Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans who would have been his potential rivals if he had sought the presidential nomination next year are praising Mitt Romney, after his announcement today that he won't be running. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio says he respects Romney's decision to "give the next generation a chance to lead." And former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush calls Romney a "patriot." There's even praise from the White House, where a spokesman cheered Romney's recent comments on policies that could benefit the middle class and reduce poverty.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A Pentagon spokesman says the gunman who killed three American contractors at the Kabul airport was in an Afghan uniform and was subsequently killed. The spokesman says the attack that killed three civilian aircraft mechanics yesterday is under investigation. Earlier today, a Taliban spokesman in Afghanistan said the shooter was a Taliban fighter who had infiltrated the ranks of Afghan security forces to stage the attack and was wearing an Afghan police uniform.
FALL RIVER, Mass. (AP) — The judge overseeing former New England Patriots standout Aaron Hernandez's murder trial says jurors can watch this weekend's Super Bowl but must be vigilant for any mention of him. The judge in Massachusetts gave jurors instructions before dismissing them for the weekend. The Patriots are taking on the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. Hernandez caught quarterback Tom Brady's last Super Bowl touchdown pass in the Patriots' 2012 loss to the New York Giants.
BOSTON (AP) — One prospective juror in the trial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv) says she has sympathy for him. She says he's young and she wonders if "he just made a really big mistake." The woman said today during jury questioning that it would be difficult for her to think of Tsarnaev as an adult and that she couldn't sentence him to death. Tsarnaev was 19 at the time of the deadly attack. He is now 21.
NEW YORK (AP) — Thirty-five years after a 6-year-old boy disappeared in Manhattan, trial is under way for a mentally ill man with a low I-Q who confessed to his murder and kidnapping. The disappearance of Etan Patz (AY'-tahn payts) shaped the nation's approach to missing children. A prosecutor told jurors today that they would see and hear what she called a "chilling confession" from Pedro Hernandez, who worked in a shop near the boy's home.