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By Compiled from wire service reports by Ross Atkin / December 9, 2008



Legal arguments about a state ban on gay marriage in Iowa come before the the state's Supreme Court Tuesday in a case brought on behalf of a half-dozen gay couples in 2005. It could take a year or more for the justices to decide whether or not to legalize same-sex marriage, as supreme courts in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and California have done. In California, however, voters recently restored the ban.

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Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the self-professed mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, and four codefendants submitted a note Monday to a military judge at the Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, prison saying they wanted to confess and plead guilty. Several of the defendants have expressed a desire for martyrdom at previous hearings.

The US Supreme Court rejected Monday, without comment, an appeal by a New Jersey man to review the eligibility of President-elect Barack Obama to lead the nation. Because Obama enjoyed dual American-Kenyan nationality at birth and his father was a British subject at the time, Obama's "natural born" citizenship" was questioned.

The price of gasoline plummeted nearly 22 cents during the past two weeks to an average national price of $1.7526 for a gallon of unleaded, self-serve regular, the Lundberg Survey reported Sunday. That's the lowest price since March 2004, and $2.37 lower than the all-time high reached this July.

In one of the last still undecided Nov. 4 Election Day results, Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy came from behind in a count of provisional ballots in central Ohio Sunday to win a congressional seat vacated by Republican Deborah Pryce, who is retiring. Provisional ballots are provided to people who believe they were wrongly denied the right to vote.

Southern California residents handed in a record 965 firearms during the past two weekends in the annual Gifts for Guns program, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said. Most people gave up guns anonymously in exchange for $100 grocery gift cards.

Football's Arizona Cardinals secured the team's first NFL division championship Sunday since 1975 by defeating the St. Louis Rams, 34-10. The win ensures the Cardinals of hosting their first home playoff game since 1947.

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