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AP Top Political News at 4:09 p.m. EDT

US combat death in Iraq reflects intensifying war
STUTTGART, Germany (AP) -- The combat death Tuesday of a U.S Navy SEAL who was advising Kurdish forces in Iraq coincides with a gradually deepening American role in fighting a resilient Islamic State, even as the Iraqis struggle to muster the military and political strength to defeat the militants....

AP PHOTOS: Highlights of the 2016 race for the White House
The candidates in the race for the White House are making the case to voters across the country in a fight to win the Republican and Democratic nominations. Here's a look, as seen in images made by Associated Press photographers on the campaign trail....

The Latest: Trump calls Cruz a 'desperate candidate'
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Latest on campaign 2016 as voters in Indiana head to the polls for the state primary (all times Eastern):...

Cruz, Trump trade insults to the end as Indiana votes
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Assailing each other with no letup, Republican front-runner Donald Trump and challenger Ted Cruz traded insults, charges and more Tuesday as Indiana voters went to the polls in what could be an all-but-decisive presidential primary election....

Viewer's Guide: Cruz, Sanders want campaign boost in Indiana
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders are all-in for Indiana as they try to stave off the growing aura of inevitability surrounding their opponents. But Donald Trump says his general election race against Hillary Clinton has "sort of already started." Clinton may not say as much, but she largely agrees. On what could be a pivotal night for Cruz, Trump is strongly favored in the state's GOP primary. Sanders and Hillary Clinton are in a tighter race on the Democratic side....

Kerry warns Assad to start transition by Aug. 1 _ or else
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Secretary of State John Kerry warned Syria's government and its backers in Moscow and Tehran on Tuesday that they face an August deadline for starting a political transition to move President Bashar Assad out, or they risk the consequences of a new U.S. approach toward ending the 5-year-old civil war....

Indiana voters get their say in high-stakes primary
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Voters in Indiana are in the spotlight in a big way. That's because the delegate math going into Tuesday's primary means Indiana represents one of U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz's last chances to stop Donald Trump's march to the 1,237 delegates the billionaire businessman needs to clinch the GOP nomination outright and avoid a contested convention. The stakes are not as high on the Democratic side. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton already has a commanding lead in the delegate race. It's not impossible for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders to catch up, but Indiana could make it much harder....

US defense secretary says Russia is 'nuclear saber-rattling'
STUTTGART, Germany (AP) -- U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter blasted what the U.S. and its allies see as Russian aggression in Europe, saying Tuesday that Moscow is "going backward in time" with warlike actions that compel an American military buildup on NATO's eastern flank....

Wilmore says his 'tone didn't fit room' in DC performance
NEW YORK (AP) -- Comic Larry Wilmore says his "tone didn't fit the room" at his much talked-about White House Correspondents Association speech but believes his use of a provocative term to address President Barack Obama may open an important dialogue for the country....

Once a Clinton stronghold, Appalachia now Trump country
ASHLAND, Ky. (AP) -- When President Bill Clinton rolled into the small Appalachian town of Ashland, Kentucky, in 1996, cheering crowds lined the streets. Local boy-turned-country music star Billy Ray Cyrus performed a special version of his hit, "Achy Breaky Heart" before nearly 20,000 supporters at a riverfront re-election rally....

AP Photo
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
Politics Video
Up to the Minute
Kerry warns Assad to start transition by Aug. 1 _ or else

Justice Dept. to provide watchdog faster access to records

US combat death in Iraq reflects intensifying war

EU says permanent border checks would cost billions annually

Former North Korea detainee Kenneth Bae tells story in book

US military tests world's largest unmanned ship

Illinois impasse sparks fears of the unthinkable: No school

2 front-runners face off in Baltimore mayoral race

In these times, political catchword is certainty


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