Behind health law's 'growing pains,' more serious problems?
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama told insurers this week his health care overhaul has had some growing pains. But with premiums rising and marquee insurers bailing, could the real diagnosis be "failure to thrive?" The medical term refers to when patients, often youngsters but also adults, fail to achieve or maintain proper weight. This is the fourth election cycle in which the Affordable Care Act has been in play, struggling for political traction and a healthy level of acceptance from a divided public. "Progress has not been without challenges," Obama wrote insurers. "Most new enterprises have growing pains and opportunities for improvement." He asked for help with the fourth sign-up season, which starts Nov.
Clinton back on campaign trail after releasing health info
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — Hillary Clinton returns to the campaign trail Thursday after a bout of pneumonia that sidelined her for three days and revived questions about both Donald Trump's and her openness regarding their health. "I'm really glad that I did finally follow my doctor's orders and take some days to rest instead of just trying to keep powering through, which I think is a common experience for people," Clinton told the "Tom Joyner Morning Show" in an interview broadcast Thursday morning. Clinton and Trump both released letters from their doctors this week with additional details about their health, including their cholesterol levels, blood pressure and current medications.
The Latest: Trump campaign releases results from physical
Donald Trump's campaign has released a letter from his doctor outlining the results from his latest physical. The letter from Trump's long-time doctor, Harold N. Bornstein, lists Trump's weight, cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and other numbers. He concludes that Trump "Is in excellent physical health." The letter, released Thursday, is more detailed than one he had released previously that consisted largely of platitudes. The release comes amid growing attention to the candidates' health histories and after Clinton was captured on video stumbling. Trump's campaign appeared to refer to that episode when it said Trump "has the stamina to endure — uninterrupted — the rigors" of the campaign and presidency.
Service chiefs urge lawmakers to avoid return of budget caps
WASHINGTON (AP) — The four-star officers in charge of each U.S. military branch pleaded with lawmakers to find common ground and avoid the return of strict, across-the-board spending limits that increase the risk of sending inadequately trained and equipped troops into combat. Testifying Thursday before the Senate Armed Services Committee, the service chiefs are providing a stark appraisal of the impact of the automatic budget caps known in Washington-speak as sequestration. An agreement last year involving Republicans and Democrats provided temporary relief from sequestration, but the limits return in the 2018 budget year. In response to a question from Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., the committee chairman, all the service chiefs agreed they would not have the resources to defend the country if sequestration kicks in.
Witness says Philippine president ordered killings of 1,000
MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A former Filipino militiaman testified before the country's Senate on Thursday that President Rodrigo Duterte, when he was still a city mayor, ordered him and other members of a liquidation squad to kill criminals and opponents in gangland-style assaults that left about 1,000 dead. Edgar Matobato, 57, told the nationally televised Senate committee hearing that he heard Duterte order some of the killings, and acknowledged that he himself carried out about 50 deadly assaults as an assassin, including a suspected kidnapper fed to a crocodile in 2007 in southern Davao del Sur province. Rights groups have long accused Duterte of involvement in death squads, claims he has denied, even while engaging in tough talk in which he stated his approach to criminals was to "kill them all." Matobato is the first person to admit any role in such killings, and to directly implicate Duterte under oath in a public hearing.
UN has 'problem' getting aid to Syria: lack of government OK
BEIRUT (AP) — The United Nations faces "a problem" in shipping humanitarian aid into Syria, the U.N. envoy for the war-torn country said Thursday, pinning the blame on the lack of authorization from Bashar Assad's government that has even disappointed Russia, the Syrian president's key backer. Staffan de Mistura said a U.S.-Russia-brokered cease-fire deal agreed on last week has largely reduced the violence since it came into effect on Monday, but the humanitarian aid flow that was expected to follow has not materialized. De Mistura said 40 aid trucks are ready to move and that the U.N. would prioritize delivery to the embattled, rebel-held eastern neighborhoods of the northern city of Aleppo.
Safety recommendations unfulfilled 7 years after Flight 1549
WASHINGTON (AP) — More than seven years after an airline captain saved 155 lives by ditching his crippled airliner in the Hudson River, now the basis of a new movie, most of the safety recommendations stemming from the accident haven't been carried out. Of the 35 recommendations made by the National Transportation Safety Board in response to the incident involving US Airways Flight 1549, only six have been successfully completed, according to an Associated Press review of board records. Fourteen of the recommendations issued to the Federal Aviation Administration and its European counterpart, EASA, are marked by the NTSB as "closed-unacceptable." One has been withdrawn, and the rest remain unresolved.
Police: Boy, 13, fatally shot by cop had pulled out BB gun
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An officer responding to a reported armed robbery shot and killed a 13-year-old boy when the teen pulled a firearm from his waistband that was later determined to be a BB gun but looked "practically identical" to the weapon that police use, authorities said Thursday. The shooting happened around nightfall Wednesday in an alley east of downtown Columbus after a short foot chase. Columbus police said officers responded to a report of an armed robbery involving multiple suspects and were told by the victim that a group of people had approached him and demanded money. The victim said one of them had a gun.
Truckers warn speed caps will cause crashes, jam highways
DETROIT (AP) — Truckers are warning that a government plan to electronically limit the speed of tractor-trailers will lead to highway traffic jams and possibly an increase in deadly run-ins with cars. More than 150 people, most identifying themselves as independent truckers, have filed comments recently with the government about the proposed rule, unveiled last month by two federal agencies. There were only a few comments in favor. The government has proposed requiring electronic speed limiters on all trucks and buses over 26,000 pounds manufactured after the regulation goes into effect. Speeds could be limited to 60, 65 or 68 miles per hour when the rule is finalized after a comment period that ends Nov.
Jesus and beer: Religious groups combine faith, cold brews
WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) — Angela Caddell started struggling with her Christianity 14 years ago when she came out as gay. But a gathering at a bar to talk faith over a cold beer once a month is helping her feel more connected to her religion. "If you're an atheist you are welcome. .... I'm a lesbian, I'm totally welcome," said the 32-year-old from nearby Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, at a recent gathering. "Tonight we're talking about scapegoating. There is no scapegoating that happens here." This event is called "Jesus & Beer" and it's part of an effort by some Christian groups throughout the country to recruit parishioners, connect with people struggling with faith or provide a relaxed outlet to talk religion.