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Drenching everything in its path, tropical storm Isidore was sweeping across Louisiana toward Alabama and Mississippi. Flooding closed roads in New Orleans, where authorities opened the Superdome football stadium as a shelter for the elderly and disabled. The governors of Louisiana and Mississippi declared states of emergency.

After two days of sharp exchanges on Iraq and national security, President Bush said he and members of Congress, Democrat as well as Republican, were "near an agreement" on an Iraq resolution and were "engaged in a deliberate and civil and thorough discussion." Earlier, House minority leader Richard Gephardt (D) of Missouri called on the administration to "take security out of politics." In an angry speech in the Senate Wednesday, majority leader Tom Daschle (D) of South Dakota demanded Bush apologize for saying Democrats are "not interested in the security of the American people." The White House said Daschle misstated Bush's remarks.

Former WorldCom controller David Myers was expected to plead guilty to securities fraud Thursday, The Wall Street Journal reported. The two felony counts he's charged with carry a combined maximum sentence of 15 years, the Journal said, and are part of a plea deal under which Myers will cooperate with the ongoing investigation into the role of senior executives in accounting fraud at the telecommunications giant. Its July bankruptcy filing was the largest in US corporate history.

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Tests were being made on partial human remains found in a wooded area 30 miles from the Bassett, Va., home where a 9-year-old girl disappeared last month. Jennifer Short's parents were found shot to death in the residence. The Henry County sheriff said he didn't think the remains belonged to the girl. "We still have hopes of finding Jennifer alive," he said.

Bell Laboratories, the research arm of Lucent Technologies, fired one of its most prominent scientists in the first case of scientific fraud in the Nobel Prize-winning facility's 77-year history. An outside review concluded that Jan Hendrik Schon, an expert in nanoelectronics, faked or altered data at least 16 times for studies published in journals such as Science and Nature.

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