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Teacher accused of sleeping with student says flight to Mexico was his idea; judge denies bail

OMAHA, Neb. - A former teacher accused of having sex with a 13-year-old student said Monday it was the boy's idea to flee to Mexico and that he told her he would kill her if she left him.

December 26, 2007 | By OSKAR GARCIA Associated Press Writer | National


New study says overall drug use declining among teens, but painkillers remain popular

WASHINGTON - Illicit drug use by teens continued to gradually decline overall this year, but the use of prescription painkillers remains popular among young people, according to a federally financed study released Tuesday at the White House.

December 26, 2007 | By DEB RIECHMANN Associated Press Writer | National


Spy court won’t release documents on warrantless wiretapping program

WASHINGTON - The nation's spy court said Tuesday that it will not release its documents regarding the Bush administration's warrantless wiretapping program.

December 26, 2007 | By MATT APUZZO Associated Press Writer | National


Stocks plunge after Fed cuts rates as expected; policymakers signal further cuts are possible

NEW YORK - Wall Street plunged Tuesday after the Federal Reserve lowered its benchmark interest rate by 0.25 percent, disappointing some investors who hoped the central bank would take more aggressive measures. The Dow Jones industrial average, which had been up about 40 points before the decision, fell 300 points.

December 26, 2007 | By JOE BEL BRUNO AP Business Writer | National


Hayden faces questions on CIA tapes destruction as ex-agent says waterboarding OK’d at the top

WASHINGTON - The CIA's waterboarding of a top al-Qaida figure was approved at the top levels of the U.S. government, a former CIA agent said Tuesday as Congress grilled agency director Gen. Michael Hayden about the destruction of videotapes of terror suspect interrogations.

December 26, 2007 | By PAMELA HESS Associated Press Writer | National


Ice storm glazes Midwest, cuts power to nearly a million homes and businesses

DES MOI - A thick glaze of ice brought down power lines and cut electricity to close to a million homes and businesses, closed schools and canceled flights Tuesday as a major storm blasted the nation's midsection.

December 26, 2007 | By JAMES BELTRAN Associated Press Writer | National


So-called human life amendment in Colorado revives strategy toward banning abortions

DENVER (AP) - A 20-year-old law student has become a cause celebre in the anti-abortion movement for her efforts to have the state Constitution define fertilized eggs as people - a tactic spreading nationwide in bids to neutralize the Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion.

December 26, 2007 | By P. SOLOMON BANDA Associated Press Writer | National


Bush ally Boehner endorses ’emergency’ spending above Bush budget cap

WASHINGTON - In a break with President Bush, the top Republican in the House endorsed $7.4 billion in new emergency spending, even as he vowed to stick with the White House's demands to hew to the president's budget limits for domestic programs.

December 26, 2007 | By ANDREW TAYLOR Associated Press Writer | National


Fed cuts key interest rate for third time in 3 months

WASHINGTON - The Federal Reserve cut a key interest rate by one-quarter of a percentage point Tuesday, but Wall Street took a tumble. Investors were disappointed that the central bank did not act more boldly to keep the country out of a recession.

December 26, 2007 | By MARTIN CRUTSINGER AP Economics Writer | National


Southern farmers seek drought relief from Congress with a disaster relief deadline extension

WASHINGTON - Congress plans to extend a disaster relief deadline so farmers hit by drought this year can get cash assistance to offset losses, Democratic lawmakers said.

December 26, 2007 | By BEN EVANS Associated Press Writer | National


Holiday mail addressed to ‘Any Wounded Soldier’ will be returned or thrown out, Pentagon says

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Hundreds of thousands of holiday cards and letters thanking wounded American troops for their sacrifice and wishing them well never reach their destination. They are returned to sender or thrown away unopened.

December 26, 2007 | By JAY REEVES Associated Press Writer | National


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