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If elected president, Barack Obama will offer Colin Powell, a retired four-star general and President Bush's former secretary of state, a position as a top adviser in the Democratic White House, Obama said on NBC's "Today" show Monday. Powell endorsed Obama's candidacy a day earlier but said he was not eager to return to government service.

The Supreme Court stepped into a water dispute Monday involving Montana, North Dakota, and Wyoming by appointing an outside lawyer to summon witnesses and issue subpoenas. The case centers on the interpretation of a 1950 agreement on how water from the Tongue and Powder rivers is supposed to be divided. The justices also agreed to decide whether people picked up on immigration violations can face charges of identity theft if they used the Social Security and ID numbers of other people.

Baseball's Tampa Bay Rays, a last-place team a year ago and perennial doormats since starting play in 1998, advanced to the World Series Sunday by defeating the defending champion Boston Red Sox, 3-1, in Game 7 of the American League Championship Series. Above, Tampa Bay second baseman Akinori Iwamura high-fives fans after the clincher. The Rays will host the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 1 of the World Series Wednesday.

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As part of an Alaska Personnel Board probe, Gov. Sarah Palin and her husband will meet with an independent investigator later this week somewhere along the campaign trail, attorneys for the couple said Sunday. The Republican vice presidential nominee was already proved within her rights in firing the state's public safety commissioner by a legislative panel, but Palin said it was the personnel board's duty to investigate claims.

NASA launched a solar probe into orbit Sunday that will study conditions at the edge of the solar system from as high as 200,000 miles above the Earth. The Interstellar Boundary Explorer could help confirm if the heliosphere, the protective bubble around the solar system, is shrinking.

The average Californian uses about 40 percent less electricity than the average American, according to a report released Monday by University of California economist David Roland-Holst. His study says the state has saved about $56 billion in electricity costs and created 1.5 million jobs over the past 35 years as the result of its energy policies.

About a third of the US electorate is expected to vote before Nov. 4 through early voting or absentee voting programs, the Associated Press reports. That would be up from 22 percent in 2004 and 16 percent in 2000.

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