AP Top Political News at 10:09 a.m. EST

Presidential contenders fight for minority voters in SC
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Presidential candidates in both parties battled for the crucial backing of black and Hispanic voters Friday as the race shifted toward states with more minority voters....

AP FACT CHECK: Clinton, Sanders on health care, donors
WASHINGTON (AP) -- In their latest debate, Hillary Clinton glossed over the big-money donors juicing her White House ambitions while Bernie Sanders offered disputed numbers behind his plan for a government-financed health system....

Debate Takeaways: Clinton, Sanders appeal to SC, Nevada
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- In the first Democratic presidential debate since Bernie Sanders' sweeping victory in New Hampshire's primary, the Vermont senator sought to build upon success and introduce himself to voters who may be open to an alternative to Iowa winner Hillary Clinton....

Obama recites love poem to wife on national television
BURBANK, Calif. (AP) -- Someone call the fire department. It's about to get hot at the White House....

Obama moves to protect 1.8 million acres of Calif. desert
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- President Barack Obama is granting national monument status to nearly 1.8 million acres of scenic Southern California desert, a move the White House says will maintain in perpetuity the region's fragile ecosystem and natural resources, as well as provide recreational opportunities for hikers, campers, hunters and others....

Sanders online fundraising gives Clinton a run for her money
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Bernie Sanders is giving Hillary Clinton a run for her money, $27 at a time....

Kasich works to assure South Carolina of conservative record
NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) -- An energized John Kasich heads into South Carolina's Republican presidential primary hoping to build on a strong showing in New Hampshire, but he's refusing to tailor or shift his message to fit the state's more conservative electorate....

Mideast 'quartet' to prepare report on peace prospects
MUNICH (AP) -- The international diplomatic "quartet" on the Mideast says it will prepare a report on the current situation between Israel and the Palestinians with an eye toward resuming peace talks....

Congress bans import of forced labor products
A bill headed for President Barack Obama this week includes a provision that would ban U.S. imports of fish caught by slaves in Southeast Asia, gold mined by children in Africa and garments sewn by abused women in Bangladesh, closing a loophole in an 85-year-old tariff law that has failed to keep products of forced and child labor out of America....

Flint crisis may help governor ease GOP doubt on Detroit aid
LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- Rick Snyder's standing as one of the GOP's most accomplished governors has taken a beating in the crisis over lead-contaminated water in Flint, Michigan. Democrats, especially those running for president, have pointed to his administration's mishandling of the city's switch to a cheaper water supply as an example of Republican cost-cutting run amok....



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