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A journalist records a video with a tablet of Gustavo Machin, Cuba’s deputy chief of North American affairs, during talks between Cuban and U.S. officials in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. The United States and Cuba are trying to eliminate obstacles to normalized ties as the highest-level U.S. delegation to the communist island in more than three decades holds a second day of talks with Cuban officials. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

U.S. says it’s not clear after Cuba talks if new policy works

Saturday, January 24, 2015

The highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Cuba in more than three decades said yesterday that two days of talks on re-establishing full diplomatic relations had left her with no sense of whether the new U.S. policy of engagement would achieve its goal of generating reforms that benefit the Cuban people. The Obama administration said the goal of its Cuban policy …

Top N.Y. politician’s arrest prompts calls for ethics overhaul

Saturday, January 24, 2015

There was the assemblyman who took a bribe from a carnival promoter. The former Senate leader accused of using envelopes stuffed with cash to grease his bid for New York City mayor. Or the one who went to prison for looting his own taxpayer-subsidized health clinics. Now add Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver to …

State officials to move ahead with plan to slice $7 million from nursing homes

Friday, January 23, 2015

A plan to patch a $58 million hole in the Department of Health and Human Services budget drew fire from legislators Friday who said $7 million in cuts to nursing home payments would target some of the state’s most vulnerable residents. “We’re making a decision to kick out people’s grandparents into the street,” …

Money Trail: A trek that takes a lot of planning and teamwork

Friday, January 16, 2015

Kai Newkirk organized a 500-mile march across California to promote political equality regardless of wealth. In part, he learned how to coordinate that movement, an effort of the group 99 Rise that he said was a “huge logistical …

No immediate ruling on blocking Obama immigration orders

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A federal judge in South Texas yesterday pushed an attorney representing the federal government to explain the legal authority behind President Obama’s executive action on immigration, which a coalition of 25 states has sued to try to stop. U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen heard arguments during a hearing …

Immigrants can now get Mexican birth certificates in U.S.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

For Mexicans living in the U.S. illegally and hoping to stay in the country under President Obama’s new immigration policy, things just got simpler. Yesterday, the Mexican government began issuing birth certificates to its citizens at its consulates …

Arizona passes law requiring students to pass civics test

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Arizona became the first state in the nation yesterday to enact a law requiring high school students to pass the U.S. citizenship test on civics before graduation, giving a boost to a growing nationwide effort to boost civics …

Amid 2016 speculation, Rand Paul visits New Hampshire

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Rand Paul’s not sure when he’ll be back in New Hampshire. “But we will be,” the Kentucky senator and prospective Republican presidential candidate assured. “We just love the weather up here. We can’t get enough of it.” That …

U.S., Iran hopeful on speeding up nuclear talks

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The United States and Iran are expressing hope that nuclear talks can be accelerated in order to meet a March target for a framework agreement, as the countries’ top diplomats met yesterday ahead of a resumption of full …

House votes to undo Obama immigration actions

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Shunning a White House veto threat and opposition within their own party, House Republicans approved legislation yesterday to overturn President Obama’s key immigration policies and expose hundreds of thousands of younger immigrants to expulsion from the U.S. The …

Kerry: US backs Russian effort on Syria

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Kerry supports Russian efforts in warring Syria U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry voiced support yesterday for a Russian effort to bring Syria’s warring factions together for talks to end the four-year conflict. Meeting in Geneva with the UN and Arab League envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, …

Ayotte to host town halls in Loudon and Barnstead

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte will host town hall meetings in Loudon and Barnstead on Friday afternoon. At the town halls, Ayotte will give an update on the country’s fiscal situation and take questions from residents. The forums are part of a series of town hall meetings Ayotte will …

With concerns about FairPoint service, contract with state still lingers

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

As long as FairPoint continues to have problems providing service to its customers, some members of the Executive Council are leery about signing a $13 million phone and internet services contract with the company. “It will take another three months from now for them to get back to …