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Betting that thin is in — and might be the only way forward — Senate Republicans are eyeing a "skinny repeal" that would roll back an unpopular portion of the federal health law. But health policy analysts warn that the idea has been tried before, and with little success.

President Trump is nominating Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback as an ambassador at large for religious freedom. The State Department post requires confirmation by the Senate, of which Brownback was a member from 1996 to 2011. He would be succeeded by Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer.

After the announcement Brownback tweeted, "Religious Freedom is the first freedom. The choice of what you do with your own soul. I am honored to serve such an important cause."

Senate Republicans have at least narrowed the options on what comes next for the Affordable Care Act — casting two separate votes since Tuesday that knocked out a "repeal-only" proposal and rejected a plan for replacement.

So, as lawmakers resume debate on Thursday, they will be staring at basically one possibility: a so-called "skinny repeal" that would surgically remove some key provisions from Obamacare, while leaving the rest intact — at least for now.

The Trump administration announced sanctions on Wednesday against Venezuela, intended to pressure President Nicolas Maduro to drop plans for a controversial election.

The sanctions target 13 current or former officials from Maduro's government, freezing their U.S. assets and preventing Americans from doing business with them, the AP reports.

As Cost Of U.S. Health Care Skyrockets, So Does Pay Of Health Care CEOs

17 hours ago

In the seven years since the Affordable Care Act was passed, CEOs of U.S. health care companies have made a lot of money.

Their compensation far outstrips the wage growth of nearly all Americans, according to reporter Bob Herman, who published an analysis this week of "the sky-high pay of health care CEOs" for the online news site, Axios.

At 10:43 a.m. Wednesday, inmate and convicted murderer Ronald Phillips was pronounced dead, executed via lethal injection by the state of Ohio — the first time the state has carried out a death sentence in more than three years.

Phillips' death at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville may mark the end of one chapter in the state's battle to find a legally permissible means of execution – and the state may soon begin carrying out many more death sentences.

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says he is staying on the job.

(SOUNBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

REX TILLERSON: I'm not going anywhere.

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Louisiana Republican Congressman Steve Scalise is out of the hospital. Scalise was shot during a baseball practice with his colleagues last month. He was released from a Washington hospital yesterday, and he is now in a rehab center. NPR's Brian Naylor reports.

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You may have read that Bigfoot was found dead on a lake shore in New Mexico this summer. He wasn't. You can learn about that hoax here from the myth-busting and fact-checking site Snopes.

You may have heard NASA predicted the Earth will endure 15 straight days of darkness this fall. It didn't. Snopes has that covered too — debunking the claim when it first appeared in 2015 and again in May when it resurfaced.

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