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News Wrap: House Blocks Obama Administration’s Welfare Work Waiver

March 13, 2013 at 12:00 AM EDT

HARI SREENIVASAN: The U.S. House voted today to block the Obama administration from granting state waivers to work requirements under welfare. Republicans charged the president is trying to gut the 1996 welfare reform law.

Last summer, the White House said it would grant waivers if states can meet welfare-to-work goals by other means. So far, no state has applied for a waiver. The House bill is not expected to pass the Democratic-controlled Senate.

A juvenile court in Steubenville, Ohio, today opened a rape trial that’s drawn international attention. The two defendants are high school football players, ages 16 and 17.

They’re accused of raping a 16-year-old girl last August. Social media postings have fueled claims that other students should have been charged and that police underplayed the incident to protect the football team. The police have denied it.

In China, authorities near Shanghai pulled hundreds more dead pigs from a river that provides drinking water to the city. In all, they have found more than 6,600 pig carcasses in the water since Friday.

Officials say the dead animals may have been dumped by swine farms upstream. The Shanghai city government said it is monitoring water quality, and that so far there is no sign of contamination.

On Wall Street, stocks managed small gains in another relatively calm day of trading. The Dow Jones industrial average gained five points to close at 14,455. The Nasdaq rose more than two points to close at 3,245.

Those are some of the day’s major stories — now back to Judy.