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Immigration plan defended...Romney challenges Clinton's credentials...Meetings offered on Benghazi

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch is defending President Barack Obama's decision to shelter millions of immigrants from deportation, but she says they have no right to citizenship under the law. Lynch is in her first day of confirmation hearings for the nation's top law-enforcement spot. She also tells the Senate Judiciary Committee the NSA's intelligence-gathering programs are "constitutional and effective." Lynch, the top federal prosecutor for parts of New York City and Long Island, is expected to win confirmation easily.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry says an ongoing abuse-of-power case against him won't delay his preparations for a possible 2016 presidential run. The Republican says he's "moving right along as expected" and plans to visit Iowa and South Carolina this week. A Texas judge yesterday refused to quash two indictments that stem from Perry's veto of state funding for public corruption prosecutors in 2013.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Mitt Romney is renewing his pledge to fight for the poor and the middle class. And he's doing so in a speech that questions the economic and foreign policy credentials of Hillary Rodham Clinton. Romney -- who this month signaled an interest in another presidential run -- is speaking this evening at Mississippi State University. In an excerpt, he questions how Clinton can "provide opportunity for all" -- if, in his words, "she doesn't know where jobs come from in the first place."

WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department says officials are prepared to meet immediately with a special House committee investigating the deadly 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya. In a letter to the panel's top Republican and Democrat, a department official says there could be a meeting "as soon as today" to schedule interviews with up to 22 potential witnesses who work for the State Department or have knowledge of the attacks. The letter comes a day after the panel's Republican chairman complained about resistance from the State Department.

ROCK HILL, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina judge says, "We cannot rewrite history" -- but he adds that we can make it right. Judge Mark Hayes today tossed out the convictions of nine black men who integrated a whites-only lunch counter in 1961, at the height of the civil rights movement. A prosecutor apologized to the eight men who were in court. The ninth has died.

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