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BC-AP Top Stories Digest

May 7, 2019

Here are the AP’s latest coverage plans, top stories and promotable content. All times EDT. For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at https://newsroom.ap.org.

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ONLY ON AP

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POLICE SHOOTING-CONNECTICUT — A Connecticut police officer who fatally shot a man during an attempted traffic stop last month had been told his conduct was unacceptable by several former supervisors, including some who raised concerns about his difficulty handling stressful situations, according to personnel records obtained by The Associated Press. By Dave Collins. SENT: 650 words, photos.

PAKISTAN-CHINA-TRAFFICKING-BRIDES — Muqadas Ashraf was just 16 when her parents married her off to a Chinese man who had come to Pakistan looking for a bride. Less than five months later, Muqadas is back in her home country, pregnant and seeking a divorce from a husband she says was abusive. She is one of hundreds of poor Christian girls who have been trafficked to China in a market for brides that has swiftly grown in Pakistan since late last year, activists say. Brokers are aggressively seeking out girls for Chinese men, sometimes even cruising outside churches to ask for potential brides. They are being helped by Christian clerics paid to target impoverished parents in their congregation with promises of wealth in exchange for their daughters. By Kathy Gannon and Dake Kang. SENT: 1,900 words, photos. An abridged version of 970 words has also been sent.

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TOP STORIES

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TRUMP-IMMIGRATION — Hastily-written executive orders. Policy declarations by tweet. President Donald Trump’s White House hasn’t been known for carefully crafting policy. But that’s exactly what Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is trying to do as he prepares to roll out a long-awaited two-pronged immigration plan. Frustrated by congressional pushback and inaction, Kushner has assembled a team that is not only hashing out policy proposals— but also drafting legislative language in-house, according to people familiar with the efforts. By Jill Colvin. SENT: 400 words. UPCOMING: 750 words by 4:30 p.m., photos, video.

CONGRESS-RUSSIA PROBE — The Trump administration instructs former White House counsel Don McGahn to defy a subpoena for documents from the House Judiciary Committee, arguing that the materials are subject to executive privilege. It’s President Donald Trump’s latest pushback against Democratic-led investigations following special counsel Robert Mueller’s report, and comes as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell declares “case close” on the Russia probe. By Mary Clare Jalonick and Lisa Mascaro. SENT: 900 words. UPCOMING: 890 words by 5 p.m. photos, video.

TRUMP-CHINA-TARIFFS-Q&A — A breakdown in trade talks between the United States and China is spooking financial markets and putting a chill on prospects for the global economy. A Q&A explains what went wrong, what the two countries are fighting over and what the fallout might be. By Paul Wiseman. Upcoming: 900 words, photos by 4 p.m.

MAGIC MUSHROOMS-DENVER VOTE — Voters were deciding whether to make Denver the first U.S. city to decriminalize psilocybin — the psychoactive substance in “magic mushrooms” — and add a new chapter to the city’s role in shaping wider drug policy. A citizen initiative on the ballot followed the same tack taken by marijuana activists to decriminalize pot possession in 2005 in the city. That move was followed by statewide legalization in 2012. A number of other states then broadly allowed marijuana use and sales by adults. By Kathleen Foody. SENT: 600 words, photos.

PREGNANCY DEATHS — More U.S. women are dying from pregnancy-related causes, and more than half of those deaths are considered preventable, according to a new government report. By Mike Stobbe and Marilynn Marchione. SENT: 650 words, photos.

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WASHINGTON/POLITICS

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SPY MUSEUM — James Bond’s shiny silver sports car — with its JB007 rotating license plate — is the first thing visitors see when they step into the new and improved International Spy Museum that opens Sunday in Washington. After that, it’s as if the history of Hollywood’s famous private eye vanishes in invisible ink, while the stories of real-life spies and modern-day espionage take center stage. By Deb Riechmann. SENT: 830 words, photos, video.

