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Sessions firestorm...North Korean threats....Deadly house fire details

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WASHINGTON (AP) — There are calls for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to step down and to step aside from the Justice Department investigation into Russian interference in the election. Sessions had two conversations with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. during the presidential campaign while he was serving as an adviser. During confirmation hearings he said "no" when asked whether "anyone affiliated" with the campaign had contact with the Russians. Sessions issued a statement Wednesday night saying he "never met with any Russian officials to discuss issues of the campaign."

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House attorneys have instructed the president's aides to preserve materials that could be connected to Russian interference in the 2016 election and other related investigations. That's according to three administration officials. The orders came after Senate Democrats last week asked the White House and law enforcement agencies to keep all materials involving contacts that Trump's administration, campaign and transition team — or anyone acting on their behalf — have had with Russian government officials or their associates.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The start of annual U.S.-South Korean war drills has North Korea making threats. The regime said it will "mercilessly foil the nuclear war racket of the aggressors with its treasured nuclear sword." An unidentified spokesman also said the North's reaction will be the toughest ever but didn't elaborate. Pyongyang calls the defensive drills a rehearsal for an invasion.

CINCINNATI (AP) — Vice President Mike Pence is expected to discuss efforts to repeal the health care overhaul during a Thursday visit to Ohio. The former governor of neighboring Indiana on Thursday is scheduled to visit Frame USA, which sells American-made picture frames from its home base in a northern Cincinnati suburb. Ohio is among the states under the Affordable Care Act that has expanded Medicaid. Republican Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sihk) has voiced concern about the fate of that expansion in the repeal.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Authorities are providing more details about a deadly house fire in the rural Oregon timber town of Riddle, about 200 miles south of Portland. A sheriff's official says the early Wednesday blaze killed four children. One was a foster child. The mother of three of the children, her husband and a fifth child were critically burned. The dead children were ages 4, 7, 10 and 13. Grief counselors are meeting with students.

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