ABC News Blogs
  • Closeup of Michelle Obama's New Look

    As Washington prepares for Inauguration Day, first lady Michelle Obama revealed her new do: bangs.

    The new haircut was tweeted out from her newly minted official Twitter account, @Flotus.

    "Michelle Obama is such a trendsetter in the fashion industry because she manages to be both aspirational and inspirational," said Lori Bergamotto, contributing style editor at Lucky magazine. "She wears high-end designers but, on the flip side, she also wears things that we can all go out and buy them from J-Crew to things at department stores."

    Cameras caught more of her new look Thursday night as she entered Washington's Cafe Milano to celebrate her 49th birthday with the president and close friends.

    So who's behind the new look?

    Johnny Wright.

    He's been styling the first lady's tresses since right before they moved into the White House. While he won't reveal Obama's salon secrets, he did offer this take on a previous Obama first-term trim.

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  • Ballet Star Attacked With Acid

    MOSCOW - The artistic director of the world renowned Bolshoi Ballet was the victim of a vicious acid attack in central Moscow that may stem from rifts within the dance company.

    Russian news reports say Sergei Filin was walking home on Thursday night when a masked assailant threw acid on his face and ran off.

    Filin, 43, is said to be in stable condition, but the attack left him with third degree burns across his face. Doctors are scrambling to save his eyesight. He is schedule to undergo surgery today and is expected to be flown to Belgium for further treatment. Russian news reports say he will require plastic surgery and that recovery could take months.

    Filin was a star ballet dancer with the Bolshoi company before becoming artistic director in 2011. Investigators have suggested that internal theater politics may be behind the attack. In a statement, the Bolshoi Theater said he had been the subject of an intimidation campaign in recent months.

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  • Virginia Lawmaker Brandishes AK-47

    A Virginia state lawmaker brandished an AK-47 on the floor of the state House of Delegates Thursday.

    Virginia Del. Joe Morrissey, a Democrat hailing from the Richmond area, showed off the weapon while pushing for tighter gun-control laws, The Washington Examiner reported.

    "A lot of people don't know that in many locations in the commonwealth, you can take this gun, you can walk in the middle of Main Street loaded and not be in violation of the law," Morrissey said on the floor, according to the Examiner, assuring other lawmakers that the gun was not loaded.

    A subcommittee voted Thursday night to kill a bill Morrissey introduced that would have tightened gun controls in the state, The Roanoke Times reported. That bill would have banned the sale of so-called assault rifles and high-capacity magazines.

    Morrissey notified police and made sure the gun was not loaded, the lawmaker told ABC News in a phone interviwe.

    The point of the

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  • NYSE stocks posting largest percentage decreases

    A look at the 10 biggest percentage decliners on New York Stock Exchange at the close of trading: Invacare Corp. fell 14.9 percent to $14.96. Kemet Corp. fell 14.9 percent to $5.15. Demand Media Inc wi ...

  • Early Glance: Railroad companies

    Shares of some top railroad companies are mixed at 10 a.m.: CSX rose $.05 or .2 percent, to $31.18. Canadian National Railway Co. fell $.48 or .7 percent, to $68.61. Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. fell ...

  • EU sanctions on Russian banks would hit economy, business
    EU sanctions on Russian banks would hit economy, business

    By Megan Davies MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia's state-controlled banks would have to turn to the state, domestic borrowers or new regions such as Asia if EU sanctions shut off investment, hurting their ability to lend to local businesses and further damaging the country's fragile economy. Under measures being considered by European Union governments in response to the Ukraine crisis, European investors would be banned from buying new debt or shares of banks owned 50 percent or more by the state. While the Russian government would step in to meet banks' funding needs, longer-term financing could be hit, hurting the banks' ability to finance business projects and crimping the country's growth potential. It could also cause nervous investors to avoid Russia altogether, encouraging more capital outflows and putting pressure on the rouble.

  • A modest proposal: Judge asks if firing squad and guillotine are preferable to lethal injection
    A modest proposal: Judge asks if firing squad and guillotine are preferable to lethal injection

    A federal judge said questions about the use of lethal injection call into question the integrity of capital punishment.

  • Facebook soars as Zuckerberg’s cash-machine kicks into gear
    Facebook soars as Zuckerberg’s cash-machine kicks into gear

    Facebook shares are bounding higher this morning after the company posted its fifth straight better-than-expected quarter. The metrics were beyond reproach

  • Chinese Officials Seal Off 'Plague' City, Puzzling US Experts
    Chinese Officials Seal Off 'Plague' City, Puzzling US Experts

    A city in China has reportedly been sealed off after one resident died from bubonic plague, but this way of trying to contain the disease is puzzling to infectious disease experts, who say the response seems extreme given the information released about the case. Plague is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Yersinia pestis that is carried by rodents, and can be transmitted to people through flea bites or by direct contact with the tissues or fluids of an animal with plague, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Today the illness is treatable with antibiotics, the CDC says.

  • Climate change ravaging Antarctic fur seals
    Climate change ravaging Antarctic fur seals

    A food shortage likely caused by climate change is shrinking a South Antarctic fur seal colony and changing the profile of its surviving members, researchers said Wednesday. South Georgia island's Antarctic fur seal pups have a lower average birth weight, and there are fewer breeding adults -- who hold out longer to reproduce than in the past, according to study results published in the journal Nature. These are classic symptoms of long-term food stress, and emerged at the same time that availability of Antarctic krill, small crustaceans which are a fur seal staple, dwindled. "Climate change has reduced prey availability and caused a significant decline in seal birth weight," they wrote.

  • French warplanes search Mali desert for crashed Air Algerie plane
    French warplanes search Mali desert for crashed Air Algerie plane

    By Hamid Ould Ahmed ALGIERS (Reuters) - French warplanes and U.N. helicopters scoured the north of Mali on Thursday for the wreckage of an Air Algerie flight after it crashed carrying 110 passengers, nearly half of them French, from Burkina Faso to Algiers. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said authorities believed flight AH5017 may have encountered bad weather after the pilot requested to change direction shortly after takeoff due to a storm. Officials in Mali and Burkina Faso gave conflicting accounts of locating the crash. Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita said wreckage of the flight had been spotted in his country's far north, toward the Algerian border between the towns of Aguelhoc and Kidal.

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