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Obama sidesteps NDAA provision requiring military custody for terror suspects

WASHINGTON — US President Barack Obama announced measures Tuesday allowing civilian investigators to handle cases of terror suspects, effectively sidestepping a 2011 law requiring they be brought before military courts. The directive provides more flexibility to the president in deciding whether to use military tribunals to try foreign terror suspects,…

More Americans believe in climate change: poll

WASHINGTON — Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that climate change is real — the highest level in two years — as the public trusted its own observations of rising temperatures, a poll said Tuesday. The growing acceptance of global warming comes despite fierce political division over the issue in the…

Massachusetts activists push to end corporate political spending

A coalition of lawmakers, advocates and activists rallied at the Massachusetts Statehouse on Tuesday to support a resolution that calls on Congress to overturn the Supreme Court’s controversial ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. The People’s Rights Resolution was introduced to the Massachusetts legislature by state Sen. Jamie…

Virginia Senate approves controversial ultrasound bill

Two Democrats joined with Republicans in the Virginia Senate on Tuesday to approve a watered-down version of controversial legislation that requires women to receive an ultrasound before having an abortion. One Republican, state Sen. John Watkins, voted against it. The “informed consent” bill ignited a firestorm this month because it…

Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe to retire

Sen. Olympia Snown, a moderate Republican from Maine, announced Tuesday that she would not seek re-election in 2012 because of the increasing polarization in Washington. “After an extraordinary amount of reflection and consideration, I am announcing today that I will not be a candidate for re-election to the United States…

State Department to hold first Twitter briefing in Spanish

WASHINGTON — The US State Department said Tuesday it will hold its first Twitter briefing in Spanish, as part of its policy of using new social media to reach out to the international community. Hosting the briefing at 2 pm Thursday in Washington, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Public…

Ohio school shooting ‘unforgivable’: White House

WASHINGTON — The high school shooting in Ohio that killed three students was “terrible and unforgivable,” the White House said Tuesday, adding that it was too early to know if it was linked to bullying. The alleged shooter, a 17-year-old student, opened fire Monday with a handgun on a group…

DOJ indicts doctor for $375 million Medicare fraud

The Justice Department indicted a Rockwall, Texas doctor Tuesday morning for allegedly receiving $375 million in phony Medicare billings in what is considered to be the largest health care fraud case in American history. According to The Los Angeles Times, Dr. Jacques Roy is facing life in prison and a…

U.S. Supreme Court tackles Nigeria-Shell rights case

WASHINGTON — The US Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a lawsuit accusing Royal Dutch Shell of human rights abuses, a case that could make corporations liable for acts of torture or genocide overseas. The plaintiffs — relatives of seven Nigerians killed by the country’s former military regime — sued…

Union of Concerned Scientists: U.S. nuclear oversight too lax

WASHINGTON — A study of safety lapses at nuclear power facilities in the United States found that owners of atomic plants too often either close an eye to problems or fail to adequately address them, a watchdog group said Tuesday. The report by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) in…

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