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New York Gov. Cuomo announces medical pot pilot program

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday he will authorize the medical use of marijuana, making his the 21st US state to do so and one of the biggest. Cuomo, a Democrat who has in the past opposed such a measure, announced a limited pilot program to serve the state…

Rescue teams search for crew members of Navy helicopter that crashed off coast of Virginia

A US Navy helicopter crashed off the coast of Virginia on Wednesday and rescue teams were searching for one of its crew members, a military official said. The MH-53E Sea Dragon went down “off the coast of Norfolk, Virginia” at about 11:30 am local time (1630 GMT) during”routine training,” said a…

Jury finds London police lawfully killed man whose death sparked 2011 riots

An inquest jury concluded that police lawfully killed a man whose shooting in 2011 sparked deadly riots across the country. Family members and supporters of Mark Duggan shouted obscenities and smashed a door after the decision was read out at the Royal Courts of Justice in London. The 29-year-old father…

Emails show Gov. Chris Christie’s staff closed bridge to punish political opponents

Gov. Chris Christie’s office knew what was coming in GWB traffic controversy, emails show (via NJ.com) A series of private emails between a top aide to Gov. Chris Christie and a political appointee at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey shows the governor’s office was well aware…

Dennis Rodman sings birthday tribute to Kim Jong-Un before basketball game

Former US basketball star Dennis Rodman sang “Happy birthday to you!” to North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un in Pyongyang Wednesday, before joining a game with fellow players to mark the event. In a video circulating online, the eccentric former NBA player can be seen walking onto an indoor basketball court…

The Guardian says its website is now blocked in China

The Guardian newspaper said Wednesday that China had partially blocked access to its website. The site was first blocked on Tuesday, the broadsheet said, although Chinese netizens were still able to access its mobile and iPad apps. “Obviously we are dismayed that theguardian.com has been blocked in China,” a spokeswoman…

Space weather delays launch of Orbital Sciences unmanned Cygnus spacecraft

Turbulent space weather forced Orbital Sciences on Wednesday to postpone the launch of its unmanned Cygnus spacecraft on a supply mission the International Space Station. The company said it is now aiming for Thursday to launch its cargo ship atop an Antares rocket, carrying 2,780 pounds (1,260 kilograms) of gear…

Success of ‘Downton Abbey’ proves TV dramas are alive and well: producer

The global success of “Downton Abbey” is vivid proof that romance and drama are alive and well and thriving on the small screen, its executive producer said Tuesday. In a telephone interview from London, two days after season four of the post-Edwardian soap opera premiered on US public television, Gareth…

‘Businesses are growing more confident’: U.S. job growth robust in December

US private-sector job growth surged in December, topping November for the strongest pace of the year with a net new 238,000 jobs added, payrolls firm ADP said Wednesday. The number came in well above the consensus estimate of 203,000, and suggested possibly strong job growth numbers to come in Friday’s…

Married pastor at Arizona megachurch resigns after admitting to multiple affairs

The lead pastor at an Arizona megachurch that draws about 6,000 people to its services has resigned after admitting to multiple extramarital affairs, church officials confirmed. Church members were told Saturday and Sunday at worship services that Pastor Mark Connelly had resigned Dec. 30 from Mission Community Church in Gilbert.…

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