JERUSALEM (AP) - Insisting "peace is possible," President Barack Obama on Thursday prodded both Israelis and Palestinians to return to long-stalled negotiations with few, if any, pre-conditions, softening his earlier demands that Israel stop building settlements in disputed territory.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Gun control legislation the Senate debates next month will include an expansion of federal background checks for firearms buyers, Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday in a victory for advocates of gun restrictions.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Moving on two fronts, the Republican-controlled House on Thursday voted to keep the government running for the next six months while pushing through a tea-party flavored budget for next year that would shrink the government by another $4.6 trillion over the next decade.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Viola Mourton buys a Powerball ticket every day. But with a $320 million jackpot that could grow in the next few days, she's upping her chances Thursday and buying several at her local convenience store.
DECATUR, Texas (AP) - A man who may be linked to the slaying of Colorado's state prison chief led authorities in Texas on a harrowing, 100 mph car chase Thursday that ended after he crashed into a semi and then opened fire before being shot down by his pursuers, authorities said.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Prosecutors said Thursday they plan to seek a challenge of an Illinois appellate court's decision overturning an aspiring rapper's conviction on allegations that he threatened a murderous college rampage, muddying the man's newfound freedom from prison.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina said Thursday it is abandoning its plan to issue pink-striped driver's licenses to certain illegal immigrants, beset by mounting criticism of the specially designed IDs.
CHICAGO (AP) - Tens of thousands of Chicago students, parents and teachers learned Thursday their schools were on a long-feared list of 54 the city plans to close in an effort to stabilize an educational system facing a huge budget shortfall.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Just days before 20 children and six educators were killed at a Connecticut school in December, state development officials offered the maker of the rifle used in the massacre a $1 million loan to bring new jobs to the state.
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) - A man pulled a woman off a city bus in northern Indiana on Wednesday, fatally shot her and then took a 3-year-old boy hostage before a sniper killed him during a police standoff.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Two Connecticut high school football players have been charged in sexual assault cases that, like a recent high-profile Ohio rape case, have led to online taunts directed at an accuser.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A northern Utah sheriff's office is floating a unique and unproven idea for keeping seniors with Alzheimer's disease and dementia safe: Give them ankle monitors normally used on criminals on house arrest or parole.
NEW YORK (AP) - A government survey of parents says 1 in 50 U.S. schoolchildren has autism, surpassing another federal estimate for the disorder.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Benedictine monks may keep selling plain, low-cost caskets from their monastery outside New Orleans, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday, finding that a regulation that only state-licensed funeral directors may sell coffins in Louisiana had no reasonable grounds.
PHOENIX (AP) - A prominent Republican lawmaker in Arizona wants to link public bathroom use to birth certificates in what civil rights advocates are calling the nation's toughest anti-transgender measure.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration is significantly reducing the amount of cellulosic biofuels refiners will have to prove they blended into gasoline last year, acknowledging that the market lagged far behind government projections.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Some student loan borrowers who had a parent or grandparent co-sign the note are finding that they must immediately pay the loan in full if the relative dies.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. Postal Service will feature a close-up, black-and-white photograph of Harvey Milk on its commemorative stamp of the California politician and gay rights icon.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Raising money for charity has become lucrative work.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A prison doctor has been fired and two other staffers are in the midst of being dismissed after an inmate at the Kentucky State Penitentiary starved himself to death, a case that has exposed lapses in medical treatment and in how hunger strikes are handled at the facility. Prison officials have asked prosecutors to investigate after The Associated Press began asking questions about the inmate's death.
FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) - After the 9/11 attacks, tens of thousands of young men and women joined the military, heading for the rugged mountains of Afghanistan and dusty deserts of Iraq.
SEATTLE (AP) - The Boy Scouts of America has revoked its charter agreement with a Seattle church that refused to remove a gay troop leader after the organization withdrew his membership.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A dozen states still have anti-sodomy laws on the books 10 years after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled they are unconstitutional.
HOUSTON (AP) - A Texas-based group involved in searches for missing persons around the nation filed a lawsuit on Monday asking a federal court to set aside an order that prohibits the nonprofit from employing drones in its work.
MILFORD, Ohio (AP) - An 89-year-old woman is preparing to move out of her home of the last 10 years because it has gone smoke-free and she won't give up cigarettes.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Defendant Siale Angilau was listening to a witness describe gang initiation rituals on Monday when authorities said he grabbed a pen, rushed toward the witness and lunged at him.
• LAWMAKER SHELVES BILL TO NAME BIBLE AS STATE BOOK: BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A Shreveport lawmaker is scrapping his proposal to name the Bible as Louisiana's official state book.
HONOLULU (AP) - A 16-year-old boy stowed away in the wheel well of a flight from California to Hawaii on Sunday, surviving the trip halfway across the Pacific Ocean unharmed despite frigid temperatures at 38,000 feet and a lack of oxygen, FBI and airline officials said.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration's conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.
JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) - What's happening in this Wyoming resort town might be better described as a land creep than a landslide, but the lack of speed has not hindered the sheer power of the moving earth.