WHY IT MATTERS: Voting rights

WASHINGTON (AP) — THE ISSUE: Who should be able to vote and how easy should it be? It’s a question that goes to the core of democracy. Voting rights are in flux in the final months of Barack Obama’s two terms as the first black president. Citing a need to combat fraud, Republican-controlled legislatures are […]

Experts: 2 killings by police were tragic, likely justified

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two fatal police shootings in the Los Angeles area in the last two weeks began the same way: officers thinking a suspect had a gun. In one, police say a 14-year-old boy fired at them and they found a weapon. In the other, a 27-year-old man police believed was a carjacking […]

Beyond ‘Obamacare’: State initiatives refocus health debate

WASHINGTON (AP) — Moving beyond “Obamacare,” political activists are looking to state ballot questions to refocus the nation’s long-running debate over government’s role in health care. This fall, California voters will decide whether to lower some prescription drug prices, while Coloradans will vote on a state version of a “single-payer” government-run health system, similar to […]

Parks promised to poor neighborhoods unbuilt years later

  SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A decade after California voters approved spending $400 million to build parks in some of the state’s poorest neighborhoods, an Associated Press review found fewer than half the 126 projects have been built. Now Democratic lawmakers want to add another $1 billion to the program. State officials say the long […]

Ford recalls 830K vehicles to fix faulty door latches

DETROIT (AP) — Ford is recalling about 830,000 vehicles in the U.S. and Mexico because parts in the side door latches can break and the doors can open while the vehicles are moving. The recall announced Thursday covers certain 2013 to 2015 Ford Escape SUVs and C-Max cars, and 2012 to 2015 Focus cars. Also […]

Poll: Police harassment familiar to young Blacks, Hispanics

DETROIT (AP) — Crystal Webb cringes whenever a patrol car appears in her rearview mirror. She also never wants to see the inside of a police station again. Her personal experience with police, plus recent fatal shootings of unarmed Black men by white officers, has led the Apple Valley, California, mother of two to ask: […]

Officer says prosecutors silenced him in Sandra Bland case

DALLAS (AP) — A police officer in the small Texas town where Sandra Bland was pulled over and jailed says the county’s top prosecutors threatened to end his career if he came forward with what he says is evidence of wrongdoing, an accusation the prosecutors deny. Among the things Prairie View officer Michael Kelley said […]

Individuals, agencies dodge blame as Freddie Gray case ends

BALTIMORE (AP) — Fourteen months after the death of a black man whose neck was broken in a police van prompted massive protests, spawned rioting and toppled the careers of Baltimore’s police commissioner and a Democratic mayor poised for re-election, authorities abandoned efforts to punish the officers involved. The city’s top prosecutor was righteous in […]

Debt-collection proposals: Fewer calls, easier to dispute

NEW YORK (AP) — Consumers could no longer receive multiple calls per day from debt collectors and would have more ability to dispute their bills under proposals released Thursday to overhaul the multibillion-dollar debt collection industry. The new rules from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau would also require collectors to have more documentation to prove […]

Another Officer acquitted in Freddie Gray death case

BALTIMORE (AP) — A judge acquitted a Baltimore police officer of manslaughter and other charges Monday in the death of Freddie Gray, a black man who was critically injured in a police transport van. It was the fourth straight trial prosecutors failed to win in the case. Lt. Brian Rice, the highest-ranking of six officers […]