Political News from Yahoo

Federal health market surpasses 1 million signups

HONOLULU (AP) — A December surge propelled health care sign-ups through the government's rehabilitated website past the 1 million mark, the Obama administration said Sunday, reflecting new signs of life for the problem-plagued federal insurance exchange.


Obama faces smattering of protests on Hawaiian vacation

The serenity of President Barack Obama's Hawaiian vacation was rattled a little on Saturday when demonstrators aired grievances against unmanned aircraft and other issues in a small protest zone near the first family's upscale rented house. Returning from an early morning gym visit at nearby Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Obama's motorcade passed a few dozen protesters holding signs with slogans including "Drones: Unethical and Illegal," "U.S. Bases Out" and "Close Guantanamo Now." Others expressed their opposition to genetically modified foods. It marked a second day of peaceful protest surrounding Obama, who is spending a two-week vacation in Kailua with wife Michelle, daughters Malia and Sasha, the first lady's mother, Marian Robinson, and the family's Portuguese Water Dogs, Bo and Sunny. "Other than a friendly 'shaka sign' from the president as he drove by in his motorcade, we have not received a formal response from the White House," said Mike Hasselle of the MoveOn Honolulu Council, one of the organizers of the action.


Kerry heads to Middle East next week for peace talks: U.S. official

By Lesley Wroughton WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Secretary of State John Kerry will return to Israel and the Palestinian territories for peace talks next week, a senior U.S. government official said on Saturday, days after Israel is due to free another group of Palestinian prisoners. The U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Kerry will visit Jerusalem and Ramallah late next week for more talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, resuming his intensive shuttle diplomacy after a Christmas break. The United States is seeking to broker an agreement on a "two-state solution" in which Israel would exist peacefully alongside a new Palestinian state.


Hawaii overshadowed by Chicago for Obama library

HONOLULU (AP) — On these pleasant shores, Barack Obama was born and raised, soaking in an island sensibility that is vital to understanding his presidency. Yet in the search for a home for his future presidential library, sunny Hawaii is overshadowed by Chicago's commanding influence.


Top Ohio Republicans face down intraparty critics

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Conservative restlessness within their own party poses challenges to three Republican stars in the battleground state of Ohio, where House Speaker John Boehner, Sen. Rob Portman and Gov. John Kasich all have riled up the right.


News summary: Ohio GOP stars face party critics

RIGHT-WING RUMBLINGS: Some Ohio conservatives are unhappy with what they see as efforts by three party stars — House Speaker John Boehner, Gov. John Kasich and Sen. Rob Portman — to play to the middle for political expedience.

High stakes for US families losing jobless benefit

WESTMINSTER, Calif. (AP) — The end of unemployment checks for more than a million people on Saturday is driving out-of-work Americans to consider selling cars, moving and taking minimum wage work after already slashing household budgets and pawning personal possessions to make ends meet.


GOP governors defend edge over Democrats in 2014

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Republicans swept into governorships on a tea-party fueled wave of discontent four years ago, taking over statehouses long governed by Democrats with promises of conservative economic and social policy makeovers.

In quest for Obama library, Hawaii plays underdog

HONOLULU (AP) — On these sun-bathed shores, Barack Obama was born and spent his formative years, soaking in an island sensibility that his wife and friends say is indispensable to understanding who he is as president. Yet in the search for a home for his future presidential library, Hawaii has become the underdog, stuck in Chicago's perpetual shadow.


Reports of sexual assaults in military on rise

WASHINGTON (AP) — Heightened attention to the crime of sexual assault in the U.S. military may be causing more people to come forward and report problems. Defense officials cite the increased awareness as a possible reason the number of reported sexual assaults rose by more than 50 percent this year.


Numbers offer complicated story of health care law

WASHINGTON (AP) — The government churns out tons of numbers, but here's one you won't see: 0.0002. That's the percentage of estimated online visitors to healthcare.gov who actually signed up for coverage the first day.

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