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Nation's first face transplant done in Cleveland

Updated: 12/16/2008 - A woman so horribly disfigured she was willing to risk her life to do something about it has undergone the nation's first near-total face transplant, the Cleveland Clinic announced Tuesday.

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Florida Police Close Books on '81 Walsh Killing

Updated: 12/16/2008 - A serial killer who died more than a decade ago is the person who decapitated the 6-year-old son of "America's Most Wanted" host John Walsh in 1981, police in Florida said Tuesday. The announcement brought to a close a case that has vexed the Walsh family for more than two decades, launched the television show about the nation's most notorious criminals and inspired changes in how authorities search for missing children.

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Obama Takes Questions From Grade Schoolers

Updated: 12/16/2008 - A dozen grade schoolers got their own chance to quiz President-elect Barack Obama on Tuesday, getting an earful on such issues as longer school days, how it feels to be on television, and even the first puppy's "business."

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Italian Mafia Taken Down By Raids

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Italian paramilitary police carried out massive arrests Tuesday against the Sicilian mafia in Palermo, "decapitating" the organization's leadership structure, the head of the city's carabinieri said.

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Cheney Defends Bush Administration

Updated: 12/16/2008 - In his first TV interview since the presidential election, Vice President Dick Cheney once again staunchly defended the Bush administration's record in the war on terror and, more specifically, the decision to go to war in Iraq.

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Britax Recalls Safety Seats

Updated: 12/16/2008 - The manufacturer says the harness straps may detach from their metal yoke (splitter plate) on the back of the child seat, if they are repeatedly loosened one strap at a time.

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Detroit Newspapers End Daily Delivery

Updated: 12/16/2008 - The Detroit Free Press and Detroit News will become the first major metropolitan newspapers in the U.S. to end daily home delivery, the papers announced Tuesday.

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Kennedy Interested in Clinton's Seat

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Caroline Kennedy, the 51-year-old daughter of President John F. Kennedy, has indicated her interest in filling the New York Senate seat being vacated by secretary of state designee Hillary Clinton.

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Poll: First Puppy Should Come From Shelter

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Americans' picks for a potential first puppy vary widely, but a CNN poll out Tuesday finds broad support on one aspect of the incoming Obama family's decision.

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Commentary: Illinois Needs Reform

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Kent Redfield says new laws and better choices by Illinois voters could end the state's tradition of corruption.

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One Thousand New Species Discovered

Updated: 12/16/2008 - A rat believed to be extinct for 11 million years, a spider with a foot-long legspan, and a hot pink cyanide-producing "dragon millipede" are among the thousand newly discovered species in the largely unexplored Mekong Delta region.

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White House Secretary Sports Black Eye

Updated: 12/16/2008 - White House Secretary Dana Perino was hit with a microphone during the scramble after an Iraqi reporter threw shows at President Bush.

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Thurber Competent to Stand Trial

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Court finds Thurber found competent to stand trial for murder of 19-year-old Jodi Sanderholm.

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Pools Could Close if Drain Covers Aren't Fixed

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Unless new anti-drowning drain covers are installed, tens of thousands of public swimming pools and hot tubs could be forced to close Saturday under a sweeping law designed to prevent drain suction from trapping children under water.

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Cruise Takes Risk in Nazi Film

Updated: 12/16/2008 - A Nazi-filled Christmas is not an easy sell. That's just one of the challenges Tom Cruise faces with his new World War II thriller "Valkyrie," which opens Dec. 25. In the film, which portrays the seldom-recalled German resistance to Adolf Hitler, Cruise plays would-be Hitler assassin Col. Claus von Stauffenberg.

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Scientists: Land Ice Melting

Updated: 12/16/2008 - More than 2 trillion tons of land ice in Greenland, Antarctica and Alaska have melted since 2003, according to new NASA satellite data that show the latest signs of what scientists say is global warming.

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Kerry: Pakistan Sincere in Terror Efforts

Updated: 12/16/2008 - Pakistan appears "sincere" in its effort to crack down on a militant group blamed for the Mumbai terrorist attack and has arrested more suspects, Sen. John Kerry said Tuesday.

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White House Still Working on Auto Fix

Updated: 12/16/2008 - The White House said Tuesday it was still evaluating options for a bailout of distressed U.S. automakers and suggested any deal requiring taxpayer money would require major concessions by all sides.

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Money Manager Accused of Scamming

Updated: 12/16/2008 - The money manager accused of duping investors in one of Wall Street's biggest Ponzi schemes once boasted to the Securities and Exchange Commission about how much money he earned and formally advised the U.S. government on ways to protect investors from scam artists. Now Bernard Madoff is accused of being one.

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Federal Grand Jury Investigates Richardson

Updated: 12/16/2008 - A federal grand jury is investigating a California firm that contributed heavily to New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson's political activities.

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