USA

Two weeks of debate on immigration reform are slated to begin in the Senate Tuesday. On Monday the Judiciary Committee scrambled to draft a bill, but if it fails, Majority Leader Bill Frist said he would propose a measure to provide more visas but also to punish employers who hire illegal immigrants. President Bush has urged finding a way to accommodate "hardworking individuals" willing to do jobs Americans reject and who are "contributing to the vitality of our country."

The death-penalty trial of Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person in the US charged in connection with the 9/11 terrorist attacks, resumed Monday with the cross-examination of FBI agent and defense witness Erik Rigler. Rigler earlier summarized a Justice Department report about the CIA's slowness in sharing intelligence.

Mary Winkler, the woman charged with murdering her preacher-husband, was scheduled to make her first court appearance Monday in Selmer, Tenn. The day before, a member of the Fourth Street Church of Christ who visited Winkler in jail said the accused wanted the congregation to know "she was sorry for everything" she'd done but gave no reason for the March 22 shooting.

Blizzard conditions west of Laramie, Wyo., led to a 20vehicle collision of cars and trucks Sunday that took the lives of at least six people. On Monday officials were still determining the condition of those injured on I-80.

Civil rights groups concerned that many displaced black residents of New Orleans won't be able to vote in the city's April 22 mayoral election were poised to argue their case in federal court Monday. US District Judge Ivan Lemelle, who earlier rejected pleas to postpone voting, granted a hearing.

George Mason University, a commuter school in Fairfax, Va., took a another giant step in its Cinderella run in the NCAA men's basketball tournament, beating Connecticut Sunday to advance to the Final Four, where it will meet Florida April 1. Louisiana State University, meanwhile, will play UCLA. All four top-seeded teams (Connecticut, Memphis, Texas, and Villanova) lost in the regionals. Below, George Mason students welcomed their team home.

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