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Russia threatens pre-emptive attack against U.S. missile shield

MOSCOW — Russia said Thursday its dispute with the United States over missile defence was near a “dead end” and warned it might have to deploy new rockets in Europe to take out elements of the controversial shield. “We have not been able to find mutually-acceptable solutions at this point…

Rep. Issa releases draft resolution accusing Holder of contempt

WASHINGTON — A key Republican lawmaker released a draft resolution Thursday accusing US Attorney General Eric Holder of contempt of Congress for allegedly failing to cooperate with a probe into a botched government effort to track arms flows into Mexico. Darrell Issa, head of the House Oversight and Government Reform…

Republican bill would prohibit abortion coverage in multi-state health plans

Sixty House Republicans and one House Democrat have sponsored legislation that would block multi-state health plans from offering coverage for elective abortions. The Hill reported that the legislation, the Stop Abortion Funding in Multi-state Exchange Plans (SAFE) Act, would amend the new federal health care law to ensure that health…

Charlotte, New Orleans issue National Day of Reason proclamations

At least two cities on Thursday recognized the National Day of Reason, a celebration intended to be a secular alternative to the National Day of Prayer. Mayor Anthony Foxx of Charlotte, North Carolina and the Council of the City of New Orleans both issued National Day of Reason proclamations, urging…

Billy Graham endorses North Carolina amendment to ban same sex marriage

Rev. Billy Graham on Wednesday encouraged the residents of North Carolina to vote for Amendment One, a ballot initiative that would define marriage as solely between a man and a women in the state’s constitution. Graham, a Christian evangelical, is one of the most influential religious figures in the United…

Two arrested after small explosion at Memphis school

CHICAGO — Two people were arrested after a small — and likely deliberate — explosion at a high school injured a staff member in Memphis, Tennessee Thursday, police said. The explosion happened shortly after a bomb threat was called into Craigmont high school around 11:20 am (16:20 GMT). “After receiving…

U.S. health care spending highest, Japan lowest: study

WASHINGTON — A study of 13 industrialized countries released Thursday showed Japan spends the least on health care, while the United States spends the most without providing superior care for the money. The United States spent nearly $8,000 per person in 2009 on health care services, more than Australia, Britain,…

Alabama House panel approves two anti-abortion bills

The Alabama House House Health committee approved two pieces of legislation on Thursday that would restrict women’s access to an abortion. The Montgomery Bureau reported that one bill would place new regulations on abortion clinics. The other would allow the state to opt out of providing health insurance for abortions…

Report: Tax breaks can reduce economic growth

Cutting taxes is not an effective way to increase economic growth, according to a report released Thursday by The Hamilton Project. “This report reinforces the wake-up call we have been issuing about the Republican tax proposals that – in the name of tax reform – would lead to additional tax…

Pat Robertson: America ‘belongs to Jesus’

Televangelist Pat Robertson explained on Wednesday that God had empowered him to create the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) “to reaffirm His claim over this land.” In a speech marking CBN’s annual “Week of Prayer,” the network founder told a group of followers about how the Jamestown settlers had claimed the…

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