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  1. RELIEF House Approves $50.7B in Sandy Aid Susan Walsh/AP

    1. House Approves $50.7B in Sandy Aid

    After a delay that infuriated the nation, the House has approved a $50.7 billion measure for the victims of Superstorm Sandy. The 241-180 vote pushes the measure to the Senate, where it will likely be taken up next Tuesday. Leaders in both New York and New Jersey applied ruthless pressure to Congress in early January after House Speaker John Boehner pulled a bill that would have provided much-needed relief. The October 29 storm wreaked havoc on the East Coast, pounding New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut with catastrophic wind and rain and killing 140 worldwide.

    January 15, 2013 7:42 PM

  2. Limiting access Cuomo Signs Gun Bill Into Law Mike Groll/AP

    2. Cuomo Signs Gun Bill Into Law

    The sweep of gun-reform laws promised in the wake of Sandy Hook has officially begun. On Tuesday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed into law a package of gun-control laws after the state Assembly voted them through. The law includes an expanded ban on assault weapons, which outlaws semiautomatic pistols and rifles and shotguns with one military-style feature. New Yorkers who own such guns can keep them but must register them with the state. It also bans magazines that hold more than seven rounds of ammunition (down from 10) and requires background checks of ammunition buyers. Cuomo said he believes the law will be “the most comprehensive package in the nation.” The NRA responded that “these gun-control schemes have failed in the past and will have no impact on public safety and crime.” We’ll see.

    January 15, 2013 6:15 PM

  3. Carnage Explosions Hit Syrian University Site of an explosion that hit an Aleppo university on Tuesday. (SANA/AP)

    3. Explosions Hit Syrian University

    A series of explosions hit Aleppo University in Syria on Tuesday, killing an estimated 52 people and injuring dozens more. Once Syria’s commerical epicenter, the city of Aleppo has essentially been the site of almost constant violence since July, with insurgents and government forces locked in a stalemate over control of the city. The university, which is in a government-controlled part of the city, had been conducting classes as fighting went on. Antigovernment activists said university buildings had been hit by missiles fired by Syrian military forces. But SANA, Syria’s state-run news agency, indicated that the missiles had been fired by the insurgents.

    January 15, 2013 1:03 PM

  4. flight trouble Airline Grounds All 787s Kin Cheung / AP Photo

    4. Airline Grounds All 787s

    Sometimes bigger is definitely not better. All Nippon Airways realized that on Tuesday, when decided to ground all Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets immediately after experiencing multiple problems. On Wednesday in Japan, one of the airline’s flights made an emergency landing after a battery alarm alert. ANA had several other problems with the Dreamliners but would not detail them. Last week, the FAA announced it would investigate the 787s after a fire aboard a Japan Airlines flight in Boston and a leak on a Dreamliner the next day.

    January 15, 2013 9:41 PM

  5. Like! Facebook Launches 'Graph Search' Facebook's Zuckerberg on Tuesday. (Stephen Lam/Getty)

    5. Facebook Launches 'Graph Search'

    Like! On Tuesday, social-media leviathan Facebook announced a new edition to its website: “graph search.” In the words of founder Mark Zuckerberg, the new tool works by “indexing our map of the graph.” In normal-people speak, it’s a way to locate information, using Facebook, on Facebook. (Good call, Facebook.) For those still confused, Zuckerberg offers a fun example—say, your sudden desire to throw a Game of Thrones party. Using the new tool, you’d simply search “My friends who live in Palo Alto who like Game of Thrones.” Rumors are already flying that the new feature will quickly morph into an underground dating tool—a simple, sly way to locate singles in your area. Watch out, OKCupid, big papa’s come to play.

