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FILE - In this Nov. 23, 2011 file photo, an American flag flies from the U.S. Capitol in Washington. The federal government ran a lower budget deficit in August 2014 than a year ago, remaining on track to record the lowest deficit for the entire year since 2008. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

It’s not for frugal: Half of the U.S. Senate gets an F in ‘fiscal performance’

- The Washington Times

Alas, almost half of the U.S. Senate has earned an F grade in “fiscal performance” according to the National Taxpayers Union’s 35th annual rating of Congress. Indeed, 45 senators received the rock bottom grade on the scorecard, which analyzes their responses to every single roll call vote affecting federal taxes, spending, debt and significant regulations.

House Select Committee on Benghazi chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy, South Carolina Republican (left) and ranking member Elijah E. Cummings, Maryland Democrat, commenced hearings Wednesday on the implementation of the Accountability Review Board recommendations following the deadly 2012 attack on the U.S. embassy in Libya that resulted in several American deaths. (Associated Press)

Bipartisan House Benghazi panel kicks off without bickering

- The Washington Times

The House Select Committee on Benghazi’s much-anticipated first public hearing Wednesday produced few partisan fireworks, as members of both parties grilled a top State Department official about improvements to embassy security in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack that left America’s ambassador to Libya and three other Americans dead.

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3,100 Arizonans may lose insurance over status

Associated Press

Federal officials say 3,100 Arizonans will lose health insurance coverage they bought through the federal marketplace if they don't provide proof of citizenship or legal immigration status by the end of the month.

US economic rebound slow to reach Philadelphia

- Associated Press

The nation's economic recovery has been slow to reach the Philadelphia metropolitan area, hurt in part by an exodus of residents and a continued collapse in mid-wage jobs, new census data show.

Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey, from left, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, and National Counterterrorism Center Director Matthew Olsen testify before the House Homeland Security Full Committee during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014.  (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Jeh Johnson rebuffs Obama, backs Reagan on Libya visas ban

- The Washington Times

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson will not lift the ban that keeps Libyans from coming to study aviation or nuclear sciences in the U.S., he told Congress on Wednesday, pushing back against an initiative supported by the State Department and the White House.

President Barack Obama greets members of the military upon his arrival on Air Force One at MacDill Air Force Base, Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014. Obama will spend the night in Tampa and tomorrow morning he will receive a briefing at US Central Command about the ongoing military campaigns in Iraq and Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Obama tells troops no ground war in Iraq

- The Washington Times

Contradicting comments from his top military advisers, President Obama told U.S. troops Wednesday that American forces "do not and will not have a combat mission" in the campaign to defeat Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq.

Ex-governors urge citizenship test for students

- Associated Press

Three former South Carolina governors are pushing for high school students to take the same test that immigrants must pass to become a U.S. citizen.