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Some of the rioters who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, are trying to profit from their participation in the deadly insurrection while they face the legal consequences for their crimes. In some cases, rioters have used the attack as a platform for promoting their business endeavors, political aspirations or social media profiles. Many of those charged have used websites and crowdfunding platforms to raise money after their arrests. Efforts to capitalize on the riot haven’t gone over well with federal prosecutors or the judges who've sentenced more than 200 riot defendants so far. Prosecutors often cite the profit-chasing activities in seeking tougher punishments.

Sunday, August 14, 2022

Some of the rioters who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, are trying to profit from their participation in the deadly insurrection while they face the legal consequences for their crimes. In some cases, rioters have used the attack as a platform for promoting their business endeavors, political aspirations or social media profiles. Many of those charged have used websites and crowdfunding platforms to raise money after their arrests. Efforts to capitalize on the riot haven’t gone over well with federal prosecutors or the judges who've sentenced more than 200 riot defendants so far. Prosecutors often cite the profit-chasing activities in seeking tougher punishments.

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Author Salman Rushdie has been taken off a ventilator and is able to talk, a day after being stabbed as he prepared to give a lecture. Rushdie's agent confirmed information contained in a tweet by another author Saturday. Earlier in the day, the man accused in the attack in upstate New York pleaded not guilty to attempted murder and assault charges. A judge ordered Hadi Matar held without bail after the district attorney told her Matar took steps to purposely put himself in position to harm Rushdie. Rushdie, the renowned author of “The Satanic Verses” remains hospitalized with serious injuries.

Ukrainian officials say Russia’s military shelled residential areas across Ukraine. They also say their own fighters have damaged the last working bridge over a river in occupied southern Ukraine, hurting Russia's ability to resupply its military. The mayor of the eastern city of Kramatorsk said a Russian rocket attack killed three people and wounded 13 others Friday night. Further west, a governor reported more Russian shelling of a city not far from Europe’s largest nuclear power plant. Ukrainian military intelligence alleged that Russian troops have shelled the nuclear plant. The Russian Defense Ministry, meanwhile, claimed Saturday its forces had taken control of a village on the outskirts of the eastern city of Donetsk.

The flagship climate change and health care bill passed by Democrats and soon to be signed by President Joe Biden will bring U.S. taxpayers one step closer to a government-operated electronic free-file tax return system. It’s something lawmakers and advocates have been seeking for years. For many Americans, it’s frustrating that beyond having to pay sometimes hefty tax bills, they also have to shell out additional money for tax preparation programs or preparers because of an increasingly complex U.S. tax system. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen says, “It’s definitely something we should do, and when the IRS is adequately resourced, it’s something that will happen."

Thousands of U.K. train drivers have walked off the job in a 24-hour strike over jobs, pay and conditions, scuppering services across much of the country. The walkout is the latest in a spreading series of strikes by British workers seeking substantial raises to offset soaring prices for food and fuel. Weekend workers, soccer fans heading for games and families heading for the seaside are among those having to change their plans on Saturday. Railway staff held a series of one-day strikes in June and July and plan more walkouts next week. Postal workers, lawyers, British Telecom staff, dock workers and garbage collectors have all announced walkouts for later this month.

Friday, August 12, 2022

Democrats have pushed their landmark climate and health care bill through Congress, handing an election-year victory to President Joe Biden. The House approved the bill over solid Republican opposition Friday, five days after the Senate did the same. The vote means a win for Biden that until late July seemed out of reach. The package is much smaller than Biden's original environment and social legislation that failed in Congress last year. But after long, bitter talks, Democrats agreed to a smaller but still substantive compromise. It includes Washington's biggest ever effort on climate change, pharmaceutical price curbs and tax boosts on big corporations, long-held party goals.

A federal judge has reinstated a moratorium on coal leasing from federal lands that was imposed under former President Barack Obama and then scuttled under former President Donald Trump. Friday’s ruling from U.S. District Judge Brian Morris requires government officials to complete a new environmental review of the leasing program before they can resume coal sales. It marks a major setback for the already struggling coal industry. Few leases were sold in recent years as coal demand shrank drastically. But coal from existing leases remains a major contributor of planet-warming emissions. The industry’s opponents had urged Morris to revive the moratorium to ensure coal can’t make a comeback as climate change worsens.

With inflation raging near its highest level in four decades, the House gave final approval to President Joe Biden’s landmark Inflation Reduction Act. Its title raises a tantalizing question: Will the measure actually do what it says? Economic analyses suggest that the answer is likely no — not anytime soon, anyway. The legislation, which now heads to the White House for Biden's signature, won’t directly address some of the main drivers of surging prices — from gas and food to rents and restaurant meals. Still, over time, the bill could save money for some Americans by lessening the cost of certain prescription drugs for the elderly, extending health insurance subsidies and reducing energy prices.

