Health insurers flirted with Democrats, supported them with money and got what they wanted: a federal mandate that most Americans carry health care coverage. Now they're backing Republicans, hoping a GOP Congress will mean friendlier regulations. They may get more than they're wishing for.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Bill Clinton, out of the Oval Office for nearly a decade and once considered a political liability, is campaigning for Democratic candidates at a pace no one can match, drawing big crowds and going to states that President Barack Obama avoids. If the Republican wave on Nov. 2 ends up a bit weaker than many now predict, at least some of the credit will have to go to the former president, the most sought-after surrogate for dozens of anxious Democratic congressional and gubernatorial nominees.
LONDON (AP) — The WikiLeaks website is poised to release what the Pentagon fears is the largest cache of secret U.S. documents in history — hundreds of thousands of intelligence reports that could amount to a classified history of the war in Iraq. U.S. officials condemned the move and said Friday they were racing to contain the damage from the imminent release, while NATO's top official told reporters he feared that lives could be put at risk by the mammoth disclosure.
PARIS (AP) — The French Senate, pushed into an early vote, approved on Friday a hotly contested bill raising the retirement age to 62, hours after riot police forced the reopening of a strategic refinery to help halt growing fuel shortages amid nationwide strikes and protests. In tense balloting after 140 hours of debate, the Senate voted 177-153 for the pension reform. The measure is expected to win final formal approval by both houses of parliament next week.
ST. MARC, Haiti (AP) — A cholera epidemic was spreading in central Haiti on Friday as aid groups rushed doctors and supplies to fight the country's deadliest health crisis since January's earthquake. At least 150 people have died and more than 1,500 others are ill. The first two cases of the disease outside the rural Artibonite region were confirmed in Arcahaie, a town that is closer to the quake-devastated capital, Port-au-Prince.
KAPAA, Hawaii (AP) — The tradition of Friday night football on the island of Kauai has been disrupted by an unusual culprit: Young seabirds migrating to the ocean mistake stadium lights for the moon and stars, causing them to become disoriented, drop from the sky and fall prey to cats. School officials canceled Friday night football for almost all of the season on Kauai and moved the games to Saturday afternoon, angering residents who are upset that their beloved fall tradition has been thwarted because of a bird.
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. (AP) — A body boarder bled to death Friday at a beach northwest of Los Angeles after a shark mauled his leg, authorities said, prompting officials to close three beaches through the weekend. Lucas Ransom, 19, was boogie-boarding in the surf line about 100 yards off of Surf Beach with a friend when a shark suddenly pulled him under the water shortly before 9 a.m., according to a statement from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department.
ATLANTA (AP) — As many as 1 in 3 U.S. adults could have diabetes by 2050, federal officials announced Friday in a dramatic new projection that represents a threefold increase. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 1 in 10 have diabetes now, but the number could grow to 1 in 5 or even 1 in 3 by mid-century if current trends continue.
RANTHAMBHORE NATIONAL PARK, India (AP) — Four news photographers Friday said that they were punched by two men accompanying British comedian Russell Brand when they were taking pictures of Brand at an Indian tiger reserve one day before his scheduled wedding to American pop singer Katy Perry. According to Associated Press photographer Mustaf Quraishi, who was one of the four photographers injured, Brand himself looked on during the assault as the photographers tried to defend themselves before being left stranded in the wild animal park.
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — New year, new Lindsay Lohan? That appears to be the hope of Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Elden S. Fox, who on Friday ordered the starlet to remain in rehab until January. In doing so he ended any short-term plans for the actress' comeback, but also followed the recommendations of medical professionals who say the "Mean Girls" star is only beginning to realize the depths of her addiction.