    January 15, 2013 1:29 PM

  6. in tribute Rep. Lofgren Introduces 'Aaron's Law' Pernille Ironside/ThoughtWorks (left), Haraz Ghanbari/AP (right)

    6. Rep. Lofgren Introduces 'Aaron's Law'

    Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) introduced “Aaron’s Law” on Tuesday night, announcing it via the user-generated site Reddit. The piece of legislation would modify the the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to exclude terms of service violations. “There’s no way to reverse the tragedy of Aaron’s death, but we can work to prevent a repeat of the abuses of power he experienced,” Lofgren wrote. “The government was able to bring such disproportionate charges against Aaron because of the broad scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) and the wire fraud statute.” Read the full bill here.

    January 15, 2013 8:55 PM

  7. Change of Heart Chuck Schumer Backs Hagel Andy Kropa

    7. Chuck Schumer Backs Hagel

    Chucks of the world, unite! New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer has changed his mind, saying on Tuesday that he will support Chuck Hagel, President Obama’s nominee for defense secretary. Schumer had previously expressed concerns over Hagel’s Mideast positions. But after meeting with the former Nebraska senator on Monday, Schumer came out in support. Hagel is set to meet with New York’s other senator, Kirsten Gillibrand, soon. Not everyone is surprised by Schumer’s turnaround: one Democratic Hill aide said, “Schumer has to play a game. He has to sound like he’s actually listening to those New Yorkers.”

    January 15, 2013 11:47 AM

  8. CORRUPT MUCH? U.S. Ordered Intern's Arrest Delayed J. Scott Applewhite/AP

    8. U.S. Ordered Intern's Arrest Delayed

    The arrest of a volunteer intern for Sen. Robert Menendez was ordered delayed by the U.S. government weeks before the election in order to avoid scandal, the AP reports. Immigration officials were reportedly prepared to arrest and deport 18-year-old Luis Abrahan Sanchez Zavaleta, who is a registered sex offender and was in the country illegally—but were ordered by Washington to hold off on the arrest following “significant interest” from Congress and the media in the possible scandal. Sanchez was eventually arrested six weeks after the election, and is currently facing deportation. 

    January 15, 2013 3:54 PM

  9. Robert Langdon’s Back Dan Brown's Back

    9. Dan Brown to Release New Book

    Looks like Robert Langdon found something else to decode. Dan Brown, author of the mega-bestsellers Angels & Demons and The Da Vinci Code, has announced a new Robert Langdon novel. The title, Inferno, was revealed in a social-media puzzle that was created to promote the new book, which is to be released on May 14 and published by Doubleday. In a statement Doubleday said that the novel would find Robert Langdon “in the heart of Europe” where he “is drawn into a harrowing world centered on one of history’s most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces.” It is Brown’s first novel since 2009’s The Lost Symbol.

    January 15, 2013 10:28 AM

  10. HEY GIRL Kendrick Writes Dirty Tweet About Gosling Anna Kendrick on Jan. 12, 2012. (Jason Merritt/Getty)

    10. Kendrick Dirty Tweets About Gosling

    Anna Kendrick has starred in a movie with George Clooney, but she apparently can’t sit through one starring Ryan Gosling. The 27-year-old actress shocked—and delighted—her fans Monday when she tweeted, “Ugh—NEVER going to a Ryan Gosling movie in the theatre again. Apparently sitting in the back row and masturbating is still considered ‘inappropriate.’” Posted at 10:45 a.m. on Monday, it’s already been retweeted almost 20,000 times in less than 24 hours. A date probably isn’t in the cards, though—Kendrick has been linked to director Edgar Wright since 2009. Maybe Gosling can save her from a taxicab next time.

    January 15, 2013 7:40 AM

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  12. GAY MARRIAGE House GOP: $3M in DOMA Defense Bruno Ehrs / Corbis

    11. House GOP: $3M in DOMA Defense

    Washington’s learned the hard way: it isn’t over until the House Republicans say so. On Tuesday, House GOP leaders signed a nearly $3 million legal contract to keep defending the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a law that defines marriage as a union between a woman and a man. The move essentially employs pro-DOMA attorneys, through taxpayer dollars, to take on cases of same-sex marriage in court. House Republicans initially took up the cause in 2011, when Attorney General Eric Holder announced that President Obama found the law unconstitutional. DOMA—which was passed by bipartisan majorities in Congress and signed by President Bill Clinton in 1993—denies federal recognition of same-sex marriages.