Stocks are closing higher on Wall Street, giving the S&P 500 its first 4-week winning streak since November. The benchmark index gained 1.7% Friday, and other indexes also rose. Technology stocks drove much the broad rally. Inflation cooled more than expected last month, sending stocks higher. Investors see a greater chance inflation may have peaked, allowing the Federal Reserve to be less aggressive with its rate hikes than it has been this year. Crude oil prices fell, while bond yields were mixed.

An unprecedented drought is afflicting nearly half of Europe. It is damaging agriculture, forcing water restrictions, causing wildfires and threatening aquatic species. Water levels are falling on major rivers such as the Danube, the Rhine and the Po, endangering shipping. There hasn't been significant rainfall for almost two months in the continent's western, central and southern regions. Britain on Friday declared a drought across southern and central England amid one of the driest summers on record. Human-caused global warming is exacerbating conditions as hotter temperatures speed up evaporation and reduced snowfall limits fresh water supplies for irrigation. One French farmer has already started using his stores of winter fodder for his dairy cows as the grass turns brown.

Health officials say it is possible that hundreds of people in New York state have gotten polio and don’t know it. The pronouncement came Friday after they said the virus that causes the potentially deadly disease has been detected in New York City’s wastewater. Authorities say the presence of the virus in wastewater suggests that it is circulating locally. They are urging parents to get their children vaccinated. One person suffered paralysis weeks ago because of a polio infection north of the city. Most people infected with polio have no symptoms but can still give the virus to others for days or weeks.

A ship has docked in a Ukrainian Black Sea port to begin loading wheat for hungry people in Ethiopia. That would be the first food delivery to Africa under a U.N.-brokered plan to unblock grain trapped by Russia’s war on Ukraine and bring relief to some of the millions worldwide on the brink of starvation. For months, fighting and a Russian blockade meant grain produced in Ukraine, known as the world’s breadbasket, piled up in silos. In recent days, several ships carrying grain have left Ukrainian ports under the new deal — but those shipments were animal feed and went to previous buyers. The ship named Brave Commander will carry its wheat to Djibouti, where it will be unloaded and sent on to Ethiopia.

Friday, August 12, 2022

The sprawling economic package passed by the U.S. Senate this week has a certain West Virginia flavor. There’s the focus on energy, including billions of dollars in incentives for clean energy but also renewed support for traditional fuel sources such as coal and natural gas.

Thursday, August 11, 2022

U.S. gas prices have dipped under $4 a gallon for the first time in more than five months. AAA says the national average is $3.99 for a gallon of regular. That's down 15 cents in just the last week, and 68 cents in the last month. Gasoline peaked at around $5.02 a gallon on June 14. Motorists in California and Hawaii are still paying above $5, and other states in the West are paying close to that. The cheapest gas is in Texas and several other states in the South and Midwest. The decline reflects falling prices for crude oil, which have dipped close to $90 a barrel from over $120 a barrel in June.

The nation’s top public health agency is relaxing its COVID-19 guidelines and dropping the recommendation that Americans quarantine themselves if they come into close contact with an infected person. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also said Thursday that people no longer need to stay at least 6 feet away from others. The changes come more than 2 1/2 years after the start of the pandemic. They are driven by a recognition that an estimated 95% of Americans 16 and older have acquired some level of immunity, either from being vaccinated or infected.

WILMINGTON, Ohio — An armed man clad in body armor who tried to breach the FBI’s Cincinnati office on Thursday was shot and killed by police after he fled the scene and engaged in an hourslong standoff in a rural part of the state, the Ohio State Highway Patrol said.

Canada arguably has the world’s most permissive euthanasia rules, but human rights advocates say those regulations devalue the lives of disabled people. They say the regulations also are prompting doctors and health workers to suggest the procedure to those who might not otherwise consider it. Families say that has led to disturbing conversations and controversial deaths. The current law allows people with serious disabilities to choose to be killed in the absence of any other medical issue. Next year, Canada is set to allow people to be killed exclusively for mental health reasons. Some critics say the system warrants further scrutiny.

In battleground Wisconsin, Donald Trump’s pick for governor defeated the favorite of the Republican establishment. In Connecticut, a state where compassionate conservatism was born, a Senate candidate who promoted Trump’s election lies prevailed over the state GOP’s preference. And in Washington, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell joined congresswoman and conspiracy theorist Marjorie Taylor Greene in defending Trump against an unprecedented FBI search. That was only this week. As the 2022 midterm season enters its final phase, the Republicans on the November ballot are tied to the divisive former president as never before — whether they like it or not.

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

President Joe Biden has signed veterans health care legislation that ends a long battle to expand benefits for troops who served near toxic “burn pits.” The ceremony Wednesday at the White House was a personal matter for Biden. His son Beau was a major in the Delaware Army National Guard, and he died of cancer after his service in Iraq. Burn pits were used in Iraq and Afghanistan to dispose of chemicals, cans, plastics, medical equipment and human waste. The legislation will help veterans get disability payments without having to prove their illness was the result of their service. Other health care services will be expanded as well.

