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Texas appeals after a judge orders the state to implement online voter registration for drivers

May 22, 2018

The legal fight over whether Texas is disenfranchising thousands of voters by violating a federal voter registration law is on its way to federal appeals court.

Just after a federal judge gave Texas less than two months to implement a limited version of online voter registration, the state on Monday formally notified U.S.…

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CIA gets first female chief with confirmation of Gina Haspel

May 18, 2018
WASHINGTON (AP) — Veteran spy Gina Haspel will become the first female director of the CIA after six Democrats joined Republicans in a Senate confirmation vote that overrode concerns about her role in the spy agency’s harsh interrogation program after 9/11.

Thursday’s 54-45 vote split both parties, and the margin was the closest for a CIA nominee in the nearly seven decades that a nod from the Senate has been required.…

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Inmate Executed for San Antonio Lovers’ Lane Killing

May 17, 2018
HUNTSVILLE (AP) — A condemned Texas inmate who insisted he wasn’t involved in a San Antonio “lovers’ lane” killing more than 14 years ago was executed Wednesday evening for the slaying.

Juan Edward Castillo, 36, received lethal injection for the fatal shooting and robbery of a 19-year-old man that testimony showed was carried out by Castillo and several friends on a secluded road where the victim was enticed by the promise of drugs and sex.…

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US has a daunting to-do list to get ready for NKorea summit

May 17, 2018
WASHINGTON (AP) — Who sits where? What’s on the agenda? Will they eat together? What’s the security plan?

President Donald Trump and his team have a daunting to-do list to work through as they prepare for next month’s expected summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Trump’s plan to meet with Kim may have come as a surprise decision, but his team hopes to leave nothing to chance when they come together in Singapore.…

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Texas Sues Maker of OxyContin Over Opioid Epidemic

May 16, 2018

 Attorney General Ken Paxton is leading Texas into a lawsuit against Purdue Pharma for exacerbating the opioid crisis among Texans.

In an announcement Tuesday afternoon, Paxton, a Republican, flanked by several assistant attorney generals, said the state is taking the drug maker to court for misrepresenting the risks of opioid addiction.…

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Homeowners scramble as Hawaii volcano spews ash, lava

May 16, 2018

HONOLULU (AP) — Patricia Deter moved from Oregon to Hawaii to be closer to her two daughters, but the Kilauea volcano burned down her home only a month after she bought it.

Now Deter and others who have recently lost homes to the lava-spewing mountain are on an urgent quest for answers about insurance, desperate to learn whether their coverage will offer any help after molten rock wiped out most of what they owned.…

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North Korea threatens to cancel Trump-Kim summit over drills

May 16, 2018

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea on Wednesday threatened to scrap a historic summit next month between its leader, Kim Jong Un, and U.S. President Donald Trump, saying it has no interest in a “one-sided” affair meant to pressure the North to abandon its nuclear weapons.

The warning by North Korea’s first vice foreign minister came hours after the country abruptly canceled a high-level meeting with South Korea to protest U.S.-South Korean military exercises that the North has long claimed are an invasion rehearsal.…

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How a federal lawsuit could open the door to online voter registration in Texas

May 14, 2018

From Jacquelyn Callanen’s perch in the Bexar County elections office, the period following Texas’ voter registration deadlines is best described as a paper tsunami.

Some of it arrives by mail. Some stacks are delivered by volunteer voter registrars. The secretary of state’s office sends over a handful of boxes filled to the brim.…

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Texas gains 8 rigs as US rig count rises to 1,045

May 12, 2018

HOUSTON (AP) — The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by 13 this week to 1,045.

At this time a year ago there were 885 active rigs.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes reported Friday that 844 rigs drilled for oil this week and 199 for gas.…

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House approves bill to revive Nevada nuclear waste dump

May 11, 2018

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House on Thursday approved an election-year bill to revive the mothballed nuclear waste dump at Nevada’s Yucca Mountain despite opposition from home-state lawmakers.

Supporters say the bill would help solve a nuclear-waste storage problem that has festered for more than three decades. More than 80,000 metric tons of spent fuel from commercial nuclear power plants sit idle in 121 communities across 39 states.…

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