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Congress loses a man of courage and decency

As on so many matters, former Republican Senate leader Bob Dole put it best when he said that almost all members of Congress love to make tough speeches; they just don’t like to make tough votes. Rep. Walter B. Jones Jr., the North Carolina Republican who died on his 76th birthday, was an ...

Case solved: Now we know his name was Bobby

Now we have a name. After two agonizing decades, the “Boy Under the Billboard” case I wrote about last year finally has been solved. But in determining the identity of the strangled 10-year-old boy who was abandoned under a highway billboard, the sheriff’s detectives also unraveled a ...

Napkin, genealogy site leads to arrest in 1993 murder case

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A businessman has been charged with fatally stabbing a Minneapolis woman in 1993 after investigators ran DNA evidence from the murder scene through a genealogy website and obtained his DNA from a discarded napkin. Jerry Westrom, 52, was charged with second-degree murder ...

North Korea exploring sanctions-proof energy technologies

NAMPO, North Korea — Power-strapped North Korea is exploring two ambitious alternative energy sources — tidal power and coal-based synthetic fuels — that could greatly improve living standards and reduce its reliance on oil imports and vulnerability to sanctions. Finding a lasting ...

Hamlin stays hot at Daytona

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Denny Hamlin came to the Daytona 500 determined to honor his late car owner with a victory. He delivered with a storybook tribute for Joe Gibbs Racing. Hamlin won NASCAR’s biggest race for the second time in four years Sunday, leading JGR in a 1-2-3 sweep of ...

Watermelon farmer Chastain gets top 10 finish

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Ross Chastain always has watermelons around victory lane, a nod to his roots in the family fruit farming business. He may not spend much time on the Florida farm these days, but with good reason — he was part of a bumper crop of Daytona 500 rookies that made ...

No. 11 Spartans use late run to put away Buckeyes, but lose Ward

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan State shut down Ohio State in the second half despite an injury to Nick Ward. Now the Spartans may be without their standout big man for a while. Ward left in the second half with a broken left hand, but No. 11 Michigan State still rolled to a 62-44 ...

Major League Baseball to institute pitch clock for spring training games

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Major League Baseball is unilaterally starting the use of pitch clocks for spring training games, while brushing off complaints from players about the slow free agent market. With the sport looking for ways to speed the pace of play, pitchers generally will have ...

Team LeBron rallies to beat Team Giannis, 178-164

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — LeBron James was trading lob pass with Dwyane Wade again, one last time. Lobs from Kyrie Irving once again, too. And after making a stepback 3-pointer late, he stared down Joel Embiid to send a message without saying a word. Oh, this mattered. Team LeBron, down by ...

Mom says son is with wrong woman

Dear Annie: My 25-year-old son, “Andy,” has been dating “Cassie” for a year and a half. Andy is the kind of guy everybody loves, from 2-year-olds to 100-year-olds. Cassie only has a couple of friends and has a terrible reputation. Nobody has anything nice to say about her. For the ...

Splenda use won’t cause diabetes

Dear Dr. Roach: I’m a 75-year-old man in good health and not obese (my BMI is around 20-21). I like coffee, and drink four or five cups a day. But I like it with a packet of Splenda, and the same thing goes for my breakfast cereal. Am I setting myself up for diabetes? — D.G.D. Answer: ...

Holmes solves Genesis Open

LOS ANGELES (AP) — J.B. Holmes rallied from a four-shot deficit in the final round and won a marathon finish Sunday in the Genesis Open for his first victory in three years and a trip back to the Masters. Holmes closed with a 1-under 70, and that was enough to overcome Justin Thomas, who ...

Trump declares nat’l emergency to get $8 billion for border wall

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defiant in the face of a budget defeat, President Donald Trump declared a national emergency Friday to get more federal dollars for his long-promised wall at the U.S.-Mexico border, relying on a broad interpretation of his powers that was certain to trigger stiff legal ...

National Briefs

No peanuts or Cracker Jack at the old ballgame in Hartford HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Kerry Adamowicz hoped that a meeting with Hartford Yard Goats officials might lead to a few peanut-free days or maybe a peanut-free section at the team’s Double-A baseball stadium, so her son and other ...

14 candidates vie to become Chicago’s next mayor

CHICAGO (AP) — The race to succeed Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has attracted a diverse group of candidates, including businesspeople, a former federal prosecutor, an ex-police superintendent, veteran politicians and community activists. The election will take place Feb. 26. If no candidate ...

Snow too thick to plow keeps skiers from California resorts

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Winter weather enveloping California’s mountains for a fourth straight day Friday kept skiers from hitting the slopes at the start of the Presidents Day holiday weekend, with snow so deep that plows could not tackle it and cities scrambled to find places to pile ...

Vatican defrocks former US cardinal over sex abuse

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has defrocked former U.S. Cardinal Theodore McCarrick after Vatican officials found him guilty of soliciting for sex while hearing confession and of sexual crimes against minors and adults, the Holy See said Saturday. McCarrick, 88, is the highest-ranking ...

Eight miners rescued in Zimbabwe; dozens more feared dead

KADOMA, Zimbabwe (AP) — Eight subsistence miners who were trapped underground for several days after heavy flooding in Zimbabwe have been rescued, though dozens of their co-workers are still missing and feared dead. Rescuers on Saturday pulled the exhausted, muddied survivors from the ...

Does Catalan crisis threaten to make Spain ‘ungovernable’?

BARCELONA (AP) — The secession crisis festering in Spain’s northeastern corner of Catalonia has spread to the political heart of the European Union nation. Twice in less than a year, separatist lawmakers from Catalonia have played the role of king slayer, with their votes in the national ...

US military planes land near Venezuela border with aid

CUCUTA, Colombia (AP) — The U.S. military airlifted tons of aid to a Colombian town on the Venezuelan border on Saturday as part of an effort meant to undermine socialist President Nicolas Maduro and back his rival to leadership of the South American nation. Two of three scheduled Air Force ...