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump was being questioned under oath Wednesday in the New York attorney general’s long-running civil investigation into his business dealings as a flurry of legal activity surrounds the former president.

Tuesday, August 09, 2022

There are legions of fans of Spider-Man, who this month marks 60 years in the vast, imaginative world of comic books, movies and merch. The fans say Spider-Man character’s classic costume, complete with wide-eyed and web-patterned mask, is a key ingredient to the character’s appeal across race, gender and nationality. Almost anyone can imagine themselves behind it as this everyman — an underestimated smartypants who, after a quick change into head-to-toe spandex, becomes a force for good. Because of this appeal, says Angélique Roché, an author and host of the “Marvel’s Voices” podcast, “we should be open to the possibilities” of diverse representations of the beloved superhero.

A federal appeals court is siding with Congress in a fight over former President Donald Trump's tax returns. A three-judge appeals panel ruled Tuesday that Congress has broad authority to request Trump's tax records and that the Treasury Department should provide them. The House Ways and Means panel is seeking Trump’s tax returns as part of an investigation into the Internal Revenue Service’s audit program and tax law compliance. The committee said that it expects to receive the requested tax documents ”immediately.” It wasn’t immediately clear whether Trump would appeal the court's decision.

Serena Williams says she is preparing to step away from tennis after winning 23 Grand Slam titles, turning her focus to having another child and her business interests. “I’m turning 41 this month, and something’s got to give,” Williams wrote in an essay released Tuesday by Vogue magazine. Williams said she does not like the word retirement and prefers to think of this stage of her life as “evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me.” Williams is playing this week in Toronto, at a hard-court tournament that leads into the U.S. Open. The year’s last Grand Slam event begins in New York on Aug. 29.

WASHINGTON — The FBI searched Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate as part of an investigation into whether he took classified records from the White House to his Florida residence, people familiar with the matter said, a dramatic and unprecedented escalation of law enforcement scrutiny of the f…

A Kentucky man accused of killing three officers in an ambush while police were serving a protective order has pleaded not guilty to 20 charges. News outlets report 49-year-old Lance Storz appeared in Floyd Circuit Court on Monday to answer the charges. Police say Storz opened fire on a group of officers June 30 at his home. Storz was indicted last month by a grand jury on three counts of murder of a police officer and six counts of attempted murder of an officer. He was also indicted on seven counts of wanton endangerment, three counts of assault and one count of assaulting a service animal.

Billions of dollars in investments are pouring into companies changing the recipe for plastic. Plastics are typically made with natural gas or crude oil as its basic carbon building block. Making these plastics out of hydrocarbons in petrochemical plants release millions of tons of carbon dioxide annually. Bioplastics plants using renewable materials such as corn, sugar and cooking oil have been built around the world to produce a more environmentally safe plastic. Some bioplastic can dissolve in water or soil under correct conditions while other types can be biodegraded in large industrial composters. Market share for bioplastics is expected to nearly triple by 2028.

LOST CREEK, Ky. — President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden on Monday witnessed the damage from deadly and devastating storms that have resulted in the worst flooding in Kentucky’s history, as they visited the state to meet with families and first responders.

Monday, August 08, 2022

The FBI has searched former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate as part of an investigation into whether he took classified records from the White House to his Florida residence. That's according to people familiar with the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation. Trump says agents broke into his safe in a search he decried as evidence of “dark times for our nation.” The FBI and Justice Department have not confirmed the search. It marks a dramatic escalation in law enforcement scrutiny of Trump and comes amid a separate but intensifying probe into efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

California's last operating nuclear power plant could get a second lease on life. Pacific Gas & Electric decided six years ago to close its twin-domed Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant by 2025. But Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom — who was involved in the agreement to close the reactors — has prompted PG&E to consider seeking a longer lifespan for the plant. Newsom worries about possible power shortages as the state transitions to solar and other renewable sources. But it's not clear if the utility wants to back out of the complex closing deal that involved environmentalists and unions, or if it even could.

Sunday, August 07, 2022

The Senate has approved Democrats' big election-year economic package. The legislation is less ambitious than President Joe Biden’s original domestic goals. But it embodies deep-rooted party dreams of slowing global warming, moderating pharmaceutical costs and taxing big corporations. Debate began Saturday and went around the clock into Sunday afternoon. Democrats had swatted down some three dozen Republican efforts to torpedo the legislation. Biden urged swift House passage. The House seems on track to provide final congressional approval when it returns briefly from summer recess on Friday.

A cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militants has taken effect in a bid to end nearly three days of violence that has killed dozens of Palestinians. Egyptian officials had worked to bring the sides to an agreement after the flare-up of fighting that saw Israeli aircraft pound targets in Gaza and militants fire hundreds of rockets that reached deep into Israel. Rocket fire and airstrikes continued until the scheduled start of the truce at 11:30 p.m. (2030 GMT; 4:30 p.m. EDT). More than 40 Palestinians were killed in the violence, including 15 children and four women. Israel began its offensive Friday and has kept up airstrikes since then, while militants have lobbed barrages of rockets into Israel.

The National Weather Service has extended a flood watch for areas of eastern Kentucky ravaged by high water more than a week ago and said there’s a threat of thunderstorms in the region for much of the coming week. The weather service in Jackson said Sunday that a “persistent threat of thunderstorms” through Thursday could produce heavy rain and cause flash flooding. The forecast includes Monday, when President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden are scheduled to visit eastern Kentucky to survey the damage and meet with those affected. Meanwhile, more federal aid has been promised to the region.

Ending his most recent COVID-19 isolation, President Joe Biden has left the White House for the first time since becoming infected last month. He's settling in for a reunion with first lady Jill Biden in their home state of Delaware. The president tested negative Saturday and Sunday, according to his doctor, clearing the way for him to emerge from an isolation that lasted longer than expected because of a rebound case of the virus. “I’m feeling good,” Biden said before boarding Marine One outside the White House for the flight to Delaware. The Bidens are expected to spend the day in Rehoboth Beach. During his isolation in the White House residence, the first lady remained in Delaware.

U.S. demand for grocery delivery is cooling as food prices rise. Some shoppers are shifting to less expensive grocery pickup, while others are returning to the store. Experts say grocery delivery saw five years of growth in the first three months of the pandemic. In June 2020, grocery delivery was a $3.4 billion business. But by June 2022, that had fallen 26%. Consulting firm Chase Design says it's hard to get the delivery premium below $10 because of fuel and labor costs. That premium is tough for some consumers to swallow when food cost inflation is at a four-decade high.

Saturday, August 06, 2022

FANCY FARM, Ky. — Republicans running for governor in 2023 took the stage at Kentucky’s biggest political event Saturday, bashing Gov. Andy Beshear’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic while offering support for recovery efforts that the Democratic governor is leading in the wake of historic …

Infowars conspiracy theorist Alex Jones is facing a hefty price tag for his lies about the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre — $49.3 million in damages and counting — for claiming the nation’s deadliest school shooting was a hoax. The verdict is the first of three Sandy Hook-related cases against Jones to be decided and a punishing salvo in a fledgling war on harmful misinformation. But what does it mean for the larger misinformation ecosystem of election denial, COVID-19 skepticism and other dubious claims that Jones helped build? Courts have held that defamatory statements against a person or a business aren’t protected as free speech, but lies about things like science, history and the government are.

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israeli airstrikes flattened homes in Gaza on Saturday and Palestinian rocket barrages into southern Israel persisted for a second day, raising fears of another major escalation in the Mideast conflict. Gaza’s health ministry said 24 people had been killed so far in t…

The Senate's nonpartisan rules arbiter has dealt a blow to Democrats’ plan for curbing drug prices. But the parliamentarian has left the rest of the sprawling economic bill largely intact as party leaders prepare for first votes on a package containing many of President Joe Biden’s top domestic goals. Democrats were told to remove language imposing hefty penalties on drugmakers that boost their prices beyond inflation in the private insurance market. Those were the bill’s chief pricing protections for the roughly 180 million people whose health coverage comes from private insurance, either through work or bought on their own.  Democrats plan to begin Senate votes Saturday on their package addressing climate change, energy, health care, taxes and deficit reduction.

KYIV, Ukraine — Russian forces began an assault Saturday on two key cities in the eastern Donetsk region and kept up rocket and shelling attacks on other Ukrainian cities, including one close to Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, Ukraine’s military and local officials said.

ROME — A trunk with its lid left open. A wooden dishware closet, its shelves caved in. Three-legged accent tables topped by decorative bowls. These latest discoveries by archaeologists are enriching knowledge about middle-class lives in Pompeii before Mount Vesuvius’ furious eruption buried …

Global warming is producing more extreme weather. That can mean extended power outages in places like New Orleans. A grassroots network is launching “Community Lighthouses” to meet the challenge. These solar-powered electricity hubs can provide a lifeline after a disaster, enabling neighbors to recharge phones and equipment and refrigerate medicines. Each lighthouse will be supported by a team of volunteers familiar with their neighborhood. Organizer Broderick Bagert said organizers felt powerless as the city struggled to deliver basics after Hurricane Ida last year. He says instead of questioning why someone else doesn't take care of the problem, "the real question is, ’why don't WE?'"

