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At least six Supreme Court justices are sounding skeptical of making a broad ruling that would leave state legislatures virtually unchecked when making rules for elections. The North Carolina case the high court was hearing Wednesday has the potential to reshape elections for Congress and the presidency in other states as well. It concerns the power of state courts to strike down congressional districts drawn by the legislature because those state courts believe they violate state constitutions. Liberal Justice Elena Kagan said eliminating that power would allow for the “most extreme forms of gerrymandering from legislatures.”

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A former Theranos executive learns Wednesday whether he will be punished as severely as his former lover and business partner for peddling the company’s bogus blood-testing technology that duped investors and endangered patients. Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani was convicted in July of fraud and conspiracy. He will be sentenced less than three weeks after Elizabeth Holmes, the company’s founder and CEO, received more than 11 years in prison for her role in a scandal that threw a bright light on Silicon Valley’s dark side. Holmes could have gotten up to 20 years in prison — a penalty that U.S. District Judge Edward Davila could now impose on Balwani. He spent six years as Theranos’ chief operating officer.

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A state court judge’s ruling has placed Oregon’s tough new voter-approved gun law on hold just hours after a federal court judge in Portland allowed a ban on the sale and transfer of high-capacity magazines to take effect this week. The ruling by Harney County Judge Robert Raschio threw the law’s implementation into limbo. Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum will file an immediate appeal with the Oregon Supreme Court. Earlier Tuesday, a federal judge in Portland delivered an initial victory to proponents of the sweeping gun-control measure by allowing the high-capacity magazine ban to take effect Thursday.

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Donald Trump’s company has been convicted of tax fraud for a scheme by top executives to avoid paying personal income taxes on perks such as apartments and luxury cars. As punishment, the Trump Organization could be fined up to $1.6 million. The guilty verdict Tuesday day came on the second day of deliberations in the only criminal trial to arise from the Manhattan district attorney’s three-year investigation of the former president and his businesses. Longtime Trump Organization finance chief Allen Weisselberg previously pleaded guilty to hatching the 15-year scheme. He testified at the trial in exchange for a promised five-month jail sentence. Trump himself was not on trial.

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A Washington state Court of Appeals has upheld most of the campaign finance violations that longtime anti-tax initiative promoter Tim Eyman was found liable for last year. The Seattle Times reports the court on Tuesday kept in place the multimillion-dollar verdict against Eyman and most of the restrictions prohibiting Eyman from controlling the finances of political committees. The Division II Court of Appeals largely found for Attorney General Bob Ferguson in his case against Eyman, but Eyman received a few limited victories. The court tossed one of the violations against Eyman, a small portion of the restrictions imposed on him, and asked the trial judge to reconsider the size of the fine levied against him.

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A federal judge ordered a Wisconsin company that cleans hundreds of slaughterhouses nationwide to ensure it is complying with child labor laws after investigators identified at least 50 minors scrubbing and sanitizing dangerous equipment at five different meatpacking plants in Nebraska, Minnesota and Arkansas. Packers Sanitation Services Inc. also entered into an agreement with the Labor Department that was announced Tuesday. As part of that, the company promised to hire an outside consultant to review its hiring policies and provide additional training for its managers. Investigators are still in the early stages of reviewing thousands of pages of records from other plants. The company employs some 17,000 people working at more than 700 locations nationwide.

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A federal judge has dismissed a U.S. lawsuit against Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the killing of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Tuesday's ruling bows to the Biden administration’s insistence that the prince was legally immune in the case. Washington, D.C., U.S. District Judge John D. Bates heeded the U.S. government’s request shielding Prince Mohammed from the case under the longstanding principle of limited immunity for heads of government. That's despite what Bates called “credible allegations of his involvement in Khashoggi’s murder.” Saudi officials killed Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in 2018. Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post, had written critically of Prince Mohammed.

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Special counsel Jack Smith has subpoenaed local election officials in Wisconsin, Michigan, Arizona and Pennsylvania. Smith is asking for communications with or involving former President Donald Trump, his campaign aides and a list of allies involved in his efforts to try to overturn the results of the 2020 election. The requests are the first known subpoenas by Smith, who was named last month as special counsel by Attorney General Merrick Garland. Smith is overseeing the Justice Department’s investigation into the presence of classified documents at Trump’s Florida estate as well as key aspects of a separate probe involving the violent storming of the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and Trump’s frantic efforts to remain in power.

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A lawyer for a former Republican candidate for Michigan governor says they want more time to consider possible plea deals in a case related to the 2021 riot at the U.S. Capitol. Gary Springstead made the request on behalf of Ryan Kelley. He's asking a judge for another 60-day timeout in federal court in Washington. Prosecutors are not opposed. Kelley is charged with misdemeanors. He’s accused of disruptive conduct, injuring public property and entering restricted space without permission on Jan. 6, 2021. Kelley insists he was lawfully protesting the results of the 2020 presidential election. He finished fourth in the August Republican primary for governor.

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Two North Carolina Democratic government lawyers have argued on competing sides at an appeals court in a case over whether the Wake County district attorney can prosecute Attorney General Josh Stein or others for a 2020 campaign commercial. Private attorneys for Stein and Wake District Attorney Lorrin Freeman met Tuesday before a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. At issue is a state law that makes certain political speech a crime. Stein's campaign ad criticized his then-Republican challenger for AG over untested rape kits. Stein and his allies say the 1931 law is unconstitutional and want the judges to block its enforcement.

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Arizona’s top officials have certified the midterm election results. The governor, secretary of state, attorney general and chief justice signed off on the election results Monday. Their signatures formalize victories for Democrats over Republicans who falsely claimed the 2020 election was rigged. The certification opens a five-day window for formal election challenges. Republican Kari Lake, who lost the race for governor, is expected to file a lawsuit after weeks of criticizing the administration of the election. The certification also allows for an automatic recount to begin in a handful of races.

