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Xi Jinping’s rise shatters hopes for democracy in China
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Xi Jinping’s rise shatters hopes for democracy in China

By YANAN WANG, Associated Press BEIJING (AP) — Orville Schell, a longtime China expert, has vivid memories of his first trip to the country back in 1975. Mao Zedong was leading China through the tumultuous Cultural Revolution, and Chinese were being shamed, beaten and even killed for perceived political mistakes. Things were vastly different when he...

Maxwell honoring Medal of Honor winner
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Maxwell honoring Medal of Honor winner

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery is remembering a Congressional Medal of Honor winner on the 50th anniversary of his death during the Vietnam War. A ceremony will be held Monday honoring Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Richard L. Etchberger of Hamburg, Pennsylvania. Etchberger died during fighting in Laos on March...

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$315 million to fund projects in Mobile, Baldwin countines

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — A $315 million from the RESTORE Act and the Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council will help fund projects in southwestern areas of the state. Fifty projects will be given funding for infrastructure, environmental restoration and economic development, Al.com reported . The biggest include $56 million for five major road expansion projects...

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‘Fake news’ smear takes hold among politicians at all levels

By RYAN J. FOLEY, Associated Press An Idaho state lawmaker urges her constituents to submit entries for her “fake news awards.” The Kentucky governor tweets #FAKENEWS to dismiss questions about his purchase of a home from a supporter. An aide to the Texas land commissioner uses the phrase to downplay the significance of his boss receiving...

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Montgomery program gives men on parole a chance for rebirth

By MARTY RONEY, Montgomery Advertiser MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Dylan Payne considers himself one of the lucky ones. He weighed 215 pounds before “he started cooking dope, bad,” in his home state of Indiana. Years later he bonded himself out of the Chilton County Jail and got a second chance. He was in jail for about...

Teen charged with manslaughter in Alabama school shooting
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Teen charged with manslaughter in Alabama school shooting

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — A 17-year-old high school junior was charged Friday with manslaughter and illegal firearms possession in a classroom shooting that killed a fellow student at an Alabama high school. The charges against Michael Jerome Barber were announced after authorities interviewed witnesses and reviewed video in connection with the shooting at Huffman High...

Ethics Commission director says bill weakens ethics law
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Ethics Commission director says bill weakens ethics law

By KIM CHANDLER, Associated Press MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The director of the state Ethics Commission said a bill before Alabama lawmakers could open up a potentially wide loophole in state ethics law by carving out an exemption for people doing economic development work. “I think it’s a bad bill that weakens the ethics law considerably,”...

Alabama Department of Education to make personnel cuts
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Alabama Department of Education to make personnel cuts

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The Alabama Department of Education is planning top personnel cuts. Al.com reports that state interim Superintendent Dr. Ed Richardson told board of education members that reducing the number of employees, known as exempt or at-will, is necessary. During a work session this week, he said “hard decisions” will need to be...

Alabama Senate Oks bill to cap payday lending interest rates
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Alabama Senate Oks bill to cap payday lending interest rates

By KIM CHANDLER, Associated Press MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Payday lending customers would have longer to repay their loan under a bill approved Thursday by the Alabama Senate, which marks the latest attempt to cap the interest rates charged with the short term loans. The bill by Republican Sen. Arthur Orr of Decatur would give borrowers...

Trump orders stiff trade tariffs, unswayed by grim warnings
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Trump orders stiff trade tariffs, unswayed by grim warnings

By KEN THOMAS, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Unswayed by Republican warnings of a trade war, President Donald Trump ordered steep new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports to the U.S. on Thursday, vowing to fight back against an “assault on our country” by foreign competitors. The president said he would exempt Canada and Mexico as...