Trump tweets, McCain return set stage for health bill vote WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump urged Republicans to "step up to the plate" for Tuesday's crucial Senate vote on their bill eviscerating much of the Obama health care law. The stage was set for high drama, with Sen. John McCain returning to the Capitol to cast his first vote since being diagnosed with brain cancer. No stranger to heroic episodes, the Navy pilot who persevered through five years of captivity during the Vietnam War announced through his office that he would be back in Washington for the critical roll call on beginning debate on the legislation. The 80-year-old has been at home in Arizona since he revealed last week that he's undergoing treatment for brain cancer, but a statement said he "looks forward" to returning for work on health care and other legislation.
Trump asks about firing Sessions, calls his position 'weak' WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump has spoken with advisers about firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions, officials say, and launched a fresh Twitter tirade Tuesday against the man who was the first U.S. senator to endorse his candidacy. "Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes (where are E-mails & DNC server) & Intel leakers!" Trump tweeted. The president's anger over Sessions' decision to recuse himself from the government's investigation of Russian meddling in the U.S. election had burst into public view Monday when he referred to Sessions in a tweet as "beleaguered." Privately, Trump has speculated aloud to allies in recent days about the potential consequences of firing Sessions, according to three people who have recently spoken to the president.
Kushner returns to Capitol Hill for 2nd day of interviews WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump's son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner will return to Capitol Hill Tuesday for a second day of private meetings with congressional investigators, this time for a closed-door conversation with lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee. Kushner on Monday answered questions from staff on the Senate's intelligence panel, acknowledging four meetings with Russians during and after Trump's victorious White House bid and insisting he had "nothing to hide." He emerged smiling to publicly declare, "All of my actions were proper." A quiet insider who generally avoids the spotlight, Kushner is the first top Trump lieutenant to be quizzed by the congressional investigators probing Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
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10 Things to Know for Today Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today: 1. BUOYED BY MCCAIN'S RETURN, GOP SET SENATE HEALTH BILL VOTE The 80-year-old Arizona Republican, undergoing treatment for brain cancer, will be back in Washington for the critical roll call on beginning debate on the legislation, but it remains an uphill battle for Republicans. 2. KUSHNER READY FOR ROUND 2 Trump's son-in-law and adviser will return to Capitol Hill for a closed-door conversation with lawmakers on the House intelligence committee after denying collusion with Russia. 3. ISRAEL DISMANTLES METAL DETECTORS FROM DISPUTED JERUSALEM SHRINE The move is designed to defuse a crisis with the Muslim world, including security ally Jordan, the custodian of the holy site.
Black seniors stroll down memory lane aiming to stay sharp Sharon Steen dons her tennis shoes and, with two fellow seniors, walks streets that in her youth were a vibrant center of Portland, Oregon's African-American community. Wasn't this the corner where an NAACP march began in 1963? Look, the record store is now a fancy high-rise. It's more than a stroll down memory lane. Steen enrolled in a small but unique study to see if jogging memories where they were made can help older African-Americans stay mentally sharp and slow early memory loss. "What we find when we walk, all of us, is that there are a lot of things we haven't had to remember, and that we can't remember.
AP: US church goes to Brazil; instills fear, splits families SAO JOAQUIM DE BICAS, BRAZIL (AP) - At the Word of Faith Fellowship churches in the Brazilian cities of Sao Joaquim de Bicas and Franco da Rocha, the signs of broken families are everywhere: parents separated from their children, siblings who no longer speak, grandparents who wonder if they will ever know their grandchildren. Over the course of two decades, the U.S.-based mother church took command of both congregations in Brazil, applying a strict interpretation of the Bible and enforcing it through rigorous controls and physical punishment, The Associated Press has found. Many of the more than three dozen former members interviewed by the AP in Brazil said they live in perpetual fear of retribution.
Israel dismantles metal detectors from key Jerusalem shrine JERUSALEM (AP) - Israel on Tuesday dismantled metal detectors it installed a week earlier at a contested Jerusalem shrine, hoping to defuse a crisis with the Muslim world, including security ally Jordan, the Muslim custodian of the holy site. The removal of the devices followed the resolution of a 24-hour diplomatic standoff with Jordan over a deadly shooting at the Israeli Embassy in the kingdom, suggesting a broader deal had been struck. However, there were signs Tuesday that the crisis over the shrine, revered by Muslims and Jews, was not over yet. Israel announced it would replace the metal detectors with new security measures.
Smugglers offer crammed big rigs as 'VIP treatment' to US SAN DIEGO (AP) - When Thomas Homan, the acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, was awakened Sunday morning with news that migrants were found dead inside a sweltering tractor-trailer outside a San Antonio Walmart, his mind flashed back to 2003, when he stood at the back of a truck about 120 miles (200 kilometers) southeast of San Antonio that carried 19 dead migrants. "It is sad that 14 years later people are still being smuggled in tractor-trailers," he said. "There still isn't water, there still isn't ventilation. These criminal organizations, they're all about making money." The striking similarities of the Texas tragedies demonstrate how smugglers have found a durable business model carrying large groups - often in big rigs - through an elaborate network of foot guides, safe house operators and drivers.
Reporter Q&A: A look at Duterte's state of the nation speech MANILA, Philippines (AP) - Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delivered his second state of the nation speech to a joint session of Congress on Monday, vowing to continue his bloody war on illegal drugs despite international and domestic criticism. The tough-talking president also insisted he would not hold peace talks with communist rebels because of continuing attacks. The Associated Press' chief Manila correspondent, Jim Gomez, who has covered regional politics for more than two decades, discusses the speech and the reaction: --- THIS YEAR AND LAST YEAR In comparing Duterte's state of the nation speech on Monday with his first one last year, the Duterte that I heard this week was essentially the same guy that I heard a year ago.
Pressure mounts to curtail surgery on intersex children NEW YORK (AP) - Children whose sexual characteristics don't neatly align with the norm have for decades faced surgery to rearrange their anatomy to resemble that of more typical boys and girls - long before they were old enough to have a say in the decision. But now the practice is under assault, as never before. The American Medical Association is considering a proposal discouraging it. Three former U.S. surgeons general say it's unjustified. And on Tuesday, Human Rights Watch and InterACT a group advocating for intersex youth - are releasing a detailed report assailing the practice and urging Congress to ban it.