Feds will investigate to see if Russian terror brothers had help

President Barack Obama pledged on Friday that the United States will find out whether the two ethnic Chechen brothers suspected of carrying out the Boston Marathon bombings received help, and he pleaded for Americans not to rush to judgment. Obama appeared in the White House briefing room after police arrested the lone surviving suspect in […]

Boy Scouts will accept gay members but not gay scoutmasters

The Boy Scouts of America on Friday proposed lifting a ban on gay scouts but maintaining a prohibition on gay adults from leading troops, a compromise that attempts to end a fight that has split the century-old American institution into bitter factions. Reaction from scouting supporters ranged from outrage to limited approval. The biggest organization […]

Texas plant explosion levels homes, kills up to 15

A fiery explosion tore through a fertilizer plant and leveled dozens of homes in a small Texas town late on Wednesday, killing as many as 15 people, injuring more than 160 others and spewing toxic fumes that forced the evacuation of half the community, authorities said. Police initially estimated that between five and 15 people […]

Alaska slashes oil prices; hopes to spur production

Alaska slashes oil prices; hopes to spur production

Alaska lawmakers on Sunday gave final approval to a bill slashing state oil-production taxes in a change supporters said was needed to boost flagging output from aging fields but which critics say will severely damage the state’s finances. The new system approved by the Republican-dominated legislature does away with a methodology that increases tax rates […]

Focus on gay rights shifts back to Obama

President Barack Obama may have made a slow start on gay rights issues, but by the end of his first term his record was such that a news magazine dubbed him the nation’s “first gay president.” Now activists want more. Fresh from historic Supreme Court arguments over same-sex unions, advocates want Obama to use his […]

Arkansas takes aim at abortion providers

Arkansas takes aim at abortion providers

The Republican-led Arkansas Senate, in the latest statehouse swipe at abortion providers around the country, approved a bill on Tuesday that sponsors said was aimed at cutting off the last vestiges of state funding to groups such as Planned Parenthood. While it does not explicitly name Planned Parenthood or any other organization, the bill would […]

Federal judge rules Obama administration broke law by ignoring fracking

Federal judge rules Obama administration broke law by ignoring fracking

A federal judge has ruled the Obama administration broke the law when it issued oil leases in central California without fully weighing the environmental impact of “fracking,” a setback for companies seeking to exploit the region’s enormous energy resources. The decision, made public on Monday, effectively bars for the time being any drilling on two […]

Obama will accept entitlement cuts in exchange for taxes

Obama will accept entitlement cuts in exchange for taxes

President Barack Obama will offer cuts to Social Security and other entitlement programs in a budget proposal aimed at swaying Republicans to compromise on a deficit-reduction deal, a senior administration official said on Friday. Under a proposal that would cut the deficit by $1.8 trillion over 10 years, the president will offer to apply a […]