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A few years ago, I was in my hometown of Essex, Massachusetts, for a visit. Down the hill from my boyhood home stands an idyllic New England baseball diamond where I had spent so much time in my youth. I had been told that many improvements had been made to the field which included dugouts a…

EDENTON — The Edenton Steamers beat the Virginia Beach Sea Dogs 9-1 Saturday night in front of a season-high crowd at Historic Hicks Field. The Steamers improve to 3-0 against Virginia Beach this season, with all three games coming at home. The Clams have now won nine straight at Historic Hi…

TARBORO — The Edenton Steamers had their 10-game winning streak snapped Thursday night in Tarboro, losing to the River Bandits 10-5. This was just the second road loss of the season for Edenton, with both losses coming at Tarboro Municipal Stadium. The Steamers fall to 16-5 overall, and 12-5…

Opinion

Our country is in the early stages of a Marxist insurrection. And it feels like the Marxists are currently winning. Over the last few weeks, the Supreme Court fired off a few of their own volleys in favor of our U.S. Constitution. The left has been pelting them with insults ever since.

The newest member of our U.S. Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett, was a “handmaid” in Kevin Ranaghan’s People of Praise religious cult. Her writings make clear her belief that a judge’s decisions should be colored by their religious beliefs, counter to the most basic tenets of our democracy.

Did our leaders even bother to think through all of the potential unintended consequences of picking a fight with Russia over Ukraine? And before anyone says that this is strictly between Ukraine and Russia, the New York Times dispelled that notion, pointing out that the CIA is on the ground inside the country along with allied special operations forces, organizing weapons deliveries from western countries and training Ukrainian fighters.

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As I always imagined it, the ascension of the first Black woman to the U.S. Supreme Court would signal an era of progress, a time of triumph for Americans who believe in the beloved community of which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke. I was well off the mark. This is no era of progress, no trumpet sound for celebration.

Last week, America, at least those interested, got to see Cassidy Hutchinson, a former top aide to Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, testify before the January 6 commission.

Features

Even villains have to start somewhere. And this week we get a look at the childhood of Gru, that “Despicable Me” bad guy who is voiced by Steve Carell in all those animated Minion movies.

State AP Stories

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Tropical Storm Colin has brought rain and winds to parts of North and South Carolina, though the storm has weakened and conditions are expected to improve by Monday's July Fourth celebrations. Separately, the center of Tropical Storm Bonnie rolled into the Pacific on Saturday after a rapid march across Central America, where it caused flooding, downed trees and forced thousands of people to evacuate in Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Forecasters say Bonnie is likely to become a hurricane by Monday off the southern coast of Mexico, but it is unlikely to make a direct hit on land.

North Carolina's Democratic attorney general has not yet indicated whether he will ask a court to lift the injunction on a state law banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Attorney General Josh Stein told Republican lawmakers on Friday that his department’s attorneys are reviewing the litigation that led a federal court to strike down the 20-week ban. His letter responds to GOP demands that he take immediate action in the wake of last week's U.S. Supreme Court ruling that overturned abortion protections. Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore warned last week Stein's inaction would lead them to get involved.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to hear a case that could dramatically change the way elections for Congress and the presidency are conducted by handing more power to state legislatures and blocking state courts from reviewing challenges to the procedures and results.

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A federal appeals court on Wednesday threw out the 2020 conspiracy and bribery convictions of a major political donor in North Carolina and his associate, declaring that the trial judge erred in his jury instructions.

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Republican legislative leaders on Tuesday unveiled state budget adjustments for the coming year, proposing to spend or set aside billions in expected extra tax collections to raise worker pay, recruit companies, build more infrastructure and combat inflation.

National & World AP Stories

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A defiant British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is battling to remain in office, shrugging off calls for his resignation after two top ministers and a slew of junior officials said they could no longer serve under his scandal-plagued leadership. British media is reporting that Johnson is refusing to step down, citing “hugely important issues facing the country.″ Members of the opposition Labour Party showered Johnson with shouts of “Go! Go!’’ during the weekly ritual of Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons. And members of his own Conservative Party also challenged him. Critics argue the leader’s days are numbered following his poor handling of sexual misconduct allegations against a senior official.

