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35 percent in U.S. facing debt collectors

WASHINGTON — More than 35 percent of Americans have debts and unpaid bills that have been reported to collection agencies, according to a study released today by the Urban Institute.

Arrest linked to gun used after Boston Marathon bombings

BOSTON — It has been one of the lingering questions since the dramatic manhunt that gripped the Boston area in the days after the marathon bombings: Where did the suspects get the gun that authorities say they used to kill a university police officer?

Courts issue conflicting rulings on Obamacare

The legal battle over President Barack Obama’s health care law ramped up Tuesday, as two federal appeals courts handed down conflicting rulings on whether the government can continue to pay subsidies nationwide to millions of low- and middle-income people to help them with the cost of insurance.

Friend first convicted in Boston Marathon probe

BOSTON — The conviction of a friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev for impeding the investigation into the bombings has his lawyers wondering if anyone else who faces charges connected to the 2013 attack stands a chance of acquittal.

Detroit retirees endorse pension cuts in bankruptcy

DETROIT — A year after filing for bankruptcy, Detroit is building momentum to get out, especially after workers and retirees voted in favor of major pension changes just a few weeks before a judge holds a crucial trial that could end the largest public filing in U.S. history. Pension cuts were approved in a landslide, according to results filed shortly before midnight Monday. The tally from 60 days of voting gives the city a boost as Judge Steven Rhodes determines whether Detroit’s overall strategy to eliminate or reduce $18 billion ...

Federal appeals court deals blow to health law

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A federal appeals court has delivered a serious setback to President Barack Obama’s health care law, potentially derailing subsidies for many low- and middle-income people who have bought policies.

Official: Fewer kids detained at border

McALLEN, Texas — The U.S. Border Patrol has detained fewer unaccompanied children entering South Texas illegally in the past 10 days, agency officials said Thursday.

Obama announces initiative for private infrastructure investment

WILMINGTON, Del. — While criticizing Congress for not passing a long-term transportation spending plan, President Barack Obama stood before the closed I-495 bridge Thursday and announced a new initiative to encourage private-sector investment in infrastructure.

Florida judge overturns state’s ban on gay marriage

FLORIDA — Monroe County Circuit Judge Luis Garcia overturned Florida’s 2008 constitutional gay-marriage ban on Thursday, and ordered that two Key West bartenders be allowed to wed but not before Tuesday.

Senators call on GM CEO to fire top lawyer

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Lawmakers demanded General Motors fire its chief lawyer and do more to help crash victims as a Senate subcommittee delved deeper into GM’s mishandling of the recall of small cars with defective ignition switches.

Court rejects death penalty in California

SAN FRANCISCO — In an indictment of California’s death penalty, a federal judge ruled Wednesday that decades-long delays and uncertainty about whether condemned inmates will ever be executed violate the constitution’s ban on cruel or unusual punishment.

Republicans block birth control bill

WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans on Wednesday blocked a bill sponsored by Washington Senator Patty Murray (D) aimed at restoring free contraception for women who get their health insurance from companies with religious objections, a legislative setback for Democrats that they hope will be a political winner in November’s elections.

First Boston bombing trial wraps up

BOSTON — A friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was a naive college kid who was prosecuted because he was a “friend of the bomber,” a defense lawyer said today, while prosecutors told a jury the man was an active participant in a plan to protect Tsarnaev by removing altered fireworks and other items from his dorm room.