Legal Battle Begins Over Obama Bid to Curb Greenhouse Gases

WASHINGTON — President Obama’s most far-reaching regulation to slow climate change will have its first day in court on Thursday, the beginning of what is expected to be a multiyear legal battle over the policy that Mr. Obama hopes to leave as his signature environmental achievement. In two separate but related cases to be jointly…


Anti-abortion battleground broadens as US states fight on ‘non-medical’ grounds

Two arch-conservative states in the American Bible belt have this week formed a new “non-medical” front in the battle over reproductive rights, with laws that sharply restrict a method routinely used to perform second-trimester abortions. Anti-abortion politicians crafting and passing the new restrictions in Kansas and Oklahoma have reactivated a broader state-by-state campaign, mirroring similar…


Indiana law appears to permit discrimination

It didn’t take long. Once Indiana’s Republican Gov. Mike Pence appeared on national television to defend the indefensible, people from Apple CEO Tim Cook to the band Wilco to Wal-Mart executives to NCAA officials joined civil rights groups in condemning what Pence was defending. And within hours, the governor who had done so badly on…


Utah governor signs law bringing back firing squad for executions

Faced with a nationwide scarcity of execution drugs, Utah’s governor on Monday signed into law a bill that resurrects the use firing squads as an alternative method of executing condemned inmates. The law allows Utah to use a firing squad only if the lethal injection drugs are unavailable 30 days before an execution is scheduled…


Police Officer Matt Kenny: One career, two fatal shootings

For the second time in his career, Madison, Wisconsin, police Officer Matt Kenny is being investigated for using lethal force. But the cases and their circumstances are different, very different. Friday’s death of Tony Robinson, an unarmed biracial 19-year-old, has made Madison the latest epicenter of protests of black males killed by white officers. Eight…


‘Pot’ use legal in Alaska, but details lacking

JUNEAU, Alaska — Alaska on Tuesday became the third U.S. state to legalize the recreational use of marijuana for adults, but it was met with little fanfare. Unlike in Colorado and Washington state, there were no street parties and public smoking displays in Alaska’s biggest cities. But backers of legal marijuana said the mild reaction…


Texas judge’s immigration ruling is full of legal holes

U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen’s decision to block the Obama plan to defer deportation for about 5 million immigrants here illegally ignores a basic principle of government: For better or worse, the executive branch of government always has discretion as to whether and how to enforce the law. The judge’s lengthy opinion is wrong…


St. Louis Puzzles Over Stubbornly High Murder Rate

St. LOUIS — Across from the Little Explorer’s Learning Center, diagonal to a crumbling house where heroin dealers and hangers-on often mill about, a garland of teddy bears adorns a telephone pole, a memorial to the latest victim to fall here at one of this city’s deadliest corners. The victim was a 27-year-old man shot…