    January 15, 2013 12:46 PM

  13. YIKES The Atlantic Pulls Scientology Ad Scientology's David Miscavige in 2004. (AFP/Getty)

    12. The Atlantic Pulls Scientology Ad

    Didn’t anyone tell The Atlantic never to side with Scientology? The Atlantic pulled an advertorial paid for by the Church of Scientology from its website Monday night, hours after it posted and received backlash. The post, which praised Scientology leader David Miscavige, had the look of a regular Atlantic article but with the banner “Sponsored Content.” “The driving force behind this unparalleled era of growth is David Miscavige, ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion,” the ad read. The advertorial went up just days before New Yorker writer Lawrence Wright’s upcoming new history of Scientology, called Going Clear.

    January 15, 2013 7:20 AM

  14. Action Biden: 19 Possible Gun Control Moves Zurab Dzhavakhadze/ITAR-TASS, via Landov

    13. Biden: 19 Possible Gun Control Moves

    There may be more change coming to gun control policy than expected. Vice President Joe Biden told a group of House Democrats Monday that the White House is weighing 19 executive actions for gun control reform. President Obama will announce his proposals to reduce gun violence later this week, and is expected to suggest banning assault weapons, high-capacity magazines, and instituting universal background checks. But what about the other 16 executive actions? According to members of Congress, they could include more enforcement of existing gun laws, and even giving the Center for Disease Control and Prevention authority to conduct more research on guns.  

  15. SERIOUSLY? Florida Gov. Gave Back Dog Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Jan. 10, 2013. (Joe Raedle/Getty)

    14. Florida Gov. Gave Back Dog

    Hopefully Gail Collins will catch wind of this story. Florida Gov. Rick Scott gave back the Labrador retriever his family adopted during his 2010 campaign for governor, the Tampa Bay Times claimed on Monday. Shortly after winning the GOP nomination, Scott and his family adopted the dog and named him Reagan after launching a Facebook campaign to help choose a name. But the last time Reagan has been seen publicly was the day before Scott was sworn in as governor in 2011. Now Scott admitted he had given back Reagan, since he was a rescue dog and “scared the living daylights” out of people at the governor’s mansion. The family has adopted another rescue dog, 7-year-old Tallee.

    January 15, 2013 7:25 AM

  16. ‘JAWS OF DEATH’ Revolving Door Kills Tatler’s Dog

    15. Revolving Door Kills Tatler’s Dog

    A dramatic, grisly, and tragic demise for Britain’s most well-connected hound. Alan, a young Dachshund and the in-house mascot for Tatler magazine, was killed by the revolving door at the Vogue House. An intern was taking Alan TBH Plumptre, his full name, for a walk when he ran toward the door and met his horrible demise. Contrary to early tweets, Alan was not decapitated. Alan's final tweet: COLDWETMAGICALFLUFFYSHITFALLINGFROMTHESKY!? WHATISITWHATISITTTTT?! #snow

    January 15, 2013 9:00 AM

  17. Siege Mali Town Battered by Airstrikes French troops arrive in Bamako, Mali on Tuesday. (Eric Feferberg/AFP/Getty)

    16. Mali Town Battered by Airstrikes

    French forces conducted a nighttime bomb attack Monday on the Mali town of Diabaly, believed to be controlled by Islamic militants. Speaking at a military base in Abu Dhabi, French President François Hollande said the overnight strikes “hit their targets” and said the “deployment of forces on the ground and in the air” will continue. Meanwhile, West African defense chiefs are scheduled to meet in Bamako on Tuesday to speed up the deployment of 3,300 African troops. Senegal, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria, and Guinea have all offered to send troops to aid the Malian government—although Nigeria, the leader of the mission, has cautioned against rushing in. The U.S. has also pledged support.

