District of Columbia

Justice: Fast, Furious agreement possible

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Justice Department reports progress in settlement talks over a lawsuit by a House committee to get records involving the bungled gun-tracking program known as Operation Fast and Furious.

In a filing Tuesday, the department proposed postponing next week's court hearing because of the progress in talks with the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. The department said committee lawyers agreed.

Judge Amy Berman Jackson rescheduled the hearing to April 24. The hearing was on the Justice Department's motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

$1B-plus awarded to terrorism victims

WASHINGTON - A federal judge has awarded more than $1 billion each to 26 victims - including estates and family members - of deadly 1985 terrorist attacks on the Rome and Vienna airports.

U.S. Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola issued the award against Syria. He concluded the attacks by the Abu Nidal Organization could not have taken place "without Syria's direct support." The money includes compensatory and punitive damages, as well as interest.

Syria is unlikely to pay it.

Clinton supporters form super PAC

WASHINGTON - Some grass-roots supporters of Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton have formed a super PAC to help a potential Clinton presidential campaign in 2016 - though Clinton says she hasn't decided her plans.

A super PAC called "Ready for Hillary" was registered with the Federal Election Commission on Friday and the group plans to launch its website in the coming weeks.

It's chaired by the founder of the Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project at George Washington University, Allida Black. As a super PAC, the group can't coordinate with a candidate.

ABC: Barbara Walters recovering at home

ABC says Barbara Walters is out of the hospital and recovering from chickenpox at home.

ABC said Tuesday that the 83-year-old host on "The View" is resting comfortably and "getting stronger."

Walters was hospitalized after falling and cutting her head at a pre-inaugural party in Washington on Jan. 19. She later was diagnosed with chickenpox, which typically infects children.


SF nudity ban upheld in federal court

SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge cleared the way Tuesday for the city of San Francisco to ban most displays of public nudity, ruling that an ordinance set to take effect Friday does not violate the free-speech rights.

U.S. District Judge Edward Chen refused to block the ban or to let a lawsuit challenging it proceed. He wrote that "nudity in and of itself is not inherently expressive."

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted 7-4 last month to prohibit residents and visitors over age 5 from exposing their genitals on public streets, in parks or plazas or while using public transit.

The Associated Press