By Jonathan Allen and Dustin Volz NEW YORK/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Des Moines Register, the largest newspaper in the state that will cast the first votes for U.S. presidential nominees in nine days, gave its coveted endorsement on Saturday to Republican Marco Rubio and Democrat Hillary Clinton, it announced on Saturday. The newspaper's board said it was impressed by Clinton's "knowledge and experience" and that it had picked Rubio because the Florida senator represented the Republican party's "best hope" in the November 2016 presidential race. While the endorsements from the newspaper have the potential to boost a candidate, they often do not predict success in Iowa's distinctive, time-consuming caucus system of picking nominees, which involves voters meeting in public places to discuss their preferences.
Michael Bloomberg, the billionaire former mayor of New York City, has told his aides to draw up plans for an independent campaign for the U.S. presidency, the New York Times reported on Saturday. Bloomberg has advised friends and associates that he would be willing to spend at least $1 billion of his own money on a campaign for the November 2016 election, the Times said, citing sources briefed on the former mayor's thinking. Bloomberg, 73, has given himself an early March deadline for entering the race, the Times reported, after commissioning a poll in December to see how he would fare against Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the Republican and Democratic frontrunners.
Michigan state officials clarified in a press release late Friday that Flint residents are not, in fact, required to show identification in order to receive free water sources being distributed by National Guard, the Red Cross and other volunteers in response to the city’s water contamination crisis.
By Rod Nickel and Julie Gordon WINNIPEG, Manitoba, and VANCOUVER (Reuters) - The gunman suspected of killing four people and injuring several others in Canada's worst school violence in a decade first shot his two brothers at home before opening fire at the remote community high school, a family friend and the town's acting mayor said on Friday. Police said a suspect was arrested after the shooting in La Loche, Saskatchewan, an impoverished community about 600 km (375 miles) north of the city of Saskatoon. The town's acting mayor, Kevin Janvier, told the Associated Press that his 23-year-old daughter Marie, a teacher, was shot to death.
Michigan National Guard members help to distribute water to a line of residents in their cars in Flint, Michigan January 21, 2016. “This is an amoral display of political apathy by Republican leaders. Castellanos said he agreed with an op-ed in the New York Times Thursday written by former White House speechwriter Matt Latimer, who worked for President George W. Bush.
By Jonathan Allen NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department asked a judge on Friday for a one-month extension to finish publicly releasing thousands of emails sent by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton while she was secretary of state, in part because a winter storm closed government offices. More than 1,300 of those emails have been partly redacted in the public release because the State Department says they contain classified information.
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said Friday his country is working to extradite recaptured drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman for trial in the United States as soon possible. The Mexican attorney general's office is pursuing charges against Guzman while also working on his extradition, the president said at an annual gathering of billionaires and political leaders in the snow-covered Swiss Alpine resort of Davos. "The instruction is to accelerate its work to obtain his extradition as soon as possible," Pena Nieto said.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Shoppers raided grocery and hardware stores, bishops excused Catholics from Sunday Mass and the nation's capital was shutting down Friday ahead of a weekend blizzard that has begun to blanket much of the Eastern United States. Washington could be buried in two feet or more of wet, driving snow.