Friday, August 05, 2022

Angel Campbell should have been looking through photo albums and eating soup beans in her grandmother's living room this week. Now the living room is gone and so is her grandmother. At least 37 people died as massive floods roared through Appalachian communities of eastern Kentucky last week. Funeral homes have settled into a steady cadence of visitations and memorials, one after another. They press on with the grim work of recovering and burying the dead even as more rain falls. One survivor says they may not have much money, but they're rich in friendship and family, and that's what's important.

WASHINGTON — After more than a decade of mostly losing out, the Internal Revenue Service may finally get the cash infusion it's long wanted in the economic package that Democrats are working furiously to push through Congress before their August break.

Senate Democrats say they have reached an accord on changes to their marquee economic legislation, clearing the major hurdle to pushing one of President Joe Biden’s leading election-year priorities through the chamber in coming days. Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, a centrist who was seen as the pivotal vote, says she is ready to “move forward” on the bill. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York says lawmakers have achieved a compromise that will receive the support of all Democrats in the chamber. His party needs unanimity and Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote to move the measure through the Senate over certain solid opposition from Republicans.

Reining in the soaring prices of insulin has thus far been elusive in Congress, although Democrats say they’ll try again — as part of their economic package that focuses on health and climate. The price of the 100-year-old drug has more than tripled in the last two decades, forcing the nation’s diabetics to pay thousands of dollars a year for the life-saving medication. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has said some language that limits the price of insulin will be added to the economic bill, but it’s not clear what that price point will be and who will be protected by that price cap.

Economies in the Asia-Pacific are forecast to hit the doldrums this year as decades-high inflation and the war in Ukraine add to uncertainty and the aftereffects of the pandemic. A report on Pacific Rim economies by the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum says growth in the region will likely fall by more than half this year to 2.5%. It says trade has weakened this year after rebounding from a pandemic slump last year. Weaker growth in the U.S. and China is a big factor, though other economies are also slowing. More than half of the 21 APEC members have raised rates or otherwise tightened monetary policy to counter inflation, which now averages 5.4% for the region.

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice has appointed two new Family Court judges. David L. Jackson was appointed to serve in the Second Circuit, which includes Marshall, Wetzel and Tyler counties, while Robert M. Ilderton will serve in the Ninth Circuit serving Logan County. Jackson will replace Judge Robert C. Hicks, who resigned. Ilderton will fill the position vacated by Judge Kelly Gilmore Codispoti, who was appointed to be a Circuit Court judge. Jackson has 30 years of experience in both private practice and public service. Ilderton has 19 years of experience in both sectors.

SANDUSKY, Ohio — Jim Obergefell, whose landmark case before the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationally, is hoping he and fellow Democrats can make gains in the Ohio Statehouse this year with a message grounded in equality.

Thursday, August 04, 2022

Twitter denied in a court filing that it had deprived its would-be acquirer, billionaire and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, of necessary information or misrepresented details about its business. Musk originally made those charges to justify his attempt to back out of a $44 billion deal to buy the social platform. In a counterclaim filed Thursday, Twitter calls Musk's reasoning “a story, imagined in an effort to escape a merger agreement that Musk no longer found attractive.” Musk's counterclaim, which Twitter is responding to, has not been made public. A judge ruled on Wednesday that it will be made public by Friday.

The U.S. has declared a public health emergency to bolster the federal response to the outbreak of monkeypox that already has infected more than 6,600 Americans. The announcement Thursday by the Department of Health and Human Services frees up federal funding and resources to fight the virus, which may cause fever, body aches, chills, fatigue and pimple-like bumps on many parts of the body. Xavier Becerra is the head of HHS. He says the agency is ready to take the U.S. response “to the next level.”

Friday, August 12, 2022

The sprawling economic package passed by the U.S. Senate this week has a certain West Virginia flavor. There’s the focus on energy, including billions of dollars in incentives for clean energy but also renewed support for traditional fuel sources such as coal and natural gas.

Thursday, August 11, 2022

U.S. gas prices have dipped under $4 a gallon for the first time in more than five months. AAA says the national average is $3.99 for a gallon of regular. That's down 15 cents in just the last week, and 68 cents in the last month. Gasoline peaked at around $5.02 a gallon on June 14. Motorists in California and Hawaii are still paying above $5, and other states in the West are paying close to that. The cheapest gas is in Texas and several other states in the South and Midwest. The decline reflects falling prices for crude oil, which have dipped close to $90 a barrel from over $120 a barrel in June.

The nation’s top public health agency is relaxing its COVID-19 guidelines and dropping the recommendation that Americans quarantine themselves if they come into close contact with an infected person. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also said Thursday that people no longer need to stay at least 6 feet away from others. The changes come more than 2 1/2 years after the start of the pandemic. They are driven by a recognition that an estimated 95% of Americans 16 and older have acquired some level of immunity, either from being vaccinated or infected.

WILMINGTON, Ohio — An armed man clad in body armor who tried to breach the FBI’s Cincinnati office on Thursday was shot and killed by police after he fled the scene and engaged in an hourslong standoff in a rural part of the state, the Ohio State Highway Patrol said.

