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By DAVID CRARY

NEW YORK (AP) - However the Supreme Court rules on same-sex marriage, the issue seems certain to divide Americans and the states for years to come.

     After considering two cases involving gay couples' rights this week, the justices left open multiple options for rulings expected in June. But they signaled there was no prospect of imposing a 50-state solution at this stage.

     With nine states allowing same-sex marriages and other states banning them, that means a longer spell with a patchwork marriage-rights map - and no early end to bruising battles in the courts, legislatures and at the ballot box.

     Opponents of same-sex marriage seem resigned to a divided nation where the debate will continue to splinter families, communities, churches.

     Supporters of same-sex marriage believe a nationwide victory is inevitable, though perhaps not imminent.

 
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JUPITER, FL (AP) - Adam Wainwright and the Cardinals have agreed to a new contract that guarantees the Cardinals' ace an additional $97.5 million over five years through 2018.

   Wainwright had been eligible to become a free agent after the World Series.

   The new agreement, first reported by FoxSports.com, was confirmed by a person familiar with the negotiations who spoke on condition of anonymity because it had not yet been announced. The Cardinals scheduled a news conference today at their spring training camp in Jupiter, Fla.

   A 31-year-old right-hander, Wainwright was 14-13 with a 3.94 ERA last year after missing the Cardinals' World Series championship season in 2011 because of elbow surgery.

   Wainwright was 20-11 with a 2.42 ERA in 2010 and was an NL All-Star.

 
Thursday, 28 March 2013 02:43
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    The union representing about 800 building and food service workers who went on strike at the University of Illinois earlier this month says they've reached a tentative deal with the school.  Service Employees International Union spokesman Adam Rosen says employees will vote on the four-year offer today and tomorrow.  

     Details of the agreement aren't being released, but University spokesperson Robin Kaler says administrators are optimistic that it will be accepted.

 
Thursday, 28 March 2013 02:33
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     Metro will be giving some passengers free rides under a federal class action settlement agreement.  The transit agency was sued over MetroLink credit and debit card receipts that violated the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act.  

     Under the law, merchants can print up to the last five digits of a customer's credit or debit card number or the card's expiration date on their receipt, but not both.  Between January 2010 and August 2011, Metro had been printing both.  

     The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that people who used credit or debit cards to buy tickets during the 20 month period can make claims by July 3 for free ride passes or tickets.  Those who still have their receipts could get $30 cash instead.

Thursday, 28 March 2013 02:20
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