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Nominee hearing and Trump hits the hill...News of electronics ban spreads slowly...Roof confidante sentencing

By The Associated Press | Posted - Mar. 21, 2017 at 3:50 a.m.



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WASHINGTON (AP) — It's a busy day on Capitol Hill today. President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch, could face hours of questioning by the Senate Judiciary Committee, especially by Democrats. Trump himself is due on the Hill to directly appeal to Republican lawmakers scheduled to vote Thursday on a health care overhaul that repeals and replaces the Affordable Care Act. The bill's future is uncertain.

CAIRO (AP) — An international airport and two Mideast airlines say they haven't received any instructions regarding the U.S. government ban on passengers in eight countries from bringing laptops and other electronics onboard direct flights to the United States. Cairo International Airport says it hasn't begun enforcing the rule. Neither has Royal Jordanian Airlines. And Dubai-based Emirates says it is not aware of any restrictions.

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A man convicted of lying to the FBI about Dylann Roof's plans for shootings at a historically black South Carolina church will be sentenced today. Joey Meek is set to be sentenced by the same federal judge who presided over Roof's trial, which ended with Roof being sentenced to death for the slaughter of nine people. Meek had agreed to plead guilty and help prosecutors but was never used. Prosecutors have since asked for a stiffer sentence than current guidelines.

BERLIN (AP) — A European Union official says that without a course change in the way it governs, Turkey's chances of acceptance into the bloc will dwindle. Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn, who oversees the bloc's expansion efforts, points to increasing concern among European nations about what they view as an accelerating slide toward authoritarian practices under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (REH'-jehp TY'-ihp UR'-doh-wahn).

BANGKOK (AP) — A 25-year-old sea turtle in Thailand that swallowed nearly a thousand coins tossed by tourists seeking good luck died today, two weeks after having surgery to remove the coins from its stomach. Veterinarians say the cause of death was blood poisoning from the loose change. The turtle — nicknamed Bank — appeared to be doing well after the operation, but a checkup Saturday revealed problems. A second surgery was unsuccessful.

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The Associated Press

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