Canada arguably has the world’s most permissive euthanasia rules, but human rights advocates say those regulations devalue the lives of disabled people. They say the regulations also are prompting doctors and health workers to suggest the procedure to those who might not otherwise consider it. Families say that has led to disturbing conversations and controversial deaths. The current law allows people with serious disabilities to choose to be killed in the absence of any other medical issue. Next year, Canada is set to allow people to be killed exclusively for mental health reasons. Some critics say the system warrants further scrutiny.

In battleground Wisconsin, Donald Trump’s pick for governor defeated the favorite of the Republican establishment. In Connecticut, a state where compassionate conservatism was born, a Senate candidate who promoted Trump’s election lies prevailed over the state GOP’s preference. And in Washington, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell joined congresswoman and conspiracy theorist Marjorie Taylor Greene in defending Trump against an unprecedented FBI search. That was only this week. As the 2022 midterm season enters its final phase, the Republicans on the November ballot are tied to the divisive former president as never before — whether they like it or not.

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

President Joe Biden has signed veterans health care legislation that ends a long battle to expand benefits for troops who served near toxic “burn pits.” The ceremony Wednesday at the White House was a personal matter for Biden. His son Beau was a major in the Delaware Army National Guard, and he died of cancer after his service in Iraq. Burn pits were used in Iraq and Afghanistan to dispose of chemicals, cans, plastics, medical equipment and human waste. The legislation will help veterans get disability payments without having to prove their illness was the result of their service. Other health care services will be expanded as well.

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump was being questioned under oath Wednesday in the New York attorney general’s long-running civil investigation into his business dealings as a flurry of legal activity surrounds the former president.

Tuesday, August 09, 2022

There are legions of fans of Spider-Man, who this month marks 60 years in the vast, imaginative world of comic books, movies and merch. The fans say Spider-Man character’s classic costume, complete with wide-eyed and web-patterned mask, is a key ingredient to the character’s appeal across race, gender and nationality. Almost anyone can imagine themselves behind it as this everyman — an underestimated smartypants who, after a quick change into head-to-toe spandex, becomes a force for good. Because of this appeal, says Angélique Roché, an author and host of the “Marvel’s Voices” podcast, “we should be open to the possibilities” of diverse representations of the beloved superhero.

A federal appeals court is siding with Congress in a fight over former President Donald Trump's tax returns. A three-judge appeals panel ruled Tuesday that Congress has broad authority to request Trump's tax records and that the Treasury Department should provide them. The House Ways and Means panel is seeking Trump’s tax returns as part of an investigation into the Internal Revenue Service’s audit program and tax law compliance. The committee said that it expects to receive the requested tax documents ”immediately.” It wasn’t immediately clear whether Trump would appeal the court's decision.

Serena Williams says she is preparing to step away from tennis after winning 23 Grand Slam titles, turning her focus to having another child and her business interests. “I’m turning 41 this month, and something’s got to give,” Williams wrote in an essay released Tuesday by Vogue magazine. Williams said she does not like the word retirement and prefers to think of this stage of her life as “evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me.” Williams is playing this week in Toronto, at a hard-court tournament that leads into the U.S. Open. The year’s last Grand Slam event begins in New York on Aug. 29.

WASHINGTON — The FBI searched Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate as part of an investigation into whether he took classified records from the White House to his Florida residence, people familiar with the matter said, a dramatic and unprecedented escalation of law enforcement scrutiny of the f…

A Kentucky man accused of killing three officers in an ambush while police were serving a protective order has pleaded not guilty to 20 charges. News outlets report 49-year-old Lance Storz appeared in Floyd Circuit Court on Monday to answer the charges. Police say Storz opened fire on a group of officers June 30 at his home. Storz was indicted last month by a grand jury on three counts of murder of a police officer and six counts of attempted murder of an officer. He was also indicted on seven counts of wanton endangerment, three counts of assault and one count of assaulting a service animal.

Billions of dollars in investments are pouring into companies changing the recipe for plastic. Plastics are typically made with natural gas or crude oil as its basic carbon building block. Making these plastics out of hydrocarbons in petrochemical plants release millions of tons of carbon dioxide annually. Bioplastics plants using renewable materials such as corn, sugar and cooking oil have been built around the world to produce a more environmentally safe plastic. Some bioplastic can dissolve in water or soil under correct conditions while other types can be biodegraded in large industrial composters. Market share for bioplastics is expected to nearly triple by 2028.

LOST CREEK, Ky. — President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden on Monday witnessed the damage from deadly and devastating storms that have resulted in the worst flooding in Kentucky’s history, as they visited the state to meet with families and first responders.