    January 15, 2013 7:05 AM

  18. SHE WON’T GO Lohan May Drop Rehab Deal Lohan at 'Liz & Dick' premiere in Nov. 2012. (Jason Merritt/Getty)

    17. Lohan May Drop Rehab Deal

    Maybe Lindsay Lohan is running off excitement after The New York Times magazine story. The actress is due back in court Tuesday for the 20th time in the past six years as a judge has revoked her probation in relation to the 2011 necklace-theft case—and she reportedly quashed a deal to go to a six-month lockdown rehab. TMZ reported Tuesday that Lohan fired her lawyer who had been negotiating the deal and now could face jail time again.

    January 15, 2013 7:35 AM

  19. HOLY MOLY Swedish Woman Steals Train, Crashes Jonas Ekstromer/AFP/Getty

    18. Swedish Woman Steals Train, Crashes

    What a start to the day. On Tuesday morning a Swedish woman allegedly stole a four-car commuter train in Stockholm and drove it to the suburbs, where it derailed and crashed into an apartment building. The woman has been seriously injured, police said, but none of the three families in the apartment building were hurt “physically.” Police spokesman Lars Bystrom said the woman is being held on suspicion of endangering the public. Bystrom said the motives were unknown. All that is known so far about the suspect is that she was born in 1990 and worked for a company contracted to carry out cleaning for the train operator.

    January 15, 2013 9:38 AM

  20. JOBS Walmart to Launch Vet-Hiring Plan Walmart in Paramount, Calif. (Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty)

    19. Walmart to Launch Vet-Hiring Plan

    Walmart is set to announce plans Tuesday to hire any veteran who wants a job—one of the nation’s biggest hiring commitments for veterans in history. Walmart, the nation’s largest retailer, will require that the veterans have left the military in the previous year and did not receive a dishonorable discharge. The program will officially launch on Memorial Day. In a statement, first lady Michelle Obama called the program “historic” and said she will urge other corporations to follow in Walmart’s footsteps. According to Walmart, the program is expected to lead to 100,000 new jobs for veterans in the next five years.

    January 15, 2013 7:10 AM

  21. DO THE RIGHT THING House Closer to Sandy Aid Bill House members sort Sandy aid bill on Monday. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

    20. House Closer to Sandy Aid Bill

    The House moved closer to passing a $51 billion bill for Sandy relief aid on Monday night when the Republican-controlled Rules Committee approved a measure that would not allow legislators to cut down on the size of the bill. Some Republicans offered amendments to try to cut some $300 million from the bill, but the House Rules approved just one—cutting $13 million from funding to accelerate the National Weather Service Readiness Project. House Speaker John Boehner is said to be eager to put the debacle behind him after facing criticism for not bringing the $60 billion Sandy aid bill to vote, and instead passing only a $9 billion flood-insurance measure at the start of the year.

    January 15, 2013 7:00 AM

  22. CONFESSIONS Lance Armstrong Admits Doping Peter Morrison/AP

    21. Lance Armstrong Admits Doping

    Cyclist Lance Armstrong admitted to doping during an interview with Oprah Winfrey on Monday, the talk-show host said Tuesday. Winfrey said, “We were mesmerized and riveted” by Armstrong’s answers. “He did not come clean in the manner I was expecting.” Armstrong reportedly plans to testify against cycling officials who allegedly knew about his drug use. Armstrong also is believed to have issued a mea culpa to the staff of his charity, Livestrong, and called members of the cycling community to apologize for allegedly lying and misleading them. Winfrey also announced the interview had been spread over two nights, and will now air Thursday and Friday.

