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Matthew Daly, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 1:22am

THE ISSUE: There are an estimated 21.6 million veterans in the United States. Among them, nearly 9 million are enrolled in health care provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs. About 4.3 million veterans get disability compensation from the VA and nearly 900,000 have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.

WHY IT MATTERS: Homegrown Extremism

Deb Riechmann and Eric Tucker, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 1:22am

THE ISSUE : Radical Islamic militancy that has sustained itself for decades overseas has inspired a series of attacks on U.S. soil in the last year and a half.

WHY IT MATTERS: Executive Authority

Erica Werner, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 1:22am

THE ISSUE: "Your Majesty" isn't in the American political lexicon. But when a president sets a major policy by edict, skirting Congress, it invariably sets off a debate that traces back to the time of kings and queens — and the Founding Fathers who rejected the authority of the crown.

WHY IT MATTERS: Immigration

Alicia A. Caldwell, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 1:22am

THE ISSUE : An estimated 11 million people are living and in many cases working in the United States illegally. The questions of what to with them and how to curb future illegal immigration have been a campaign issue for more than a decade. Never more so than now. Illegal immigration goes to the heart of Donald Trump's presidential campaign. It's a source of his strength among supporters, contention among critics and confusion over what he really intends to do.


Alicia A. Caldwell, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 12:20am

THE ISSUE : The United States is the proud home of "the mother of exiles," the Statue of Liberty. But of the millions of exiles from the Syrian war, only about 10,000 have reached U.S. shores.


Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 12:10am

THE ISSUE : About 9 in 10 Americans now have health insurance, more than at any time in history. But progress is incomplete, and the future far from certain. Millions remain uninsured. Quality is still uneven. Costs are high and trending up again. Medicare's insolvency is two years closer, now projected in 2028. Every family has a stake.

WHY IT MATTERS: Race and Policing

Jesse J. Holland, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 22nd - 12:10am

THE ISSUE : Policing in the United States' minority communities has been a flashpoint since the deaths of Michael Brown in Missouri, Tamir Rice in Ohio, Sandra Bland in Texas and others. The increasing number of graphic photos and videos depicting the deaths of black men, women and children at the hands of police officers has sparked unrest around the nation. The perception that law enforcement officers are rarely, if ever, punished for what some consider unethical behavior, brutality and even criminal acts against black Americans has led to the rise of new social and civil rights movements like Black Lives Matter.


David Crary, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 11:50pm

THE ISSUE: Persistent Republican-led efforts to restrict access to abortion and to curb government funding for Planned Parenthood have been hotly debated in Washington and in states, and will be shaped in some way by the next president.

WHY IT MATTERS: Supreme Court

Mark Sherman, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 11:30pm

THE ISSUE: No one likes an even number on a court that makes decisions by majority vote. Yet that's just what the Supreme Court has been left with, eight justices, since the death of Antonin Scalia in February.

Clinton camp preparing for possibility Trump won't concede

Ken Thomas and Lisa Lerer, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 7:20pm

Hillary Clinton's campaign is increasingly preparing for the possibility that Donald Trump may never concede the presidential election should she win, a development that could enormously complicate the crucial early weeks of her preparations to take office.

The Latest: Trump to lay out closing arguments in Gettysburg

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 6:30pm

The Latest on the U.S. presidential race (all times EDT):

Trump attorneys seek to bar his campaign comments at trial

Elliot Spagat, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 5:42pm

In an unusual legal maneuver, Donald Trump's attorneys have asked a federal judge to exclude any statements made by or about the Republican nominee during the presidential campaign from his upcoming civil trial over the now-defunct Trump University.

Early voting: Democrats show strength in key battlegrounds

Hope Yen, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 3:11pm

Hillary Clinton appears to be displaying strength in the crucial battleground states of North Carolina and Florida among voters casting ballots before Election Day, and may also be building an early vote advantage in Arizona and Colorado.

The Latest: Ex-California lawmaker gets prison in bribe case

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 3:01pm

The Latest on the sentencing of former California state Sen. Ron Calderon (all times local):

3 states say they denied Russia request to monitor election

Sean Murphy, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 3:01pm

Oklahoma and at least two other states said Friday that they have denied efforts by Russian officials to be present at polling stations during the election, requests the U.S. State Department's spokesman dismissed as "nothing more than a PR stunt."

Disgraced yet adored ex-mayor waging write-in campaign

Juliet Linderman, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 2:52pm

Sipping a tea latte in the window of a Baltimore mall, former Mayor Sheila Dixon, whose long political career was derailed by a fraud conviction, waved at a seemingly never-ending stream of admirers.

Pence again finds himself as Donald Trump's clean-up man

Bill Barrow, Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 2:31pm

It's become a familiar routine for Mike Pence.

White supremacist David Duke qualifies for Senate debate

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 4:10pm

White supremacist David Duke has qualified for a televised debate in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race.

Pentagon identifies American killed in Iraq on Thursday

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Oct 21st - 1:01pm

The Pentagon has identified the American killed in Iraq on Thursday as a 34-year-old Navy chief petty officer named Jason C. Finan.