National News

Pandemic postpones national math, reading tests until 2022

Federal officials say national reading and math tests used to track what U.S. students know are being postponed from next year to 2022 over concerns about whether such testing would be feasible or produce valid results amid the pandemic.

Justice Department appeals, seeking to replace Trump in suit

  27 veterans die in COVID-19 outbreak at Illinois VA home

Americans risk traveling over Thanksgiving despite warnings

Rocky the Christmas tree stowaway owl returns to the wild

Argentine soccer great Diego Maradona dies at 60

  Picture of US economy is worrisome as virus inflicts damage

Continued Coverage

  Biden seeks unity as Trump stokes fading embers of campaign

Amazon Web Services widespread issues affecting Gray TV sites

Boy, 15, charged in Wisconsin mall shooting that injured 8

  EXPLAINER: Why the Dow topped 30,000 for the first time

  27 COVID deaths at Illinois vets nursing home prompts probe

Fox News, family of slain DNC staffer Seth Rich settle suit

Duchess of Sussex reveals she had miscarriage in the summer

The former Meghan Markle said she was sharing her story to help break the silence around an all-too-common tragedy.

  EU says first coronavirus vaccinations possible by Christmas

A top European Union official is appealing to the 27 member countries to urgently prepare logistical chains to handle the rollout of hundreds of millions of vaccine doses.

  Substitute teacher accused of body-slamming Fla. high school student

The school district is investigating the incident. The substitute will not be placed at any school pending its outcome.

  Doctor simulates COVID-19 patient’s last moments to encourage virus precautions

The doctor encourages everyone to take precautions to reduce the transmission of COVID-19, including mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing.

Nearly 1 million Sunbeam Crock-Pots recalled over burn risks

  California OK’d aid in name of Scott Peterson, other killers

Man pleads guilty in plot to attack White House, Trump Tower

  November’s full beaver moon rises at month’s end

  ‘America is back’: Biden pushes past Trump era with nominees

  Restaurant workers out of work again as virus surges anew

To wave or not to wave: Not all wild animals want to be friends, National Park Service says

A Facebook post on social distancing takes it to the next level, especially when it comes to dealing with the creatures you might encounter in one of America’s national parks.

Obama memoir sells a record 1.7 million copies in first week

Former President Barack Obama’s “A Promised Land” sold more than 1.7 million copies in North America in its first week.

A Grammys ‘Savage’: Beyoncé leads with 9 nominations

The 2021 Grammy Awards, to be hosted by Emmy-winner Trevor Noah, will air live on Jan. 31.

Trump skips turkey jokes, gives thanks for COVID-19 vaccines

One will be declared the national Thanksgiving turkey, though both will retire to a new home on the campus of Iowa State University.

Bruce Boynton, who inspired 1961 Freedom Rides, dies at 83

Boynton was arrested 60 years ago for entering the white part of a racially segregated bus station in Virginia and launching a chain reaction that ultimately helped to bring about the abolition of Jim Crow laws in the South.

OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma pleads guilty in criminal case

In a virtual hearing with a federal judge in Newark, New Jersey, the OxyContin maker admitted impeding the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s efforts to combat the addiction crisis.

  Mysterious metal monolith found in Utah desert

The officers were in a helicopter helping wildlife workers count bighorn sheep when they spotted the strange sight.

  Dow crests 30,000 points on vaccine hopes, Biden transition

The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded above 30,000 points for the first time Tuesday as investors were encouraged by the latest progress on developing coronavirus vaccines and news that the transition of power in the U.S. to President-elect Joe Biden will finally begin.

  Biden win over Trump in Nevada made official by court

The unanimous action by the seven nonpartisan justices sends to Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak results that will deliver six electoral votes from the western U.S. battleground state to Biden.

Restorers remove dangerous Notre Dame cathedral scaffolding

The removal of the 200 tons of scaffolding was considered dangerous, with some experts fearing that it could cause more of the Gothic monument to fall down.

  Hotel workers struggle amid coronavirus resurgence

Many properties remain closed, and thousands of people that worked in hospitality are unemployed. With the holidays approaching, the impact is even more painful.

Helen LaFrance, who painted rural memories, dies at 101

A prominent Black Kentucky artist whose painted memories of rural life in Kentucky are featured in U.S. and European museums and in the collections of well-known personalities including Oprah Winfrey, has died. Helen LaFrance was 101 years old.

