Morning News Briefs and Tuesday's Forecast

Posted: January 7, 2014

Winchester-Area Weather: A WIND CHILL WARNING remains in effect until 6 PM today with wind chills of 15 to 20 below zero and as low as 30 below on ridgelines. The lowest wind chill values are expected through the midday hours. Temperatures of zero to 5 above early this morning, rising to 10 to 15 above this afternoon. West winds of 15 to 25 mph with gusts up to 35 mph. Low tonight of 9.
The good news is we'll head into a warm-up on Wednesday. Partly cloudy and 31 on Wednesday, then a high of 38 on Thursday before reaching 44 on Friday. Rain Saturday, but the high is expected to reach into the 50s.

Morning News Briefs from the Associated Press for Tuesday, January 7, 2014

South, East brace for polar temps, wind chills
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Frigid air that snapped decades-old records will make venturing outside dangerous for a second straight day, this time spreading to southern and eastern parts of the U.S. and keeping many schools and businesses shuttered. Meanwhile, residents driven from their homes by power outages in the Midwest worried about burst pipes. Monday's subzero temperatures broke records in Chicago, which set a record for the date at minus 16, and Fort Wayne, Ind., where the mercury fell to 13 below. Records also fell in Oklahoma and Texas, and wind chills across the region were 40 below and colder. Officials in states like Indiana already struggling with high winds and more than a foot of snow urged residents to stay home if they could.

Showdown set on unemployment bill in Senate
WASHINGTON (AP) — The new year looks a lot like the old one in the Senate, with Democrats scratching for votes to pass an agenda they share with President Barack Obama, and Republicans decidedly unenthusiastic about supporting legislation without changes. At the dawn of the 2014 election year, the issue is unemployment benefits, and a White House-backed bill to renew benefits that lapsed last month for the long-term jobless.

Yellen faces challenges as Fed trims bond buys
WASHINGTON (AP) — Janet Yellen will take the helm of a Federal Reserve facing a significantly different economic landscape than the one that dominated Ben Bernanke's tenure as chairman, confronting her with different decisions as well. Bernanke's eight years leading the Fed were largely consumed with the Great Recession and his efforts to cure it by pushing down interest rates and pumping cash into the economy. Many economists think Yellen's big challenge will be deciding how to ease off some of those very policies, which Bernanke took with Yellen's support.

Political swipes in India show rape a voter issue
NEW DELHI (AP) — The 16-year-old reported that she had been gang raped, only to be raped again by the same men the next day and later threatened for going to the police in eastern India. By the time charges were filed more than two months later, she had been set on fire and died from her injuries. The girl's death on New Year's Eve in West Bengal came more than a year after a deadly gang rape in New Delhi raised awareness and outrage over chronic sexual violence in India and government failures to protect women. The New Delhi rape was considered a major reason for why voters ousted the capital's government last month, and a furious response to the West Bengal case suggests that with general elections just months away, politicians are anxious to impress voters who are demanding that women's safety become a police priority.

For Obama, Congress, a last grasp at immigration
WASHINGTON (AP) — His agenda tattered by last year's confrontations and missteps, President Barack Obama begins 2014 clinging to the hope of winning a lasting legislative achievement: an overhaul of immigration laws. It will require a deft and careful use of his powers, combining a public campaign in the face of protests over his administration's record number of deportations with quiet, behind-the-scenes outreach to Congress, something seen by lawmakers and immigration advocates as a major White House weakness.

Gay couples' rush to marry in Utah grinds to halt
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — More than 1,000 gay and lesbian couples in Utah have exchanged wedding vows over the past two weeks in jubilant celebrations — but the rush on same-sex marriage licenses has come to an end. The U.S. Supreme Court put a halt to them Monday by granting the state of Utah a stay on a federal judge's ruling that two other courts previously denied. The decision drew cheers from Gov. Gary Herbert and other state officials, who immediately instructed county clerks to stop marrying gay and lesbian couples. In Utah's largest county, four couples were turned away.

In one frozen town, cigarettes worth freezing for
CORAOPOLIS, Pa. (AP) — Certain essentials must be taken care of, no matter what. As a record freeze hit this hard-luck town outside Pittsburgh early Tuesday, basic needs came down to football, lottery tickets and cigarettes. Especially cigarettes. Dangerously frigid air arrived in Coraopolis, Pa., from the Midwest, borne by a biting wind that pulled smoke horizontally from the factory chimneys along the Ohio River. With Tuesday's school already cancelled and local TV news issuing dire warnings, the mile-long main drag fell silent except for a few cars and the rumble of freight trains running two blocks over.

No. 1 Florida State beats No. 2 Auburn 34-31
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — After a regular season filled with blowout victories and easy fourth quarters, Jameis Winston and Florida State showed they could close like champions, too. No. 2 Auburn wobbled the top-ranked Seminoles by jumping out to an 18-point lead in the first half, and then put Florida State on the brink of defeat for the first time this season.

Florida St. fans revel in BCS victory over Auburn
Florida State fans shouted and danced in raucous celebration after their top-ranked team roared back in the final seconds of the fourth quarter to beat Auburn in the BCS championship game. Many pumped fists gleefully, hugged and slapped high fives in Tallahassee, Fla., after Jameis Winston threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Kelvin Benjamin with 13 seconds left as Florida State beat No. 2 Auburn 34-31 on Monday night.

Attacks in Iraq kill 4 as siege in Anbar continues
BAGHDAD (AP) — Officials say attacks in Iraq have killed at least four people as government troops continue their siege of two cities overrun by al-Qaida in western Anbar province. Maj. Raid Emad Rasheed says a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden truck into a police station in the northern city of Kirkuk, killing two people there and wounding 55, some critically.