• ND officials eager to expand trade with Cuba

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The Obama administration's move to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba could lead to increased sales of North Dakota crops to the communist island nation, though some issues would need to be sorted out, officials say. North Dakota farmers grow an abundance of dry peas, dry beans, lentils and potatoes, which are all big parts of the Cuban diet. Over the past 12 years, the state has exported an average of about $1 million worth of agricultural goods to Cuba annually through a humanitarian food exemption to the U.S. trade embargo, according to North Dakota Trade Office data. The agency's executive director, Dean Gorder, said there is the potential for even bigger sales to Cuba. "The population of Cuba

  • Unemployed men suffer more than unemployed women, survey shows

    Megan Marsden Christensen, KSL | Updated: Tue, Dec 16, 2014

    Weak growth, foreign competition and technological change have caused many Americans to be out of work, but men are handling unemployment harder than women, according to a new survey.

  • Dr. No to the end: Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn blocks bills in last day in Senate

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Updated: 21 hr ago

    Departing Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma, catches flak for single-handedly blocking approval of legislation addressing terrorism insurance and veteran suicide.

  • Oklahoma Senator-elect James Lankford lands plum committee assignments

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Updated: Mon, Dec 15, 2014

    The Oklahoma City Republican will be busy after taking over for Sen. Tom Coburn next month. He was tapped to serve on Appropriations, Homeland Security, Intelligence and Indian Affairs Committees.

  • Social Security Q&A

    Published: Sun, Dec 14, 2014

    Social Security Q&A for Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014.

  • Congress sends Obama $1.1 trillion spending bill

    By DAVID ESPO and DONNA CASSATA | Updated: Sat, Dec 13, 2014

    The vote was 56-40 in favor of the measure, which funds nearly the entire U.S. government through the Sept. 30 end of the fiscal year.

  • U.S. Senate sends president defense bill with full fleet of AWACS, other Oklahoma provisions

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Published: Sat, Dec 13, 2014

    Massive defense bill grants small pay raise to active duty troops, prevents another round of base closures and authorizes $111 million in construction at Tinker Air Force Base.

  • Move over Black Friday—Giving Tuesday breaks records in holiday generosity

    Lane Anderson, Deseret News | Updated: Mon, Dec 8, 2014

    Giving Tuesday, the charitable answer to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, raised $45 million for causes this week.

  • Door to door: Following one food donation, from giver to receiver

    Lane Anderson, Deseret News | Updated: Tue, Dec 9, 2014

    Ever wonder where your food donations go? We followed one can to find out.

  • Senate to take up $1.1T bill to keep govt running

    By ANDREW TAYLOR, AP | Published: Fri, Dec 12, 2014

    WASHINGTON — It’s now up to the Senate to pass a huge $1.1 trillion spending bill to keep the government running, but not before a battle between old school veterans and new breed freshmen such as tea partier Ted Cruz and Elizabeth Warren, a liberal with a national following. The smart money’s on old school types such as Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and GOP Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. The measure passed the House on Thursday after a day of drama but by a relatively comfortable 219-206 vote.

  • Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn gives emotional farewell

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Updated: Thu, Dec 11, 2014

    In his farewell address, the Oklahoma Republican warns again that a powerful central government is a threat to individual liberty. Coburn is resigning in the next few weeks.

  • National job list honors Oklahoma City-based Paycom

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Thu, Dec 11, 2014

    Oklahoma City-based Paycom — a provider of online payroll and human resources services — landed at No. 16 on Glassdoor’s 2015 list of the nation’s 50 Best Places to Work. Paycom also was among The Oklahoman’s Top Workplaces for 2014, ranking second among large state-based companies. The only other Oklahoma company to make the national list is Tulsa-based QuickTrip.

  • 42.9 million Americans have unpaid medical bills

    By JOSH BOAK, AP Economics Writer | Published: Thu, Dec 11, 2014

    WASHINGTON — Nearly 20 percent of U.S. consumers — 42.9 million people — have unpaid medical debts, according to a new report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The findings suggest that many Americans are being trapped by debt because they are confused by the notices they get from hospitals and insurance companies about the cost of treatment. As a result, millions of Americans may be surprised to find they are stuck with lower credit scores, making it harder for them to borrow to buy a home or an automobile. “When people fall ill and end up at the hospital with unexpected bills, far too often they have entered into a financial maze,” CFPB director Richard Cordray said in a speech to be delivered

  • Pew poll finds support for gun rights at 21-year high

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Published: Wed, Dec 10, 2014

    In a new survey, a majority of Americans say gun rights more important than gun control. It is the first time that more people supported gun rights since the organization began polling the question in 1993.

  • Oklahoma U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn slams federal tax giveaways

    BY CHRIS CASTEEL, Washington Bureau | Updated: Wed, Dec 10, 2014

    In his last report before leaving the Senate, the Muskogee Republican says the tax code favors the wealthy and manipulates the economy. Sen. Tom Coburn criticizes a range of tax breaks, including those for oil and gas companies and Indian tribes.

  • What you should know about Social Security and divorce

    Flint Stephens, KSL | Updated: Mon, Nov 3, 2014

    Many people do not realize that a divorced person may be entitled to Social Security benefits based on the work history of a former spouse. Divorce can be an important factor affecting Social Security benefits.

  • Senate report: Harsh CIA tactics didn’t work

    By KEN DILANIAN and BRADLEY KLAPPER | Published: Tue, Dec 9, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — In a damning indictment of CIA practices, Senate investigators on Tuesday accused the spy agency of inflicting pain and suffering on al-Qaida prisoners far beyond America’s legal boundaries and then deceiving the nation with narratives of life-saving interrogations unsubstantiated by its own records. The Senate Intelligence Committee released a mountain of evidence from CIA files suggesting the treatment of detainees in secret prisons a decade ago was worse than the government described to Congress or the public. It doesn’t call the tactics torture, but Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the panel’s chairman, writes that “under any common meaning of the term, CIA detainees were tortured.

  • D.C. Notes: Oklahoma's share of federal spending below national average

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Published: Sun, Dec 7, 2014

    Chris Casteel: D.C. Notes for Sunday, Dec. 7, 2014.

  • It’s official: America is now No. 2

    Published: Fri, Dec 5, 2014

    There’s no easy way to say this, so Brett Arends, MarketWatch columnist, just says it: We’re no longer No. 1. Today, we’re No. 2. Yes, it’s official. The Chinese economy just overtook the United States economy to become the largest in the world. For the first time since Ulysses S. Grant was president, America is not the leading economic power on the planet. It just happened — and almost nobody noticed.

  • U.S. House sends on defense bill protecting AWACS at Tinker Air Force Base

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Published: Fri, Dec 5, 2014

    Legislation negotiated by Oklahoma Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe would also boost the amount of money for aircraft maintenance, the main activity at the sprawling base. Bill now goes to Senate, where Sen. Tom Coburn could stall progress.