    January 15, 2013 8:15 AM

  23. CHARGES Pakistan Orders Arrest of P.M. Prime Minister Ashraf in September 2012. (Anjum Naveed/AP)

    22. Pakistan Orders Arrest of P.M.

    Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered the arrest of Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf in connection to a corruption case when Ashraf was a federal minister. The court insisted Ashraf “violated the principle of transparency” in securing contracts for the purchase of rental power plants for the federal government. Authorities were given 24 hours to arrest Ashraf and 16 others in connection to the case. Meanwhile, the capital, Islamabad, erupted in protests organized by populist cleric Muhammad Tahirul Qadri, who has recently returned to the country from Canada and has been calling for reforms. Pakistan’s main stock exchange fell nearly 3 percent on the news of the turmoil.

    January 15, 2013 6:30 AM

  24. ACTION NY Makes Gun Deal Gov. Cuomo announcing gun legislation on Monday. (Mike Groll/AP)

    23. NY Makes Gun Deal

    Take note, Congress: if notoriously fractured Albany can make a deal, it’s your turn. New York state legislators reached a deal with Gov. Andrew Cuomo on a number of gun restrictions, including expanding the state’s assault weapons ban and enacting laws to keep guns away from the mentally ill. The deal passed the state Senate, which is controlled by a coalition of Republicans and a handful of Democrats, at 11 p.m. Monday, with support mainly from New York City and Long Island legislators. Not one Republican from the rural upstate caucus voted for it. It will go to the Assembly on Tuesday. President Obama is expected to throw his support this week behind an executive order to expand background checks on guns, lawmakers said on Monday.

    January 15, 2013 6:35 AM

  25. MEMORIAL JSTOR Tool Created in Swartz’s Honor Aaron Swartz in Aug. 2009. (Sage Ross/DPA, via Corbis)

    24. JSTOR Tool Created in Swartz’s Honor

    In a memorial to Aaron Swartz, a group of online activists have launched a tool to “liberate” articles from JSTOR, the subscription-based article database from which Swartz had been accused of illegally downloading articles. The Archive Team, a group dedicated to preserving websites about to go offline, created the bookmarklet called the Aaron Swartz Memorial JSTOR Liberator, which allows readers to bypass the subscription fee on JSTOR. Swartz, 26, one of the cofounders of Reddit, was found dead in an apparent suicide on Friday. Federal prosecutors had charged him with 13 counts of computer and wire fraud for allegedly illegally downloading as many as 4.8 million articles from JSTOR in late 2010 and early 2011.

    January 15, 2013 12:12 PM

  26. Gruesome 18 Human Heads Found at O’Hare KAREN BLEIER

    25. 18 Human Heads Found at O’Hare

    Authorities at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport discovered 18 severed human heads after they opened a mysterious package on Monday. The skin was still attached to the heads. Though the discovery was gruesome, they appear to be medical samples from Italy that were misplaced and police do not suspect foul play. But U.S. Customs and Border Protection has launched an investigation into the incident.

    January 15, 2013 10:48 AM

  27. ‘KEYS TO REDEMPTION’ Lance Had Tense Meeting With USADA Lance Armstrong during 2010 Tour de France. (Joel Saget/AFP/Getty)

    26. Armstrong, USADA Held Tense Meeting

    So what finally pushed him over the edge? The Wall Street Journal details the tense deliberations that led to cyclist Lance Armstrong’s confession that he doped (set to air Thursday and Friday in an interview with Oprah Winfrey). Last month, Armstrong sat down for a testy meeting with the head of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, Travis Tygart. At the meeting, Armstrong reportedly said he had doped, but that cheating was rampant in sports, including the NFL. The meeting reportedly ended with Armstrong telling Tygart, “You don’t hold the keys to my redemption,” and Tygart saying that was “b-------.” Shortly after, Armstrong decided to do an interview with Oprah, texting the Journal, “I hope she hits me hard.”

    January 15, 2013 12:25 PM