SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Opponents of gay marriage have rallied outside the Illinois Capitol a day after thousands of supporters rallied for the legislation.
The "Defend Marriage Lobby Day" began Wednesday with a morning prayer service outside the Capitol. Attendees clustered around a large wooden cross that had been placed at the Lincoln statue. Some participants carried pictures of the Holy Family - Jesus, Mary and Joseph - and posters emphasizing their belief that marriage should be between a man and a woman.
The event included pastors who hope to influence moderate Republicans and socially conservative members of the House Black Caucus.
Same-sex marriage legislation passed the Illinois Senate in February, but gay activists say they're a few votes short in the House.
A settlement may be near in the class action lawsuit against Schnucks supermarkets stemming from a security breach that compromised more than 2 million customer credit and debit cards. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the judge will decide in the coming weeks if the deal Schnucks has agreed to is satisfactory.
But an attorney pursuing a federal lawsuit over the matter is asking the court to throw out the settlement, claiming it's unfair because proper discover hasn't been done and the full scope of the damages to Schnucks customers isn't known. Attorney's involved in the local case deny that.
Hackers breached the grocery chain's security between December 2012 and March 2013.
Next summer's Fair St. Louis will be held at Forest Park. The Fair Saint Louis Foundation and St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay made the official announcement Wednesday evening at the Art Museum.
The 34th annual festival will be centered on Art Hill on July 3, 4 and 5. The 137th Veiled Prophet Parade will march through Forest Park instead of downtown St. Louis.
That's because the $380 million renovation of the Arch grounds won't be finished in time. It could be done in time for the 2015 fair, but that decision won't be made until late next year.
The 2014 event will include the traditional air show, concerts, fireworks and a Kids Zone, with the main stage at the foot of Art Hill near the Grand Basin. And Fair officials are promising several new elements that will be unveiled early next year.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois lawmakers have re-opened talks on a bill to expand gambling, but many of the concerns that doomed earlier proposals remain.
The House Executive Committee held a hearing Wednesday on a measure to add five casinos and allow slot machines at Chicago's major airports. The bill passed the Senate in the spring but didn't get a House vote.
Bill sponsor Rep. Robert Rita is a Blue Island Democrat. He says he'll work to address concerns. They include whether there's sufficient oversight of a Chicago casino and how new revenue would be shared.
Both the House and Senate have adjourned for the week. Lawmakers are scheduled to return to Springfield for the second week of the fall session in early November.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - State Sen. Jim Oberweis says he's gathering petition signatures to make a bid for the U.S. Senate.
The Republican from Sugar Grove made the comments Wednesday at a Springfield rally for opponents of same-sex marriage. He says he wants to challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin. Oberweis is a dairy magnate who has made numerous bids for office before.
He made previous unsuccessful attempts for U.S. Senate in 2002 and 2004. He also ran and lost in the 2006 Republican gubernatorial primary, and a congressional bid in 2008. He won a seat to the state Senate last November.
Downers Grove businessman Doug Truax and Kane County Regional School board member Chad Koppie are also making primary bids.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Reser's Fine Foods in Topeka, Kan., is recalling about 22,800 pounds of potentially bacteria-tainted chicken, ham and beef products.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced Tuesday that the meat products may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. The meat was shipped to retailers and distributors in 27 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service listed various "sell by" dates for the recalled products.
There have been no reports of illness. Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis, an uncommon and potentially fatal disease. Symptoms can include high fever and severe headache.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says he has been chosen to head up a public safety committee for the National Governors Association.
Nixon said Wednesday that the association's Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee focuses on the National Guard, criminal justice and veterans affairs, as well as other security and safety issues.
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder will be the vice chairman of the committee.
Nixon says committee members try to ensure that the governors' views are taken into account in federal policies.
A curious incident from the Belleville East High School homecoming dance.
Police say Curtis Hutchings was sitting in a parked car outside of the dance and was wearing makeup and a pink dress. KMOV reports that the middle-aged man had no legal grounds to be on school property and police were able to verify the possibility of lewd conduct.
Hutchings is held on a $50,000 bond.
ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) - A river worker is hospitalized after his boat was struck by a barge on the Missouri River near St. Charles.
The 51-year-old man's name has not been released following the accident on Wednesday. Police say he lives in the Rolla area. His condition was not immediately known.
Authorities say the man was doing work on a train trestle that crosses the river. He was driving a boat struck by a barge, even though the tug boat pushing the barge sounded its horn several times.
The boat capsized and went under the barge. Workers on a rescue boat took the victim to shore.
The U.S. Coast Guard is investigating the crash.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - A reputed prison gang leader who was on probation in California has been captured in Missouri.
Forty-five-year-old Albert "Spanky" Amaya is jailed in Missouri's Pettis County while awaiting extradition. No attorney is listed for him in online Missouri court records.
The Los Angeles Times reports that Amays was sentenced to 25 years to life in state prison in 2008 after he was convicted of extortion, his third felony conviction. But he was released in June after a voter-approved measure allowed "three strikes" inmates to seek re-sentencing.
The San Bernardino County district attorney's office placed him on GPS monitoring while seeking to send him back to prison. Authorities allege he was a crew chief for the Mexican Mafia prison gang and fled after cutting the GPS device.