YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK - Everybody gathers around Joe, the guy who seems to have all the answers. Only he doesn't.
The legislative twists and turns in Congress' battle over the partial government shutdown and the entwined Republican effort to curtail President Barack Obama's health care law:
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Internet stocks are heating up again, just as Twitter is preparing to turn up the temperature with its highly anticipated IPO.
BOSTON (AP) - Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a judge Wednesday to lift restrictions placed on him in prison, arguing that the conditions are overly harsh, have left him nearly totally isolated and are impairing their ability to defend him.
DANDRIDGE, Tenn. (AP) - A bus taking a church group home to North Carolina blew a tire, veered across a highway median and crashed into a sport utility vehicle and tractor-trailer Wednesday in a fiery wreck that killed eight people, authorities said.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Attend a black-tie gala? No. Meet with business leaders who oppose a government shutdown? Yes. Jet off to Asia for a four-country tour? Maybe, but shorten the trip and keep the option to cancel.
NEW YORK (AP) - Fear of a protracted U.S. government shutdown is making global investors increasingly nervous.
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama brought congressional leaders to the White House on Wednesday for the first time since a partial government shutdown began, but there was no sign of progress toward ending an impasse that has idled 800,000 federal workers and curbed services around the country.
DETROIT (AP) - Detroit, not unexpectedly, has defaulted on its most recent general obligation bond debt payment, Moody's Investors Service said Wednesday.
THE REAL CAPT. PHILLIPS GETS HERO'S WELCOME IN VT. : WILLISTON, Vt. (AP) - The captain of the American cargo ship hijacked by Somali pirates four years ago returned home from sea to another hero's welcome - this time for a sneak peek of the Tom Hanks movie about the ordeal.
NEW YORK (AP) - As the government's partial shutdown enters a second day, most companies across the country are doing business as usual. Yet concern is rising that a prolonged shutdown would cause some work at private companies to dry up and consumers to lose faith in the U.S. economy.
NEW YORK (AP) - In 1985, a year after the Cold War thriller "The Hunt for Red October" came out, author Tom Clancy was invited to lunch at the Reagan White House, where he was questioned by Navy Secretary John Lehman.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Business leaders are taking sides with Democratic President Barack Obama after failing to persuade their traditional Republican allies in Congress to avert a government shutdown.
PHOENIX (AP) - A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the appointment of an independent monitor and a community advisory board to ensure that an Arizona sheriff is complying with constitutional requirements after finding his office engages in racial profiling.
ATLANTA (AP) - A man who slapped a crying toddler on an Atlanta-bound plane has pleaded guilty to simple assault.
AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) - Police in a Phoenix suburb fatally shot a machete-wielding man Thursday after he rammed a patrol car in a stolen truck, injuring an officer.
NEW YORK (AP) - New York City police shot and killed a hatchet-wielding man on Thursday after he suddenly attacked a group of patrol officers without warning in broad daylight on a busy commercial district in Queens.
FREDERICK, Md. (AP) - An airplane and a helicopter collided in the air near a Maryland airport before crashing into a line of trees and a self-storage business Thursday afternoon, killing three people but sparing two men in the plane, who deployed a parachute attached to the aircraft before it hit the trees.
OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) - He seemed lost, "did not fit in," had drug problems, and went more than five years without seeing his mother. In recent weeks, he had been living at a homeless shelter and had talked about wanting to go to Libya - or Syria - but became agitated when he couldn't get a passport.
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - The number of people who died trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico border has dropped to the lowest level in 15 years as more immigrants turned themselves in to authorities in Texas and fewer took their chances with the dangerous trek across the Arizona desert.
NEW YORK (AP) - An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus, Mayor Bill de Blasio said. It's the first case in the city and the fourth in the nation.
AURORA, Colo. (AP) - Defending their allies, Bill and Hillary Clinton are barnstorming the country for Democrats struggling through a bleak campaign season in states where President Barack Obama is deeply unpopular.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri funeral director is sending his father out with a bang. His father's ashes, anyway.
ATLANTA (AP) - All travelers who come into the U.S. from three Ebola-stricken West African nations will now be monitored for three weeks, the latest step by federal officials to keep the disease from spreading into the country.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - When Halloween falls on a Friday in communities where high school football is king, it's time to reschedule the holiday.
BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A U.S. Navy veteran can be buried with the ashes of her late partner in a southwest Idaho military cemetery after the state legalized gay marriage.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Michael Brown's official autopsy indicates he was shot in the hand at close range during a struggle, but a medical examiner not involved in the investigation says there's no way to conclude whether the injury meant the unarmed 18-year-old was trying to grab the gun of the officer who killed him.
DENVER (AP) - Three teenage girls being investigated for trying to join Islamic State forces in Syria were victims of an "online predator" who encouraged them, a school official said Wednesday, as U.S. officials tried to determine how they made it to Europe without anyone knowing and whether terrorists' appeal is deepening among vulnerable youth.
CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) - A man who allegedly confessed to killing seven women in Indiana on Wednesday refused to speak or even acknowledge his name to a judge, and a sheriff explained later that the suspect was upset his hearing was in open court before dozens of journalists.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) - The American Postal Workers Union is calling upon Harvard University's president to oppose a deal between Staples Inc. and the U.S. Postal Service, or resign her seat on the office supply company's board.