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Obama looking to counter gloomy GOP message...Ryan wants to see anti-IS strategy...Stocks gain

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WASHINGTON (AP) — His advisers have made it clear that President Barack Obama is hoping to counter what the White House sees as a gloom-and-doom message from Republican presidential candidates with an upbeat State of the Union address tonight. But Obama isn't expected to get into any specifics of the 2016 contest. He'll be delivering his speech before a Republican-led Congress that is angry about his executive orders on issues from guns to immigration.

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Paul Ryan says Republicans are "not expecting much new" from the State of the Union address -- but that they're hoping to hear a "comprehensive plan" for defeating the Islamic State group. Obama is expected to reiterate steps his administration is taking to curb that group's power in the Mideast, and to limit its ability to carry out attacks in the West. This is the first State of the Union speech since Ryan became speaker last year.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon says the crew members of two small Navy craft are being held by Iran. But U.S. officials have been assured by Tehran that the crew and the vessels will be returned safely and promptly. U.S. officials said that the incident happened near Farsi Island, situated in the middle of the Persian Gulf. They say it stemmed from some type of mechanical trouble with one of the boats, causing them to run aground. The troops were picked up by Iran.

NEW YORK (AP) — A late wave of buying has left the stock market higher, led by gains in technology and health care. Today's gain of 47 points was the first advance this year for the Nasdaq, which is heavily weighted with technology companies. Chipmaker Intel rose 2 percent and Apple gained 1.5 percent. Energy companies were a drag on the market as the price of crude oil fell to new 12-year lows. The Dow gained 117 points today and the S&P rose 15 points.

CLEVELAND (AP) — Investigators in northeastern Ohio are trying to find out what caused an explosion that killed a couple and two children at a home last night. They've identified the adult victims and are still working to confirm the identities of the couple's eight-and-12-year-old daughters. The home was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived minutes after the blast. The fire chief says it doesn't look like there was a natural gas leak.

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