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WASHINGTON (AP) — The 2014 midterm elections are days away, but preparation are already underway for the first debate of the 2016 presidential primary contest.

In the image from video provided by KAKE News black smoke billows from a building at Mid-Continent Airport where officials say a plane crashed Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014 in Wichita, Kan. AP Photo/KAKE News) MANDATORY CREDITWICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A small plane lost power after takeoff and crashed into a flight-training building while trying to return to a Kansas airport Thursday, killing four people, injuring five others and igniting a fire that sent up towering plumes of black smoke that could be seen for miles around Wichita.


NEW YORK (AP) — Inmates held in solitary confinement at Rikers Island as punishment for violations during previous stints in jail are suing to stop the practice, known as owed time.

This two photo combo with undated handout photos provided by Nohemi Gonzalez, shows Erica Maria Alvarado Rivera, left, and her brother Alex, right, at their mother's home in Progreso, Texas. According to witnesses armed men took Erica Maria, 26, and her brothers, Alex, 22, and Jose Angel, 21, on Oct. 13 in El Control, a small town near the Texas border west of Matamoros. The three were visiting their father in Mexico and they have not been seen since. (AP Photo)MATAMOROS, Mexico (AP) — The governor and chief prosecutor for a northern Mexico border state confirmed on Thursday that three Texans missing for more than two weeks were found dead near Matamoros a day earlier.


A Citi sign is seen at the Citigroup stall on the floor of the New York Stock ExchangeBy David Henry and Ankur Banerjee (Reuters) - Citigroup Inc said it was setting aside an extra $600 million to cover legal expenses in the third quarter due to "rapidly evolving regulatory inquiries," while also disclosing that it was subject to foreign exchange market probes. Citigroup is one of six major banks that are expected to settle with Britain's Financial Conduct Authority by mid-November over allegations that the banks manipulated foreign exchange markets. The banks are aiming to settle for a total of around 1.5 billion pounds sterling, or $2.42 billion, sources have told Reuters. ...


MILPITAS, Calif. (AP) — Authorities have arrested the motorcycle rider suspected of filming and waving off a California Highway Patrol officer who was trying to stop him and other riders doing stunts on a highway.

This undated image provided by University of Texas at Arlington shows Kaci Hickox. In a Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014 telephone interview with CNN, Hickox, the nurse quarantined at a New Jersey hospital because she had contact with Ebola patients in West Africa, said the process of keeping her isolated is "inhumane." (AP Photo/University of Texas at Arlington)FORT KENT, Maine (AP) — Insisting she is perfectly healthy, nurse Kaci Hickox again defied the state's Ebola quarantine Thursday by taking a bike ride with her boyfriend, and Maine health authorities struggled to reach a compromise that would limit her contact with others.


Neal Orsini poses in a Colonial-era cemetery on Rogers Island on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in Fort Edward, N.Y. The cemetery could hold the remains of hundreds of people, including some of the famous frontier fighters known as Rogers’ Rangers. In 2006, a local couple who served as caretakers for the then-privately owned property uncovered seven human skeletons buried at the site, including one that was missing its skull. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)FORT EDWARD, N.Y. (AP) — Sleepy Hollow has the legend of the Headless Horseman. Does a community 150 miles farther up the Hudson River have a Headless Ranger buried in an unmarked cemetery from the 18th century?


  Thu, 30 Oct 2014 18:24:16 -0400

Apple CEO publicly acknowledges that he's gayNEW YORK (AP) — Apple CEO Tim Cook's declaration that he's "proud to be gay" wasn't exactly news in Silicon Valley, where his sexual orientation was no secret. But advocates say that given Apple's immense reach and visibility, his coming-out could help change attitudes in workplaces across America.


FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — On the airwaves of a popular Navajo radio station, President Barack Obama uses the Navajo greeting "Ya'at'eeh" and implores tribal members to get out and vote for Democrats.

First Lady Michelle Obama, left, speaks as Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy listens after surprising a group of supporters in an overflow room to a rally, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014, in New Haven, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — In a final-week burst of campaigning, President Barack Obama sought to mobilize Democratic voters Thursday in the race for governor in Maine while keeping his distance from the state's bubbling controversy over its Ebola policies and the nurse who has defied them.


