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State lawmakers push Medicaid work requirements through Senate

The state Legislature moved forward today on a plan to drastically change Michigan’s Medicaid policy. The Senate passed a bill that would add work requirements to Medicaid. If a person is considered able-bodied and doesn’t fit an exception, they would be required to work or go to school for 29 hours a week. Advocates say the bill encourages and helps people find work. Democrats were opposed to the legislation, and before voting, some Democratic Senators offered amendments. Senator Curtis...

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A federal judge has denied a request to order Michigan officials to resume distribution of free bottled water in Flint.
 
     The Flint Journal reports that U.S. District Judge Judith Levy sided with the state, which announced an end to the program on April 6. Tests show Flint is far below the federal action level for lead as it recovers from a lead-contaminated water crisis.
 
     Some residents and Mayor Karen Weaver say bottled water should remain available until home water lines are replaced, a job that will last until 2020.
 

Public school teachers marched through downtown Lansing today. They delivered a petition against guns in schools to the state Capitol.

Today is the anniversary of the Columbine school shooting. Earlier, students walked out of their classrooms. In a show of solidary, hundreds of teachers marched to the Capitol dressed in orange – the color for the anti-gun violence movement.  

   They want stricter gun laws – like tighter background checks. And they don’t want guns in schools – even in teachers’ hands.

Jenni Jones teaches the 4th grade in Grand Rapids.

Grand Valley State University

The Voices of GVSU are hosting their 30th anniversary reunion concert.  The Voices came into play at a crucial time for its founder, Cassonya Carter.  The “Voices” filled some critical voids related to faith, being homesick and for some, not being part of mainstream, college life.

 “natz sound of choir”

“My faith really keeps me rooted and grounded and I found ten other students. We were on the same page they believed in the vision that I had and they joined with me and we started the Voices of GVSU.”

A student who led a two-day demonstration outside of his central Michigan high school this week says it was in response to the unpunished theft of a Confederate battle flag from his pickup truck. Cameron Myers, an 18-year-old senior at Bay City Western High School, told The Associated Press on Thursday that he complained to school officials that someone had cut the large Confederate flag from a pole on his truck, but no one was disciplined. He then took to friends on social media, asking them to fly their own flags outside the school. 

The state of Michigan is defending a decision to cut off free bottled water in Flint, saying tap water now is as "good or better" than in many communities. Attorneys responded Thursday to a request that the state be ordered to resume water distribution. Federal Judge Judith Levy is holding a hearing Friday. Gov. Rick Snyder announced an end to free water on April 6.

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The issue of James Comey's memos is where we're going to begin our Friday political chat. Kristen Soltis Anderson of the Washington Examiner and author of "The Selfie Vote" is here in the studio. Hi, Kristen.

KRISTEN SOLTIS ANDERSON: Hi.

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After weeks of living as a fugitive — and reportedly trying to steal the identity of a look-alike — Lois Riess has been arrested. Riess, 56, is wanted in connection with killings in two states, as well as stolen and forged checks.

"We look at her appearance. She looks like anybody's mother or grandmother," Undersheriff Carmine Marceno of Lee County, Fla., said Friday. "Yet she's an absolute cold-blooded murderer."

Updated at 2:56 p.m. ET

Avicii, the Swedish producer who was one of the world's most successful DJs, was found dead today in Muscat, Oman, his publicist confirmed to NPR Music. He was 28. No cause of death was given.

It's a problem that has come seemingly out of nowhere. Over the last five years a worrisome number of low-income countries have racked up so much debt they are now at high risk of being unable to pay it back — with potentially devastating consequences not just for their economies but for their citizens, many of whom are already living in extreme poverty.

As chemical weapons inspectors wait to investigate an alleged strike near the Syrian capital of Damascus, former inspectors say the challenges the current team faces are daunting.

The inspectors arrived in Syria on April 14, on a mission to investigate a suspected chemical attack in the Damascus suburb of Douma seven days earlier. Unconfirmed reports from the scene suggest that dozens may have died.

A disability rights group in Texas sent out a survey last month, trying to figure out how many of its members became disabled by gun violence. The group, ADAPT of Texas, says it's an effort to collect data that will help inform Texas lawmakers about how they should legislate guns.

Bob Kafka, an organizer with ADAPT, says when gun violence occurs, particularly mass shootings, the public tends to have a pretty limited discussion about what happens to the victims.

Grand Valley State University

The Voices of GVSU are hosting their 30th anniversary reunion concert.  The Voices came into play at a crucial time for its founder, Cassonya Carter.  The “Voices” filled some critical voids related to faith, being homesick and for some, not being part of mainstream, college life.

 “natz sound of choir”

“My faith really keeps me rooted and grounded and I found ten other students. We were on the same page they believed in the vision that I had and they joined with me and we started the Voices of GVSU.”

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