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The Biden administration is actively searching for ways to safeguard abortion access for millions of women. But those efforts are bumping up against a complex web of strict new state laws enacted in the months after the Supreme Court stripped the constitutional right. After midterm elections there’s a renewed purpose at the White House to find ways to help women in states have virtually outlawed or limited the treatment, and to enforce policies already in place. But the administration is shackled by a ban on federal funding for most abortions, a conservative-leaning Supreme Court and a split Congress.

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A U.S. Supreme Court case involving North Carolina's congressional districts could have ramifications for the way voting districts are drawn in other states. At issue in Wednesday's arguments is whether state courts can strike down U.S. House maps passed by state lawmakers for violating state constitutions. North Carolina's Republican legislative leaders are asserting an “independent state legislature” theory — claiming the U.S. Constitution gives no role to state courts in federal election disputes. The outcome could affect similar lawsuits pending in state courts in Kentucky, New Mexico and Utah. It also could have implications in New York and Ohio, where state courts previously struck down U.S. House districts.

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News channel Al Jazeera is formally asking the International Criminal Court to investigate the fatal shooting of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh as she was reporting from a Palestinian refugee camp in May. Al Jazeera, which made the request Tuesday, has accused the Israeli government of specifically targeting its journalists, calling Abu Akleh’s death a war crime. The news outlet said it wants ICC prosecutor Karim Khan to include the reporter's killing in his ongoing investigation into the situation in Palestine.

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The Supreme Court’s conservative majority is sounding sympathetic to a Christian graphic artist who objects to designing wedding websites for gay couples. But in arguments Monday, liberal justices suggested that allowing that discrimination could open the door to broader refusals by businesses to serve Black, Jewish or Islamic customers, interracial couples and many others. The Colorado case is the latest clash of religion and gay rights to land at the high court. A case involving a Colorado baker and a wedding cake for a gay couple ended with a limited decision five years ago and is to return to the court.

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The U.S. Senate has confirmed the appointment of a federal magistrate from southern Indiana to the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The Senate voted 60-31 Monday to confirmed Doris L. Pryor. Since March 2018, Pryor has served as magistrate judge for the Southern District of Indiana. Before that, she served as an assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Indiana. Republican Sen. Todd Young of Indiana says Pryor “is a public servant of the highest caliber.” She will be the first Black from Indiana ever to serve on the 7th Circuit, which covers Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin.

The manager appointed by the U.S. Justice Department to oversee reforms to the beleaguered water system in Mississippi’s capital city says he hopes to wrap up work in one year or less. Ted Henifin's intended time frame echoes the Justice Department’s order appointing him as interim manager in Jackson. Henifin has been tasked with implementing 13 projects to improve the water system’s near-term stability. His work is meant to be an interim step while city, state and federal officials negotiate a court-enforced decree to mandate improvements. Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba says the city’s work with the federal government to improve the water system could take longer than one year.

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A judge has thrown out bribery and fraud charges against former New York Lt. Gov. Brian Benjamin, leaving him facing only records falsification charges. Federal Judge J. Paul Oetken ruled Monday. Hours later, prosecutors notified the judge they were appealing to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Oetken says an indictment lacked an explicit example in which Benjamin provided a favor for a bribe. Benjamin, a Democrat, resigned after his April arrest. He pleaded not guilty to charges that he obtained campaign contributions from a real estate developer after agreeing to secure state money for a nonprofit organization. His lawyers say Benjamin is thankful for the ruling.

Same-sex couples say they're happy that Congress is moving quickly to ensure nationwide recognition of gay marriage. But they're also upset that it's necessary seven years after the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed it as a constitutional right. Democrats moved to add protections after the high court overturned a woman's right to abortion and Justice Clarence Thomas suggested a decision upholding gay marriage also could be reconsidered. Congress is expected to approve the Respect for Marriage Act. Sharon Bishop-Baldwin says she's disheartened her rights are still an issue. She and her wife led a fight for the right to wed in Oklahoma and thought the matter was settled.

Same-sex couples say they're happy that Congress is moving quickly to ensure nationwide recognition of gay marriage. But they're also upset that it's necessary seven years after the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed it as a constitutional right. Democrats moved to add protections after the high court overturned a woman's right to abortion and Justice Clarence Thomas suggested a decision upholding gay marriage also could be reconsidered. Congress is expected to approve the Respect for Marriage Act. Sharon Bishop-Baldwin says she's disheartened her rights are still an issue. She and her wife led a fight for the right to wed in Oklahoma and thought the matter was settled.

As a businessman and president, Donald Trump faced a litany of lawsuits and criminal investigations yet emerged from the legal scrutiny time and again with his public and political standing largely intact. But he’s perhaps never confronted a probe as perilous as the Mar-a-Lago investigation, an inquiry focused on the potential mishandling of top-secret documents. The sense of vulnerability has been heightened in recent weeks by the Justice Department’s appointment of an aggressive special counsel, the removal of a Trump-requested independent arbiter and the unequivocal rejection by judges of his lawyers’ arguments.

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The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has denounced a European Union proposal to create an U.N.-backed special tribunal to prosecute crimes in Ukraine. Karim Khan pushed back on Monday against the plan European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced last week to establish a special court to prosecute Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Khan says the ICC is capable of effectively dealing with war crimes committed in Ukraine, including by prosecuting high-ranking political figures. The Hague-based ICC has launched an investigation into war crimes in Ukraine but cannot prosecute the crime of invading another country. That's because Russia is not a signatory to the treaty that created the court.

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