New York City’s first Black mayor, David Dinkins, dies at 93

Police say initial indications were that the 93-year-old died of natural causes.

  Pennsylvania certifies Biden as winner of presidential vote

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf first disclosed in a tweet that the Department of State had certified the vote count for president and vice president.

  Taylor Swift ‘folklore’ concert film coming to Disney+

The concert film will include guest appearances from Jack Antonoff, Aaron Dessner and Bon Iver — acts who all appear on Swift’s “folklore” album.

  WATCH: Wildlife uses Utah’s first interstate crossing just for them

Video of various animals utilizing a wildlife bridge over an interstate in Utah shows the $5 million project is working as intended, according to the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

  Keep the mask: A vaccine won’t end the US crisis right away

Despite the expected arrival of COVID-19 vaccines in just a few weeks, it could take several months — probably well into 2021 — before things get back to something close to normal.

How to get the best Apple Black Friday 2020 deals

Apple doesn’t have “discount” in its DNA. While Apple tempts us with its latest technology, Black Friday deals often come from retailers clearing out last-generation inventory.

US agrees for now to stop deporting women who alleged abuse

In a motion that must still be approved by a federal judge, the Justice Department and lawyers for several of the women agreed that immigration authorities would not carry out any deportations until mid-January.

Texts: US census manager told counters to use fake answers

The texts are the latest evidence suggesting census accuracy was sacrificed for speed as census takers and supervisors rushed to complete a head count last month.

  Families meet after double kidney swap

Hallie Thomas happily donated a kidney to little Emery. As luck would have it, Emery’s mom was a match for her husband Richard, who also needed a kidney.

  International flyers may soon need to get coronavirus vaccinations

International air travel could come booming back next year but with a new rule: Travelers to certain countries must be vaccinated against the coronavirus before they can fly.

Some romaine hearts recalled in 15 states because of E. coli concerns

The recall includes Wild Harvest Organic Romaine Hearts and Dole Organic Romaine Hearts three-packs.

  ‘Ghost candidates’ blamed for siphoning votes in Florida Senate races

These mysterious candidates appear to run for office solely to take votes away from a competitor and make it easier for a third candidate to win.

  Carl Bernstein says 21 GOP senators contemptuous of Trump

Former Watergate sleuth Carl Bernstein took to Twitter to list the names of 21 Republican senators who he says have “repeatedly expressed contempt” for Donald Trump and his fitness to be president.

Court: Texas, Louisiana can end Planned Parenthood funding

A federal appeals court ruled Monday that Texas and Louisiana can cut off Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood clinics.

  Officers hand out turkeys instead of tickets in NYC

The officers made several stops for minor infractions, but instead of handing out tickets, they cut the drivers a break and gave them turkeys.

Off-duty officer fatally shoots burglary suspect after teen son calls for help

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting.

After criticism, Feinstein to step down as top Judiciary Dem

Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, the Senate’s No. 2 Democrat, said he will seek to replace Feinstein as the committee's top Democrat.

  Biden transition gets govt OK after Trump out of options

Michigan’s Board of State Canvassers, which has two Republicans and two Democrats, was meeting Monday afternoon for what usually is a routine step.

  Millions stick to Thanksgiving travel plans despite warnings

Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urged Americans not to travel or spend the holiday with people outside their household.

  Federal prisons to prioritize staff to receive virus vaccine

The federal prison system will be among the first to receive the coronavirus vaccine.

US agency ascertains Biden as winner, lets transition begin

The move clears the way for Joe Biden aides to begin coordinating with federal agencies on plans for takeover on Jan. 20.

Delta CEO thanks employees with free travel

The gift will go to about 40,000 employees.

  Biden signals sharp shift from Trump with Cabinet picks

The picks mark a return to a more traditional approach to America’s relations with the rest of the world and reflect Biden’s campaign promises to have his Cabinet reflect the diversity of the American population.

Ken Jennings will be first interim ‘Jeopardy!’ host

Ken Jennings is well-known to fans of the game show for his 74-game winning streak and victory in last year's prime-time ‘Greatest of All Time’ competition.

  New Zealand leader Ardern offers virus know-how to Joe Biden

New Zealand's leader said the tone of the 20-minute phone call Monday was warm and that Biden spoke very favorably about how New Zealand was handling the pandemic.

