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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) Virginia Republican George Allen has launched a campaign to regain the U.S. Senate seat he lost in 2006. Allen made the announcement Monday in a video e-mailed to supporters.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) A new report says foreclosure rates have doubled in rural Virginia since 2008 while rates in urban areas have inched up only slightly. The nonprofit group Housing Opportunities Made Equal says persistent unemployment is largely to blame for the higher foreclosure rate in rural areas.

STAUNTON, Va. (AP) Former Virginia Supreme Court Justice and state legislator George Moffett Cochran has Saturday at his home in Staunton. He was 98. A memorial is being held Tuesday.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) The Virginia Senate has approved legislation making it easier to cast absentee ballots. Sen. Janet Howell's bill would allow absentee voting for any reason. Currently, those wishing to cast an absentee ballot can only do so if they are going to be out of town, taking care of an ill family member or meet one of more than a dozen other criteria.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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