National Politics

Video: Myanmar police hold AP journalist in chokehold

YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — A video of the arrest of Associated Press journalist Thein Zaw as he was photographing Myanmar security forces charging at anti-coup protesters shows him being quickly surrounded and held in a chokehold as handcuffs are placed on him.

Louisiana ends search for new voting machines amid criticism

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana's secretary of state decided Wednesday to shelve his search for new voting machines after a barrage of complaints about the bid process from election technology companies, the head of a state Senate oversight committee and his fellow Republicans.

New York will loosen some virus restrictions on gatherings

NEW YORK (AP) — New York will loosen restrictions on private gatherings and clear the way for some public performances that have been banned for nearly a year because of the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday.

General: Pentagon hesitated on sending Guard to Capitol riot

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Department leaders placed unusual restrictions on the National Guard for the day of the Capitol riot and delayed sending help for hours despite an urgent plea from police for reinforcement, according to testimony Wednesday that added to the finger-pointing about the government response.

With Biden's backing, Dems revive bill to overhaul policing

WASHINGTON (AP) — Cheered on by President Joe Biden, House Democrats are hustling to pass the most ambitious effort in decades to overhaul policing nationwide, confident they can avoid clashing with moderates in their own party who are wary of reigniting a debate they say hurt them during last fall's election.

Kansas to loan up to $100M to cities with huge energy costs

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Driven by pleas from desperate local officials, Kansas legislators on Wednesday quickly created a state low-interest loan program to help cities cover spikes in costs associated with providing heat and electricity to their residents during last month's intense cold snap.

South Carolina: Ex-NBA star's Trustee vote shows race fight

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The University of South Carolina’s first African American basketball star, a former NBA veteran running unopposed with the governor's backing, would appear to be a slam dunk for election to a full term on the school’s Board of Trustees.

It's back to school for Jill Biden and new education chief

MERIDEN, Conn. (AP) — Jill Biden, the teacher in the White House, along with new Education Secretary Miguel Cardona went back to school Wednesday in a public push to show districts that have yet to transition back to in-person learning that it can be done safely during the pandemic.

North Carolina health officials urge schools to reopen

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services called Wednesday on all K-12 public schools to offer in-person instruction “to the fullest extent possible" to the roughly 1.5 million students in the state.

Minnesota gets its first doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota state and health officials on Wednesday celebrated the arrival of the first shipments of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine, saying it will help speed up the pace of vaccinations and a return to normal in the state.

Police uncover ‘possible plot’ by militia to breach Capitol

WASHINGTON (AP) — Capitol Police say they have uncovered intelligence of a “possible plot” by a militia group to breach the U.S. Capitol on Thursday, nearly two months after a mob of supporters of then-President Donald Trump stormed the iconic building to try to stop Congress from certifying now-President Joe Biden's victory.

Judge blocks laws in showdown between governor, lawmakers

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky judge temporarily blocked new Republican-backed laws that threatened to invalidate executive orders by the Democratic governor to slow the spread of COVID-19, saying the measures could create an atmosphere of chaos in the state's pandemic response.

California lawmakers eye aiding those with criminal records

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California lawmakers are pushing several new efforts this year to largely seal or expunge criminal records for people who have completed their sentences, expanding on existing laws that proponents said aid people who are trying to re-enter society.