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Reuters US Domestic News Summary

Firefighters gaining edge in California wildfires that have killed at least 40

Firefighters began gaining ground on wildfires that killed at least 40 people in the past week, the deadliest blazes in California’s history, as winds eased and searchers combed charred ruins for more victims with hundreds still missing. Two of the three most destructive Northern California fires were more than half contained early on Monday, and some residents who fled the flames in hard-hit Sonoma County could be allowed to return home later in the day, officials said.

White House pitches corporate tax cut as win for workers

The Trump administration said in an analysis released on Monday that middle-class Americans would see incomes eventually rise more than $4,000 if President Donald Trump’s corporate tax cuts were enacted, seeking to counter Democratic criticisms that its tax proposals overwhelmingly benefit the rich. The White House and top Republicans in Congress have released a framework for tax reform that lacks details but is intended to serve as a guidepost for congressional committees that are crafting tax legislation.

Washington state boy, 13, accidentally shot dead by friend

A 13-year-old boy in Washington state accidentally shot and killed his longtime friend while both boys were at a home with no adults present, authorities said on Sunday. A “very distraught” boy in the town of Kelso called 911 shortly before noon on Saturday from his house to report the shooting, the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office said in an online statement.

Pot farmer’s dreams go up in smoke during California wildfires

Andrew Lopas’ plans to bring his marijuana business out of the black market with a legal, profitable and organic pot farm went up in smoke in the wildfires that have scorched Santa Rosa, California. After four decades of growing pot illegally, the 54-year-old saw an opportunity last year to start a legitimate business serving the medical marijuana market.

Six injured, one missing in Louisiana oil platform explosion

One worker is missing and six are injured after an oil production platform operated by a New Orleans company exploded and caught fire in Louisiana’s Lake Pontchartrain late on Sunday, authorities said. The platform is operated by Clovelly Oil Co, confirmed Donald Mackenroth, a Clovelly vice president reached by phone. He said the cause of the explosion and fire was not clear, and declined to comment on the number of workers on the platform.

Afghan Taliban deny former hostage’s claims of murder, rape

A Taliban spokesman denied on Sunday accusations by a Canadian man that one of his children had been murdered and his wife raped while they were being held captive by militants who kidnapped them in Afghanistan in 2012. Joshua Boyle and his American wife, Caitlan Coleman, were held by the Haqqani network, a semi-independent wing of the Afghan Taliban, before being rescued by Pakistani troops in northwest Pakistan, near the Afghan border, last week.

U.S. Army Sergeant Bergdahl to enter plea in desertion case

U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, accused of endangering fellow soldiers who searched for him after he walked off his combat outpost in Afghanistan in 2009 and was captured by the Taliban, is scheduled to enter a plea in his case on Monday. The Army said Bergdahl, 31, would appear in court in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where he was scheduled to stand trial this month on charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, with the latter offense carrying a possible life sentence.

Republican Senator Collins likely ‘yes’ vote to advance tax reform

U.S. Republican Senator Susan Collins, who helped torpedo President Donald Trump’s effort to repeal Obamacare, said on Sunday she was leaning towards a ‘yes’ vote on the Senate budget resolution to advance tax reform. “I am likely a yes on that budget. I very much want to see tax reform,” Collins said on ABC’s “This Week” news program.

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