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1st victory for GOP in dismantling 'Obamacare' ... China defends action on Trump trademarks ... Scotland to make another bid for independence

By The Associated Press | Posted - Mar. 9, 2017 at 4:50 a.m.



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WASHINGTON (AP) — It's a first victory for Republicans in their effort to erase former President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. Following a nearly marathon 18-hour session, members of the House Ways and Means Committee pushed through a measure that would repeal tax penalties on people who don't buy health insurance. The legislation would also end income-based subsidies the government gives people to buy coverage. Instead, it creates tax credits based largely on age.

SHANGHAI (AP) — China is defending its handling of 38 trademarks it recently gave provisional approval to the Trump organization. China says it followed the law in processing the applications at a pace that some experts view as unusually quick. Democrats in Congress were critical of President Donald Trump after The Associated Press reported Wednesday that the potentially valuable trademarks had been granted, raising questions of conflict of interest and political favoritism. One senator said the issue "merits investigation."

LONDON (AP) — Scotland's leader says the country could make a second bid for independence within 18 months to avoid being dragged out of the European Union with the rest of the United Kingdom. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said in comments broadcast today that fall 2018 is "the common sense time" to hold a referendum. Sturgeon, who leads the pro-independence Scottish National Party, has complained bitterly about Britain's decision to withdraw from the European Union.

ATLANTA (AP) — Police in Fulton County, Georgia say a man hired women to work as dancers inside a million-dollar mansion and threatened to kill at least one of them if she tried to leave. Officers helped eight women leave the home after a 911 call was made Tuesday morning. Thirty-three-year-old Kenndric Roberts faces charges of false imprisonment and trafficking a person for labor. An initial court appearance is scheduled for today.

HONG KONG (AP) — World stock markets are down today after news of a big buildup in U.S. oil stockpiles depressed crude prices and shares of energy companies. Stocks are down in Britain and Germany in early trading. France's CAC 40 is flat. Most Asian stocks closed lower, but Japan's Nikkei climbed 0.3 percent. Dow futures are flat and broader S&P 500 futures are up less than 0.1 percent.

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The Associated Press

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