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Wednesday, Apr 16th

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Senate’s findings on CIA interrogations likely to become roadmap for litigation

CIA interrogationsscathing and still-secret Senate report on harsh CIA interrogations and detentions threatens to drag President Barack Obama into a legal thicket he’d rather avoid.

With its findings that the CIA flagrantly abused some detainees and held some without legal authorization, the Senate Intelligence Committee report now headed for the White House could become a roadmap for future litigation. At the very least, it confronts officials with uncomfortable choices.

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Florida Gov. Rick Scott's voter purge violated federal law, court rules

Rick scottFlorida Gov. Rick Scott’s administration was found by a federal appeals court Tuesday to have violated federal law with its 2012 voter purge, an attempt to remove non-citizens from voter rolls just prior to the presidential election.

In June of 2012, just prior to August’s statewide primary election, Scott’s Administration attempted to purge the voter rolls of non-citizens through a comparison of the rolls with state and federal databases. But according to federal law, any systematic removal of voters less than 90 days prior to an election is prohibited.

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Hobby Lobby invests in contraception manufacturers

Hobby LobbyWhen Obamacare compelled businesses to include emergency contraception in employee health care plans, Hobby Lobby, a national chain of craft stores, fought the law all the way to the Supreme Court. The Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate, the company's owners argued, forced them to violate their religious beliefs.

But while it was suing the government, Hobby Lobby spent millions of dollars on an employee retirement plan that invested in the manufacturers of the same contraceptive products the firm's owners cite in their lawsuit.

Documents filed with the Department of Labor and dated December 2012—three months after the company's owners filed their lawsuit—show that the Hobby Lobby 401(k) employee retirement plan held more than $73 million in mutual funds with investments in companies that produce emergency contraceptive pills, intrauterine devices, and drugs commonly used in abortions. Hobby Lobby makes large matching contributions to this company-sponsored 401(k).

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Marathon bombing: Saudi victim sues Glenn Beck for defamation

Glenn Beck

Last April 19, Glenn Beck told listeners that he had a big scoop for them – maybe, one of the biggest scoops of his career.

What we do going forward from here will determine the fate of our nation,” he said.

Mr. Beck, the conservative talk show host, told the audience that Abdulrahman Ali Alharbi, a young Saudi national who was studying English in Massachusetts, was behind the duel explosions that had ripped through a crowd at the Boston Marathon four days earlier.

And the FBI was covering it all up, continued Beck, on his radio program "The Blaze."

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UN Climate change report: 'The worst is yet to come'

UN Report on Climate ChangeHello, and welcome to the Guardian's live coverage of the release of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on climate impacts. It's the first update to the report for seven years, and is expected to reveal some dire news about the effect of climate change on the world.

Nearly 500 people have signed off on the wording of the report, including 66 expert authors, 271 officials from 115 countries, and 57 observers.

The Guardian's Suzanne Goldenberg is in Yokohama for the press conference. She sent us this dispatch:

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Report: NSA kept tabs on 122 world leaders

NSA kept tabs on 122 world leadersIntelligence gathering by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) included the creation of a special databank which targeted 122 world leaders, according to new leaks reported on Saturday by German newspaper Der Spiegel and The Intercept, part of the tranche of documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden last year.

The undated document includes the name of Germany’s chancellor Angela Merkel, whom the NSA targeted in more than 300 separate reports.

Other leaders listed in the databank include the leaders of Peru, Somalia, Syria, Guatemala, Colombia and Belarus.

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After Christians Distribute Bibles at Elementary Schools, Atheists Ask Permission to do the Same… and Get It

bibleLast fall, the ACLU of Kentucky sent letters to superintendents in the state warning them about how Gideons International, the Bibles-in-your-hotel-room people, were often given access to public elementary school children, “solely for the purpose of actively distributing copies of New Testament Bibles directly to students.”

It didn’t stop Casey County School District Superintendent Marion Sowders from allowing the Gideons into the district’s three elementary schools earlier this year.

If you were a non-Christian group, how would you respond?

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