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Vice President Joe Biden talks with Iraq's Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi during a session of the U.S.-Iraq Higher Coordinating Committee, Thursday, April 16, 2015, in the Indian Treaty Room of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) ** FILE **

Joe Biden tries to smooth over tensions with Baghdad

- The Washington Times

As tensions mount between the Obama administration and Baghdad over the quality of Iraqi security forces, Vice President Joseph R. Biden tried to reassure Iraq’s prime minister Monday that the U.S. stands behind the Iraqi government in its battle with the Islamic State.

A new housing unit, left, is under construction on Tuesday, July 1, 2014, in Kiryas Joel, N.Y. Kiryas Joel is a tightly packed Hasidic enclave surrounded by suburbia in the Hudson Valley. A petition to expand the village by annexing 500 acres of leafy lots nearby has heightened tensions with some suburban neighbors. There are fears it would lead to unwanted increases in people, homes and traffic. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)

The elusive magic of neighborhoods

What determines where you live? Housing costs, family income, the quality of schools, length of commute all matter in our housing decisions. But there are overarching factors that are even more important: the people who compose your family and where you work. Have your first child? Get a divorce? Find a new job? You’re a strong candidate for a move.

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News briefs from around Tennessee at 1:58 a.m. EDT

Associated Press

Two B.B. King heirs who've been most outspoken about the blues legend's care in his final days have accused King's two closest aides of poisoning him, but the attorney for King's estate called the claims ridiculous and police said there was no active homicide investigation.

FILE - In this March 30, 2011 file photo, Jaime Rodriguez, mayor of the Mexican town Villa Garcia, speaks on a cellphone in Monterrey, Mexico, a day after he survived an assassination attempt. As mayor of a suburb of the northern industrial city of Monterrey, Rodriguez survived two assassination attempts that left his car bullet-ridden, defying, he says, the fierce Zetas cartel. Now he is trying to beat the odds in another way, running as an independent for governor of Nuevo Leon, a wealthy and strategic state bordering Texas. (AP Photo, File)

Independent candidate rides hated of politics in Mexico

- Associated Press

Mexicans' disgust with corrupt, aloof, high-living politicians has a name, and it's El Bronco. The horseback-riding, boot-clad, tough-talking Jaime Rodriguez lives up to his nickname.

Highlights from around the state Capitol

Associated Press

After nearly four hours of divisive debate, the Texas Senate voted along party lines Monday in favor of a Republican-backed measure that would tighten rules for teenagers unable to get the required parental consent for an abortion.

2 gun rights bills expected to get final votes in Texas

- Associated Press

Two bills to expand gun rights that had been expected to fly through the Republican-controlled Texas Legislature have instead hit several snags and will need a big push during this final week of the session if they are to become law.

FILE - In a Feb. 18, 2015, file photo, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, left, and Senate President John Cullerton, D-Chicago, talk on the floor of the General Assembly in Springfield, Ill. Lawmakers enter the final scheduled week of the spring session Monday, May 25, 2015, with a number of big agenda items to deal with, if Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic leaders can overcome their stalemate. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman, File)

Standoff between Rauner, Democrats hangs over Legislature

- Associated Press

A standoff between Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democrats who control the Illinois Legislature is threatening to derail action on a long list of issues as lawmakers enter the final days of their spring session.

Woman hanging on Shell ship since Friday ends drill protest

Associated Press

The woman who had been hanging off the anchor chain of a support ship that is part of Royal Dutch Shell's plans to explore for oil in the Arctic Ocean ended her dayslong protest north of Seattle on Monday morning.

This undated colorized transmission electron micrograph image made available by the CDC shows an Ebola virus virion. For the first time, Ebola has been discovered inside the eyes of a patient months after the virus was gone from his blood, according to a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine on Thursday, May 7, 2015. (Frederick Murphy/CDC via AP)

A little good news about Ebola

- The Washington Times

The news from Africa and the Third World is seldom good, and much of the bad news is about disease born of ignorance, superstition and primitive sanitation, news dispatched by a media addicted to tales of unrelieved gloom, certain doom and inevitable disaster.