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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — They fled South Lake Tahoe a week ago in a torrent as the Caldor fire rained ash onto an hourslong traffic jam and evacuees start-and-stopped their way to safety across the Nevada state line.

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The fast-spreading delta variant has flooded hospitals across the South. It’s killed more people in Florida and Louisiana than the darkest days of the pandemic winter, and left so many COVID-19 patients gasping for breath that some places face shortages of medical oxygen.

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LOS ANGELES – A coronavirus variant recently determined to be a “variant of interest” has been detected in 167 people over the summer in Los Angeles County, officials said.

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WASHINGTON — The largest population declines in California were below Los Angeles and near the Oregon border, but the shifts could mean changes in congressional districts in between, according to census data released Thursday.

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The U.S. has decided not to lift existing travel restrictions “at this point” because of the alarming surge of new COVID-19 cases nationwide and spread of the highly contagious delta variant, a White House official reportedly confirmed Monday.

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WASHINGTON – Senate infrastructure talks suffered a setback Monday after Republicans rejected an offer meant to address all outstanding issues from the White House and Democrats, calling into question goals of passing a $579 billion measure before Congress’s August recess.

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The Dixie fire burning in Butte and Plumas counties mushroomed to more than 100,000 acres Thursday, becoming the second California blaze this year to surpass that acreage  milestone.

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SURFSIDE – It’s been six days since authorities found the body of Maria Gabriela Camou in the rubble of the Surfside condo collapse, but her family says funeral plans must wait until the search crew finds her husband of 40 years, Miguel Kaufman.

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LOS ANGELES – A quarter of young adults in the United States ages 18 to 25, a group most likely to transmit the coronavirus, say they "probably" or "definitely" won't get vaccinated against COVID-19, according to a study released Wednesday.

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WASHINGTON – A bipartisan group of House lawmakers on Tuesday publicly endorsed President Joe Biden’s $579 billion infrastructure deal with a group of Republican and Democratic senators, giving the compromise fresh momentum at the start of a crucial month for the administration’s agenda.

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If you are fully vaccinated and sending your kids off to camp or inviting their friends to sleep over, you might almost – almost – feel like the nightmare that was the COVID-19 pandemic is finally in the rearview mirror.

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WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden announced new steps Tuesday intended to inoculate additional Americans as the more contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus spreads and his administration labors to persuade holdouts to get shots.

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MIAMI – South Florida got its first taste of Tropical Storm Elsa on Monday afternoon as the outermost bands began to lash the region with brief, intense bouts of rain likely to last through today.

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CHICAGO – At least 95 people have been shot in Chicago since the beginning of the long Independence Day weekend, including two police officers; a 6-year-old girl and her mother; and a group of six people early Monday in the Washington Park neighborhood.

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WASHINGTON – The Trump Organization and Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg will be charged today (Thursday), in the first cases to emerge from a multiyear investigation of the former president’s company, people familiar with the matter said.