President Barack Obama answering questions in the White House yesterday. He said he is “eager to work with the new Congress to make the next two years as productive as possible”. Photograph: Larry Downing/Reuters

President Barack Obama said Republicans “had a good night” in Tuesday’s midterm elections but attributed the party’s sweeping wins to the public’s di(...)

Republican Bruce Rauner gives a thumbs-up after winning the midterm elections in Chicago, Illinois, November 4th, 2014. Photograph; Jim Young/Reuters

If you landed from space this week you might think the United States Capitol in Washington, DC, encased in a new grey cocoon of scaffolding erected to(...)

US president Barack Obama photographed meeting with his national security and public health teams in the Roosevelt Room at the White House yesterday. He  could be on track to see his party record the biggest losses in the House of any presidential term since Harry Truman. Photograph: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Barack Obama will need all his great oratorical powers to explain the Republican wins over Democrats in the US midterms elections that exceed the “she(...)

 United States Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky, waves to supporters with his wife Elaine Chao during his victory celebration at the Marriott East Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky yesterday. Photograph: Mark Lyons/EPA 1:30

US president Barack Obama suffered a heavy political defeat as Republicans won back the Senate from Democrats in the US midterm elections, giving the (...)

Planet Business

Image of the week: Hard Times Tavern Bitter about the budget? Water charges leaving a nasty taste in your mouth? A drink or several at the Hard(...)

Republican US senator Pat Roberts cradles a baby after speaking at a Conservative Revival in Gardner, Kansas. Photograph: Dave Kaup/Reuters

Herbie Hopper is standing on a busy roadside in Wichita, Kansas, holding one end of a large yellow flag. It shows a picture of a coiled rattlesnake(...)

Conservative protesters pray in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, yesterday. Photograph: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The US supreme court has declined to be drawn into the nationwide debate on same-sex marriage, immediately increasing the number of states tha(...)

Gay marriage to be allowed in five states including Utah after US supreme court decision. Cindy Bednarz (L) and her wife Lisa Bednarz attend a same-sex marriage rally at Utah’s State Capitol building in Salt Lake City, Utah in this file photo. Photograph: Jim Urquhart/Files/Reuters

The US supreme court today declined to decide once and for all whether states can ban gay marriage, a surprise move that will allow gay men and women (...)

John Rusnak in one of his ZIPS Dry Cleaners franchises in Baltimore: I’d love to build a thousand of these stores and make a million dollars. photograph: baltimore sun 2:52

John Rusnak was something of a star when he was in prison, he says. Fellow inmates sought out the man once dubbed “Johnny Ruz” by market traders over (...)

Too close for comfort: Kay Hagan’s opponents have used her kiss from Barack Obama last week against her. Photograph: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty
Obama: kiss of death?

High on a shelf above a counter in the Raleigh Times Bar is an empty pint glass, sitting encased in front of a US presidential seal. This is the glass(...)