WASHINGTON (AP) - The scandals dogging President Barack Obama are a political gift to Republicans, who could use some good luck after recent election losses. It's not clear, however, how Republicans can best capitalize on Democrats' woes, legislatively or politically. Last November's election dynamics complicate the picture on both fronts. Republican leaders are urging a bit of restraint in exploiting the White House's new weaknesses.
SHAWNEE, Okla. (AP) - Hearing on the radio that a violent storm was approaching her rural Oklahoma neighborhood, Lindsay Carter took advantage of the advanced warning, gathered her belongings and fled. When she returned, there was little left of the community she called home. Several tornadoes struck parts of the nation's midsection Sunday, concentrating damage in central Oklahoma and Wichita, Kan. One person was killed near Shawnee, Okla., and 21 injuries were reported throughout the state.
NEW YORK (AP) - Experts say the officer who killed a Long Island college student and a home invasion suspect on Friday was confronted with a split-second choice. John Jay College of Criminal Justice professor Michele Galietta says the death of Hofstra University junior Andrea Rebello illustrates the difficulty officers face when responding to calls involving armed gunmen.
WASHINGTON (AP) - More than 85,000 veterans were treated last year for injuries or illness stemming from sexual abuse in the military, and 4,000 sought disability benefits, underscoring the staggering long-term impact of a crisis that has roiled the Pentagon and been condemned by President Barack Obama as ""shameful and disgraceful." A Department of Veterans Affairs accounting released in response to inquiries from The Associated Press shows a heavy financial and emotional cost involving vets from Iraq, Afghanistan and even back to Vietnam, and lasting long after a victim leaves the service.
ZEPHYRHILLS, Fla. (AP) - Some lucky person walked into a Publix supermarket in suburban Florida over the past few days and bought a ticket now worth an estimated $590.5 million - the highest Powerball jackpot in history. But it wasn't Matthew Bogel. On Sunday, he loaded groceries into his car after shopping at the Publix. He shook his head when asked about the jackpot.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has a suggestion for commuters who manage to make it to work in New York City from southwest Connecticut: You might want to stay put in the Big Apple - all week. The governor warned that Monday's commute is expected to be "extremely challenging" following the collision and derailment of two trains outside Bridgeport last week that injured 72 people.
BEIRUT (AP) - A Syrian group that tracks the country's civil war says 23 fighters from the militant group Hezbollah have been killed in fierce clashes in a strategic town near the Lebanese border. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the fighters died in the fighting Sunday around the rebel-held town of Qusair. More than 100 have been wounded.
Car bombs in Baghdad, south Iraq kill at least 34 BAGHDAD (AP) - A wave of car bombings across Baghdad's Shiite neighborhoods and in the southern city of Basra killed at least 34 people on Monday, Iraqi officials said. The attacks are the latest in a recent spike of bombings that has hit both Sunni and Shiite civilian targets over the past week. The bloodshed has raised fears of a return to the widespread sectarian violence of 2006-2007 that brought the country to the edge of civil war.
Another day, another domination for Taylor Swift: She was the red hot winner at the Billboard Music Awards. Swift won eight of 11 awards, including top artist and top Billboard 200 album for "Red." She told the crowd: "You are the longest and best relationship I ever had."
SOCHI, Russia (AP) - The mountains of Sochi are now home to Potanin's slope, Gazprom's gondola lift and Sberbank's ski jump. The nicknames used by locals and an army of construction workers leave no doubt about who is paying for the 2014 Winter Games: Russia's business powerhouses. Other countries that have hosted the Olympics have overwhelmingly used public funds to pay for the construction of needed venues and new infrastructure. The Russian government, however, has gotten state-controlled companies and tycoons to foot more than half of the bill, which now stands at $51 billion and makes the 2014 Winter Games by far the most expensive Olympics in history. In contrast, the much-larger 2012 Summer Olympics in London cost about $14.3 billion and the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing cost about $40 billion.