MELANIA TRUMP — First lady Melania Trump lays out plans to make her “Be Best’ initiative to help children even best-er. By Darlene Superville. SENT: 390 words. UPCOMING: 750 words by 4 p.m., photos, video.

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NATIONAL

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JUVENILE TERROR LOOPHOLE — The Justice Department’s ability to charge minors for supporting terrorist groups has been hampered by a 2018 Supreme Court decision. The ruling has forced federal prosecutors to hand off at least one such case to local authorities. The decision in a case unrelated to terrorism opened a loophole that could allow young supporters of groups like the Islamic State to skate on charges from the federal government. By Jake Bleiberg and Michael Balsamo. SENT: 680 words, photo.

ABORTION-GEORGIA — Georgia’s Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed legislation banning abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected. That can be as early as six weeks, before many women know they’re pregnant. Kemp said he was signing the bill “to ensure that all Georgians have the opportunity to live, grow, learn and prosper in our great state.” SENT: 600 words, photos.

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INTERNATIONAL

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IRAN-US — A sudden White House announcement that a U.S. aircraft carrier and a bomber wing would be deployed in the Persian Gulf to counter Iran comes just days ahead of the one-year anniversary of President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American from Tehran’s nuclear deal. SENT: 975 words, photos.

SOUTH AFRICA-ELECTION — A quarter-century after the end of apartheid, South Africans go to the polls Wednesday for the sixth national elections since the demise of the harsh system of racial discrimination, although the country remains divided by economic inequality. The African National Congress, the party of Nelson Mandela that has been in power since 1994, is likely to win a majority but it will face a difficult challenge to match the 62% of the vote that it won in the previous election five years ago. SENT: 675 words, photos.

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HEALTH/SCIENCE

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SCIENCE SAYS-WHY BIODIVERSITY MATTERS — You may go your entire life without seeing an endangered species, yet the globe’s biodiversity crisis threatens all of humanity in numerous unseen or unrecognized ways, scientists say. A massive United Nations report this week warned that nature is in trouble, estimated 1 million species are threatened with extinction if nothing is done and said the worldwide deterioration of nature is everybody’s problem. By Science Writer By Seth Borenstein. SENT: 775 words, photos.

SCIENCE SAYS-MEATLESS MEATS — A new era of meat alternatives is here, but patties from Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods can be nutritionally similar to beef. By Food & Health Writer Candace Choi. SENT: 810 words, photos.

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BUSINESS/TECHNOLOGY

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FINANCIAL MARKETS — Stocks fell broadly on Wall Street after President Trump’s threat to escalate a trade war moved closer to reality. SENT: 450 words, photos, developing.

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ARTS/ENTERTAINMENT

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MET GALA-INSIDE: The cocktail bar was shutting down, and guests were being encouraged to begin the elegant trek to dinner through the grand halls of the Metropolitan Museum. But Joan Collins had swept in, channeling her “Dynasty” character in tiers of fluffy ivory feathers and gobs of blinding diamonds, and she wanted a glass of wine. “I’m having a great time,” she said, of her very first Met Gala. “I’d be even better if I had a drink.” A look inside the festivities at one of the world’s most exclusive parties. By National Writer Jocelyn Noveck. SENT. 1069 words, with photos, video.

TV-COURT TV REBOOT — Court TV is ending its long recess. The channel that thrived during the trial-crazy 1990s comes back from the dead after more than a decade amid true-crime craze that its backers hope will launch it into a long new life. The new Court TV, which will be available over the air and on some cable providers, will focus on big cases such as the upcoming sexual assault trial of Harvey Weinstein. But it will also focus on little-known trials that were essential to the old network. By Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton. SENT: 990 words, photos.

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SPORTS

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RAC--COUNTRY HOUSE-FORGOTTEN WINNER — If not for the roses outside the stable or the sign by his stall reading 2019 Kentucky Derby winner, it might be hard to know Country House won horse racing’s marquee event. The buzz is all about the disqualification. SENT: 650 words, photos.