BATON ROUGE, La. — Louisiana voters Saturday chose to send Republican state Treasurer John Kennedy to the U.S. Senate, filling the nation’s last Senate seat and giving the GOP a 52-48 edge in the chamber when the new term begins in January.
Mr. Kennedy had always been the runoff election’s front-runner in a state that overwhelmingly supported Donald Trump. He defeated Democrat Foster Campbell, a state utility regulator whose chances were seen as such a long-shot that national Democratic organizations offered little assistance to Mr, Campbell’s campaign.
The Senate runoff drew national attention, with Mr. Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence each traveling to Louisiana to rally for Mr. Kennedy.
Trump pledges he won't devote time to role on new 'Apprentice'
NEW YORK — President-elect Donald Trump said he won’t spend any time working on the new version of the TV reality show he starred in before seeking office, although he will be paid and credited as an executive producer.
“I have NOTHING to do with The Apprentice except for fact that I conceived it with Mark B & have a big stake in it,” Mr. Trump tweeted to his 17 million followers on Saturday, referring to producer Mark Burnett. “Will devote ZERO TIME!”
The arrangement, unusual for a sitting president, may subject Mr. Trump to criticism from watchdogs on the lookout for conflicts of interest between America’s first billionaire commander in chief and his far-flung business interests.
A Marine veteran in Congress opposes Mattis' nomination, and reaction is fierce
WASHINGTON — A member of Congress who served as a Marine in Iraq said he has been called “everything you can under the sun” by fellow veterans for his decision to oppose retired Marine Gen. James N. Mattis becoming defense secretary, but he stands by his choice.
Rep. Ruben Gallego, D.-Ariz., who became a congressman last year, said he has been insulted repeatedly by fellow combat veterans.
Mr. Gallego, whose district includes Phoenix, announced Dec. 5 that he was opposing President-elect Donald Trump’s nomination of Gen. Mattis as defense secretary because he believes “strongly in the principle of civilian leadership of the military.” He is one of the only members of Congress to come out openly against Gen. Mattis running the Pentagon.
Stanford University suspends raucous marching band
PALO ALTO, Calif. — The notorious Stanford University band will be suspended through next spring after administrators found “a systemic cultural problem” in the student group that has “not been taken seriously by the band or its leadership.”
The punishment stops all band activities, both on and off campus. Students who flout the order could be disciplined individually.
The Stanford band has had an infamous reputation since the 1960s and has been suspended before — in 1986, for urinating on the field, and in 2006, after being accused of trashing the trailer that had been its home.
The band already had been under scrutiny for its behavior since 2012. In the spring of 2015, Stanford barred the band from performing at away athletic events after finding it had violated university rules on alcohol, controlled substances, hazing and sexual harassment.
Holocaust survivors score victory in reclaiming stolen art
WASHINGTON — A group of Holocaust survivors and their families notched a crucial victory on Friday, as Congress approved legislation that would make it easier to reclaim art confiscated during World War II.
The unanimous vote by the Senate was the culmination of a bipartisan effort to help victims whose art was taken by the Nazis and their allies. The House passed the bill Wednesday.
Should President Barack Obama sign it into law, as expected, the measure would loosen, and standardize across the country, the statute of limitations on claims for the return of looted art. Survivors and their families would have six years to make a claim after identifying pieces taken from them and proving their right to them.
Also in the nation ...
Vandals spray-painted a Los Angeles-area church with three swastikas and other graffiti in what police said Saturday could be a hate crime. ... General Motors plans to recall nearly 50,000 sport utility vehicles made for police departments and other government agencies because of a hazard in the cooling system.