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Wal-Mart Cuts Health Benefits for 30,000 Part-Timers

walmartsWal-Mart Stores Inc. plans to eliminate health insurance coverage for some of its part-time U.S. employees in a move aimed at controlling rising health care costs of the nation's largest private employer.

Wal-Mart told The Associated Press that starting Jan. 1, it will no longer offer health insurance to employees who work less than an average of 30 hours a week. The move affects 30,000 employees, or about 5 percent of Wal-Mart's total part-time workforce, but comes after the company already had scaled back the number of part-time workers who were eligible for health insurance coverage since 2011.

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Supreme Court Rejects Appeal From Teacher Fired For Promoting Creationism

creationsimThe Supreme Court has rejected the appeal of an Ohio public school science teacher who was fired for promoting the theory of creationism and refusing to remove religious materials from his classroom.

The justices on Monday let stand an Ohio Supreme Court ruling that found the Mount Vernon school district had grounds to fire John Freshwater in 2011 for insubordination for keeping religious books and a poster of a praying president.

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Feds probe power steering in Ford midsize cars

Feds probe Ford power steeringThe U.S. government's auto safety regulator has opened an investigation into complaints that the power-assisted steering can suddenly fail on three Ford Motor Co. midsize car models.

The probe covers 938,000 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ cars from the 2010 through 2012 model years, as well as the 2010 and 2011 Mercury Milan. It includes gas-electric hybrid versions of the cars.

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U.S. Supreme Court declines to intervene in gay marriage cases

Supreme CourtThe other states would be North Carolina, West Virginia, South Carolina, Wyoming, Kansas and Colorado.

The high court's decision not to hear the cases was unexpected because most legal experts believed it would want to weigh in on a question of national importance that focuses on whether the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of equal treatment under the law means gay marriage bans were unlawful.

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New York moves to limit federal deportations of undocumented immigrants

NYC deportationsA proposed New York City law would allow officials to decline requests by U.S. immigration authorities to detain immigrants for deportation proceedings unless a warrant is issued by a federal judge.

Even then, the city would only approve a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention request if the individual has been convicted of a violent or serious crime within the past five years.

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Flag that flew over U.S. Capitol on 9/11 destroyed in memorial fire

Flag destroyed in fireThe flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 11, 2001, was destroyed in a fire at a 9/11 memorial complex in Pennsylvania, authorities said Saturday.

In addition to the American flag, also lost in the fire were personal items of the passengers and crew members who were on board United Airlines Flight 93 when it went down in a field as one of four hijackings by al Qaeda militants on Sept. 11, 2001, the National Park Service said in a statement Saturday.

About 100 'tribute' items left by visitors to honor the passengers and crew killed in the crash were also destroyed by the fire, the park service said.

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Ferguson Protesters Outfitted In Orange Jumpsuits And Jailed With High Bail

ferguson protestersMore than a dozen people arrested during protests outside the Ferguson Police Department early Friday were outfitted with orange prison jumpsuits, slapped with high bail and locked behind bars for hours longer than most others arrested in earlier demonstrations against the police shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown.

The 13 protestors, including many seized while standing on the sidewalk, were arrested by police officers from St. Louis County Police and Missouri State Highway Patrol and were jailed in nearby St. Ann. Video of the arrests show protestors on the sidewalk, and not blocking the street, when officers moved in. They were charged with offenses that included failure to comply with police, noise ordinance violations and resisting arrest.

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