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Washington (AFP) – U.S. sales of new homes bounced back in August after July’s slump, though the pace remained slower than the first quarter of the year, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday.

New home sales rose to an annual pace of 421,000 units, compared to 390,000 in July and 454,000 in June.

But the pace remained slower than the first quarter’s 449,000 pace, which analysts say could be the result of a jump in home mortgage interest rates.

The median sale price remained lower than early in the year at $254,600, roughly unchanged from the same period in 2012.

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Donald Trump and Melania Trump

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In a Monday court filing, the Justice Department asked a federal court not to unseal the affidavit showing probable cause for the warrant to search Mar-a-Lago, giving reasons that underscore the hot water Donald Trump appears to be in.

Disclosing the affidavit now would, according to the filing, “cause significant and irreparable damage to this ongoing criminal investigation.” It would do that by revealing, “among other critically important and detailed investigative facts: highly sensitive information about witnesses, including witnesses interviewed by the government; specific investigative techniques; and information required by law to be kept under seal.”

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Lara Trump

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When Donald Trump revealed last Monday night that the FBI had “raided” his Mar-a-Lago resort and residence, Fox News had an asset on its payroll uniquely positioned to provide its audience with insight: The former president’s daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, is a Fox contributor. But unfortunately for the network’s viewers, over the past week she's been using her network platform to mislead them.

Members of the Trump orbit, including Lara Trump’s husband, Eric, deployed to Fox last week offering the expected furious defenses of the former president and denunciations of the FBI’s probe. But if there’s any value whatsoever in putting a former president’s relative on staff, surely it is in the aftermath of such an event, when she might have both rare access to credible information and a willingness to reveal it.

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