When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

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Hispanic Caucus Rejects Republican Immigration Bills

Nov 28, 2012
Originally published on December 3, 2012 11:54 am

Determined not to be excluded from the post-election bipartisan talk of passing immigration legislation, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on Wednesday rejected two Republican proposals while outlining its own priorities.

The group, currently made up entirely of Democrats, denounced the STEM Jobs Act, delivering a swipe at Republicans on a bill expected to come before the House on Friday as the first test of the GOP's newfound embrace of an immigration overhaul.

The bill would increase the number of visas for foreign-born graduates with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics by eliminating another visa program for people from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States.

Hispanic caucus members criticized the bill because it would end one visa program and allow relatives of legal residents to come to the U.S. while awaiting their visas, but not authorize them to work.

The Hispanic caucus lawmakers support a version written by Democratic Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California that would, among other things, preserve the original visa program.

Hispanic lawmakers also criticized the first Republican bill proposed in the Senate following the elections. The ACHIEVE Act, introduced by Sens. Jon Kyl of Arizona and Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas, is a pared-down version of the DREAM Act, which would offer legal status to young illegal immigrants who serve in the military or attend college.

"The problem with the ACHIEVE Act is it does not achieve the dream," said Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., at a news conference on Wednesday. Menendez and 20 House members comprise the caucus.

In recent days, Republicans and Democrats in both chambers have begun discussing several immigration bills that could be introduced, potentially competing in the new Congress early next year.

On Wednesday, the Hispanic caucus, for which immigration has long been its signature issue, offered its own nine policy priorities in hopes of shaping negotiations.

It said legislation should require illegal immigrants to register with the federal government, undergo a criminal background check, learn English and pay taxes as conditions for obtaining legal status and eventual citizenship.

Caucus members endorsed conservative priorities such as securing U.S. borders and worker verification, but with carefully worded caveats: "smart and reasonable enforcement" on the borders; and "a workable employment verification system that prevents unlawful employment and rewards employers and employees who play by the rules."

They also called for full workplace rights and safer working conditions for immigrants, and a priority for reuniting legal residents with family members seeking U.S. entry.

"Let me be clear about this — we want to work with Republicans to find common ground, help the American people, and help America's immigrants," said caucus member Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill. "But common ground is based on common decency and common sense. These principles reflect that common decency."

Many Republicans in the House who have staunchly opposed citizenship for illegal immigrants have remained quiet on the issue in recent weeks. Conservatives and advocates of slowing the flow of immigration believe the caucus's goal of passing an omnibus bill is unlikely in either chamber.

"I don't think comprehensive immigration reform is going to happen, period," says Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, which advocates a lowering of immigration rates.

Krikorian says Republicans appear most likely to consider supporting a smaller, targeted bill such as the DREAM Act, because many Americans are "sympathetic" to young adults who had no choice in coming here as children.

The sticking point for Republicans, he says, will be their desire to add an enforcement provision to the DREAM Act so that the law wouldn't encourage an increase of more illegal immigrants. He recommends mandatory worker verification as one solution.

"I think at some point amnesty for some people is inevitable ... but we have to have in place the mechanisms to make sure we're not in the same boat years from now," says Krikorian. "That's really the public's problem with this issue."

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