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Nation / World

Neb. state Sen. Ernie Chambers, right, of Omaha, celebrates with Sen. Kathy Campbell, left, of Lincoln, after the one-house Legislature voted 30-19 to override Gov. Pete Ricketts, a Republican who supports the death penalty. The vote makes Nebraska the first traditionally conservative state to eliminate the punishment since North Dakota in 1973. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

Neb. lawmakers vote to abolish death penalty

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska abolished the death penalty on Wednesday over the governor’s objections in a move pushed through the Legislature with unusual backing from conservatives who oppose capital punishment for religious, financial and practical reasons. Senators in the one-house Legislature voted 30-19 to override the veto of Gov. Pete Ricketts, a Republican who supports the death penalty. The vote …

IRS believes identity thieves from Russia

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

WASHINGTON — IRS investigators believe the identity thieves who stole the personal tax information of more than 100,000 taxpayers from an IRS website are part of a sophisticated criminal operation based in Russia, two officials told the Associated Press. The information was stolen as part of an elaborate scheme to claim fraudulent tax …

Santorum makes 2nd bid for White House

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

CABOT, Pa. — Conservative culture warrior Rick Santorum launched a 2016 White House bid on Wednesday, vowing to fight for working-class Americans in a new election season that will test his influence — and focus on social issues — in a changing Republican Party. The former Pennsylvania senator may have exceeded his own …

Calif. farmers with old rights face water cuts

Thursday, May 21, 2015

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California farmers who hold rights to water that date back as far as the Gold Rush are bracing for their first state-ordered conservation in decades, as a record drought prompts some of the deepest cuts …

Malaysia orders sea search-and-rescue for migrants

Thursday, May 21, 2015

YANGON, Myanmar — Four Malaysian navy ships began searching the seas for stranded boat people Thursday in the first official rescue operation since desperate migrants started washing onto Southeast Asia’s shores, and a formerly reluctant Myanmar agreed to …

Scouts’ president: Ban on gay adults not sustainable

Thursday, May 21, 2015

NEW YORK — The president of the Boy Scouts of America, Robert Gates, said Thursday that the organization’s long-standing ban on participation by openly gay adults is no longer sustainable and called for change in order to prevent …

Ruptured pipe spreads oil, fouls Calif. beaches

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

GOLETA, Calif. — An oil spill from a ruptured onshore pipeline that fouled beaches and threatened wildlife along a scenic stretch of the California coast spread across 9 miles of ocean Wednesday and officials said up to 105,000 …

Malaysia, Indonesia to offer migrants temporary shelter

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia — In a major breakthrough that could ease Southeast Asia’s migrant crisis, Indonesia and Malaysia offered Wednesday to temporarily take in thousands of people who have been stranded at sea but appealed for international help, saying …

US releases documents from bin Laden house

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

WASHINGTON — Documents swept up in the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound portray a leader cut off from his underlings, disappointed by their failures, beset by their complaints and regretting years of separation from much of his …

Islamic State takes ancient Syrian town

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

BEIRUT — Islamic State extremists captured the ancient Syrian town of Palmyra after government defense lines there collapsed Wednesday, a stunning triumph for the group only days after it captured the strategic city of Ramadi in Iraq. It …

Big banks to pay $5B, admit market rigging

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

WASHINGTON — Four of the world’s biggest banks agreed Wednesday to pay more than $5 billion in penalties and plead guilty to rigging the currency markets — a rare instance in which federal prosecutors have wrung an admission …

DEA raids pharmacies in ‘pill mill’ crackdown

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Authorities raided medical clinics, pharmacies and other locations across the South on Wednesday as part of a Drug Enforcement Administration attempt to thwart illegal prescription drug sales. The raids in Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana and …