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After the massacre: A search for clues, answers

A Colorado suburb shocked and saddened by a deadly shooting spree at a midnight unveiling of the latest Batman movie grieved for the victims while authorities sought a motive and a safe way to reach clues inside the suspect’s apartment, still apparently rigged with an elaborate booby-trap. Police grimly went door to door late Friday with a list of the victims killed in the worst mass shooting in the U.S. in recent years, notifying families who had held out anxious hope that their loved ones had been spared inside the packed theater near Denver. Twelve people died and 58 were
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Colorado massacre puts damper on campaign rhetoric

The deadly shootings at a movie theater in Colorado have briefly silenced the presidential campaign, prompting both President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney to cut short their schedules and pull advertising in the state out of respect for the victims and their families. Obama said Saturday in his weekly radio and Internet address that he hopes everyone takes time this weekend “for prayer and reflection — for the victims of this terrible tragedy, for the people who knew them and loved them, for those who are still struggling to recover.” The president said Americans should also think about
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Movie theater massacre will spur debate over, but little change in, gun laws

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock is a member of a coalition called Mayors Against Illegal Guns, but when he issued a statement expressing shock and horror on Friday after a mass shooting at a Colorado movie theater, he had nothing to say about gun control. Neither did President Barack Obama nor his Republican rival Mitt Romney, though both canceled campaign speeches on Friday and expressed sorrow for the victims of the shooting rampage. The killing of 12 people at a midnight screening of the new Batman movie in the Denver suburb of Aurora may spark a fresh round of soul-searching on
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Gunman kills 12, wounds 50 in Colorado theater showing “The Dark Knight Rises”

A gunman opened fire, killed 12 and wounded at least 50 overnight at an Aurora, Colorado, movie theater where patrons gathered to watch the premiere of a new film that has generated debate and is decried as an “anti-Romney conspiracy” by the right wing. The gunman, wearing a bullet-proof vest and a gas mask, fired into the crowd of patrons who came to watch “The Dark Knight Rises” at the Century Theater in Aurora, Colorado. Some of the wounded are children, one as young as six years old, police sources tell Capitol Hill Blue. Aurora police chief Dan Oates said
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Panetta, angry over leaks, orders Pentagon to monitor media

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta ordered senior Pentagon officials on Thursday to begin monitoring major U.S. news media for disclosures of classified information in an effort to stop the release of government secrets after a series of high-profile leaks. The announcement came hours after Panetta and other senior defense officials appeared before a closed-door hearing of the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee to discuss recent disclosures of classified security information. Reports about U.S. cyber warfare against Iran, procedures for targeting militants with drones and a double agent who penetrated a militant group in Yemen have angered U.S. lawmakers. Some have
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Obama, Romney trade barbs on health care, jobs

President Barack Obama is warning Florida retirees that Republican challenger Mitt Romney would undercut the new health care law and alter Medicare, a play for voters in one of the nation’s top swing states. Obama wraps up a two-day trip to Florida on Friday with stops in Fort Myers and suburban Orlando, where he is pressing the case that retirees would be hurt by Romney’s opposition to the health care law and by Republican-led efforts to turn Medicare into a “voucher program.” Romney is keeping his focus on the economy, charging that Obama remains more concerned about holding onto his
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Jobless claims up as weak economy continues

The slowdown in the economy persisted early in the third quarter as factory activity in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region contracted in July for a third straight month and new claims for jobless aid surged last week. Other reports on Thursday showed home resales slumped to their lowest level in eight months in June and a gauge of future economic activity slipped last month. “The data confirm that the economy has cooled off pretty considerably late in the second quarter and early in the third quarter from the pace we saw earlier in the year,” said Omair Sharif, an economist at
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Will racial or religious bigotry determine the outcome of the 2012 Presidential election?

A question discussed privately by political strategists on both sides of political aisle focuses on the concern that bigotry — either religious or racial — could decide who wins the Presidency of the United States in November. Republican and Democratic strategists confide to Capitol Hill Blue that focus groups and some polling show resentment of either incumbent President Barack Obama’s race or Republican challenger Mitt Romney’s Mormonism could be a deciding factor in a close race. “It may come down to which base fear is more dominant: Fear of blacks or fear of Mormons,” says a senior Democratic strategist, who
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Did Ron Paul call on Romney to release his tax returns or not? That is the question

Ron Paul, the last Republican challenger to presumptive nominee Mitt Romney appeared to have a message for the former Massachusetts governor:  Stop stalling and release your tax returns. Or did he? Romney has refused to release tax returns than 2010 and has come under fire from both the campaign of incumbent President Barack Obama and fellow Republicans. Said Paul in an interview with Politico: Politically, I think that would help him, In the scheme of things politically, you know, it looks like releasing tax returns is what people want. Still, Paul called the controversy “a charade,” adding “I think it’s
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Romney on the attack as tax return debate haunts his campaign

Mitt Romney plans to stay on the attack in the race for the White House, but growing pressure from across the political spectrum to release his personal tax returns threatens to stunt the Republican presidential candidate’s momentum as he courts voters across key Midwestern battlegrounds. The former Massachusetts governor takes his fight against President Barack Obama to Ohio on Wednesday, building off fiery speeches in Pennsylvania the day before in which he accused his Democratic opponent of believing the government is more vital to a thriving economy than the nation’s workers and dreamers. “I’m convinced he wants Americans to be
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