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Obama announces panel to ease voting

President Obama made an aggressive push for new voting rights in his speech, announcing the creation of a nonpartisan commission to "improve the voting experience in America."

** FILE ** In this Tuesday, June 28, 2011, file photo, Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., center, flanked by Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, left, and Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., speaks during a meeting on Capitol Hill in Washington. The Senate holds its second hearing Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013, on gun curbs since the December 2012 shooting deaths of 20 first-graders in Newtown, Conn. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

Senate Dems, GOP far apart on guns at Judiciary hearing

Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee argued during a Tuesday hearing that a balance can be struck between combating gun violence with new laws and protecting Americans' Second Amendment rights, while Republicans said it would be unwise to enact new laws until the current ones are more vigorously enforced.

Vice President Joseph R. Biden speaks at Girard College in Philadelphia on Feb. 11, 2013, after a roundtable discussion on gun control with elected and law enforcement officials. (Associated Press)

Biden: Taking away guns 'a bunch of malarkey'

Vice President Joseph R. Biden on Monday characterized suggestions that he has ever favored confiscating guns as "malarkey" — a term the garrulous Mr. Biden used in last fall's vice presidential debate to rebut his opponent, Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan.

Musician and gun rights activist Ted Nugent addresses a seminar at the National Rifle Association's convention in Pittsburgh on May 1, 2011. (Associated Press) **FILE**

Ted Nugent to be guest at State of the Union

While other members of Congress are hosting gun-control advocates for Tuesday's State of the Union address, Rep. Steve Stockman has given one of his visitor's gallery tickets to Ted Nugent, the conservative gun-rights supporter.

**FILE** President Obama and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius leave the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington on Feb. 10, 2012, after the president announced the revamp of his contraception policy requiring religious institutions to fully pay for birth control. (Associated Press)

Feds recoup $4.2B in fraudulent health care payments

The federal government recouped $4.2 billion from fraudulent health care payments in fiscal 2012, the Obama administration said Monday, calling it the best return on investment since the government began a program 16 years ago to try to collect on bad payments.