.S. base in Cuba. But the Defense Department had authorized only closed-circuit broadcast to several military bases in the northeast U.S.

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US News
2:12 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

House re-elects Boehner speaker

Speaker of the House John Boehner speaking at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, DC.
Credit Gage Skidmore / Flickr

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House has re-elected embattled Republican John Boehner speaker.

The Ohio lawmaker won a second, two-year term as leader with 220 votes, losing just a handful of votes in the Republican-controlled chamber.

The election of the speaker came as the House and Senate ushered in a new Congress Thursday.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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