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Just days after declaring pregnancy a sacrament, the Supreme Court announced a bold ruling in favor of performative Christianity. Never mind this tiresome business about no establishment of religion; the holy Republican majority in their priestly robes have liberated the nation’s public school football coaches to get on with the serious business of saving souls. Read more

National polls show former President Donald Trump with a commanding lead over all other Republicans for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination. The group includes Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is in a distant second place but is widely seen as the new front-runner should Trump decide not to run. Read more

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State AP Stories

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Tropical Storm Colin is bringing the threat of rain and high winds for a day or two during the holiday weekend to both North and South Carolina. Conditions are expected to improve by Monday's July Fourth celebrations. Separately, the center of Tropical Storm Bonnie rolled into the Pacific on Saturday after a rapid march across Central America, where it caused flooding, downed trees and forced thousands of people to evacuate in Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

North Carolina's Democratic attorney general has not yet indicated whether he will ask a court to lift the injunction on a state law banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Attorney General Josh Stein told Republican lawmakers on Friday that his department’s attorneys are reviewing the litigation that led a federal court to strike down the 20-week ban. His letter responds to GOP demands that he take immediate action in the wake of last week's U.S. Supreme Court ruling that overturned abortion protections. Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore warned last week Stein's inaction would lead them to get involved.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to hear a case that could dramatically change the way elections for Congress and the presidency are conducted by handing more power to state legislatures and blocking state courts from reviewing challenges to the procedures and results.

National & World AP Stories

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Clinics are shutting down abortion services in Texas after the Supreme Court in the nation's second-largest state blocked an order that briefly allowed the procedure to resume in some cases. It's the latest development in legal scrambles taking place across the country following the reversal of reversal of Roe v. Wade. The Friday night ruling stopped a three-day-old order allowing abortions to resume up to six weeks into pregnancy. On Saturday, the American Civil Liberties Union said it doubted that any abortions were now being provided in the state. One provider, Whole Woman’s Health, says the ruling forced it to stop offering the procedure in its four Texas clinics.

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The Uvalde school district’s police chief has stepped down from his position in the City Council just weeks after being sworn in following allegations that he erred in his response to the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School that left 19 students and two teachers dead. Chief Pete Arredondo told the Uvalde Leader-News Friday that his resignation is “the best decision for Uvalde.” He was elected to the District 3 council position on May 7 and sworn in on May 31. The director of the Texas Department of Public Safety told a Senate hearing last month that Arredondo made “terrible decisions” as the massacre unfolded on May 24 , and that the police response was an “abject failure.”

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The bodies of three young children and a woman believed to be their mother have been recovered from a Minnesota lake. Authorities say the deaths are being investigated as a triple murder-suicide. The chain of events began Friday morning when the father was found dead at a mobile home park in the town of Maplewood, near Minneapolis. Police determined that the woman had left with the children, and a search began. The woman’s car was found near Vadnais Lake. One child's body was found in the lake Friday night, another shortly after midnight, and the bodies of the third child and the mother were found late Saturday morning. All of the children were under age 5.

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The Palestinian Authority says it has given the bullet that killed Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh to American forensic experts. The move takes a step toward resolving a standoff with Israel over the investigation into her death. Abu Akleh, a veteran correspondent who was well known throughout the Arab world, was fatally shot while covering an Israeli military raid on May 11 in the occupied West Bank. The Palestinians, along with colleagues who were with her, say she was killed by Israeli fire. Israel says its troops were in a battle with Palestinian gunmen, and it's unclear who fired the fatal shot. It says the bullet must be inspected to understand what happened.