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AP Top Political News At 11:18 a.m. EDT

New tune for piano-playing senator: Revised education policy
WASHINGTON (AP) -- How does a musician-senator fill the time during yet another partisan Senate stalemate?...

Clinton says she takes a 'backseat to no one' among liberals
HANOVER, N.H. (AP) -- Hillary Rodham Clinton said Friday she takes a "backseat to no one" on championing liberal causes, presenting herself as a standard-bearer for Democrats as primary challenger Bernie Sanders generates large, energetic crowds....

Hispanic leaders want GOP field to condemn Trump's 'idiocy'
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Hispanic leaders are bristling at the largely tepid response by Republican presidential candidates to Donald Trump's characterization of Mexican immigrants as rapists and drug dealers....

Who's John Jay? Scholars urge new look at forgotten founder
KATONAH, N.Y. (AP) -- The inner circle of founders has been set for as long as anyone can remember - Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, Hamilton and Madison....

Race to replace ex-Rep. Schock a classic GOP primary contest
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) -- The race to replace former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock has shaped up as a classic Republican primary, pitting the son of a longtime Illinois congressman and Cabinet member against a conservative writer who has railed at what he sees as the "establishment" GOP hand-picking the disgraced lawmaker's successor....

Texas wants its gold back inside the state's borders
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Forget Fort Knox or the Federal Reserve. Texas has decided to start keeping its gold holdings within in its own borders. But what makes sense politically in such a sovereignty-loving place is creating a logistical conundrum....

Reelz rescues Miss USA pageant, dropped by NBC in Trump flap
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The Miss USA pageant, left without a TV home following blowback against co-owner Donald Trump over his comments on Mexican immigrants, has been rescued by the Reelz channel....

Government faces burden in proving airlines worked together
WASHINGTON (AP) -- As the Justice Department launches an investigation into possible collusion in the airline industry, experts say the government faces the burden of proving that carriers were deliberately signaling business decisions to each other....

Chafee's campaign leaves some NH Democrats a bit puzzled
LACONIA, N.H. (AP) -- Presidential candidate Lincoln Chafee stands before a few dozen people at a meeting of New Hampshire's Belknap County Democrats. The Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat gets nods of approval when he tells them he was the only Republican senator to vote against authorizing the war in Iraq....

Analysis: Root of tattered US-Russia ties date back decades
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The stumbles, blunders, and policy chaos that have sent increasingly frosty U.S.-Russia relations into what many now call a new Cold War might have been inevitable....

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Up to the Minute
Job market's new normal: Smaller workforce, sluggish pay

Government faces burden in proving airlines worked together

Hispanic leaders want GOP field to condemn Trump's 'idiocy'

Federal Election Commission fines Sanders-affiliated PAC

How Obama reversed course on federal college ratings

White House Brief: Things to know about Jim Webb

Obama's counterterrorism policy facing mounting criticism

Analysis: Root of tattered US-Russia ties date back decades

Report: No evidence IRS employees told to destroy info

Man who climbed over White House fence gets time served