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L.A. Times - National News

L.A.'s leading national news source. Up-to-date coverage of breaking U.S. news and top stories.

Last Build Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2017 12:05:08 -0800

Copyright: ©2017 Los Angeles Times

Martin Luther King Jr. fought for more than civil rights. This was the protest less remembered

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

In January 1967, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. packed several suitcases and secluded himself on the coast of Jamaica, far from the telephone, far from the crises roiling America.

It would not go down in history as one of his most famous trips. King was trying to finish writing a new book, “Where...


Race is an integral part of Obama's story, and he embraced its complexity

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

President Obama had occupied the Oval Office for nearly a full term when government engineers came to him with a request: that he move out for a few months while they completed an overdue renovation of the West Wing.

Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s oldest family friend and a senior advisor, objected.


Wife of Orlando nightclub shooter arrested outside Oakland for obstruction, faces court hearing Tuesday

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 10:45:00 PST

The wife of a gunman in an attack at an Orlando, Fla., nightclub last summer that left 49 patrons dead was arrested outside Oakland on Monday morning on suspicion of obstructing investigators, according to jail records.

Noor Zahi Salman, the wife of gunman Omar Mateen, will face federal charges...


Washington state has eight people on death row - and no plans to ever execute them

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 05:00:00 PST

Twenty years ago, Dwayne Anthony Woods was convicted of murdering two women, sentenced to die and sent to Washington’s death row at the state penitentiary in Walla Walla.

Claiming he was innocent, he launched a series of appeals that kept him alive and denied the victims’ families the justice they...


Black Americans reflect on eight years with Obama: The pride, the triumphs and the missed opportunities

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

Eight years ago, Andrew Jackson II saw himself on the cusp of possibility in a world of firsts.

He boarded a bus that January with dozens of family members and friends, headed to the National Mall to watch the nation’s first black president — the first person he had ever voted for — make history.


When Obama dropped the 'wet foot, dry foot' policy, he also snuffed out another program few Americans knew about

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 16:15:00 PST

When President Obama killed the 22-year-old policy giving preferential, fast-track citizenship to Cubans who could make it to the U.S., his administration nixed another program, too. Not well known to most Americans, it sought to undermine the Cuban government through a form of brain drain.



How these Los Angeles-born pink hats became a worldwide symbol of the anti-Trump women's march

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 05:00:00 PST

Krista Suh plans to attend the women’s march in Washington, D.C., this week to protest Donald Trump’s presidency, and she wanted to make a statement. But she also had a more primal goal: staying warm.

“I wanted to do something more than just show up,” said the 29-year-old screenwriter who lives...


What we know about Christopher Steele, the British ex-spy who wrote the controversial Trump dossier

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

He’s a former British spy, a man used to operating in the shadows. Now, however, he is dramatically, and uncomfortably, in the spotlight.

Christopher Steele, whom some confidants describe as a real-life Agent 007, has been identified in news reports as the author of a controversial dossier suggesting that...


South Carolina church massacre survivor: Witness to horror - and justice

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

She was there the night Dylann Roof gunned down her son and eight other parishioners who welcomed him to their church. She was there when Roof’s trial opened — the first to testify about the horror of that night.

And she was there last week when a judge sentenced him to death.

Through it all, Felicia...


Trump kicks off Martin Luther King weekend with disparaging tweet against civil rights icon John Lewis

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 17:25:00 PST

Unwilling to let criticism pass, Donald Trump on Saturday pilloried as “all talk … no action” national icon John Lewis, who was repeatedly beaten by police and nearly lost his life during protests in the long struggle for civil rights.

Trump’s Twitter comments about the Georgia congressman came...


Bitter, disbelieving: Cuban migrants en route to U.S. hope for some kind of eleventh-hour reprieve

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 09:50:00 PST

This sweltering town just north of Mexico’s southern border with Guatemala is a three-day bus jaunt from the U.S.-Mexico frontier, a fact that has long drawn migrants from across the globe en route to the United States.

Images of the Stars and Stripes and the Statue of Liberty adorn travel agencies...


Obama envisioned a bridge across party lines. Instead he oversaw a deepening chasm

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

He first achieved national renown with a speech hailing bipartisanship, and spent much of his presidency singing the praises of cooperation across party lines.

But nearly all of his major accomplishments resulted from party-line votes or executive actions.

And if Republicans accused him of paying...