Monday, August 08, 2022

The FBI has searched former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate as part of an investigation into whether he took classified records from the White House to his Florida residence. That's according to people familiar with the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation. Trump says agents broke into his safe in a search he decried as evidence of “dark times for our nation.” The FBI and Justice Department have not confirmed the search. It marks a dramatic escalation in law enforcement scrutiny of Trump and comes amid a separate but intensifying probe into efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

California's last operating nuclear power plant could get a second lease on life. Pacific Gas & Electric decided six years ago to close its twin-domed Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant by 2025. But Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom — who was involved in the agreement to close the reactors — has prompted PG&E to consider seeking a longer lifespan for the plant. Newsom worries about possible power shortages as the state transitions to solar and other renewable sources. But it's not clear if the utility wants to back out of the complex closing deal that involved environmentalists and unions, or if it even could.

Sunday, August 07, 2022

The Senate has approved Democrats' big election-year economic package. The legislation is less ambitious than President Joe Biden’s original domestic goals. But it embodies deep-rooted party dreams of slowing global warming, moderating pharmaceutical costs and taxing big corporations. Debate began Saturday and went around the clock into Sunday afternoon. Democrats had swatted down some three dozen Republican efforts to torpedo the legislation. Biden urged swift House passage. The House seems on track to provide final congressional approval when it returns briefly from summer recess on Friday.

A cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militants has taken effect in a bid to end nearly three days of violence that has killed dozens of Palestinians. Egyptian officials had worked to bring the sides to an agreement after the flare-up of fighting that saw Israeli aircraft pound targets in Gaza and militants fire hundreds of rockets that reached deep into Israel. Rocket fire and airstrikes continued until the scheduled start of the truce at 11:30 p.m. (2030 GMT; 4:30 p.m. EDT). More than 40 Palestinians were killed in the violence, including 15 children and four women. Israel began its offensive Friday and has kept up airstrikes since then, while militants have lobbed barrages of rockets into Israel.

The National Weather Service has extended a flood watch for areas of eastern Kentucky ravaged by high water more than a week ago and said there’s a threat of thunderstorms in the region for much of the coming week. The weather service in Jackson said Sunday that a “persistent threat of thunderstorms” through Thursday could produce heavy rain and cause flash flooding. The forecast includes Monday, when President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden are scheduled to visit eastern Kentucky to survey the damage and meet with those affected. Meanwhile, more federal aid has been promised to the region.

Ending his most recent COVID-19 isolation, President Joe Biden has left the White House for the first time since becoming infected last month. He's settling in for a reunion with first lady Jill Biden in their home state of Delaware. The president tested negative Saturday and Sunday, according to his doctor, clearing the way for him to emerge from an isolation that lasted longer than expected because of a rebound case of the virus. “I’m feeling good,” Biden said before boarding Marine One outside the White House for the flight to Delaware. The Bidens are expected to spend the day in Rehoboth Beach. During his isolation in the White House residence, the first lady remained in Delaware.

U.S. demand for grocery delivery is cooling as food prices rise. Some shoppers are shifting to less expensive grocery pickup, while others are returning to the store. Experts say grocery delivery saw five years of growth in the first three months of the pandemic. In June 2020, grocery delivery was a $3.4 billion business. But by June 2022, that had fallen 26%. Consulting firm Chase Design says it's hard to get the delivery premium below $10 because of fuel and labor costs. That premium is tough for some consumers to swallow when food cost inflation is at a four-decade high.

Saturday, August 06, 2022

FANCY FARM, Ky. — Republicans running for governor in 2023 took the stage at Kentucky’s biggest political event Saturday, bashing Gov. Andy Beshear’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic while offering support for recovery efforts that the Democratic governor is leading in the wake of historic …

Infowars conspiracy theorist Alex Jones is facing a hefty price tag for his lies about the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre — $49.3 million in damages and counting — for claiming the nation’s deadliest school shooting was a hoax. The verdict is the first of three Sandy Hook-related cases against Jones to be decided and a punishing salvo in a fledgling war on harmful misinformation. But what does it mean for the larger misinformation ecosystem of election denial, COVID-19 skepticism and other dubious claims that Jones helped build? Courts have held that defamatory statements against a person or a business aren’t protected as free speech, but lies about things like science, history and the government are.

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israeli airstrikes flattened homes in Gaza on Saturday and Palestinian rocket barrages into southern Israel persisted for a second day, raising fears of another major escalation in the Mideast conflict. Gaza’s health ministry said 24 people had been killed so far in t…

The Senate's nonpartisan rules arbiter has dealt a blow to Democrats’ plan for curbing drug prices. But the parliamentarian has left the rest of the sprawling economic bill largely intact as party leaders prepare for first votes on a package containing many of President Joe Biden’s top domestic goals. Democrats were told to remove language imposing hefty penalties on drugmakers that boost their prices beyond inflation in the private insurance market. Those were the bill’s chief pricing protections for the roughly 180 million people whose health coverage comes from private insurance, either through work or bought on their own.  Democrats plan to begin Senate votes Saturday on their package addressing climate change, energy, health care, taxes and deficit reduction.

