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Helenmary Ball, left, of Calvert County, Md., as “Maryland District 5,” points toward the separated area of Maryland District 3, being represented by Bobby Bartlett, right, as nonpartisan groups against gerrymandering protest in front of the Supreme Court, Wednesday, March 28, 2018, in Washington where the court will hear arguments on a gerrymandering case. (Jacquelyn Martin / Associated Press)

Justices struggle with partisan redistricting again

UPDATED: Wed., March 28, 2018, 1:34 p.m.

Dealing with an issue that could affect elections across the country, Supreme Court justices wrestled Wednesday with how far states may go to craft electoral districts that give the majority party a huge political advantage.
A man standing on the bow of a Golden Gate Ferry takes a picture of a container ship as it heads toward the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge in San Francisco on March 7, 2018. (Associated Press)

U.S. economic growth in Q4 revised up to 2.9 percent rate

The U.S. economy grew at a solid 2.9 percent annual rate in the final three months of last year, a sharp upward revision that caps three straight quarters of healthy growth. The Trump administration is hoping the economy will accelerate further this year, aided by sizable tax cuts and increased government spending.

Gov. Jay Inslee speaks to reporters after signing a bill that alters the contracting structure of home health care workers, on Tuesday, March 27, 2018, in Olympia, Wash. (Rachel La Corte / Associated Press)

Inslee signs controversial union bill

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has sided with public-sector unions in a showdown with Republicans and anti-labor groups by approving a controversial bill that will alter the contracting structure of home health care workers.
This photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows a convoy of buses carrying rebel fighters and their families leaving several towns and villages that are to be handed over to government control, in the eastern Ghouta region near Damascus, Syria, Wednesday, March. 28, 2018. (Associated Press)

U.N. calls for $150M for urgent relief in Syria

Aid groups need $150 million to provide urgent relief to a quarter-million people recently displaced by separate offensives by the Syrian government outside Damascus and by Turkish-led forces in the north, a top U.N. Syria official said Wednesday.
In Jan. 19, 2009, file photo, a woman looks out of a window while visiting the National Civil Rights Museum located at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tenn., on the nationwide holiday honoring Martin Luther King Jr. (Mark Humphrey / Associated Press)

Visiting Memphis 50 years after King’s assassination

UPDATED: Wed., March 28, 2018, 3:50 p.m.

Fifty years ago, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was killed while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. The civil rights leader’s shocking murder on April 4, 1968, marked one of the most significant moments in U.S. history.
In this image taken from video footage run Wednesday, March 28, 2018, by China's CCTV via AP Video, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, and Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, left, shake hands at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing. (Associated Press)

Kim, Xi portray strong ties after North Korea leader’s China trip

UPDATED: Wed., March 28, 2018, 7:59 p.m.

With smiles and firm handshakes, North Korea and China used a surprise summit this week to show that despite recent tensions, Pyongyang still has a powerful backer and Beijing will not be sidelined in discussions about the fate of its unpredictable neighbor.

Michael Gerson: Trump leaves vacuum of integrity at the heart of our government

Some who watched the Stormy Daniels interview on “60 Minutes” claimed it contained nothing new. On national television, an adult performer alleged that Donald Trump engaged in an extramarital fling, that his minions legally and physically threatened her to discourage public disclosure of the affair, and that Trump’s fixer paid her $130,000 in hush money to secure her silence immediately before the 2016 election. People should just go back to their knitting. Nothing to see here. Americans who find this unremarkable have missed an extraordinary cultural moment. Daniels’ allegations are denied by the president. Yet who in their right mind would trust Trump’s word over hers? In this case, the porn star has more credibility than the president of the United States. It is not even close.

Spokane considers burning sewer sludge after outcry over fertilizer use

UPDATED: Thu., March 29, 2018, 2:20 p.m.

A study expected to be finished by the end of the year will explore the possibility of incinerating the solid material left over at the city’s waste water treatment plant at the Waste-to-Energy facility on the West Plains. The material had been used as fertilizer on area farms, but concerns have sprouted about harmful chemicals in the sludge seeping into the water table.

Valley council selects final Barker Road plan

UPDATED: Wed., March 28, 2018, 6:09 a.m.

The Spokane Valley City Council has selected a final design for the Barker Road grade separation project after input from resident and the business community.
In this March 15, 2018 photo, public health nurse Peggy Cooley of the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, seen on the phone screen, uses Skype video to remotely monitor a patient taking antibiotics for tuberculosis at home in Lakewood, Wash. (Manuel Valdes / Associated Press)

Selfie medicine: Phone apps push people to take their pills

Smartphone apps that monitor pill-taking are now available, and researchers are testing how well they work when medication matters. Experts praise the efficiency, but some say the technology raises privacy and data security concerns.

Spokane Jersey Mike’s Subs locations to donate all of Wednesday sales to Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital

Both of Spokane’s Jersey Mike’s Subs locations are donating all of Wednesday’s sales receipts to support a hospital-based school program at Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital. Throughout the month of March, customers across the country have made donations to Jersey Mike’s Subs for its eighth annual Month of Giving, the company said in a news release.