BC-AP News Digest 7:25 am

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Associated Press

Posted on January 18, 2013 at 7:00 AM

The world at 7:25 a.m. Times EST.

At the Nerve Center, news producers Rich Somma and Coralie Carlson can be reached at 800-845-8450 (ext. 1600). For photos, Aaron Jackson (ext. 1900). For graphics and interactives, Bernadette Tuazon (ext. 7636). Expanded AP Content can be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com. For access to AP Exchange and other technical issues, contact customersupport(at)ap.org or call 877-836-9477.

A selection of top photos can be found at http://bit.ly/APTopPhotos

DEVELOPING

— LOTTERY WINNER POISONED — Exhumation scheduled to begin at 8 a.m.

— EARNS-GENERAL ELECTRIC — GE reports quarterly financial result before the market opens.

— EARNS-MORGAN STANLEY — Morgan Stanley reports quarterly financial results before the market opens.

TOP STORIES

ARMSTRONG-THE INTERVIEW

NEW YORK — The most effective part of Oprah Winfrey's interview with Lance Armstrong came right at the beginning: Five questions, five one-word answers. Armstrong said yes to each, acknowledging he cheated his way to seven Tour de France titles. In what Winfrey has called the most important interview of her television career, she couldn't be accused of burying the lead. It set up everything to follow in the first, 90-minute segment of Armstrong's confession. By Television Writer David Bauder.

AP photos, videos.

— JOHN LEICESTER-180113 — Column: "One big lie" — Armstrong tears down his story but what will replace it?

— ARMSTRONG-OPRHAH REAX — Reactions to Armstrong's interview with Winfrey.

ALGERIA-KIDNAPPING

ALGIERS, Algeria — A deadly Algerian military raid to free hostages from at least 10 countries and wipe out their Islamist militant captors moves closer to the heart of the natural gas complex, the government news service says. By Karim Kabir and Paul Schemm.

AP photos, video.

— ALGERIA-DIPLOMACY — Nations with hostages in Algeria react with muted anger to the North African country's decision to launch a military rescue mission without consultation. AP photos.

— MALI FIGHTING — Aid groups warn they can't reach key Mali town of Konna, where Islamists advanced one week ago. AP photos.

BOEING 787-PASSENGERS

DALLAS — Some frequent fliers say they aren't worried about safety aboard Boeing's problem-plagued 787 aircraft, while many less-seasoned travelers are often unaware of what model of plane they flying on. That makes it anyone's guess whether Boeing Co., or the airlines that use its planes, will pay a price for uncertainty surrounding the 787, which has been grounded worldwide. By Airlines Writer David Koenig.

AP photos, videos.

— JAPAN-BOEING 787 — U.S. investigators, Boeing staff arrive in western Japan to inspect troubled 787. AP photos.

REPUBLICANS-ELECTORAL COLLEGE

BOSTON — After back-to-back presidential losses, Republicans in key states want to change the rules to make it easier to win. From Wisconsin to Pennsylvania, GOP officials who control legislatures in states that supported President Barack Obama are considering whether to abandon the winner-take-all Electoral College system. Despite outrage from Democrats, the proposed change appears to be gaining momentum. By Steve Peoples.

AP photo.

FOOD ALLERGIES-DISABILITIES

WASHINGTON — People with severe food allergies have a new tool in their attempt to find menus that fit their diet: federal disabilities law. And that could leave schools, restaurants and anyone else that serves food more vulnerable to legal challenges over food sensitivities. By Mary Clare Jalonick.

AP photo.

HAGEL

WASHINGTON — In the middle of a bitter and ultimately unsuccessful fight over a Republican president's nominee for defense secretary, a former White House occupant pleaded with senators to give the president his choice for the Pentagon job. The year was 1989, the former president was Richard Nixon, and the nominee to lead the Defense Department was former Sen. John Tower. Back then, Nixon said the Senate should respect the right of a new president to choose those he believes are best qualified to serve in his Cabinet. Today, a similar debate is playing out as some senators oppose President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the Pentagon, former Sen. Chuck Hagel. By Donna Cassata.

AP photos.

NATIONAL

NYC TEACHER EVALUATIONS

NEW YORK — The issue of teacher evaluations, which has been contentious around the country to the point of a strike, brought New York City and its teachers' union to an impasse and harsh war of words that put the city at risk of losing up to $450 million in state aid and grants. The conflict between the sides over a teacher evaluation plan meant New York City was one a few school districts around the state that wasn't able to meet a state deadline. By Karen Matthews.

COLORADO SHOOTING-THEATER REOPENS

AURORA, Colo. — One survivor had to pause on his way into the theater and pray. Another braced for flashbacks as he entered the auditorium where 12 died and dozens were injured. Still others refused to even set foot in the door of the former Century 16 as it reopened with a special screening for survivors. By P. Solomon Banda.

