National Politics

Congress poised for quick action on Biden's Pentagon nominee

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Democratic-controlled Congress easily passed legislation Thursday required to confirm retired Gen. Lloyd Austin as President Joe Biden’s secretary of defense, brushing aside concerns that his retirement occurred inside the seven-year window that safeguards civilian leadership of the military.

SD governor gave Trump bust with face on Mount Rushmore

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem on Thursday said she gave former president Donald Trump a $1,100 bust depicting the president on Mount Rushmore last year because she knew it was something he wanted to receive.

Biden's US revives support for WHO, reversing Trump retreat

GENEVA (AP) — The United States will resume funding for the World Health Organization and join its consortium aimed at sharing coronavirus vaccines fairly around the globe, President Joe Biden’s top adviser on the pandemic said Thursday, renewing support for an agency that the Trump administration had pulled back from.

SC abortion limits bill with no rape exception nears debate

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina's state senators, emboldened by their newly expanded GOP majority, are nearing floor debate on a bill that would ban almost all abortions in the state without exceptions for pregnancies caused by rape or incest.

Trump returns to a business empire ravaged by pandemic

NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump is returning to a family business ravaged by pandemic shutdowns and restrictions, with revenue plunging more than 40% at his Doral golf property, his Washington hotel and both his Scottish resorts over the past year.

Vote's timing is key issue with Kansas anti-abortion measure

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republican lawmakers insisted Thursday that their proposed anti-abortion amendment to the Kansas Constitution be put to voters on the August 2022 primary ballot, leading to criticism that they fear it would fail if put to a broader swath of voters during that year's general election.

Biden halts border wall building after Trump's final surge

SAN DIEGO (AP) — In the days before Joe Biden became president, construction crews worked quickly to finish Donald Trump’s wall at an iconic cross-border park overlooking the Pacific Ocean, which then-first lady Pat Nixon inaugurated in 1971 as symbol of international friendship.

Biden cleans house at VOA after revolt over Trump changes

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration has moved quickly to remove a number of senior officials aligned with former President Donald Trump from the Voice of America and the agency that oversees all U.S.-funded international broadcasting.

AKA sorority members celebrate Kamala Harris inauguration

CHICAGO (AP) — Elizabeth Shelby had her inauguration outfit planned weeks in advance: blue jeans, a Kamala Harris sweatshirt, a green coat, and pink Chuck Taylors as an homage to her sorority’s colors and Vice President Harris’ signature shoe.

Kansas lawmakers advance judge nominations to full Senate

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Gov. Laura Kelly's nominee for a spot on Kansas' second-highest court said Thursday his experience as a public defender would bring real value to an appellate court that is now filled with former civil litigators, former prosecutors and former district judges.