KYIV, Ukraine — Russian forces began an assault Saturday on two key cities in the eastern Donetsk region and kept up rocket and shelling attacks on other Ukrainian cities, including one close to Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, Ukraine’s military and local officials said.

ROME — A trunk with its lid left open. A wooden dishware closet, its shelves caved in. Three-legged accent tables topped by decorative bowls. These latest discoveries by archaeologists are enriching knowledge about middle-class lives in Pompeii before Mount Vesuvius’ furious eruption buried …

Global warming is producing more extreme weather. That can mean extended power outages in places like New Orleans. A grassroots network is launching “Community Lighthouses” to meet the challenge. These solar-powered electricity hubs can provide a lifeline after a disaster, enabling neighbors to recharge phones and equipment and refrigerate medicines. Each lighthouse will be supported by a team of volunteers familiar with their neighborhood. Organizer Broderick Bagert said organizers felt powerless as the city struggled to deliver basics after Hurricane Ida last year. He says instead of questioning why someone else doesn't take care of the problem, "the real question is, ’why don't WE?'"

Friday, August 05, 2022

Angel Campbell should have been looking through photo albums and eating soup beans in her grandmother's living room this week. Now the living room is gone and so is her grandmother. At least 37 people died as massive floods roared through Appalachian communities of eastern Kentucky last week. Funeral homes have settled into a steady cadence of visitations and memorials, one after another. They press on with the grim work of recovering and burying the dead even as more rain falls. One survivor says they may not have much money, but they're rich in friendship and family, and that's what's important.

WASHINGTON — After more than a decade of mostly losing out, the Internal Revenue Service may finally get the cash infusion it's long wanted in the economic package that Democrats are working furiously to push through Congress before their August break.

Senate Democrats say they have reached an accord on changes to their marquee economic legislation, clearing the major hurdle to pushing one of President Joe Biden’s leading election-year priorities through the chamber in coming days. Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, a centrist who was seen as the pivotal vote, says she is ready to “move forward” on the bill. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York says lawmakers have achieved a compromise that will receive the support of all Democrats in the chamber. His party needs unanimity and Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote to move the measure through the Senate over certain solid opposition from Republicans.

Reining in the soaring prices of insulin has thus far been elusive in Congress, although Democrats say they’ll try again — as part of their economic package that focuses on health and climate. The price of the 100-year-old drug has more than tripled in the last two decades, forcing the nation’s diabetics to pay thousands of dollars a year for the life-saving medication. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has said some language that limits the price of insulin will be added to the economic bill, but it’s not clear what that price point will be and who will be protected by that price cap.

Economies in the Asia-Pacific are forecast to hit the doldrums this year as decades-high inflation and the war in Ukraine add to uncertainty and the aftereffects of the pandemic. A report on Pacific Rim economies by the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum says growth in the region will likely fall by more than half this year to 2.5%. It says trade has weakened this year after rebounding from a pandemic slump last year. Weaker growth in the U.S. and China is a big factor, though other economies are also slowing. More than half of the 21 APEC members have raised rates or otherwise tightened monetary policy to counter inflation, which now averages 5.4% for the region.

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice has appointed two new Family Court judges. David L. Jackson was appointed to serve in the Second Circuit, which includes Marshall, Wetzel and Tyler counties, while Robert M. Ilderton will serve in the Ninth Circuit serving Logan County. Jackson will replace Judge Robert C. Hicks, who resigned. Ilderton will fill the position vacated by Judge Kelly Gilmore Codispoti, who was appointed to be a Circuit Court judge. Jackson has 30 years of experience in both private practice and public service. Ilderton has 19 years of experience in both sectors.

SANDUSKY, Ohio — Jim Obergefell, whose landmark case before the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationally, is hoping he and fellow Democrats can make gains in the Ohio Statehouse this year with a message grounded in equality.

Thursday, August 04, 2022

Twitter denied in a court filing that it had deprived its would-be acquirer, billionaire and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, of necessary information or misrepresented details about its business. Musk originally made those charges to justify his attempt to back out of a $44 billion deal to buy the social platform. In a counterclaim filed Thursday, Twitter calls Musk's reasoning “a story, imagined in an effort to escape a merger agreement that Musk no longer found attractive.” Musk's counterclaim, which Twitter is responding to, has not been made public. A judge ruled on Wednesday that it will be made public by Friday.

The U.S. has declared a public health emergency to bolster the federal response to the outbreak of monkeypox that already has infected more than 6,600 Americans. The announcement Thursday by the Department of Health and Human Services frees up federal funding and resources to fight the virus, which may cause fever, body aches, chills, fatigue and pimple-like bumps on many parts of the body. Xavier Becerra is the head of HHS. He says the agency is ready to take the U.S. response “to the next level.”