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A new report on the Uvalde elementary school massacre in Texas says a police officer had a chance to open fire on the gunman but missed it while waiting for permission to shoot. The report also says some of the 21 victims at Robb Elementary School likely “could have been saved” on May 24 had they received medical attention sooner. The report is yet another damning assessment of how police failed to act on opportunities that might have saved lives in what became the deadliest school shooting in the U.S. since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in 2012.

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Rafael Nadal extended his Grand Slam winning streak to 19 matches with a 3-6, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, 7-6 (10-4) victory over 11th-seeded Taylor Fritz in the Wimbledon quarterfinals. Nadal is seeking a third Wimbledon championship and 23rd major title overall. He is perfect at the four most important tournaments in 2022. He won the Australian Open in January and the French Open in June. He will face Nick Kyrgios in the semifinals at the All England Club on Friday. Kyrgios reached the final four at a major for the first time by beating Cristian Garin in straight sets. Simona Halep and Elena Rybakina advanced to the women’s semifinals.

Mississippi’s only abortion clinic has been buzzing with activity in the chaotic days since the U.S. Supreme Court upended abortion rights nationwide. The case originated in Mississippi with the bright pink medical facility called Jackson Women's Health Organization. Physicians there have been trying to see as many patients as possible before the facility, best known as the Pink House, permanently closes its doors at the end of business Wednesday. Clashes have intensified between anti-abortion protesters and volunteers who escort patients into the clinic. Unless there’s an intervention by the state’s conservative Supreme Court, Mississippi will enact a law Thursday to ban most abortions.

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Stocks turn higher on Wall Street in choppy afternoon trading Wednesday following the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve’s most recent policy meeting. The S&P 500 rose 0.6%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.4% and the Nasdaq rose 0.7%. The Russell 2000 index of small company stocks remained in the red, down 0.5%, a sign that investors are worried about economic growth. The minutes of the two-day meeting last month show that Fed officials concluded higher interest rates could be needed to restrain what they saw as a worrying trend: consumers starting to anticipate higher inflation. Bond yields rose.

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Jurors have found a 32-year-old man guilty of first-degree murder for the 2019 fatal shooting of rapper Nipsey Hussle. The Los Angeles County jury reached its verdict in the trial of Eric R. Holder Jr. on Wednesday. The verdict brings an end to a legal saga that has lasted more than three years and a trial that was often delayed because of the pandemic. Holder and Hussle had known each other for years when a chance meeting outside the Grammy-winning rapper’s Los Angeles clothing store led to the shooting, and Hussle's death. Holder could get life in prison when he’s sentenced on Sept. 15.

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The man charged with killing seven people at an Independence Day parade confessed to police that he unleashed a hail of bullets from a rooftop in suburban Chicago and then fled to the Madison, Wisconsin, area, where he contemplated shooting up an event there. That's according to authorities who spoke Wednesday. Robert Crimo III turned back to Illinois, where he was later arrested after deciding he was not prepared to pull off a shooting in Wisconsin. An Illinois judge ordered Crimo to be held without bail. A prosecutor said police found the shells of 83 bullets and three ammunition magazines on the rooftop that he fired from.

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In the midst of the chaos of a Chicago-area parade massacre, a woman walked up to Greg Ring and handed him a 2-year-old boy, covered in blood. Ring took the child, who was crying for his mom and dad, to a fire station, where he was asked to keep him, while authorities tried to deal with the shooter. The family drove to Ring’s in-laws' home, where the boy sat with Ring’s 4-year-old, watching a Mickey Mouse show. It wasn’t until later they were able to identify him and reunite him with his grandparents. Aiden McCarthy’s parents, Kevin and Irina, both died in the shooting, which killed seven people and wounded more than two dozen others.