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AP Top News at 3:43 a.m. EDT

From 'likable enough' to lovefest, Obama to hail Clinton
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - It was long ago and far away when Barack Obama snippily remarked, "You're likable enough, Hillary." It's a lovefest now. Hillary Clinton formally captured the Democratic nomination and declared the glass ceiling keeping women from the presidency cracked and nearly shattered. Her husband, ex-President Bill Clinton closed the historic night with an expansive and passionate testimonial, offering a deeply personal - though sanitized - account of their relationship. It was a policy-driven ode to the "best darn change-maker I have ever met." Tonight, the current president is joining her party - for it is her party now - in making the case to the nation for electing the former first lady, senator and secretary of state as the first woman to occupy the Oval Office.


Bill Clinton tells a love story to make his case for Hillary
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - There have been millions of words, decades of video and reams of commentary devoted to their story. It's been dissected, defended and decried at kitchen tables and on cable news, in tabloids and classrooms. But on Tuesday night, as millions of voters watched and with the political stakes as high as they've ever been, Bill Clinton tried to make sense of it all and make the case for his wife, the newly minted Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. "In the spring of 1971, I met a girl," he began. The former president's tenth address to a Democratic convention was by far his most personal, a 42-minute tour through wedding proposals and Halloween parties, the deaths of parents and movie marathons.


Japan police search home of suspect in stabbing spree
SAGAMIHARA, Japan (AP) - Japanese police on Wednesday searched the home of the suspect in a mass stabbing spree that left 19 people dead at a facility for the mentally disabled. The suspect, 26-year-old Satoshi Uematsu, was transferred earlier in the day from a local police station to the prosecutor's office in Yokohama. The attacker left dead or injured nearly a third of the approximately 150 patients at the facility in a matter of 40 minutes early Tuesday, Kanagawa prefectural authorities said. The fire department said 25 were wounded, 20 of them seriously. Uematsu turned himself into police about two hours after the pre-dawn attack in Sagamaihara, a city about 50 kilometers (30 miles) west of central Tokyo.


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IS group claims attack that killed 85-year-old French priest
SAINT-ETIENNE-DU-ROUVRAY, France (AP) - The Islamic State group crossed a new threshold Tuesday in its war against the West, as two of its followers targeted a church in Normandy, slitting the throat of an elderly priest celebrating Mass and using hostages as human shields before being shot by police. It was the extremist group's first attack against a church in the West, and fulfills longstanding threats against "crusaders" in what the militants paint as a centuries-old battle for power. One of the attackers had tried twice to leave for Syria; the second was not identified. "To attack a church, to kill a priest, is to profane the republic," French President Francois Hollande told the nation after speaking with Pope Francis, who condemned the killing in the strongest terms.


California wildfire forces shutdown of famed Big Sur parks
BIG SUR, Calif. (AP) - California's signature parks along the Big Sur coastline that draw thousands of daily visitors were closed Tuesday as one of the state's two major wildfires threatened the scenic region at the height of the summer tourism season. To the south, firefighters made progress containing a huge blaze in mountains outside Los Angeles, allowing authorities to let most of 20,000 people evacuated over the weekend to return home. In Wyoming, a large backcountry wildfire in the Shoshone National Forest put about 290 homes and guest ranches at risk. The Big Sur fire threatened a long stretch of pristine, forested mountains hugging the coast and sent smoke billowing over the famed Pacific Coast Highway, which remained open with few if any flames visible to motorists but a risk that the blaze could reach beloved campgrounds, lodges and redwoods near the shore.


Coast Guard: 46 people rescued from sinking boat off Alaska
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Two Good Samaritan vessels rescued 46 people Tuesday night who abandoned their sinking fishing boat in the Bering Sea off Alaska's Aleutian Islands, the Coast Guard said. There were no reports of any injuries as the crew members were transferred from life rafts to the merchant ships, in a fairly calm seas, Coast Guard Petty Officer Lauren Steenson said. The ships then embarked on a 13-hour voyage to Adak, Alaska, a port in the Aleutians. When the 220-foot Alaska Juris started taking on water Tuesday morning, all crew members donned survival suits and got into three rafts.


As Fed ends meeting, few expect much clarity on next hike
WASHINGTON (AP) - With consumers spending and employers hiring more freely, the U.S. economy has fared better of late. But when the Federal Reserve ends its latest policy meeting Wednesday, most analysts think it will signal that it wants to see further gains before raising interest rates again. The Fed is expected to issue a statement that acknowledges the strengthening economy without providing much clarity about when the next rate hike might occur. Still, some Fed-watchers say the wait may not be much longer. In the eight weeks between this week's meeting and the next in September, the Fed will see a flurry of fresh economic data, including two monthly jobs reports.


Clinton campaign seeks to make most of Kaine's Spanish
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - When Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine and Hillary Clinton made their debut as the Democratic presidential ticket, he proudly declared, "Hillary and I are soul mates in this struggle." It was a message he delivered to the Miami crowd in Spanish. In the days after Kaine's selection as Clinton's running mate, much was made of his time working with Roman Catholic missionaries in Latin America as a young law student. Fluent in Spanish, the former mayor of Richmond and governor of Virginia moved easily between languages when he spoke at that first campaign event. But while some Latinos say there's a practical value to Kaine's skills, they add the days are gone when that alone is enough to win over Hispanic voters.


Senator: Is Medicare drug plan vulnerable to exploitation?
WASHINGTON (AP) - A senior senator is examining whether Medicare's prescription drug benefit is vulnerable to manipulation by pharmaceutical companies that set very high prices for medications. In a letter Monday to Medicare's top administrator, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said policymakers must ensure the Part D prescription program serving some 38 million beneficiaries "is free from exploitation," and asked if it meets that test as currently structured. Grassley acted after The Associated Press reported on Medicare data that show spending for high-cost drugs covered under the program's "catastrophic" protection jumped by 85 percent in three years, from $27.7 billion in 2013 to $51.3 billion in 2015.


Washington scientist launches effort to digitize all fish
SEATTLE (AP) - University of Washington biology professor Adam Summers no longer has to coax hospital staff to use their CT scanners so he can visualize the inner structures of sting ray and other fish. Last fall, he installed a small computed tomography, or CT, scanner at the UW's Friday Harbor Laboratories on San Juan Island in Washington state and launched an ambitious project to scan and digitize all of more than 25,000 species in the world. The idea is to have one clearinghouse of CT scan data freely available to researchers anywhere to analyze the morphology, or structure, of particular species.

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