Pedestrians walk past a Starbucks store in the Manhattan borough of New York(Reuters) - Starbucks Corp's early re-launch of its popular Pumpkin Spice latte drink failed to heat up business at its U.S. cafes, disappointing Wall Street and sending the company's shares down almost 5 percent. The world's biggest coffee chain said a 1 percent increase in traffic contributed to a 5 percent gain in sales for Americas-region cafes open at least 13 months. But that result fell short of the 6.2 percent same-store sales gain expected by analysts polled by Consensus Metrix. The U.S.-dominated Americas region contributes the majority of Starbucks revenue. ...


Hello Kitty fans pose for photos in a giant tea cup at the Hello Kitty Con, the first-ever Hello Kitty fan convention, held at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014, in Los Angeles. The convention was held to honor the character's 40th birthday. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)LOS ANGELES (AP) — Hello Kitty cuteness is taking over Little Tokyo in downtown Los Angeles as the city hosts the first Hello Kitty fan convention.


EU Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger addresses the media at the European Commission headquarters in Brussels, Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014. Trilateral gas talks between the European Union, Russia and Ukraine about gas supply from Russia for Europe during the upcoming winter take place in Brussels. (AP Photo/Yves Logghe)BRUSSELS (AP) — Moscow and Kiev on Thursday clinched a deal that will guarantee that Russian gas exports flows into Ukraine throughout the winter despite their intense rivalry over the fighting in eastern Ukraine.


The headline of the Stockton Record newspaper reads "City in 'Fight for its life", in a downtown newsstandBy Robin Respaut SACRAMENTO (Reuters) - Stockton, California, employees breathed a sigh of relief on Thursday as a judge ruled the city could exit bankruptcy, leaving benefits administered by public pension giant Calpers untouched. The ruling, however, left investors and analysts confused about how pension funds stacked up in terms of their priority of treatment in a bankruptcy proceeding. Public employees had worried about their pensions after U.S. ...


  Thu, 30 Oct 2014 18:12:45 -0400

Alstory Simon leaves the Jacksonville Correction Center as a free man Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014, in Jacksonville Ill. Simon's confession helped free a death row inmate in a case that was instrumental in the campaign to end capital punishment in Illinois. Anthony Porter had spent 16 years on death row and his supporters maintained he was wrongfully convicted. Simon was convicted and sentenced to 37 years in prison. But the Cook County State's Attorney's Office began re-examining Simon's conviction last year after he recanted his confession. Simon alleged he was coerced into making it by a private investigator. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)CHICAGO (AP) — A prisoner whose confession helped free a death row inmate in a case that was instrumental to ending capital punishment in Illinois was released Thursday after he recanted, and a prosecutor said there was powerful evidence that the other man was responsible.


FILE - In this June 27, 2012, file photo, pedestrians cross a street near the Bank of Stockton in Stockton, Calif. Residents in the California city of Stockton will likely learn Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014, if they can put more than two years of financial uncertainty behind them. Marking a critical moment in the bankrupt city's financial recovery, Stockton will ask U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Klein to approve a plan for reorganizing more than $900 million in long-term debt over objections from a lone creditor who says it was treated unfairly. (AP Photo/Gosia Wozniacka, File)SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A judge on Thursday approved a plan by Stockton, California, one of the largest U.S. cities to declare bankruptcy, allowing it to eliminate more than $2 billion in long-term debt payments without touching its massive pension obligations.


U.S. Secretary of State Kerry gestures at the Washington Ideas Forum presented by the Aspen Institute and the Atlantic in WashingtonWASHINGTON (Reuters) - The description of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a "chickenshit" by an anonymous U.S. official as quoted in a U.S. magazine this week was disgraceful and damaging, Secretary of State John Kerry said on Thursday. Netanyahu on Wednesday condemned the comment from an unnamed official in The Atlantic, which added to tensions between his government and the Obama administration, particularly over settlement building in Israeli-annexed East Jerusalem. ...


Russian Energy Minister Novak arrives for gas talks between the European Union, Russia and Ukraine at the EU Commission headquarters in BrusselsBy Alastair Macdonald BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Ukraine, Russia and the European Union signed a deal on Thursday on the resumption of Russian natural gas supplies to Ukraine for winter after several months of delay during the conflict in Ukraine. European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, who witnessed the three-way signing ceremony in Brussels as he prepares to leave office on Friday, said: "There is now no reason for people in Europe to stay cold this winter. ...


