Monday, February 19, 2018
News Roundup

Davis signals she will run for Texas governor

Austin, texas

Davis signals she will run for governor

Sen. Wendy Davis, the Democrat who filibustered an abortion law for nearly 13 hours wearing pink running shoes, began the slow rollout of her campaign for Texas governor on Wednesday with an email asking supporters to spread the word and donate money ahead of a "what's next" announcement. The Fort Worth Democrat stopped short of revealing her decision, saying she would make a formal announcement about her decision on Oct. 3. But the well-trodden tactic of announcing an announcement clearly signals a campaign far larger than a re-election bid to her state Senate seat. The slow roll out has become a hallmark of modern campaigns.

Tehran, Iran

Government frees political prisoners

In a sign that Iran's government is loosening its grip on domestic security, several political prisoners, including a prominent human rights lawyer, were released Wednesday. Nasrin Sotoudeh, a lawyer who had been accused of insulting the government, was among those freed. Her husband, Reza Khandan, notified news agencies of Sotoudeh's release and posted the news on his Facebook page. In all, 11 prisoners were freed Wednesday, including journalists and reformist politicians.

Washington

House plans vote on food stamps

The yearslong fight over federal funding for food stamps is set for another showdown today when House Republicans plan to vote on a proposal to dramatically curtail aid to needy Americans. Every Democrat is expected to vote against the proposal. The GOP measure would slash about $39 billion over the next decade for food stamps, formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which is providing an average of $133 in monthly aid to more than 47 million Americans, according to a recent government report. The proposal differs sharply from a Senate plan passed this summer that would cut roughly $4.5 billion in SNAP money mostly by reducing administrative expenses.

Baghdad

Official appeals for help after attacks

Iraq's prime minister appealed to his people for support for the government's fight against insurgents as bombings in central and northern Iraq killed at least six and wounded scores on Wednesday. The bombings came a day after a series of attacks targeted commercial streets, killing at least 31 people in the latest chapter in the country's monthslong, spiraling violence. More than 4,000 people have been killed in Iraq since April, according to U.N. figures.

Elsewhere

RICHMOND, VA.: A federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that "liking" something on Facebook is a form of protected free speech.

Times wires

Comments

Updated: 17 minutes ago
Water Wars starting to simmer again in Tampa Bay

Water Wars starting to simmer again in Tampa Bay

CLEARWATER — A simmering feud between Tampa and the regional water authority avoided boiling over Monday, but little was resolved.At a Tampa Bay Water meeting, board members requested Tampa work with the agency on the city’s plan to convert tens of m...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Ex-workers at Russian ‘troll factory’ trust U.S. indictment

Ex-workers at Russian ‘troll factory’ trust U.S. indictment

Associated PressST. PETERSBURG, Russia — While Russian officials scoff at a U.S. indictment charging 13 Russians with meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, several people who worked at the same St. Petersburg, Russia, "troll factory" say t...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Man sought in sexual assault of woman, 71, in New Port Richey

Man sought in sexual assault of woman, 71, in New Port Richey

NEW PORT RICHEY — Deputies are searching for a man who they said broke into a home and raped a 71-year-old woman on Monday.The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said the woman was checking on a home at 7437 Heather St. for the homeowner at about 8:15 a.m...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Trump offers support for limited effort on background checks

Trump offers support for limited effort on background checks

Associated PressWEST PALM BEACH — From the confines of his Mar-a-Lago golf club, President Donald Trump offered support Monday for a limited strengthening of federal background checks on gun purchases while staying largely mum in the past few days ab...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Puerto RicoJudge grants $300M loan for power companyA federal judge on Monday approved a $300 million loan for Puerto Rico’s power company that officials say will help keep the troubled agency operating until late March. The judge had originally reje...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Grief-filled funerals also can be cathartic

Grief-filled funerals also can be cathartic

PARKLAND — Each funeral for the victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High massacre is different, yet the same: the mourning relatives, teens walking in clutches wearing black, politicians paying their respects, media cameras pointing at the entran...
Updated: 2 hours ago

U.S. input unlikely on climate rule book

VIENNA — The climate rule book being drafted to keep a lid on Earth’s rising temperatures should be finished by the end of the year — with or without the U.S. government’s help.Countries that ratified the Paris climate agreement will meet in December...
Updated: 2 hours ago
St. Petersburg set to rename main library after President Obama

St. Petersburg set to rename main library after President Obama

ST. PETERSBURG — Speaking in front of a small crowd gathered on the front lawn of the city’s main library, Mayor Rick Kriseman announced Monday that the facility will get a $6 million renovation and be renamed in honor of President Barack Obama.The a...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Pa. Supreme Court redraws districts

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court drew new boundaries for the state’s congressional districts on Monday, releasing a map that, if it stands, could play a significant role in Democratic Party efforts to gain control of the House of Representatives in the...
Updated: 3 hours ago