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.
NEW YORK (AP) - It's not just big businesses like JPMorgan Chase, Target and Home Depot that get hacked. Small companies suffer from intrusions into their computer systems, too.
ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. (AP) - A man told police he poured vodka into the IV feeding tube of his girlfriend's disabled 13-year-old son to settle him down, a dose of alcohol that contributed to his death, according to court documents released Wednesday.
PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona's barrage of rain storms in recent months has created an unlikely pest infestation for the desert region: mosquitoes.
NATRONA HEIGHTS, Pa. (AP) - A Pennsylvania high school soccer coach and two players have been suspended for at least five days after an autistic teammate told police the two teens duct-taped him to a goalpost.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - An international team led by two veteran pilots has set its sights on breaking a pair of major ballooning records when it launches its helium-filled balloon from Japan in early 2015.
FRISCO, Texas (AP) - A sheriff's deputy who went into the apartment where the Dallas Ebola patient stayed was hospitalized out of an "abundance of caution" after falling ill Wednesday, officials said.
NEW YORK (AP) - Wal-Mart Stores Inc. plans to eliminate health insurance coverage for some of its part-time U.S. employees in a move aimed at controlling rising health care costs of the nation's largest private employer.
HARDWICK, Vt. (AP) - A woman and her boyfriend who police said put alcohol in her disabled 13-year-old son's IV tube, killing him, were charged on Tuesday with murder.
NEW YORK (AP) - Americans are living longer than ever before, according to a new government report filled mostly with good news. U.S. life expectancy inched up again and death rates fell.
DALLAS (AP) - Holiday shoppers with a limitless budget and taste for opulence could spend $425,000 for a trip to the Academy Awards, complete with invitations to the Vanity Fair Oscar party.
DENVER (AP) - A chemistry teacher has been fired after four students were burned, one seriously, when a fire erupted in a Denver high school chemistry laboratory while the teacher was conducting a demonstration with methanol, a school spokeswoman said Tuesday.
HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) - A cellphone video released Tuesday shows police in Indiana breaking a car window then using a stun gun on a man after police stopped the driver for not wearing a seat belt.
LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. (AP) - Two men and a 15-year-old have been sentenced to life in prison for murdering a metro Atlanta teen who authorities said was targeted over his expensive shoe collection.
CHICAGO (AP) - A 19-year-old American left a letter expressing disgust with Western society before trying to board an international flight in Chicago, the first step in his plan to sneak into Syria to join the Islamic State group, according to a federal criminal complaint released Monday.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Political rivals for New Mexico governor faced off in a Spanish debate Monday, a rare event that nonetheless marked an emerging trend as Republicans and Democrats around the U.S. court Hispanic voters.