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BC-AP Top Stories Digest

January 26, 2019

Here are the AP’s latest coverage plans, top stories and promotable content. All times EST. For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at https://newsroom.ap.org .




TRUMP CLIMBS DOWN — President Donald Trump was feeling the heat. Federal workers went unpaid. Basic services were frozen. His poll numbers were slipping. His arguments were landing with a thud with the public. A pair of Senate votes on Thursday, and a round of telephone calls from frustrated Republicans, made clear he had no way out. A president who never admits defeat then began the backpedaling. By Catherine Lucey, Lisa Mascaro and Jill Colvin. SENT: 910 words, photos.

GOVERNMENT REOPENS-BACK TO WORK — National park rangers were once again greeting visitors at many parks across the United States and flight operations at major airports were returning to normal one day after a record 35-day government shutdown came to an end. While there were signs Saturday that some government machinery was grinding back to life, many workers approached the end of the shutdown with cautiousness, saying they would continue to restrict spending amid fears that another shutdown could happen in weeks. By Amy Forliti. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 4 p.m.

GOVERNMENT REOPENS-ECONOMIC IMPACT — The U.S. economy will likely resume its steady growth now that the government has reopened, though economists say some scars — for the nation and for federal workers — will take time to heal. Most analysts estimate that the 35-day partial shutdown shaved a few tenths of a percentage point from annual economic growth in the first three month of 2019. They say growth should pick up in the coming months, though some of the money federal workers and contractors didn’t spend in the past five weeks — on such items as movie tickets, restaurants and travel — will never be made up. By Economics Writer Josh Boak. SENT: 500 words, photos.

TRANSGENDER MILITARY SERVICE — Long term, lawyers and activists battling to ensure that transgender people can serve openly in the U.S. military are convinced they will prevail. Short term, they are braced for anguishing consequences if the Trump administration proceeds with its plan to sharply restrict such service. The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 vote Tuesday, gave the administration the green light to put the policy into effect even as legal challenges continue. By National Writer David Crary. SENT: 1,125 words, photos.

STATE LEGISLATURES-WOMEN — Following a record-setting election for women, state legislatures across the country are convening this year with at least 17 new women in top leadership roles. But those gains are offset by another reality: At least a dozen women who led their legislative chambers or caucuses last year will no longer be doing so because of term-limits and decisions to seek higher office or retire. By David A. Lieb. SENT: 1,285 words, photos.

SOUTH SUDAN-THE DISPLACED — Tracing his fingers over the metal fencing at a United Nations protected site in South Sudan’s capital, Nhial Nyuot Nhial hung his head as he contemplated going home after years of civil war. More than 190,000 people are still sheltering in the squalid U.N. camps, the legacy of an unprecedented decision by a peacekeeping mission to throw open its doors to people fleeing conflict. Now the U.N. is pushing for the camps to close, amid warnings that rushing the process could reignite violence. By Sam Mednick. 750 words, photos. Eds: This story has moved as the Sunday Spotlight.




TRUMP-CONSERVATIVE BACKLASH — No retreat, no surrender is how President Trump frames his deal to reopen the government while still pursuing border wall negotiations with Congress. Some conservative backers have a different take: “pathetic,” ″Cave Man, “wimp.” UPCOMING: 650 words, photos.

TRUMP-RUSSIA PROBE-MUELLER’S TACTICS — Donald Trump confidant Roger Stone may be accused of lying and tampering with witnesses, but it’s equally notable what he’s not charged with: colluding with the Kremlin in a grand conspiracy to help Trump win the presidency in 2016. The case is the latest in a series brought by special counsel Robert Mueller to focus on cover-ups but lay out no underlying crime. SENT: 840 words, photos.

FACT CHECK-WEEK — Over the past week, President Trump declared that the remains of U.S. service members are “back home where they belong” from North Korea, though that mission has barely started and already has run into a roadblock. He also exaggerated economic performance under his presidency and the progress of the border wall that Congress, so far, won’t pay for. By Hope Yen, Christopher Rugaber and Robert Burns. SENT: 1,810 words, photos. Find AP Fact Checks at http://apne.ws/2kbx8bd




BIG MONEY LITTLE PAYBACK — Just north of Emporia, one of Virginia’s poorest cities, sits a 1,600-acre tract of weeds, wildflowers and the occasional wild turkey. Save for a few patches of trees and parcels of cotton, the site is virtually empty. But it’s heavy with expectations. Officials have poured about $25 million into the Mid-Atlantic Advanced Manufacturing Center in the hope of attracting a factory filled with workers bringing home healthy paychecks, bolstering a region with high unemployment and few opportunities, but haven’t succeeded so far. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

TEACHER STRIKES — Los Angeles teachers who declared a victory after a six-day strike have added momentum to a successful wave of activism by educators framing their cause as a push to improve public education, not just get pay raises. Teachers in Denver, Oakland, Virginia, Texas, Washington and Illinois are planning rallies, marches and, in some cases, strikes of their own — actions that have fed off one another since the movement began last spring in West Virginia. SENT: 850 words, photos.




VENEZUELA-POLITICAL CRISIS — The United States urges all nations to support Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido while Russia accused the Trump administration of attempting “to engineer a coup d’etat” against President Nicolas Maduro — a reflection of the world’s deep divisions over the crisis in the embattled Latin American country. By Edith M. Lederer And Scott Smith. SENT: 1,065 words, photos.

BRAZIL-DAM COLLAPSE — Rescuers in helicopter searched for survivors in a huge area in southeastern Brazil buried by mud from the collapse of dam holding back mine waste, with at least nine people dead and up to 300 missing. Nearly a full day since the disaster happened, finding many more survivors was looking increasingly unlikely. SENT: 850 words, photos.

SAUDI ARABIA-BALLISTIC MISSILES — A military base deep inside Saudi Arabia appears to be testing and possibly manufacturing ballistic missiles, experts and satellite images suggest, evidence of the type of weapons program it has long criticized its archrival Iran for possessing. Further raising the stakes for any such program are comments by Saudi Arabia’s powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who said last year the kingdom wouldn’t hesitate to develop nuclear weapons if Iran does. Ballistic missiles can carry nuclear warheads to targets thousands of kilometers (miles) away. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.




FILM-SHIA LABEOUF — Shia LaBeouf latest film was born in an unusual place — court-ordered rehab. The actor spent time writing the script for his semi-autobiographical “Honey Boy” while he was being treated for substance abuse after a 2017 arrest. SENT: 400 words, photos.




TEN--AUSTRALIAN OPEN-OSAKA’S WIN — Naomi Osaka wins the Australian Open for a second consecutive Grand Slam title, recovering to beat Petra Kvitova 7-6 (2), 5-7, 6-4 after wasting three championship points. Osaka, the U.S. Open champ, becomes the first Japanese to be ranked No. 1. UPCOMING: 550 words, photos by 4 p.m.

HKN--ALL-STAR GAME — The NHL holds its All-Star Game, again using a three-on-three format in which the four divisions will compete in two 20-minute semifinals, with the winners advancing to the final. The hometown Sharks are represented by Joe Pavelski, Brent Burns and Erik Karlsson. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 8:15 p.m.

GLF--FARMERS INSURANCE OPEN — Justin Rose has a three-shot lead over Hideki Matsuyama going into the third round of the Farmers Insurance Open. Tiger Woods is 11 back in his first tour event of the year. By Golf Writer Doug Ferguson. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 7 p.m.