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Kerry bluntly warns Russia of new sanctionsPineda banned 10 games for pine tar, won't appeal

Secretary of State John Kerry speaks about the situation with Ukraine and Russia from the State Department in Washington, Thursday, April 24, 2014. Kerry is accusing Russia of failing to live up to commitments it made to ease the crisis in Ukraine. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)He says the U.S. will have no choice if Russia fails to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine.


In this April 23, 2014 photo taken from video and provided by ESPN, home plate umpire Gerry Davis touches the neck of New York Yankees starting pitcher Michael Pineda in the second inning of the Yankees' baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston. Pineda was ejected after umpires found a foreign substance on his neck. (AP Photo/ESPN)BOSTON (AP) — Michael Pineda says he was just trying to get a better grip on the ball.


Nevada rancher stands by racially charged commentsMichael Phelps wins 100 fly heat in comeback meet

Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy speaks with a supporter (Reuters)Cliven Bundy's musings about slavery have made him a liability for conservative lawmakers.


Michael Phelps competes in the 100-meter butterfly during the Arena Grand Prix swim meet, Thursday, April 24, 2014, in Mesa, Ariz. It is Phelps' first competitive event after a nearly two-year retirement. (AP Photo/Matt York)MESA, Ariz. (AP) — A giddy Michael Phelps qualified fastest for the 100-meter butterfly final Thursday in his first competition since retiring after the 2012 London Olympics.


New Jersey fire burns 300 acres; some let back into homesNorthwestern players to cast historic union vote

Homes damaged by Ocean County forest fireA large brush fire had burned more than 300 acres in central New Jersey, yet some residents are being allowed back into their homes after earlier evacuations.


FILE - In this April, 2, 2014 file photo, former Northwestern football quarterback Kain Colter, right, and Ramogi Huma, founder and president of the National College Players Association, arrive on Capitol Hill in Washington. Northwestern football players will cast secret ballots Friday, April 25, 2014, on whether to form the nation’s first union for college athletes, a potentially landmark vote that will, however, be kept sealed for weeks or months, and possibly years. Colter announced in January that he would lead the drive to unionize. The CAPA would represent the players at the bargaining table if the pro-union side prevails. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke, File)EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Northwestern University's football players will cast ballots Friday on whether to form the nation's first union for college athletes — a potentially landmark vote that will be kept sealed for months and possibly years.


Ex-Marine convicted of three murders, sentenced to deathBen Martin surges to Zurich Classic lead

FILE - These undated family photos provided by the Zion, Ill., Police department show Krystal Tobias, 9, and Laura Hobbs, 8. Prosecutors have urged a federal jury to impose the death penalty on an ex-Marine who murdered a Navy sailor, saying it's the only adequate punishment for a man who has committed a series of sexually motivated attacks. The jury heard closing arguments Thursday in federal court in Alexandria in the trial of 25-year-old Jorge Torrez. Prosecutor James Trump told jurors that execution is the only adequate punishment for a man who not only murdered Snell but killed two girls in his Illinois hometown. Torrez is charged but has not been convicted in those slayings. (AP Photo/Family photo via the Zion Police Department)Jorge Torrez was sentenced to death Thursday for murdering a fellow service member in 2009, after a federal jury concluded he had been responsible for a series of violent, sexually motivated attacks on women and young girls over the last nine years.


Ben Martin smiles after a birdie on the 17th hole during the opening round of the PGA Zurich Classic golf tournament at TPC Louisiana in Avondale, La., Thursday, April 24, 2014. Martin shot a course-record 10-under-par 62. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)AVONDALE, La. (AP) — Ben Martin treated a tiny gallery to a course-record round, shooting a 10-under 62 on Thursday in the first round of the Zurich Classic.


Ukraine military operation kills 5Pineda not only pitcher in majors to try pine tar

A woman bandages the head of a pro-Russian activist injured outside the Mariupol town hall, East UkraineRussia launched army drills near the border in response, raising fears its troops would invade.


Home plate umpire Gerry Davis, right, confers on the mound with New York Yankees starting pitcher Michael Pineda, left; shortstop Derek Jeter (2); and others in the second inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston, Wednesday, April 23, 2014. Pineda was ejected after umpires found with a foreign substance on his neck.(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)New York Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda is hardly the first major leaguer to head to the mound hoping to get away with using pine tar to aid his grip.




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 Great Falls Views and Opinions
Ukraine: Not What It Seems

After tense days of fighting this week, people in Ukraine are mourning the dead and celebrating the removal of President Victor Yanukovych from power. The final struggle that began on February 18, was the bloodiest endured by the protesters of Euromaidan. By February 22 the fighting was over. Representatives from Germany, France, Poland and Russia came to Kyiv to work out a final deal that would put an end to the fighting. The opposition insisted that Yanukovych step down as president and early elections be held. When Yanukovych chose to flee Kyiv instead, the parliament voted to impeach him and set new elections for May 25.

Religious Freedom Bill - Protecting The Faithful or Legalized Discrimination?

After a much heated national debate, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed the controversial bill that would have allowed people and businesses in the state to refuse services to LBGT people based on their religious belief.

Tech Savvy Politics

Recently the Republicans launched several new websites to build up their technology advantage in the upcoming election.

The Nuclear Option

The Democrats in the United States Senate put an end to Republican obstruction last week when they voted 52 to 48 to end the filibuster. Called the nuclear option, the change to Senate rules allows for executive and judicial nominees to be approved with a simple majority vote. The minority party can no longer filibuster these nominees and require a majority of 60 votes.

Coup Or Civil War In Egypt

The day after new protests erupted in Egypt the military in a show of support presented an ultimatum to Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood-led government. Morsi was to step down from power and meet all of the demands of the Egyptian people, or face being removed by the military on Wednesday. As the ultimatum deadline draws closer in Egypt, Morsi refuses to leave, insisting that parliamentary elections are needed before he should be removed, and that he doesn't have permission from the United States to remove himself from power. Most recently he stated he will pay with his life to preserve the sanctity of the ballot box.

The Legacy of Citizens United and the IRS

Recently acting IRS commissioner Lerner resigned from office after the discovery that it appears the Cincinnati office had been targeting certain groups applying for 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) status. The news erupted into scandal in the wake of a week of apparent scandals piling on top of President Obama. At first the problem looked as if the IRS was targeting only tea party groups for audits, while no other social welfare group received the same scrutiny. Was this really the case?

The Defense of Marriage Act and the Supreme Court

On Tuesday and Wednesday last week, the United States Supreme Court began hearing arguments for Hollingsworth v. Perry, the case that will decide the fate of Proposition 8 and United States v. Windsor, the Defense of Marriage Act. Both laws being challenged prohibit same sex couples from getting married.

 
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