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Republican debate tonight ... House speaker plans to release spending bill and tax package ... Defense Secretary heads to Turkey

By The Associated Press | Posted - Dec. 15, 2015 at 1:50 a.m.



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WASHINGTON (AP) — Tonight will be the first Republican presidential debate since the terror attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, and Donald Trump's proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States. Trump will be standing at center stage at the Las Vegas gathering, but also in the spotlight will be Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who's challenging Trump's lead in Iowa polls.

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Paul Ryan plans today to publicly release agreements on a $1.1 trillion government-wide spending bill to stave off a shutdown and a tax package extending dozens of breaks. Congressional negotiators and the White House have been working on a deal that Ryan says contain victories for both Republicans and Democrats.

INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey (AP) — Defense Secretary Ash Carter says he's looking for new ways the U.S.-led coalition can strengthen its fight against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. Carter is headed to Turkey, where he says he'll be asking his military commanders and other officials to come up with new tactics that can be used to attack IS, and identify new ways coalition partners can speed up the destruction of the insurgent group.

VIENNA (AP) — The U.N. nuclear agency is ready to close the books on a decade-long probe of allegations that Iran worked on atomic arms. The 35-nation board of the International Atomic Energy Agency is expected today to approve a resolution that ends the investigation. An EU statement obtained before delivery reflects the will to move on after the agency assessed that Iran likely worked on elements of a nuclear weapon. Iran denies any work — or interest in — atomic arms.

ALVA, Okla. (AP) — A man faces two felony counts of assault and battery after allegedly crashing his vehicle into a hotel in a dispute over a bill in northwestern Oklahoma. Police tell the Enid News and Eagle that 62-year-old John Parsley of Gonzales, Texas, wanted a refund on part of his bill at the Alva Comfort Inn Suites last Thursday. Surveillance video shows Parsley taking his truck and crashing into hotel's front desk, then backing up and slamming into the lobby again. Police say he nearly hit two women.

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The Associated Press

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