As tax revenues increased and spending cuts took effect, the 2014 budget deficit dropped to the lowest level in six years.
Eric Holder Jr., the nation's first black U.S. attorney general, will resign his post after a tumultuous tenure marked by civil rights advances, national security threats, reforms to the criminal justice system and 5 1/2 years of fights with Republicans in Congress.
The Senate joined the House on Thursday in rare bipartisanship by approving a measure to train and equip members of the Syrian opposition.
The final tally was 273 to 156. But many members of both parties broke ranks with their leaders — Reps. John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi — who strongly backed the measure.
Dempsey and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel outlined the White House plan to "degrade and ultimately destroy" the Islamic State.
Boehner says "we ought to give the president what he's asking for."
The bottom line is that it is unlikely that President Obama will ask Congress for authorization to conduct military strikes against the Islamic State.
President Obama has ordered a review of federal programs that supply local law enforcement agencies with military weapons and equipment after concerns over how the police handled unrest in Ferguson, Mo., in the aftermath of the shooting death of Michael Brown.
American aircraft have carried out more strikes against the Islamic State, after the extremist group beheaded U.S. journalist James Foley.
As the Obama administration says the number of unaccompanied minors crossing the Southwest border is declining, the White House is being urged to stop fast-tracking their deportation hearings.