By Dan Levine and Fiona Ortiz (Reuters) - In his essay coming out as gay, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook criticized an Arizona proposal that would have given private business owners the ability to deny services to gay people on religious grounds. Cook on Thursday became the most prominent American corporate leader to come out, saying he was trading his closely guarded privacy for the chance to help move civil rights forward. ...
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts is getting a somewhat reluctant endorsement from his former Republican primary challenger, Milton Wolf.

FILE - In this Oct. 2, 2014 file photo, flowers and photos are on display during a vigil for the Strack family at Pioneer Park in Provo, Utah. Relatives of five Utah family members found dead in a locked bedroom last month say revelations that poison likely killed them confirmed their suspicions. Jacob Strack says in a statement relatives are shocked, upset and struggling as they relive the deaths of Benjamin and Kristi Strack as well as three of their children. They say they will release more information later. (AP Photo/The Daily Herald, Grant Hindsley, File) MANDATORY CREDITSALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Relatives of five Utah family members found dead in a locked bedroom last month suspected the deaths weren't accidental, and revelations that poison likely killed them confirmed their suspicions, according to a statement released Thursday.


Nurse Kaci Hickox and her boyfriend Ted Wilbur address the media during an informal meeting with the news media outside their home in Fort KentBy Steve Holland CAPE ELIZABETH Maine (Reuters) - A nurse who treated Ebola patients in Sierra Leone but has tested negative for the virus went for a bike ride on Thursday, defying Maine's order that she be quarantined in her home and setting up a legal collision with Governor Paul LePage. Attorneys for Kaci Hickox, 33, said they had not yet been served with a court order to enforce the 21-day quarantine - matching the virus's maximum incubation period - but remained prepared to fight such an order if necessary. ...


FILE - In this Oct. 15, 2014 file photo, Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., left, and his Republican opponent, Rep. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., face off during a televised debate at 9News in Denver. As a season of campaigning enters its final, intense weekend, a new Associated Press-GfK poll illustrates the challenge ahead for candidates and their allies trying to rally voters around traditional wedge issues such as abortion and gay marriage. This fall, voters just have other matters on their minds. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)DENVER (AP) — As a season of campaigning enters its final, intense weekend, a new Associated Press-GfK poll illustrates the challenge ahead for candidates and their allies trying to rally voters around traditional wedge issues such as abortion and gay marriage. This fall, voters just have other matters on their minds.


Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel listens at left as Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin E. Dempsey speaks during a briefing at the Pentagon, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon is considering ways to bring the Sunni Arab tribes of Iraq's Anbar province more fully into the battle against the Islamic State group, the top U.S. military officer said Thursday.


  Thu, 30 Oct 2014 17:56:23 -0400

Dave McIntyre, a component installer, works on outfitting an entire deck to a Carver C37 yacht at Marquis Yachts in Pulaski, Wis., on Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. Marine manufacturing is a $6 billion industry that's critical to the economic landscape of Wisconsin, according to experts. About 3,200 people, with two-thirds located in the northeastern part of the state, hold jobs in marine manufacturing.(AP Photo/The Green Bay Press-Gazette, Evan Siegle) NO SALESWASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy powered its way to a solid annual growth rate of 3.5 percent from July through September, outpacing most of the developed world and appearing on track to extend its momentum through this year and beyond.


  Thu, 30 Oct 2014 17:48:35 -0400

File--In this June 26 , 2014, file photo, Anthony Johnson, director of marijuana legalization group New Approach Oregon, and Liz Kaufman, campaign director, speak to reporters in Salem, Ore. Intense get-out-the-vote drives are mobilizing in Oregon and Alaska to legalize retail sales of marijuana to anyone old enough to drink. (AP Photo/Chad Garland, file)GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — From slick video ads online to scrawled chalk messages on college campus sidewalks, intense get-out-the-vote drives are mobilizing in Oregon and Alaska to legalize retail sales of marijuana to anyone old enough to drink.


PARAMUS, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey professor suspended after he posted an online photo containing a quote from "Game of Thrones" has had his punishment rescinded by the college.
SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Gregg Allman has been dropped from a lawsuit by the family of a film worker killed by a train during shooting of a biographical movie about the Allman Brothers Band singer, attorneys said Thursday.

