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WASHINGTON (AP) - The early days of the Democratic primary campaign are highlighting the party's diversity as it seeks a nominee who can build a coalition to take on President Donald Trump. Among those who have either moved toward a campaign or declared their candidacy, there are four women, a Latino, and an openly gay candidate. One of the women is also African-American. The diversity of the Democratic lineup is likely to expand in the coming weeks.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Democratic Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas is stepping down from her position as chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation in addition to leaving her post as leader of one of the House Judiciary Committee's key subcommittees. The moves Wednesday come after a lawsuit from a former employee who complained that her sexual assault complaint had been mishandled. In a statement last week, Jackson Lee's office denied allegations that it retaliated against the woman who filed the lawsuit.

PORT ARTHUR, Texas (AP) - A Texas restaurant that features homestyle Southern food is offering a free meal called the Poor Man Special to federal workers not getting paid during the government shutdown. Edith's Place in Port Arthur on Tuesday began offering the free lunch special to furloughed workers until the end of the shutdown, which began Dec. 22. The restaurant's Facebook site says the Poor Man Special includes red beans & sausage over rice, or smothered potatoes & sausage. Both meals include homemade cornbread.

OTERO COUNTY, N.M. (AP) - Authorities say two soldiers from an Army base in Texas have died and seven other military members remain hospitalized after two military training vehicles crashed in southern New Mexico. El Paso TV station KTSM reports the soldiers were part of the 1st Armored Division at Fort Bliss that's headquartered in El Paso. The crash reportedly occurred Tuesday night in U.S. Route 54 close to Otero County Prison, about 30 miles from El Paso, and involved two Stryker vehicles.

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