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NJ ‘joking judge’ resigns after losing ruling

A New Jersey municipal judge, who is also an established stand-up comedian and actor, resigned Thursday after the state Supreme Court ruled he can’t moonlight as an entertainer.

House slashes $4 billion from food stamps in 217-210 vote

The House has voted to cut nearly $4 billion a year from food stamps, a 5 percent reduction to the nation’s main feeding program used by more than 1 in 7 Americans.

Pope Francis assails ‘small-minded’ rules, urges compassion

Signaling a dramatic shift in Vatican tone, Pope Francis said the Catholic Church had become obsessed by “small-minded rules” about how to be faithful and that pastors should instead emphasize compassion over condemnation when discussing divisive social issues of abortion, gays and contraception.

Washington Navy Yard opening three days after massacre

Some employees returning to work at the Washington Navy Yard Thursday said they felt it was too early to talk about the massacre earlier this week while others said it will take a while to put what happened behind them.

Teen DQ manager gets national praise for good deed

Joey Prusak was appalled when he saw a customer at the suburban Minneapolis Dairy Queen store where he works pick up someone else’s $20 bill and slip it into her purse.

NASA rover finds no hint of methane in Mars air

NASA’s Curiosity rover hasn’t discovered any signs of methane in the atmosphere of Mars, a finding that does not bode well for the possibility that microbes capable of producing the gas could be living below the planet’s surface, scientists said Thursday.

Postmaster says USPS may need emergency rate hike

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said Thursday his agency is in “the midst of a financial disaster” and may need an emergency increase in postage rates to keep operating.

Discovery of bodies in Oklahoma lake could shed light on years-old cases

Divers conducting a training exercise with sonar equipment found a 1969 Camaro and early 1950s Chevrolet at the bottom of an Oklahoma lake on Tuesday. Skeletal remains could end up solving cold cases that have left families without answers for decades.