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GOP gavel fights: 11 House committee chairmanships in play

WASHINGTON—Almost every House member is on the stump this month, wrapping up re-election bids, with most cruising to new terms and a handful on both sides of the aisle scrambling to hang on to their jobs. But for a select few GOP lawmakers — those actively seeking committee chairmanships — the final days before Nov. 4 are as much about lining up support among colleagues as they are about connecting with voters.

Another man jumps White House fence

WASHINGTON — A man jumped the White House fence Wednesday night and was taken into custody after being bitten by a guard dog, officials said, just weeks after another fence jumper made it deep into the executive mansion amid a series of security failures.

Fact Checker: Rand Paul’s claim that White House said Ebola transmission is like AIDS (+video)

“I think from the very beginning they haven’t been completely forthright with us. They’ve so wanted to downplay this that they really I don’t think have been very accurate in their description of the disease. For example, they say, ‘Don’t worry, it’s only mixture of bodily fluids through direct contact.’ So what are you thinking? I’m thinking like AIDS, you don’t get AIDS at a cocktail party so my level of alarm goes down. And if I am treating somebody or looking at them around, I’m thinking, oh no it’s like AIDS, I am not going to get it. But it really isn’t like AIDs. And then they’ll say in a little lower voice, ‘Oh, but direct contact can be three feet from somebody.’ But if you ask any American on the street, ‘Do you think direct contact is standing three feet from somebody?’ Because they so much wanted to downplay that ‘We were in charge, we know everything about this,’ I think they made mistakes in not really being accurate about talking about the disease.”

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New programs under Farm Bill bring reforms to industry

Over the past few weeks, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced a series of new programs and reforms, as a part of the 2014 Farm Bill. These reforms are aimed at giving farmers better options for risk management, and increasing eligibility for USDA microloan programs for beginning and family farmers.

After 34 years, new blood in the House

With Election Day still three weeks away, no one knows the eventual size of the freshmen class of the 114th United States Congress. But if history is any indication, approximately 90 percent of the 394 House members running for reelection will achieve it. And of the 80ish men and women who will take the oath of office for the first time next year, nearly all of them have spent the past months grinding against opposite-party opponents and girding for the final campaign push.

Cold War spy plan isn’t ready to retire

WASHINGTON — The iconic U-2 spy plane, with its long, sagging wings and a reputation for being challenging to fly and harder to land, is one of the oldest aircraft in the U.S. fleet, with a storied history to match: The downing of Francis Gary Powers is a touchstone moment in the Cold War, and many a UFO rumor can be attributed to the plane’s early flight tests at the government’s secret Area 51 in the Nevada desert.