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China is trying to navigate its biggest coronavirus outbreak without a tool it could have adopted many months ago, the kind of vaccines that have proven to offer the best protection against the worst outcomes from COVID-19. The mRNA vaccines made by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna have still not been approved in mainland China, despite evidence they are the best protection against severe disease and death. Instead, China has pinned its hopes on homegrown mRNA vaccines that are still being tested. Health experts say the strategy could lead to avoidable deaths and deeper economic losses because whole cities would be locked down to insulate the country’s unprotected population.

California senators have approved giving people the power to sue those who traffic in illegal firearms, mimicking a Texas law that is intended to deter abortions. They acted hours after Tuesday’s deadly elementary school shooting in Texas. Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom sought the bill in response to a Texas law allowing people to go after those who provide or assist in providing abortions. The California version would allow people to file civil lawsuits against anyone who distributes illegal assault weapons, parts that can be used to build weapons, guns without serial numbers, or .50 caliber rifles. Republican Sen. Andreas Borgeas said legislators should instead empower law enforcement to act.

Grass in office parks, on college campuses or in some California neighborhoods will go brown this summer. State water officials on Tuesday adopted a ban on watering some green spaces as the drought drags on, though it doesn't apply to parks, sports fields or people's lawns. The vote by the State Water Resources Control Board comes after Gov. Gavin Newsom warned broader, mandatory water restrictions could be coming if Californians don't step up their conservation. The board is also requiring most of the state's more than 400 local water districts to adopt stricter conservation measures, regardless of their local supply.

U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene has defeated five Republican challengers in a Georgia primary that tested conservative voters’ tolerance of her divisive politics. Greene advances to the November election, where she will face the winner of a three-way Democratic primary in northwest Georgia’s 14th District, a seat drawn to give Republicans a huge advantage. Jennifer Strahan and other Republican challengers sought unsuccessfully to convince voters that Greene’s combative rhetoric and willingness to embrace conspiracy theories did little to help her constituents. Greene spent more than $6.6 million defending her seat. She remained on the ballot after voters mounted a failed effort to disqualify her by claiming she encouraged the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.

There have been dozens of shootings and other attacks connected to U.S. schools and colleges over the years. Until the massacre at Colorado’s Columbine High School in 1999, the number of dead tended to be in the single digits. Since then, the number of shootings that included schools and killed 10 or more people has mounted. The most recent two were both in Texas. Eighteen children and at least two adults are dead after a shooting Tuesday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. In May 2018, a 17-year-old killed 10 people at Santa Fe High School near Houston. Most of the victims were students.

Democratic U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock will face Republican football legend Herschel Walker for a coveted Senate seat in Georgia after both handily defeated primary challengers to set up a historic, high-stakes showdown. Warnock easily defeated beauty industry professional Tamara Johnson-Shealey in Tuesday’s primary. Walker, who is backed by former President Donald Trump, defeated five GOP challengers in his race, clearing the 50% mark needed to avoid a runoff. The GOP is trying to take back the seat Warnock won last year, helping Democrats squeak out a congressional majority. Former President Donald Trump has thrown his heft behind Walker.

In Dallas, Steve Kerr and Jason Kidd did not want to talk about basketball. LeBron James made no effort to hide his anger. Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics, a young father, called the news “devastating.” The sports world reacted swiftly Tuesday to the news of an 18-year-old gunman opening fire at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, and killing at least 18 children. It was the deadliest shooting at a U.S. grade school since a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, almost a decade ago.

HILDEBRAN — The Hildebran Town Council recently initiated installing patriotic banners in the downtown district to honor fallen veterans and their families beginning on Memorial Day.

North Carolina Senate Republicans have unveiled a wide-ranging proposal they say would help parents stay informed about what their children are being taught and how they’re being treated by doctors. The measure also would tread into contentious LGBTQ matters that have caused divisive debate elsewhere. The legislation unveiled Tuesday would bar public school curriculum for kindergarten through third grade from containing instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity. Republicans contend the prohibition is more limited than a new Florida law. The measure will get heard Wednesday in committee. It would have to pass both chambers before heading to Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper's desk.

A federal prosecutor says a North Carolina man was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Tuesday after his conviction in connection with a police chase during which he fired at officers nine times. U.S. Attorney Michael Easley says in a news release that Cedrick Tyler Armstrong of Zebulon was convicted last November of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Authorities say a traffic stop led to a chase through multiple counties before Armstrong and the driver of the car he was riding in were found at a house in Raleigh and arrested.

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper says a fresh foods manufacturer is expanding production in the Southeast with plans to invest over $42 million in a North Carolina production facility which will create more than 200 jobs. In a news release, Cooper says Massachusetts-based Häns Kissle Co. will build a 100,000-square-foot manufacturing site in Apple Creek Corporate Center just outside of Gastonia. The Charlotte Observer reported that the Gaston County Economic Development Commission says the company plans to break ground next month and be operational by next summer.

A sheriff's office says the son and grandson of a North Carolina diner owner have been charged in an assault which led to her death. WLOS reports Henderson County Sheriff Lowell Griffin said Austin Amos Kennedy Byrnside, 22, was charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. Byrnside is the grandson of Paulette Clark. Maurice Jones Jr. is charged with conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. He is Clark’s son. Authorities say Clark was beaten at her home on May 6 with the butt of an air rifle which was used to shoot her in the eye.


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