(CNN) – One day after a national Republican campaign group pulled out of the South Carolina special congressional race, the group's Democratic counterpart announced it's stepping in.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee says it will begin running an attack ad Friday against Republican candidate Mark Sanford, the former governor of the state who's attempting a political comeback after his career was derailed following his now-famous extramarital affair with a woman in Argentina.
(CNN) - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday he'll set aside proposed gun legislation without a final vote following the defeat a day earlier of major provisions sought by President Barack Obama and Democrats in the aftermath of the Newtown school massacre.
"(Obama) and I agreed that the best way to keep working towards passing a background check bill is to hit pause, and freeze the background check bill where it is," he said on the Senate floor. "This will allow senators to keep negotiating."
(CNN) - Sen. Roger Wicker, whose Washington office was sent letters laced with the poison ricin, said Thursday he's met the man who stands charged with sending the envelopes.
"He's an entertainer. He's an Elvis impersonator, and he entertained at a party that my wife and I helped give for a young couple that was getting married. He was quite entertaining," said Wicker, R-Mississippi, of Paul Kevin Curtis, who was charged Thursday with making threats against the president and sending threatening letters, according to the Justice Department.
(CNN) - Paul Kevin Curtis has been charged with making threats against the president and sending threatening letters, the Justice Department said Thursday. Curtis, of Mississippi, was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of sending threatening letters to President Barack Obama and Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi.
Boston (CNN) – President Barack Obama said whoever is behind the Boston Marathon bombings will be caught.
"Yes, we will find you. And yes, you will face justice," Obama said at an interfaith service commemorating the victims. "We will find you. We will hold you accountable. But more than that, our fidelity to our way of life ... will only grow stronger, for God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but one of power and love and self-discipline."
Boston's resolve is the greatest rebuke to whoever committed Monday's Boston Marathon bombings, Obama said.
"If they sought to intimidate us, to terrorize us, to shake us from those values ... who make us who we are as Americans, it should be clear by now that they picked the wrong city to do it (in). Not here in Boston."
The president said he came with a message on behalf of all Americans: "Every one of us has been touched by this attack on your beloved city. Every one of us stands with you, because after all, it's our beloved city, too. Boston may be your hometown, but we claim it, too."
(CNN) - Sen. Mitch McConnell's re-election campaign says it's going up on television Friday with a new television commercial seizing upon last week's news that the Senate minority leader and political operatives were secretly taped at his Louisville, Kentucky headquarters.
The ad, which McConnell's campaign says they'll spend six figures to run statewide in Kentucky on broadcast and cable T.V., tries to link the push by national Democrats to defeat the Senate's top Republican in his re-election bid next year with the controversy over the secret recordings, along with an earlier racial attack on McConnell's wife by a local progressive group.
(CNN) – When Rand Paul took to the Senate floor to filibuster President Barack Obama's choice for CIA director, a conservative ally in Alaska took notice – and headed to the post office.
"I sent him some caribou jerky from Alaska to help keep up his strength on the Senate floor," Sarah Palin writes in this week's "Time 100" issue. "There's more where that came from for this bold Senator with 20/20 vision willing to take a stand for liberty."
(CNN) - Test results were expected Thursday on letters possibly contaminated with the deadly poison ricin that were sent to President Barack Obama and Sen. Roger Wicker this week.
The FBI arrested Paul Kevin Curtis in connection with the case at his home on Corinth, Mississippi, on Wednesday, the department said in a statement.
CNN: 'Like a nuclear bomb': Deadly fertilizer plant blast devastates Texas town
The full extent of the devastation will have to wait until the light of day Thursday. But residents of the small Texas town of West already know what to expect. "There are a lot of people that got hurt," West Mayor Tommy Muska forewarned Wednesday night. "There are a lot of people that will not be here tomorrow." A massive explosion at a fertilizer plant on the edge of the town killed at least two people, wounded more than 150, leveled dozens of homes and prompted authorities to evacuate half their community of 2,800. "It was a like a nuclear bomb went off," Muska said. "Big old mushroom cloud." The Wednesday night blast shook houses 50 miles away and measured as a 2.1-magnitude seismic event, according to the United States Geological Survey.
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Dallas Morning News: West fertilizer plant said in report that it presented no risk
The fertilizer plant that exploded Wednesday night in West, Texas, reported to the Environmental Protection Agency and local public safety officials that it presented no risk of fire or explosion, documents show. West Fertilizer Co. reported having as much as 54,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia on hand in an emergency planning report required of facilities that use toxic or hazardous chemicals. But the report, reviewed Wednesday night by The Dallas Morning News, stated “no” under fire or explosive risks. The worst possible scenario, the report said, would be a 10-minute release of ammonia gas that would kill or injure no one.