Anti-government protestor carries a burning object outside the parliament building in OuagadougouBy Mathieu Bonkoungou and Joe Penney OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) - Burkina Faso's military dissolved parliament and announced a transitional government on Thursday after violent protests against President Blaise Compaore, but it was not immediately clear who was in charge. Army chief General Honore Traore said the new government would be installed after consultation with all political parties and would lead the country to an election within 12 months. He also announced a curfew from 1900 to 0600 GMT (1500 to 0200 ET). ...


OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) - The head of Burkina Faso's armed forces announced on Thursday the dissolution of the national assembly and the creation of a national transitional government to last a maximum of 12 months, though he did not say who would lead it. "A transitional body will be put in place in consultation with all parties. A return to the constitutional order is expected in no more than 12 months," General Honore Traore told a news conference after a day of violent protests in the capital. (Reporting by Mathieu Bonkougou in Ouagadougou and Bate Felix in Dakar; Editing by Daniel Flynn)

FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2014 file photo, TV personality Takema "Tiny" Harris arrives at the 2014 BET Hip Hop Awards in Atlanta. Harris, the wife of rapper T.I., has the attention of skeptical eye doctors and social media haters over a procedure she underwent to permanently lighten the color of her eyes. Harris, once a member of the '90s R&B group Xscape, told ABC News on Thursday that she traveled to Africa a little more than two weeks ago for cosmetic eye implants that changed her eye color from brown to ice gray. (Photo by Dan Harr/Invision/AP, File)NEW YORK (AP) — Reality TV star Tameka "Tiny" Harris, the wife of rapper T.I., has the attention of skeptical eye doctors and social media haters over a procedure she underwent to permanently lighten the color of her eyes.


Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., talks with supporters during a campaign stop in Leavenworth, Kan., Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. Roberts is locked in a tough contest with independent candidate Greg Orman, a 45-year-old Olathe businessman and co-founder of a private equity firm. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts is raising concerns that President Barack Obama may try to place terrorist suspects at a Kansas military prison — and is forcefully vowing to stop it — as he taps into the potential fears of voters during the closing days of a tight re-election campaign.


Britain's Andy Murray returns a ball to Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov during the third round match at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 indoor tennis tournament on October 30, 2014 in ParisParis (AFP) - Andy Murray guaranteed his place at the World Tour Finals on Thursday while Roger Federer joined him in the Paris Masters quarter-finals to keep his quest for the number one spot alive.


WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal agents and prosecutors in Arizona made multiple errors in their investigation of a U.S. citizen who was suspected of smuggling grenade components to Mexico, including failing to arrest him when there was more than enough evidence to do so, the Justice Department watchdog said in a harshly critical report Thursday.
  Thu, 30 Oct 2014 17:26:35 -0400

San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy hands the championship trophy to Pablo Sandoval as they celebrate after Game 7 of baseball's World Series against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo. The Giants won 3-2 to win the series. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)NEW YORK (AP) — Baseball's business season began Thursday when 121 players become free agents, a group that includes Pablo Sandoval, Michael Morse, Jake Peavy, Sergio Romo and Ryan Vogelsong of the World Series champion San Francisco Giants.


A man jumps over a burning couch in the Mission district after the San Francisco Giants beat the Kansas City Royals to win the World Series on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The celebration in San Francisco's streets following the Giants' World Series victory started off peaceful but quickly turned raucous and violent, as revelers vandalized police cars and businesses and pelted officers with bottles.


By Phil Stewart and David Alexander WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States needs to expand a limited advise-and-assist mission in Iraq into embattled Anbar province, where some Iraqi forces are isolated and in defensive positions against Islamic State, the top U.S. military officer said on Thursday. But General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Iraq's government must be ready to arm Sunni tribes as a precondition for getting outside advisers into the western Iraqi province. ...
KOSLANDA, Sri Lanka (AP) — Hundreds of desperate Sri Lankan villagers dug with bare hands through the broken red earth of a deadly landslide Thursday, defying police orders after a top disaster official said there was no chance of finding more survivors at the high-elevation tea plantation.
  Thu, 30 Oct 2014 17:05:36 -0400

A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, October 14, 2014New York (AFP) - Strong earnings by credit card giant Visa sent its stock soaring Thursday, almost single-handedly powering the Dow to a 1.3 percent gain.



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