At 8 a.m. EST Thursday, the National Hurricane Center issued hurricane and tropical storm watches for the northern Gulf Coast, as tropical storm Karen gains strength in the southern part of the Gulf of Mexico.
As of 12:01 a.m. EST on Tuesday, the federal government closed down. Congressional leaders in the House of Representatives and the Senate were unable to reach an agreement on a budget or a temporary fix, known as a continuing resolution, before the start of the new fiscal year on October 1.
With Congress unable to agree on a budget or even a short-term emergency bill, it's increasingly likely that the federal government will suffer its first shutdown in 17 years. Leaders in the House of Representatives and the Senate will trade proposals on Monday, but neither side is optimistic that they will reach an agreement.
George Zimmerman was taken into custody on Monday afternoon in Lake Mary, Florida, after his wife, Shellie, told police he had pulled a gun on her. Zimmerman has not been charged with a crime at this time and is being held in investigative detention.
Secretary of State John Kerry described how the government in Syria, led by President Bashar al-Assad, used chemical weapons in an attack on its own citizens, killing 1,429 people, including 426 children. Kerry suggested that the United States must respond, or take the chance that other dictators might act similarly.
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