WASHINGTON (AP) - Conservative senators from both parties announced their support for expanding background checks for gun buyers Wednesday, giving a burst of momentum to advocates of stronger restrictions. But big questions remain about whether President Barack Obama can push significant gun controls through Congress.
SUWANEE, Ga. (AP) - A gunman who was having financial problems held four firefighters for hours in a suburban Atlanta home, demanding his cable and power be turned back on, before being shot dead when SWAT members stormed the house, authorities said Wednesday. The hostages had cuts and bruises from explosions officers set off to distract the gunman before moving in, but they will be fine, a fire official said.
WASHINGTON (AP) - A bipartisan group of senators finalizing a landmark immigration bill has agreed to require greatly increased surveillance of the border and apprehensions of people trying to cross it, a person familiar with the proposals said Wednesday.
ROME, Maine (AP) - A man who lived like a hermit for decades in a makeshift camp in the woods and may be responsible for more than 1,000 burglaries for food and other staples has been caught in a surveillance trap at a camp he treated as a "Walmart," authorities said Wednesday.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Mixing modest curbs on spending with tax increases reviled by Republicans, President Barack Obama proposed a $3.8 trillion budget on Wednesday that would raise taxes on smokers and wealthy Americans and trim Social Security benefits for millions.
DEVICE TO SCARE BIRDS CAUSES GUARD BASE LOCKDOWN: JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - After a report of gunfire, Air National Guard officials locked down a Mississippi base on Wednesday, but the noise thought to be shots turned out to be a device used to scare birds away from an airport runway, authorities said.
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama on Tuesday nominated three candidates for full terms on the National Labor Relations Board, which has been in limbo since a federal appeals court invalidated his recess appointments to the agency.
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - A judge said Tuesday that he will take 30 days before deciding whether the trustee in Casey Anthony's bankruptcy case can sell the commercial rights to her life story as a means to clear some of her outstanding debts.
CYPRESS, Texas (AP) - A student went on a building-to-building stabbing attack at a Texas community college Tuesday, wounding at least 14 people - many in the face and neck - before being subdued and arrested, authorities and witnesses said.
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Campaign aides to Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell proposed using actress Ashley Judd's past bouts with depression against her if she had decided to challenge him in his re-election bid next year, according to a secret recording posted by a magazine.
MINT SPRING, Va. (AP) - Two teens leapt from a speeding car with malfunctioning brakes in Virginia on Tuesday before a state trooper used his patrol car to force it into an interstate highway guardrail.
LAS VEGAS (AP) - A Nevada jury has ordered the state's largest health management organization to pay $500 million in punitive damages to three plaintiffs in a civil lawsuit stemming from a Las Vegas hepatitis outbreak.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Senate's top Democrat is setting Congress' first showdown vote for Thursday on President Barack Obama's gun control drive as a small but mounting number of Republicans appear willing to buck a conservative effort to prevent debate from even beginning.
NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The U.S. Air Force plans to ground about a third of its active-duty force of combat planes and a top general warned Tuesday that the branch might not be able to respond immediately to every event when needed.
PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (AP) - When a Vietnam veteran briefly stopped in Hawaii on his way home from war, he vowed to return one day to honor the people who perished during the attack on Pearl Harbor. With just less than two months to live, Joseph Hooker realized his longtime dream on Wednesday.
FOND DU LAC, Wis. (AP) - A Wisconsin State Patrol trooper just three months out of the academy and working the first solo patrol of his "dream job" died in a shootout with a bank robbery suspect also believed to have killed a motorist.
WASHINGTON (AP) - At Iraq's request, the U.S. began airstrikes in Tikrit on Wednesday in support of a stalled Iraqi ground offensive to retake the city from Islamic State fighters. The bombing marked a significant expansion of the U.S. military role in Iraq.
PITTSBURGH (AP) - An elementary school teacher who resigned this month was obsessed with one of her 11-year-old students, encrypting her phone number on the girl's math homework, exchanging thousands of text messages with her and even talking of running away with her, authorities said Wednesday.