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GOP Leaders Support Payroll Tax Extension

Congress only has two weeks before inaction would result in a tax hike for 160 million Americans. The payroll tax cut extension passed in late December is set to expire at the end of the month.

A Familiar Face Back In Iowa: China's Vice President

Ji Xinping, the heir apparent in Chinese government, is visiting old friends in Muscatine, Iowa, this week. The last time he stopped by was in 1985 as part of an agricultural trade mission. Mayor DeWayne Hopkins is looking forward to making him the only person to receive two keys to the city.

How Much Sleep Do Kids Need? Not Such A Mystery After All

The science may not be perfect, but a prominent sleep researcher says she and her colleagues have a pretty good handle on how much sleep kids need. She defends the field against a study that claimed the experts haven't even had a clue.

Pekingese Named Best In Show At Westminster; Out West, A Dog's Star Rises

The Westminster Kennel Club dog show is under way, and dogs are being pampered, brushed and cajoled to walk before the event's judges. And in a competition for canine actors held out West, Martin Scorsese's attempt to rally support for a Hugo star falls short.

McDonald's Teams Up With Humane Society To Phase Out Pig Crates

The animal rights organization, a longtime critic of factory farming practices, has collaborated with McDonald's to require pork suppliers to figure out how to phase out crates that confine pregnant sows.

Family Acceptance Key In Preventing Gay Youths From Considering Suicide

Strong family support can help protect gay and lesbian teens from considering suicide, a study finds. A previous suicide attempt is an important, predictive risk factor for trouble.

Writers Explore The Meaning Of 'Black Cool'

'Cool' is a word that has come to mean so much more than just a temperature. It can be an attitude, a style or a sound. In a new collection of essays called Black Cool, writers explore the definition of coolness within black culture.

'Un-Fair' Anti-Racism Ads Draw Mixed Reactions

In January, a group of residents in Duluth, Minn., launched an anti-racism effort called the Un-Fair Campaign. The ads, posters and billboards aim to raise awareness about racial injustice and ask white people to recognize institutional racism. The ads have stirred controversy.

Politics And Faith Collide In Contraceptive Debate

Under a revised plan on contraception health coverage, insurance companies — not Catholic institutions — will have to pay for contraception for employees. The issue has been a flash point for Bishops since before the health care law passed through Congress.