News from The Associated Press

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  • Democrats diverge on outreach to anti-abortion swing voters

    Even as Democrats shift leftward on abortion rights, the issue remains a potential hurdle for their efforts to connect with Catholics and other devout voters who want to see the government play a role in limiting abortions. And Democratic candidates have diverged recently on the question of whether abortion opponents are welcome in their party. Bernie Sanders said that “being pro-choice is an absolutely essential part of being a Democrat,” while his rival Amy Klobuchar said that anti-abortion Democrats “are part of our party.” Klobuchar has a strong voting record in favor of abortion rights, but some abortion opponents still lauded her for extending a hand to those on the other side of the issue.

  • Karen Pence adds campaigning for President Trump to busy to-do list

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Karen Pence has no shortage of projects. The wife of Vice President Mike Pence promotes the healing power of art therapy and help for military spouses. She’s into honeybees and supports sister cities. She’s a watercolorist who designs the family’s annual Christmas card and teaches art at a religious elementary school. Now, she’s beginning to campaign on her own to help win a second term for President Donald Trump and her husband. And with first lady Melania […]

  • Proposed Indiana pregnancy accommodation legislation unlikely to advance

    Indiana legislators aren’t likely to revive a proposal aimed at requiring more businesses to provide workplace accommodations for pregnant women. Gov. Eric Holcomb urged lawmakers to support the proposal, but it was rebuffed in the state Senate by his fellow Republicans earlier this month. Republican Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma says many questions remain among legislators as the bill faces opposition from business groups as possibly exposing more companies to lawsuits. The proposal would have required Indiana businesses with more than 15 employees to allow pregnant women to take longer breaks, transfer to less physical work and take unpaid time off after childbirth.

  • SpaceX works to launch up to 4 tourists into super high orbit

    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — SpaceX aims to launch up to four tourists into a super high orbit, possibly by the end of next year. The private company is working with Space Adventures Inc. for the flight, officials announced Tuesday. Ticket prices are not being divulged but expected to be in the millions. Space Adventures already has helped put tourists into orbit with trips to the International Space Station, working with the Russian space program. For this trip, paying customers will […]

  • Pete Buttigieg’s next challenge: Winning over minority voters

    Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg's fresh face, intellect and turn-the-page message won votes across many demographic groups in the kickoff states. Now the promise of his candidacy is colliding with the reality of the central question about his viability: Can he win among minority voters who form the critical foundation of the party’s base? That will be tested soon in Nevada and South Carolina. Buttigieg's strategy is to earn a fresh look from black and brown voters by flashing his support in the first two contests, drawing on the validation of minority leaders who have endorsed him and leveraging the personal networks of his supporters.

  • NCAA moving toward plan changing waiver process

    The NCAA is moving toward allowing all Division I athletes to transfer one time without sitting out a season of competition. A plan to change the waiver process is expected to be presented to the Division I Council in April. If adopted, new criteria would go into effect for the 2020-21 academic year. Currently, football, men's and women's basketball, men's hockey and baseball players must sit out one season after transferring. The NCAA adjusted waiver criteria two years ago to give more athletes the chance to become immediately eligible, but that has led to complaints about inconsistency in the process. If the plan is adopted, any athlete in good academic standing and not facing a disciplinary suspension will be allowed to transfer and play immediately for the new school.

  • Former San Francisco 49ers owner Edward DeBartolo Jr. gets pardon from Trump

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump on Tuesday pardoned Edward DeBartolo Jr., the former San Francisco 49ers owner convicted in a gambling fraud scandal who built one of the most successful NFL teams in the game’s history. DeBartolo Jr., who owned the San Francisco 49ers during their 1980s-1990s dynasty, was involved in one of the biggest owners’ scandals in the sport’s history. In 1998, he pleaded guilty to failing to report a felony when he paid $400,000 to former Louisiana […]

  • Homeland Security waives contracting laws for border wall

    SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Trump administration said Tuesday that it will waive federal contracting laws to speed construction of a wall at the U.S.-Mexico border. The Department of Homeland Security said waiving procurement regulations will allow 177 miles (283 kilometers) of wall to be built more quickly in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. The 10 waived laws include requirements for having open competition, justifying selections and receiving all bonding from a contractor before any work can begin. The […]

  • Boy Scouts file for bankruptcy amid increase in sex-abuse lawsuits

    Barraged by hundreds of sex-abuse lawsuits, the Boy Scouts of America filed for bankruptcy protection Tuesday in hopes of working out a potentially mammoth victim compensation plan that will allow the hallowed, 110-year-old organization to carry on. The Chapter 11 filing in federal bankruptcy court in Wilmington, Delaware, sets in motion what could be one of the biggest, most complex bankruptcies ever seen. Scores of lawyers are seeking settlements on behalf of several thousand men who say they were molested […]

  • Denny Hamlin wins Daytona 500; Ryan Newman suffers ‘non-life threatening’ injuries in terrifying crash

    UPDATE: According to Roush Fenway Racing’s Twitter page, Ryan Newman is awake and speaking with family and doctors. Update on Ryan Newman: — Roush Fenway (@roushfenway) February 18, 2020   DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Ryan Newman flipped across the finish line, his Ford planted upside down and engulfed in flames, a grim reminder of a sport steeped in danger that has stretched nearly two decades without a fatality. At the finish line, Denny Hamlin made history with a second […]

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