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Florida braces for Hurricane Hermine

DAMAGE from Hurricane Katrina in Florida in 2005 (FEMA photo)

DAMAGE from Hurricane Katrina in Florida in 2005 (FEMA photo)

Hurricane Hermine is expected to strike Florida early Friday and Gov. Rick Scott is warning residents of that state to batten down the hatches. Called “life-threatening,” it’s expected to strike the Big Bend region of the Gulf Coast at midnight, with heavy rain and surges of up to eight feet, according to the National Hurricane Center. While Florida is often buffeted by storms and such, no hurricane has actually made landfall in The Sunshine State since 2005, when Katrina struck the area.

Midday News UpdateROCKET TEST EXPLODES ON PAD

A Falcon 9 rocket being tested by the private SpaceX firm blew up Thursday morning, according to the Washington Post. There were no reported injuries but the sound of the blast carried outwards from Cape Canaveral in Florida for miles and dark thick smoke hung over the site. SpaceX, which has flown satellites into orbit and cargo to the International Space Station, is hoping to get send NASA astronauts to the station in 2017.

election2016PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION NEWS

  • Vice President Joe Biden won’t give a direct answer to the question of whether the Clinton Foundation is “100 percent ethical,” according to the Associated Press. Biden was questioned during an interview on MSNBC. Critics have argued that the foundation had a too-cozy connection to the State Department when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State.
  • Donald Trump’s speech on immigration Wednesday is not well-received among some Republican Hispanic leaders. The Republican presidential nominee repeated his pledge to offer no amnesty for illegal aliens and to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico. Alfonso Aguilar, president of the Latino Partnership For Conservative Principles, said “I was expecting something very different last night.”
  • Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is maintaining an edge in support over GOP nominee Donald Trump, according to an average of recent polls compiled by RealClearPolitics.com. As of Thursday, Clinton led Trump by 4.9 percent, but that’s down by a couple of points from her peak two weeks ago.

The Midday Update is posted Monday through Friday as staff time permits. Want more national and international news? Go to: http://bigstory.ap.org .

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