The CNN Washington Bureau’s morning speed read of the top stories making news from around the country and the world. Click on the headlines for more.
CNN: Keystone pipeline builder proposes new route
The company building the controversial Keystone XL pipeline has submitted a proposal for a new route, a spokesman for Nebraska's environmental authority said Wednesday. The new route is east of the initially proposed route that went over an environmentally sensitive aquifer, said spokesman Brian McManus of the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality. TransCanada is the company constructing Keystone.
CNN: GOP leaders gather in Arizona, ready to embrace Romney
With Romney now on a sure path to the nomination thanks to the departure of his top rival, Rick Santorum, GOP leaders from every state will begin gathering Thursday at a posh Scottsdale resort to plot out general election strategy with the former Massachusetts governor as their standard-bearer.
CNN: House Republican calls for Secret Service director resignation
Virginia GOP Rep. Randy Forbes on Wednesday became the first member of Congress to call for U.S. Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan to step down due to a prostitution scandal involving eleven agents that has raised questions about security at the agency.
CNN: Ted Nugent to be interviewed by Secret Service
Ted Nugent, the rocker whose comments about President Barack Obama have come under scrutiny, will be interviewed by agents with the Secret Service, a U.S. official said Wednesday. The interview, scheduled for Thursday, comes amid outcry over comments Nugent made at the annual meeting of the National Rifle Association, which took place in St. Louis this past weekend.
CNN: Secret Service pushing out 3 members amid Colombia scandal
Three U.S. Secret Service members will leave the agency because of an alleged prostitution scandal in Colombia, the agency said Wednesday. One of them is a supervisory employee who is being allowed to retire, and another employee has resigned, the agency said. A third agent, another supervisory employee, is being pushed out, with the agency proposing he be removed. A U.S. official said the agent plans to fight his ouster.
CNN: Panetta: Photos of troops with insurgents' bodies violate U.S. values
Photos of U.S. soldiers posing with bodies of suspected Afghan insurgents, published Wednesday by the Los Angeles Times, depict behavior that "absolutely violates" U.S. regulations and values, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Wednesday. "This is not who we are, and it's certainly not who we represent when it comes to the great majority of men and women in uniform who are serving there," he said.
CNN: New judge in Zimmerman case no 'soft touch,' lawyer says
The judge who will take over the case of a Florida man accused of shooting an unarmed teenager has high ratings from defense lawyers but isn't known as a "soft touch," one Florida attorney said Wednesday. Seminole County Circuit Judge Kenneth Lester Jr. will start by presiding over a bond hearing for George Zimmerman on Friday.
CNN: Friends and admirers mourn Dick Clark
A roundup of reactions to the death of television producer and longtime "American Bandstand" host Dick Clark, who died Wednesday.
CNN: U.N. chief says Syria has not fully complied with peace plan
Syria is not complying with its pledge to withdraw troops and heavy weapons from towns, the United Nations said Thursday, as it highlighted the need for the government to fully commit to a proposed peace plan.
CNN: India says long-range missile test was a success
India said Thursday that it had successfully carried out the maiden test flight of its longest-range nuclear-capable missile, which can apparently travel more than 5,000 kilometers. The Agni V rocket took off around 8:03 a.m. local time (10.33 p.m. Wednesday ET) and "met all the mission objectives," said S.P. Das, director of the missile test site.
CNN: Pakistan mulling when to deport bin Laden family members
Pakistan says it is liaising with the governments of Yemen and Saudi Arabia before it decides when to deport several of Osama bin Laden's family members of back to their homelands. The detention of the terrorist mastermind's three widows and two daughters ended Tuesday night. But as of late Wednesday, there were no signs that they had left the Islamabad house where they were held.
CNN: Guinea-Bissau coup leaders announce transition plan
Guinea-Bissau's military announced Wednesday that it would hand over power within days to a civilian transitional government that would rule for up to two years. Two dozen political parties have signed an agreement to set up a National Transition Council, said Lt. Col. Daba Naualna, a military spokesman. That council would run Guinea-Bissau for a two-year period, at the end of which a new president and parliament would be elected, Naualna said.
CNN Money: Big Business gets a break on financial reform
Big business scored a major win Wednesday when two regulatory boards agreed to limit the impact of tough rules to regulate the complex trades that helped spur the 2008 financial crisis. Regulators have been struggling for months to figure out who should be included in a new crackdown of swaps or derivatives - complex financial bets derived from other financial products such as the price of jet fuel or mortgages.
CNN Money: Obama tightens oil and gas drilling regulations
The Obama administration tightened regulations on the oil and gas industry Wednesday, requiring drillers to capture emissions of certain air pollutants from new wells. But in a nod to industry concerns that the rules were being enacted too quickly, the Environmental Protection Agency said companies can burn the pollutants at the well head until the start of 2015, when enough equipment is expected to be available to capture the pollution.
CNN Money: Moms: 'I can't afford to work'
After factoring in the rising cost of child care, the daily commute and other work-related expenses, a growing number of mothers are figuring out that having a job just doesn't pay. "It comes down to a cost analysis and I have several clients that have taken the route of quitting," said Anna Behnam, a financial advisor at Ameriprise Financial in Rockville, Md. "Factor in taxes, transportation costs, clothing and lunch - what is the true net that you bring home after salary?"
In case you missed it…
CNN's Wolf Blitzer talks to Sec. of State Clinton and Defense Secretary Panetta about the ongoing situation in Syria.