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AP Top Political News At 1:37 p.m. EDT

Intelligence nightmare: Extremists hardened from Mideast battles fly home on Western passports
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The case of Mehdi Nemmouche haunts U.S. intelligence officials....

Obama puts brakes on notion that US military force can solve Ukraine, Mideast crises
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Faced with deepening crises in the Middle East and Ukraine, President Barack Obama is putting the brakes on the notion that American military power can solve either conflict....

$10 billion Russian fund with US advisers, partners complicates West's sanctions over Ukraine
WASHINGTON (AP) -- As President Barack Obama warns of stepped-up economic punishments against Russia for its military incursions inside Ukraine, U.S. sanctions have so far avoided one prominent financial institution: the $10 billion Russian Direct Investment Fund, which has partnered with brand-name American companies and whose advisers include top U.S. and European private equity executives....

Texas Gov. Perry criticizes Obama for 'no strategy' on Syria; other top GOPers mum so far
DALLAS (AP) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry is wasting little time pouncing on President Barack Obama's "we don't have a strategy yet" comments about the violent militant faction attacking cities in Iraq, accusing the White House of "dithering and debating" the threat posed by the Islamic State group....

Obama interrupting weekend trip to return to White House after Democratic fundraisers
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama is interrupting a weekend trip to return to the White House....

Beware of giant snails! USDA seizes more than 1,200 African snails that eat buildings, crops
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The giant African snail damages buildings, destroys crops and can cause meningitis in humans. But some people still want to collect, and even eat, the slimy invaders....

Farm worker challenges No. 2 McCarthy for House seat, seeks 'straight answer' on immigration
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Raul Garcia has a question for Kevin McCarthy, the House's No. 2 Republican: "While we are waiting for you on immigration reform, who should be harvesting America's food?"...

High school buddies followed similar path into militant Islam _ and met the same end
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The two high school buddies loved to shoot hoops and crack jokes with their friends. They both converted to Islam in early adulthood. And both were recruited by terror groups to leave the United States and die for jihadist causes....

Obama reiterates pledge to act on immigration if Congress doesn't, but sets no timeline
WASHINGTON (AP) -- With a self-imposed deadline looming, President Barack Obama said Thursday he still intends to act on his own to change immigration policies but stopped short of reiterating his past vows to act by end of summer....

US fighters conduct 5 airstrikes in northern Iraq, hitting Islamic State targets
WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. fighter planes conducted five airstrikes against Islamic State targets in northern Iraq on Thursday, continuing a limited campaign aimed at helping Iraqi and Kurdish forces retake key territory and degrade the militants' capability....

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Pentagon says Iraq airstrikes, operations have cost about $560 million so far

US targets those suspected of supporting terrorism, helping Iran expand nuclear program

Delays in sending out millions of forms could slow consumers' tax refunds

Intelligence nightmare: Extremists hardened from Mideast battles fly home on Western passports

Potential 2016 hopefuls Perry, Paul, Pence hoping to wow conservatives at Dallas event

Spokeswoman: Wife of Maryland U.S. Rep. Andy Harris dies unexpectedly

Texas Democrat Wendy Davis gets aggressive in courtship of women voters in governor's race

Obama, Clinton to highlight fundraiser at DNC's women's forum

News Guide: Voters pick nominees for governor in Florida, Arizona, weigh write-ins in Vermont