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AP Interview: In pursuit of GOP unity, Ryan endorses Trump

JANESVILLE, Wis. (AP) — House Speaker Paul Ryan endorsed Donald Trump's bid for president on Thursday, bringing an end to the extraordinary public split between the GOP's presumptive White House nominee and the nation's top Republican in office. … [Read more...]

El Salvador wants to investigate ambassador for arms sales

El Salvador prosecutors on Thursday asked Congress to allow the government to investigate the country's ambassador to Germany for illegal arms sales during his time in the Defense Ministry. Congress must approve criminal proceedings against any public official. The government said Ambassador Jose Atilio Benitez, 57, a retired general, committed fraud with more than 30 weapons that belonged to the … [Read more...]

Judges won’t stop use of North Carolina congressional lines

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Federal judges have declined for now to strike down the latest edition of North Carolina congressional district boundaries being used in next week's primary elections. … [Read more...]

Men say they invested in speaker’s company out of friendship

OPELIKA, Ala. (AP) — Two prominent businessmen testified Thursday that they invested in Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard's debt-riddled printing company out of friendship and because they thought it would be a good investment. … [Read more...]

Ryan to AP: Trump is comfortable with my principles

House Speaker Paul Ryan endorsed Donald Trump for president on Thursday, and explained his decision to back the billionaire businessman in an exclusive interview with The Associated Press. Quotes from the interview: … [Read more...]

The Edge: Ryan on Trump—Okay, Sure

Today in One Paragraph House Speaker Paul Ryan said he’d vote for Donald Trump after weeks of consideration. Meanwhile, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder will not support the presumptive Republican nominee. Hillary Clinton called Trump “temperamentally unfit” to be president during a major foreign policy speech. President Obama gave the final commencement address of his presidency at the United States … [Read more...]

Republican House Speaker throws support behind Trump

Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan threw his support behind the party's presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump on Thursday, a key step toward building unity ahead of the US general election in November. The top-ranked Republican currently elected to public office, Ryan dropped a bombshell last month, triggering soul-searching within the fractured party when he said he was "just … [Read more...]

Speaker ‘disappointed’ over economic plan passing

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello says he's disappointed a state-mandated economic development plan was approved, and that controversy over the plan has diverted attention from the state's economy. Members ... … [Read more...]

Senate committee votes for new war powers

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday voted to authorize President Barack Obama's war against the Islamic State group — the first vote in Congress to explicitly grant him war powers in the U.S. battle against the militant extremists. … [Read more...]

Congress losing last WWII vets, a tea party fave

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress is saying farewell to its last two veterans of World War II, the member whose lodgings inspired Amazon's "Alpha House" show, a founding firebrand of the tea party, the senator dubbed "Dr. No" and a few dozen other lawmakers this week as another session of bickering winds down. … [Read more...]

Pacific trade pact chances ‘significantly’ better than 50-50: Obama

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Chances that U.S. negotiators can bring home a strong trade deal with Asia-Pacific countries are now much better than 50-50, U.S. President Barack Obama said on Thursday. Obama said he was also confident the administration could make a "strong case" in Congress for a Trans-Pacific Partnership deal covering nearly 40 percent of the world economy. "I'm much … [Read more...]

U.S. House rejects making charity tax breaks permanent

(Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday rejected legislation to make three U.S. tax breaks for certain kinds of charitable donations permanent parts of the tax code, handing a defeat to the chamber's top tax law writer. Representative Dave Camp, the Republican chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, proposed the bill at the 11th hour in the midst of Congress' scramble to … [Read more...]

Shutdown deadline looms as opposition to U.S. spending bill mounts

By David Lawder WASHINGTON (Reuters) - With the threat looming of a midnight government shutdown, the fate of a $1.1 trillion U.S. spending bill was thrust into doubt on Thursday by Democratic objections over a provision to roll back part of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law. A vote on final passage of the bill was set for Thursday afternoon, and House Speaker John Boehner predicted passage. But … [Read more...]

State Dept deputy approved by panel, full Senate next

A US Senate panel on Thursday approved Tony Blinken as deputy secretary of state, setting up a potential full confirmation vote on President Barack Obama's nominee before Congress adjourns this week. If confirmed, Obama's deputy national security advisor Blinken would be the State Department's number two to top diplomat John Kerry, capping a fierce behind-the-scenes tussle over who … [Read more...]

U.S. bill to avoid government shutdown clears hurdle in House

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A $1.1 trillion government funding bill, necessary to keep federal agencies operating beyond midnight, cleared a procedural hurdle in the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday, paving the way for a final vote on the legislation later in the day. By a vote of 214-212, the House approved the rules for debating the bill. (Reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by Susan Heavey) … [Read more...]

Boehner: Government funding bill should pass on Thursday

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday said he expects the $1.1 trillion government funding bill to pass the House of Representatives later in the day. "I expect this bill will receive bipartisan support to pass," the top House Republican leader told reporters at a news conference. (Reporting by Richard Cowan; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Bill Trott) … [Read more...]

Congressional deal upends pot legalization in DC

Elected officials and drug-policy advocates hoped to make the nation's capital the first place on the East Coast with legal pot. They wanted to use the District of Columbia as further encouragement for ... … [Read more...]

Budget would raise limits on political money

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress is set to make it easier for political parties to collect bigger checks from their wealthiest backers — if Democrats do not scuttle the plan first. … [Read more...]