WASHINGTON (AP) - It happens every week at meetings in towns, counties and cities nationwide. A lawmaker or religious leader leads a prayer before officials begin the business of zoning changes, contract approvals and trash pickup.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Just two weeks from an economy-threatening deadline, fiscal cliff talks hit a lull Tuesday as House Speaker John Boehner announced that Republicans would also march ahead with their own tax plan on a separate track from the one he's been pursuing with President Barack Obama.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The movie "Zero Dark Thirty" suggests the CIA's harsh interrogation techniques led the U.S. to Osama bin Laden. Sen. John McCain watched the movie Monday night and says it left him sick - because it's wrong.
The following is a recap of prayer policies at South County public government meetings:
CHICAGO (AP) - The FBI says window prison bars were found inside a mattress in the cell belonging to two bank robbers who escaped from downtown Chicago's high-rise jail.
LANSING, Kan. (AP) - The bodies of the two men executed for the 1959 murders of a Kansas family that became infamous in Truman Capote's true-crime book "In Cold Blood" were exhumed Tuesday in an effort to solve slayings of a Florida family killed weeks later.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - A small-caliber rifle and notes about a possible attack on a northeast Oklahoma high school were found at the home of a teenager accused of plotting to shoot classmates and detonate bombs, police said Monday.
NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) - Opening a long and almost unbearable procession of grief, Newtown began laying its dead to rest Monday, holding funerals for two 6-year-old boys - one a football fan who was buried in a New York Giants jersey and one whose twin sister survived the school shooting rampage.
AUSTRALIAN COURT: WORKER'S COMP COVERS SEX MISHAP: CANBERRA, Australia (AP) - An Australian court has ruled that a bureaucrat who was injured while having sex on a business trip is eligible for worker's compensation benefits.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The governor on Monday sidestepped a decision about whether a condemned inmate is too fat to be humanely executed by sparing him on the grounds that he had poor legal representation.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - A federal judge sentenced a hacker to 10 years in prison on Monday after he broke into the personal online accounts of Scarlett Johansson, Christina Aguilera and other women and posted revealing photos and other material on the Internet.
2 HURT WHEN TRUCK VEERS OFF I-280, CATCHES FIRE: MILLBRAE (AP) - Two men are hospitalized with what a California Highway Patrol spokesman describes as "major burns" after the delivery truck they were in ran off the side of a San Francisco Bay area freeway, crashed into a tree and burst into flames.
NEW YORK (AP) - Participant Media plans to launch a cable network aimed at viewers 18 to 34 years old with programming it describes as inspiring and thought-provoking.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Recovering from war wounds that left him with one arm, Danny Inouye wanted a cigarette and needed a light.
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama has agreed to curtail future cost-of-living increases for recipients of Social Security and softened his demand for higher taxes at upper income levels as part of accelerating talks with House Speaker John Boehner to avoid a "fiscal cliff," people familiar with the talks said Monday.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Two men exchanged gunfire early Sunday on the city's always-crowded Bourbon Street in the celebrated French Quarter and nine people were shot in the crossfire, including two who were critically wounded, police said.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Authorities on Sunday were investigating how a metal security grate detached and fell from the facade of an Italian ice shop, killing a 3-year-old girl in front of dozens of people who tried to rescue her.
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - Atlantic City started the year with 12 casinos. By Labor Day, it could be down to nine.
DETROIT (AP) - Massive chunks of concrete hang menacingly from what remains of an upper floor at a gutted building at the vacant Packard car plant, a time-decayed symbol of Detroit's finer things and luxury vehicles.
PRINCETOWN, N.Y. (AP) - When Maggie McNally-Bradshaw and husband Curt hop on their electric motorcycles and twist the throttles, they get a rush like no other.
BRUSSELS (AP) - Over Russia's objections, Ukraine's new president on Friday signed a free-trade deal binding his country more closely to Western Europe, sealing the very agreement that triggered the bloodshed and political convulsions of the past seven months.
ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) - Nigeria's intelligence agency said it has been warning shopping complexes in Abuja for two weeks that Islamic extremists might attack them in the capital, where a blast at a mall killed 22 people this week.
WASHINGTON (AP) - In a scathing appraisal, a review ordered by President Barack Obama of the troubled Veterans Affairs health care system concludes that medical care for veterans is beset by "significant and chronic system failures," substantially verifying problems raised by whistleblowers and internal and congressional investigators.
WASHINGTON (AP) - A fear of voting has gripped Democratic leaders in the Senate, slowing the chamber's modest productivity this election season to a near halt.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The government wants to dramatically reduce the allowable height of potentially thousands buildings near airports around the country - a proposal that is drawing fire from real estate developers, local officials and members of Congress who say it will hurt property values.
NEW YORK (AP) - Big sodas can stay on the menu in the Big Apple after New York state's highest court refused Thursday to reinstate the city's first-of-its-kind size limit on sugary drinks. But city officials suggested they might be willing to revisit the supersize-soda ban.
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - Ryan Pitts will wear the nation's highest award for combat valor, but the humble and soft-spoken Medal of Honor recipient who continued to fight after being wounded in one of Afghanistan's bloodiest battles insisted Thursday that the medal belongs to all of his comrades who fought and died that day.
DENVER (AP) - When the U.S Supreme Court struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act exactly one year ago, it stopped short of saying states cannot ban gay marriage. But in a string of 17 straight rulings, judges have argued the high court's decision in U.S. vs Windsor means just that: States cannot get in the way of gay couples who want to marry.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - The dangers posed by a spike in oil shipments by rail extend beyond crude from the booming Bakken region of the Northern Plains and include oil produced elsewhere in the U.S. and Canada, U.S. safety officials and lawmakers said.
SALEM, Ore. (AP) - Sponsors of an initiative that would legalize recreational marijuana traveled to Salem on Thursday to turn in boxes stuffed with enough signed petitions to bring their total signatures to 145,000 - far more than are needed for the measure to qualify for the November ballot.