Political News from Yahoo

California state Senator Wright to resign following fraud conviction

By Alex Dobuzinskis LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California state Senator Roderick Wright plans to resign from office later this month following a perjury and voter fraud conviction that saw him sentenced to 90 days in jail, he said in a letter sent on Monday. Wright, who was convicted in January of lying about whether he lived in the district he sought to represent, was the first of three California Senate Democrats to face criminal proceedings this year. This effectively cost the party a cherished two-thirds majority in the California Senate. ...

NASA asteroid defense program falls short: audit

Washington (AFP) - The US space agency's program to detect and protect the Earth from incoming asteroids is poorly managed and far behind schedule, said a government audit report on Monday.

Yemen army, tribes clash with Shiite rebels

Sanaa (AFP) - Shiite Huthi rebels clashed Monday with Yemeni army forces and loyalist tribes northeast of Sanaa as a UN envoy kept up mediation efforts, tribal sources said.

Lula mobbed in Rio, defends govt on Petrobras

Rio de Janeiro (AFP) - Influential former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Monday rallied behind successor Dilma Rousseff as she chases re-election next month amid a corruption scandal and weak economy.

Leaders pledge powers in final push before Scottish vote

The leaders of the three main British parties on Tuesday issued a joint pledge to give the Scottish parliament more powers if voters reject independence, in a final drive to stop the United Kingdom splitting. Its appearance comes two days ahead of Scotland's independence referendum on Thursday. Printed to look like a yellowed scroll, the promise was signed by Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, opposition Labour party leader Ed Miliband, and Liberal Democrat deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg. "We agreed that: The Scottish Parliament is permanent and extensive new powers for the Parliament will be delivered," the text read.

Ukraine outrage over delay on EU trade deal

Kiev (AFP) - Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is facing a backlash from his staunchest supporters for bowing to Russian pressure and postponing the implementation of an EU trade deal the two sides plan to ratify Tuesday.

US official warns Assad not to target US planes

Washington (AFP) - US forces will target Syrian anti-aircraft systems if they take aim at American planes conducting strikes inside Syria against Islamic State rebels, a senior US official warned Monday.

Connecticut ex-governor opens defense in campaign law trial

By Richard Weizel NEW HAVEN Conn. (Reuters) - The first defense witness in the trial of former Connecticut Governor John Rowland testified on Monday that Rowland performed legitimate consulting services for a nursing home company, countering prosecutors who say he worked under a phony contract in violation of federal campaign laws. Rowland attended numerous meetings with top executives of Apple Healthcare in 2011 and 2012, and offered “helpful advice” to the company, its chief operating officer Brian Bedard said on Monday. Earlier on Monday, after nearly two weeks of testimony in U.S. ...

Punters take a gamble on Scottish independence vote

While the odds indicate Scotland will vote against independence, bookmakers said Monday that most punters are putting their money on a "Yes" in the biggest political betting event they have ever seen. William Hill on Sunday cut their odds on a "Yes" vote from 3/1 to 11/4 after a late wave of support. Ladbrokes is offering 1/4 on a "No" vote and 3/1 on a "Yes" vote. It's a good investment whatever happens!" said Jamie Anderson, told AFP as he walked into a Glasgow bookmakers planning to lay a bet for independence.

US Army invites women to try out for elite Ranger school

Washington (AFP) - The US Army is inviting female soldiers to apply to the grueling Ranger school, officials said Monday, part of the military's effort to open the door to women serving in ground combat.

US steps up efforts to target extremists at home

Washington (AFP) - The United States announced Monday it was stepping up efforts to target extremists at home as it seeks to build a broad global coalition against Islamic State militants.

Key bridge destroyed in IS-held eastern Syria

Beirut (AFP) - Islamic State militants lost a vital supply route in eastern Syria on Monday with the destruction of the last bridge in the city of Deir Ezzor, a monitoring group said.

Renegade claims jet raid on Libya militia position

Tripoli (AFP) - A warplane carried out an air raid Monday on a military base in western Libya held by anti-government militias, in an attack claimed by renegade former general Khalifa Haftar.

Countries scramble to make up 'precious time' lost in Ebola fight

Brussels (AFP) - The European Union urged the international community Monday to boost aid to make up for "precious time" lost in the response to west Africa's deadly Ebola outbreak, as the UN Security Council announced an emergency meeting on the crisis.

Government data requests up 150 pct in 5 years: Google

Washington (AFP) - Google said Monday that worldwide government requests for user data rose 150 percent over five years, as the Internet giant renewed its call for reforms to allow for greater disclosure.

Powerful Washington lobbyist Boggs dies at 73

WASHINGTON (AP) — Thomas Hale Boggs Jr., a son of congressional royalty who evolved into a top-tier lobbyist and prolific Democratic fundraiser and embodied what it meant to have Washington clout, died Monday He was 73.

Some consumers risk losing health law tax credits

WASHINGTON (AP) — Thousands of consumers risk losing financial aid for health care premiums under President Barack Obama's law unless they clear up lingering questions about their incomes, administration officials said Monday.