AP Top News at 3:47 p.m. EDT

Does NKorean H-bomb threat push US closer to war?
WASHINGTON (AP) - Would exploding a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific, as North Korea has threatened, push the current war of words between the U.S. and North Korea closer to actual war? As with much that has transpired lately in the U.S.-North Korea nuclear crisis, no one can be sure where this would lead or whether the North will even carry out its threat. It does, however, raise many questions, including: How would the North undertake such a nuclear test, what risks might it pose to Japan and how would the U.S. respond? After the North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, said President Donald Trump would "pay dearly" for threatening to "totally destroy" North Korea if the U.S.


GOP health bill all but dead; McCain again deals the blow
WASHINGTON (AP) - Sen. John McCain declared his opposition Friday to the GOP's last-ditch effort to repeal and replace "Obamacare," dealing a likely death blow to the legislation and, perhaps, to the Republican Party's years of vows to kill the program. "I cannot in good conscience vote for the Graham-Cassidy proposal," McCain said in a statement, referring to the bill by Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana. His opposition likely leaves the bill at least one vote short of the support needed for passage. "I believe we could do better working together, Republicans and Democrats, and have not yet really tried," McCain said.


Puerto Rico faces weeks without electricity after Maria
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) - Puerto Rico faced another night of darkness Friday, two days after Hurricane Maria hurled rain and wind at the U.S. territory and knocked out its electricity grid. Residents feared power could be out for weeks - or even months - and wondered how their battered island would cope. Some of the island's 3.4 million residents planned to come to the U.S. to temporarily escape the desolation left by the destruction. At least in the short term, though, the soggy misery will continue: additional rain - up to 6 inches - is expected through Saturday.


Watch Top News Video




Hurricane pushes long-suffering Puerto Rico to the edge
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) - A tired and discouraged Rosa Maria Almonte cleaned steel pots with bleach inside her darkened cafe as her daughter cooked up rice, beans and pork chops on a gas stove to feed people desperate for a hot meal in their storm-ravaged city. She has run El Buen Cafe for 21 years and seen some tough times, but the damage from Hurricane Maria, with no running water, no electricity and the prospect of a grinding recovery that could take weeks or months, had her wondering whether there was any point in staying. "I don't know if I can keep going," the 73-year-old cafe owner said Friday after mopping up water that seeped into her shop, the awning sitting in a heap on her counter.


Relatives keep vigil amid search for Mexico quake survivors
MEXICO CITY (AP) - Survivors were still being pulled from the rubble in Mexico City as rescue operations stretched into a fourth day Friday, spurring hope among desperate relatives gathered at the sites of buildings collapsed by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake. Mexico's federal police said several people were lifted out of the debris of two buildings Thursday. Rescuers removed or broke through slabs until they found cracks that allowed workers to wiggle through to reach the victims and lift them to safety. The city government said 60 people in all had been rescued since the quake hit at midday Tuesday.


Kim fires off insults at Trump and hints at weapons test
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un lobbed a string of insults at President Donald Trump on Friday, calling him a "mentally deranged U.S. dotard" and hinting at a frightening new weapon test. It was the first time for a North Korean leader to issue such a direct statement against a U.S. president, dramatically escalating the war of words between the former wartime foes and raising the international nuclear standoff to a new level. Trump responded by tweeting that Kim is "obviously a madman who doesn't mind starving or killing his people." In a lengthy statement carried by state media, Kim said Trump would "pay dearly" for his recent threat to destroy North Korea.


Obama campus assault guidance gets scrapped under Trump
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Trump administration on Friday scrapped Obama-era guidance on investigating campus sexual assault, replacing it with new instructions that allow universities to require higher standards of evidence when handling complaints. DeVos has said that Obama's policy had been unfairly skewed against those accused of assault and had "weaponized" the Education Department to "work against schools and against students." The change is the latest in Trump's broader effort to roll back Obama policies. Women's rights groups slammed Friday's decision, saying it will discourage students from reporting assault. The guidance released in 2011 and then updated in 2014 instructed universities to use a "preponderance of the evidence" standard when assessing and investigating a claim of sexual assault.


Rollback of federal police reform program riles advocates
A South Carolina city sought the federal government's help in rebuilding community trust after the 2015 fatal shooting of an unarmed black man by a white officer. Civil rights advocates hoped the resulting comprehensive review of police interactions would be a first step toward meaningful change. But North Charleston's review and similar efforts in several other cities effectively ended last week when the U.S. Justice Department announced it was rolling back an Obama-era program aimed at improving relations between residents and police. Instead, the program will now focus on tackling such issues as violent crime and gangs - moving away from federal scrutiny of law enforcement and more closely reflecting the Trump administration's law-and-order agenda.


Indiana man locked in cave for 60 hours, forgotten by group
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) - A 19-year-old man who spent 60 hours locked alone inside a gated southern Indiana cave says he feels lucky to be alive. Indiana University freshman Lukas Cavar was on a spelunking trip to Sullivan Cave about 10 miles (16 kilometers) south of Bloomington when he became separated Sunday afternoon from 12 other members of the university's Caving Club. When he eventually reached the cave entrance, Cavar found club members had padlocked its gate, unaware that he remained inside. He couldn't get a cellphone signal and screamed for hours, hoping motorists passing on a nearby road might hear him.


NOT REAL NEWS: A look at what didn't happen this week
A roundup of some of the most popular, but completely untrue, headlines of the week. None of these stories are legit, even though they were shared widely on social media. The Associated Press checked these out; here are the real facts: NOT REAL: Extremely Racist Black ESPN Reporter Says ALL White People Are NAZIS THE FACTS: ESPN "SportsCenter" anchor Jemele Hill never labeled all white people as Nazis, despite this viral headline from conservative site America's Freedom Fighters. Hill did call President Donald Trump a white supremacist on Twitter, prompting Trump to call for an apology from the network. ESPN has repeatedly said Hill's comments don't reflect the network's view.