Kirsten Gillibrand launches White House run exploratory committee

NEW YORK (AP) – Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand took a major step toward announcing a 2020 presidential bid Tuesday, saying she is launching an exploratory committee for a White House run.

"It's an important first step, and it's one I am taking because I am going to run," the New York ...

Everyone calm down, the Gillette ad is just fine

A new commercial from Gillette opens with audio of chattering news reports about the #MeToo movement, bullying and "toxic masculinity." A narrator says in a sonorous (and masculine) voice: "Is this the best a man can get?" — a variation on the company's 30-year old motto.

"Is it? We can't ...

Ted Lieu blasts Trump floats pulling out of NATO report

Congressional Democrats are hitting back at the White House over a new report that President Trump has repeatedly floated the idea of pulling the United States out of NATO.

The New York Times, citing unnamed former and current administration officials, said Mr. Trump reportedly didn't see the point of the ...

After scandal, W.Va. Supreme Court submits budget request

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The West Virginia Supreme Court has submitted a budget proposal a year after its spending practices triggered an impeachment scandal.

Chief Justice Beth Walker submitted the request Tuesday for $131.15 million in the 2020 fiscal year, compared with appropriations of $139.7 million this year.

Several justices ...

Most Americans favor tighter abortion restrictions, poll finds

Three-quarters of Americans -- including 60 percent of self-identified Democrats and 61 percent of those who identify as pro-choice -- support restricting legal abortion to the first three months of pregnancy at most, according to a new poll released Tuesday.

Judge rules Somalis targeted in Kansas bomb plot can testify

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Somali immigrants can testify at the sentencing this month of three militia members convicted of plotting to bomb their apartment complex in a southwest Kansas city, a federal judge ruled Tuesday.

Defense attorneys had hoped to block the 20 short videos of victim testimony from being ...

IRS recalls major swath of workforce for filing season

Facing tax-filing season, the IRS will recall tens of thousands of employees to work without pay amid the government shutdown, according to a contingency plan released Tuesday.

The Trump administration has said taxpayers will get their much-anticipated refunds, though it was unclear how, since most of the IRS's workforce was ...

Excerpts from recent editorials in newspapers in Illinois

January 14, 2019

The (Champaign) News-Gazette

Headed down the same road

Three cheers for efforts to end self-interested patronage politics in Illinois. Nonetheless, those familiar with politics here can only watch with amusement at the recent legislative zeal to bring reform to the Illinois Tollway Authority.

It seems that legislators ...

Takeaways: AG nominee cuts own path in confirmation hearing

WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General nominee William Barr made one thing clear Tuesday during his Senate confirmation hearing: He may want the job, but he doesn't need it.

The 68-year-old Barr, who has already served once before as attorney general, said he's in a position in life where he "can ...

Anastasia Vashukevich, who claims Manafort evidence, convicted in Thailand

BANGKOK — A jailed Belarusian model and her Russian lover, who claimed to have audio of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort discussing U.S. electoral strategy with high-placed Russian figures, were found guilty Tuesday of sex crimes and will be deported.

After the couple's arrest in February 2018 near Bangkok, ...

Drug trafficker tells of bribe to ex-president of Mexico

NEW YORK (AP) - A Colombian drug trafficker testified that Mexican cartel leader Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman boasted about paying a $100 million bribe to the former president of Mexico.

Alex Cifuentes spoke about the alleged bribe to President Ernesto Pena Nieto during his testimony Tuesday in Guzman's trial in ...

Democrats: Acting AG Whitaker will testify in February

WASHINGTON (AP) - House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler says acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker has agreed to testify before his panel on Feb. 8.

In a letter sent to Whitaker Tuesday, Nadler says he is "happy to have reached an agreement for you to appear" on that date.

It ...

The Latest: GOP decry Gov. Lujan Grisham’s ed spending plans

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - The Latest on New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham's first State of the State address (all times local):

5:30 p.m.

Republican New Mexico House Minority Leader James Townsend says he is "scared to death" of the spending proposals pushed by Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.