  AP source: Biden taps ex-Fed chair Yellen to lead treasury

A path-breaking figure in the male-dominated economics field, Yellen, 74, was also the first woman to serve as Fed chair, from 2014 to 2018. She later became an adviser to Biden’s presidential campaign in an unusual departure for a former Fed leader that thrust her into the political arena.

GM flips to California’s side in pollution fight with Trump

General Motors says it will no longer support the Trump administration in legal efforts to end California’s right to set its own clean-air standards.

  3rd major COVID-19 vaccine shown to be effective and cheaper

AstraZeneca is the third major drug company to report late-stage results for a potential COVID-19 vaccine as the world anxiously waits for scientific breakthroughs that will bring an end to a pandemic that has wrought economic devastation and resulted in nearly 1.4 million confirmed deaths.

  Tennessee business creates new safety device to stop school shootings

The device is a massive containment unit designed to keep people from entering a school, bank or courthouse with any type of gun.

GM to recall 7 million vehicles globally to replace Takata air bags

The decision announced Monday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will cost the automaker an estimated $1.2 billion, about one third of its net income this year.

  White House still planning holiday parties, despite warnings

The decision to move forward with indoor White House events and other gatherings comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, top White House advisers and public health professionals across the nation have been pleading with Americans not to travel for Thanksgiving.

White Sox to host Yankees in Field of Dreams game on Aug. 12

Major League Baseball says the plan is tentative, contingent on the status of public health next summer.

Toy safety group releases annual list of top 10 ‘worst’ toys

“Although intended for fun and entertainment, many toys contain hidden hazards unnecessarily putting children at risk of injury or death,” Boston-based World Against Toys Causing Harm Inc. said in a statement announcing its “10 Worst Toys” of the year.

Reports: Israeli PM flew to Saudi Arabia, met crown prince

Israel has long had clandestine ties to Gulf Arab states that have strengthened in recent years as they have confronted a shared threat in Iran.

  Woman shoved in front of NY subway train can’t remember attack

The 40-year-old housekeeper was hit by a train. In an incident caught on surveillance video, she’s seen being shoved by someone onto the train tracks while she was standing on the platform Thursday at Union Square.

Suspect arrested, at least 2 dead in stabbing at San Jose, Calif., church

A suspect has been arrested in connection with the fatal stabbings of two people and the wounding of others at a California church that was being used as a homeless shelter, police said Monday.

Oxford English Dictionary couldn’t pick just one ‘word of the year’ for 2020

The Oxford English Dictionary had a hard time picking its traditional “word of the year” for 2020.

  Shops, gyms to reopen in England under new COVID-19 plan

British Prime Boris Johnson confirmed to lawmakers Monday the government will lift the stay-at-home instruction on Dec. 2.

Western Union money transfers between US and Cuba end

More than 400 Western Union locations will shut down across the island by 6 p.m. Cuba Time on Monday.

Beppe Modenese, creator of Milan fashion system, dies at 90

Dubbed “Italy’s Prime Minister of Fashion” in 1983 by Women’s Wear Daily, Modenese remained a front-row mainstay into recent seasons, maintaining the official title of honorary president of the Italian fashion council, the Italian National Fashion Chamber.

  Pandemic has taken a bite out of seafood trade, consumption

The coronavirus pandemic has hurt the U.S. seafood industry due to a precipitous fall in imports and exports and a drop in catch of some species.

Pope Francis’ book explores George Floyd, virus skeptics

“Let Us Dream” aims to outline Francis’ vision of a more economically and environmentally just post-coronavirus world where the poor, the elderly and weak aren’t left on the margins and the wealthy aren’t consumed only with profits.

  Man seen exhaling on protesters outside Trump golf club charged with assault

The Loudon County Sheriff’s Office confirmed Raymond Deskins is the man seen on a video exhaling at a gathered crowd.

The votes are in: National Zoo’s giant panda cub named

The National Zoo’s giant panda cub now has a name following a public vote.

Don’t let moose lick your cars, Canadian authorities caution

Authorities in Jasper, in Canada’s Alberta province, have put up signs asking motorists to avoid allowing moose to lick the salt off their cars.

  Co-founder of viral ALS Ice Bucket Challenge dies at 37

The social media challenge has raised more than $200 million worldwide for Lou Gehrig’s disease research.