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National News

‘Fat Leonard’ may be Venezuela bargaining chip, experts say

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A fugitive defense contractor nicknamed "Fat Leonard" who claims to have incriminating sex photos of U.S. Navy brass could become the latest bargaining chip in Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's efforts to win official recognition from the Biden administration, according ...

Huge surplus leaves Georgia with $6.6B in cash to spend

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia ran a surplus of more than $6 billion in the budget year that ended June 30, meaning the state's next governor and lawmakers could spend or give back billions. The State Accounting Office, in a Friday report, said Georgia ran a $6.37 billion surplus even after spending ...

Budd embraces Trump, abortion opposition in NC Senate race

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — In competitive races across the U.S., Republican candidates are distancing themselves from their party's most controversial policies and people — namely, abortion and former President Donald Trump — as Election Day approaches. Not Ted Budd. The North Carolina GOP ...

Foes of Arizona school vouchers file to block huge expansion

PHOENIX (AP) — Public school advocates who oppose a massive expansion of Arizona's private school voucher system enacted by the Republican-controlled Legislature and signed into law by Republican Gov. Doug Ducey in July filed enough signatures Friday to block it from taking effect. The law, ...

Arizona judge: State can enforce near-total abortion ban

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona can enforce a near-total ban on abortions that has been blocked for nearly 50 years, a judge ruled Friday, meaning clinics statewide will have to stop providing the procedures to avoid the filing of criminal charges against doctors and other medical workers. The judge ...

PHOTO GALLERY: ‘Let’s have some music’: Elton John plays White House

WASHINGTON (AP) — "God bless you, let's have some music," said Elton John. With that, the White House South Lawn was transformed into a musical lovefest Friday night as John played a farewell gig to honor everyday "heroes" like teachers, nurses and AIDS activists. But as it turns out, the ...

Pakistan’s prime minister talks Kashmir, floods at UN

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif appealed for a peaceful end to the dispute over Kashmir and deplored regional instability, invoking the perennial themes of Pakistan's U.N. addresses after dedicating the first half of his speech Friday to the ravages of recent floods. The ...

They said it: Leaders at the UN, in their own words

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Many leaders saying many things about many topics that matter to them, to their regions, to the world: That's what the U.N. General Assembly invariably produces each year. And each year, certain voices dominate. Here, The Associated Press takes the opposite approach and ...

US steps up diplomatic efforts with China on Taiwan, Russia

NEW YORK (AP) — The Biden administration on Friday ramped up its diplomatic efforts to press China to end provocative actions against Taiwan and warned it about any active support for Russia in its war against Ukraine. Secretary of State Antony Blinken made both cases in a meeting with his ...

World opinion shifts against Russia as Ukraine worries grow

NEW YORK (AP) — The tide of international opinion appears to be decisively shifting against Russia, as a number of non-aligned countries are joining the United States and its allies in condemning Moscow's war in Ukraine and its threats to the principles of the international rules-based ...

Puerto Ricans seething over lack of power days after Fiona

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Half of Puerto Rico is without power more than five days after Hurricane Fiona struck — including an entire town where not a single work crew has arrived. Many on the U.S. territory are angry and incredulous, and calls are growing for the ouster of the island's ...

West: More sanctions, isolation if Putin carries out threats

WASHINGTON (AP) — How do American leaders and their allies intend to respond if President Vladimir Putin seeks to escalate his way out of a bad situation on Ukraine's battlefields, and makes good on renewed threats of annexing territory or even using nuclear weapons? At least to start with, ...

Georgia voting equipment breach at center of tangled tale

ATLANTA (AP) — The tale of breached voting equipment in one of the country's most important political battleground states involves a bail bondsman, a prominent attorney tied to former President Donald Trump's attempts to overturn the 2020 presidential election and a cast of characters from a ...

As Ukraine worries UN, some leaders rue what’s pushed aside

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — In speech after speech, world leaders dwelled on the topic consuming this year's U.N. General Assembly meeting: Russia's war in Ukraine. A few, like Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, prodded the world not to forget everything else. He, too, was quick to bring up the ...

California governor travels to Texas amid feud with GOP

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom will travel to Texas on Saturday, venturing into the territory of one of his chief political foils while seeking to boost his own profile amid a noncompetitive reelection campaign back home. Newsom is on his way to an easy victory for a ...

Belarus opposition says fate of country, Ukraine intertwined

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The fate of Belarus and Ukraine are "interconnected," and both countries must fight together to safeguard their very existence because Russia doesn't view them as independent sovereign states, Belarus' opposition leader said Friday. Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, who fled to ...

Shapiro wages drama-free Pa. campaign amid big personalities

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. (AP) — Doug Mastriano, the Republican nominee for governor in Pennsylvania, is perhaps best known as an election denier who was at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. John Fetterman, the Democrat hoping to flip the state's Senate seat, has revolutionized how campaigns use social ...

Oz releases health records to spotlight Fetterman’s stroke

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Dr. Mehmet Oz, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, released his health records as he maneuvers to keep questions about Democratic rival John Fetterman's recovery from a stroke front and center in the hotly contested campaign. Dr. Rebecca Kurth in ...

2 Americans released by Russian separatists arrive in NYC

NEW YORK (AP) — Two U.S. military veterans who disappeared three months ago while fighting Russia with Ukrainian forces arrived Friday at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport after their release by Russian-backed separatists as part of a prisoner exchange. "We're looking forward ...

Book shows personal side of ‘Mockingbird’ author Harper Lee

HOMEWOOD, Ala. (AP) — To the world, Harper Lee was aloof to the point of being unknowable, an obsessively private person who spent most of her life avoiding the public gaze despite writing one of the best-selling books ever, "To Kill a Mockingbird." To Wayne Flynt, the Alabama-born author was ...