Trump's approach might seem new, but Arnold Schwarzenegger tried it first. It was a disaster.

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 14:05:00 PST

President-elect Donald Trump may have mocked the rocky debut of successor Arnold Schwarzenegger in the faux boardroom chair of “The Celebrity Apprentice,” but as he makes his own start in the Oval Office, Trump may find he has a few things to learn from his reality TV replacement.

Long before Schwarzenegger...


These Republicans hate Obamacare, but aren't ready to give it up just yet

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 13:40:00 PST

Back in 2015, being a Montana Republican meant despising Obamacare — and your loathing of it better have been a preexisting condition.

House Speaker Austin Knudsen qualified. He voted against the state’s decision to expand Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act in 2015. When he ran for...


Don's Johns brand port-a-potties will be anonymous on Inauguration Day

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 13:05:00 PST

It's the great port-a-potty cover-up for President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration.

Workers preparing for the inauguration Jan. 20 have taped over the name of the company — "Don's Johns" — that has long supplied portable restrooms for major outdoor events in the nation's capital.



Republicans take first steps toward repealing Obamacare, but the hard part comes next

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 13:05:00 PST

The Republican-led Congress passed a plan Friday to start the process of repealing the Affordable Care Act, but the road ahead remains unclear. 

House Republicans approved the budget blueprint, 227-198, following a similar party-line vote earlier this week in the Senate, which sets a month-end...


President Obama, who hoped to sow peace, instead led the nation in war

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

Before he took office in 2008, Barack Obama vowed to end America’s grueling conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. During his second term, he pledged to take the country off what he called a permanent war footing.

“Our systematic effort to dismantle terrorist organizations must continue,” he said in...


Trump's Cabinet picks aren't standing by some of his controversial opinions - or even discussing them

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 03:00:00 PST

With the Senate having held confirmation hearings for seven of the incoming administration’s  choices for top positions, a clear pattern has begun to emerge — prospective Cabinet members have carefully walked away from some of President-elect Donald Trump’s more controversial promises.

In the process,...


Trump's pick for secretary of State raises concern with aggressive comments about China

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 20:40:00 PST

Did Rex Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for secretary of State, misspeak or did he intend to take a stand that if implemented could be interpreted by China as an act of war?

Tillerson said during his confirmation hearing Wednesday that the United States would have to block China’s...


Obama surprises 'brother' Joe Biden with the Presidential Medal of Freedom

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 17:55:00 PST

After two presidential campaigns together, countless one-on-one meetings and the forging of a bromance that inspired countless Internet memes, President Obama had an honor in store Thursday for Vice President Joe Biden: the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

“This is an extraordinary man with an extraordinary...


Justice Department's internal watchdog to investigate FBI's handling of Clinton email inquiry

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 14:40:00 PST

The Justice Department's internal watchdog launched a sweeping inquiry Thursday into how the FBI handled its Hillary Clinton email probe, including Director James B. Comey’s controversial decision to publicly discuss the case in ways the former Democratic nominee has complained contributed to her...


Ben Carson at confirmation hearing: Too many people live in public housing, and I want to help

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 14:30:00 PST

During his failed presidential run, Ben Carson won over conservatives with his scorn for government social programs that he said were good mostly for keeping people mired in poverty.

But at a hearing Thursday to confirm him as President-elect Donald Trump’s choice to the head of the Department...


Trump still says he'll make Mexico pay for his border wall, but can he really?

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 14:05:00 PST

It's by now a predictable pattern. Every few days, President-elect Donald Trump repeats his threat to build a massive border wall - and force Mexico to pay for it. And each time, Mexican leaders respond the same way.  "Neither today, nor tomorrow nor never Mexico will pay for that stupid wall....(image)

Trump's pick for CIA chief says he wouldn't carry out orders to torture

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 12:25:00 PST

Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), Donald Trump’s pick to head the CIA, told senators at his confirmation hearing Thursday that he would not carry out orders from the White House to use torture, a position that potentially puts him at odds with the president-elect.

During his campaign last year, Trump...


James Mattis draws little flak at confirmation hearing to head Defense Department

Thu, 12 Jan 2017 10:40:00 PST

Retired Marine Gen. James N. Mattis, President-elect Donald Trump’s pick to head the Pentagon, took little flak at a relatively brief Senate confirmation hearing Thursday that focused in part on his views of social shifts underway in the military.

Mattis signaled that he doesn’t intend to reverse...