AP photos, video.

MORMON MISSIONARY AGE

PROVO, Utah — Mikaela Merrill has known since she was 14 years old that she wanted to serve a Mormon mission. Now the 19-year-old from Castle Rock, Colo., is just weeks away from fulfilling her dream by serving in Taiwan. Merrill is among the first wave of missionaries taking advantage of The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints lowered minimum age for missionaries, to 19 from 21 for women, and to 18 from 19 for men. By Brady McCombs.

AP photos, video.

— HOMELESS IN PARADISE — Sarasota's wealthy and homeless clash in Florida city's downtown; ACLU files five lawsuits. AP photos.

WASHINGTON

OBAMA-OUTSIDE GROUP

WASHINGTON — In an unprecedented move, President Barack Obama's vaunted political organization is being turned into a nonprofit group — funded in part by corporate money — to mobilize support behind the president's second term agenda. By Ken Thomas.

— ANGUS KING-GUNS — Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, says he's reluctant to endorse a federal ban on the kind of assault weapon used in the Newtown school shooting.

— INAUGURATION-MILITARY DANCE — Four enlisted troops who served in wars picked to dance with Obamas and Bidens at inaugural ball.

— AP POLL-DEBT LIMIT — AP-GfK Poll: Most see harm if debt limit not raised; more support GOP demand for spending cuts.

— OBAMA-A CHANGED MAN — Four years in, how Obama has changed — and hasn't — as he heads into his second term.

— INAUGURATION-WEATHER — After a downright cold first inauguration, will Washington warm to Obama's second swearing in?

INTERNATIONAL

CHINA-TIBET CRACKDOWN

BEIJING — Chinese authorities are responding to an intensified wave of Tibetan self-immolation protests against China's heavy-handed rule by clamping down even harder, criminalizing the suicides, arresting protesters' friends and even confiscating thousands of satellite TV sets. The harsh new measures provide an early indication that the country's new leadership will not ease up on Tibet despite the protests and international condemnation. By Gillian Wong.

AP photos.

PALESTINIANS-ISRAELI VOTE

RAMALLAH, West Bank — Palestinian officials are looking at Benjamin Netanyahu's expected re-election with despair, fearing the Israeli hardliner's ambitious plans for settlement construction over the next four years could prove lethal to their dreams of a state. By Karin Laub and Mohammed Daraghmeh.

AP photos.

— ISRAEL-POLITICS — Hard-line bloc remains ahead in final polls before Israeli elections. AP photos.

— GERMANY-ELECTION — Regional vote expected to offer clues to Merkel's future as coalition partner weakens. AP photos.

— IRAN-NUCLEAR — U.N. team returns from Tehran without deal on restarting probe of alleged Iranian nuclear arms work. AP photos.

— SYRIA — Syrian state media: rocket slams into a building in Aleppo causing many casualties.

BUSINESS

HOUSING STARTS

WASHINGTON — The aftermath of the housing bust forced many homebuilders to dramatically scale back construction on new homes to avoid the risk of ending up saddled with a trove of newly built, yet unsold properties. But an improving housing market has homebuilders feeling more confident about sales, and that's likely to kick the pace of new construction into a higher gear this year. By Economics Writer Martin Crutsinger.

AP photos.

— TOYOTA LAWSUITS — Toyota says it has settled what was to be the first in a group of hundreds of pending wrongful death and injury lawsuits involving sudden, unintended acceleration by its vehicles. AP photos.

SPORTS

NOTRE DAME-TE'O

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Another day went by with Manti Te'o not answering questions about the hoax that turned his heartwarming story of playing through adversity into a strange tale about a dead girlfriend who never existed, and the questions about whether he was a victim or participant in the scam mounted. By College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo.

AP photos, video.

ENTERTAINMENT

RUSSIA-BOLSHOI

MOSCOW — The artistic director of the Bolshoi Theater's ballet troupe was splashed with acid and may lose his eyesight in an attack that the Bolshoi said appeared to be linked to struggles for influence at one of the world's most famous ballet companies. By Nataliya Vasilyeva and Lynn Berry.

AP photos.

— DEAR ABBY-LEGACY — "Dear Abby" advice columnist, dead at 94, is remembered for a rapier wit and a deep compassion. AP photos.

GETTING ATTENTION

— SISTER WIVES — A court hears arguments on whether Utah can prohibit plural marriage, in a lawsuit by the stars of the reality show "Sister Wives."

— AIRPLANE-THREAT CALL — F-15s scrambled to escort Alaska Airlines plane to Seattle; FBI interviewing passenger.

— COLLEGE STUDENT ABDUCTED — Man suspected of abducting, raping Michigan college student is killed by deputy after pursuit. AP photos.

___

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