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Sunday, Apr 20th

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GM recalls another 1.5 million vehicles, to take $300 million charge

GM recallGeneral Motors Co announced three more recalls on Monday, related to airbag deployment and other issues, and said it would take a $300 million charge primarily to cover the costs related to these actions as well as the previous recall for faulty ignition switches.

The No. 1 U.S. automaker, which will take the charge in the first quarter, did not provide a breakdown of how much was related to the ignition-switch recall of more than 1.6 million older-model vehicles that has hurt the company's reputation since it was announced last month.

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Guinness pulls out of NY St. Patrick's day parade

Guinness pulls parade supportGuinness joined with other major corporations Sunday in pulling its support from the annual New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade over bans preventing LGBT organizations from openly marching.

"Guinness has a strong history of supporting diversity and being an advocate for equality for all," the beer maker said in a statement. "We were hopeful that the policy of exclusion would be reversed for this year’s parade. As this has not come to pass, Guinness has withdrawn its participation. We will continue to work with community leaders to ensure that future parades have an inclusionary policy."

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Earthquake strongly felt across Los Angeles

LA earthquakeA pre-dawn earthquake rolled across the Los Angeles basin on Monday, rattling residents from the San Fernando Valley to Long Beach.

The quake's magnitude was 4.4 and it was centered 15 miles west-northwest of the downtown civic center, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.  Los Angeles police and fire officials said there were no immediate reports of damage.

"It rocked and rolled for about 10 or 12 seconds. I'm surprised nothing fell off the walls or broke — and nothing did — but it was quite a shaker," said Brian Bland, a retired AP Radio correspondent who lives in suburban Santa Monica.

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Comedian David Brenner, 'Tonight' favorite, dies

david brennerDavid Brenner, the gangly, toothy-grinned "Tonight Show" favorite whose brand of observational comedy became a staple for other standup comedians, including Jerry Seinfeld and Paul Reiser, died Saturday. He was 78.

Brenner, who had been fighting cancer, died peacefully at his home in New York City with his family at his side, according to Jeff Abraham, his friend and publicist.

"David Brenner was a huge star when I met him and he took me under his wing. To me, historically, he was the godfather of hip, observational comedy," comedian Richard Lewis said in a statement. "He mentored me from day one. ... His passing leaves a hole in my life that can never be replaced."

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Gun control supporters turn to new front: Corporate America

Gun control supportersThe American gun control movement is going corporate.

Still reeling from the stinging legislative defeats of 2013, proponents of tougher firearm regulations are increasingly turning their focus to private sector campaigns.

Gun control groups have claimed victories in recent months, successfully pushing Starbucks to declare guns unwelcome in stores and persuading Facebook to crack down on unregulated firearm solicitations.  With no end in sight to the congressional gridlock that has thwarted more stringent federal gun laws, groups say they will continue to apply pressure on major companies.

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Maryland Senate votes to ease marijuana penalties

Maryland pot lawThe politics of Maryland lawmakers are increasingly reflecting the shift in public opinion on marijuana use, as today the Maryland Senate passed a bill, 36 to 8, that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of the drug.

If the bill passes the House, it means those found with less than 10 grams of on their person would not be charged with a crime, and would only be subject to a civil fine of $100.

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Federal judge rules that Tennessee must recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages

Tennessee must recognize out of state gay marriageTennessee must recognize the legal same-sex marriages of three couples who wed in other states, a federal judge in Nashville ruled on Friday in a limited decision that echoed a similar case in neighboring Kentucky.

Judge Aleta Trauger granted the couples a preliminary injunction that requires Tennessee to recognize their marriages pending a final decision on the constitutionality of Tennessee’s ban on same-sex nuptials.

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