Politics & Government

Politics, elections, law, military and veteran's affairs

It appears that as far as the news media is concerned, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump sees Democrats everywhere. Even when they're not.

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Testimony Begins In New Jersey Bridgegate Trial

Sep 20, 2016
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Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

President Obama used his final address to the United Nations General Assembly to make a spirited argument for international cooperation, while also delivering a stern warning about the countervailing forces of nationalism and tribal identity that have been gaining momentum in both the U.S. and Europe.

Obama's message seemed tailored as much for American voters looking towards the November election as for the international leaders who assembled in New York City.

A month ago, there were "Road Closed" signs up on all of Donald Trump's potential paths to the White House.

But now, less than a week before the crucial first debate of this presidential race — and as a terrorism bombing investigation continues in New York and New Jersey — a viable route has emerged for the Republican nominee, according to the latest NPR Battleground Map.

From his studio in the battleground state of Wisconsin, talk radio host Charlie Sykes has held the mantle of modern conservatism for more than two decades. Every day, he goes on the air for three straight hours, vetting rising stars and inviting Republican leaders and listeners to hash out the issues of the day.

"I think it's fair to say that there's been no conservative leader in Wisconsin who hasn't been a regular guest on my show," Sykes says. "If you wanted to be introduced, you needed to go through conservative talk radio."

Social media have become home to two things in recent years: memes and public shaming.

Both came into play Monday night when Donald Trump Jr. tweeted an image of a bowl of Skittles, comparing Syrian refugees to poisoned candy. "If I had a bowl of Skittles and I told you three would kill you, would you take a handful?" the meme asks. "That's our Syrian refugee problem."

You may or may not have noticed, but the 2016 presidential campaign has entered a new phase — perhaps even a new dimension. It is new, not just for this year's already extraordinary campaign, but for American political discourse.

That is because on Friday, Donald Trump brought forth what may well be the most preposterous falsehood anyone has attempted to peddle in our political life. Think that is hyperbole? Feel free to counter with something to match it. Seriously.

For nearly eight years, President Obama has been putting his stamp on U.S. foreign policy both by what he's done and by what he chosen not to do.

His legacy includes achievements like the international climate agreement.

It also includes festering problems like the Syrian civil war.

Obama is summing up that legacy himself Tuesday, as he addresses the United Nations General Assembly for what's likely to be the last time as president.

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Hillary Clinton's and Donald Trump's responses to the weekend bombings in New York and New Jersey, as well as a mass stabbing in Minnesota, were markedly different.

Trump on Monday morning called on law enforcement to embrace increased racial and religious profiling as they sought out terrorism suspects, while Clinton said it's "crucial that we continue to build up trust between law enforcement and Muslim-American communities."

In September of last year, Donald Trump released his first tax plan, but now he has made another go of it. Over the last couple of months, he has released an overhaul that changes rates and includes newly announced child care deductions. The revised plan would still cost the government trillions in revenues, according to a new analysis, though not as much as his last plan.

As further proof that this presidential campaign is everywhere, Sunday night's Emmys stage featured several nods to the candidates as well as the current political climate. Here are some highlights:

1. Julia Louis-Dreyfus' wall

This Week In Politics

Sep 19, 2016
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Bill Clinton says that out of the hundreds of thousands of donors to the Clinton Foundation over the past 18 years, there must have been some people who gave to the foundation to gain influence with him and his wife.

But the former president told NPR that doesn't mean any donors received anything improperly.

Violent crime is likely to rise slightly this year in the nation's 30 largest cities, and murders will increase too, mostly because of problems in one place--Chicago — according to a new, preliminary analysis by the Brennan Center for Justice.

The center, a nonpartisan group that monitors developments in law and justice, said only Chicago has endured a year-over-year rise in both violent crime and homicides in 2015 and 2016. Overall, analysts said, violent crime remains near record lows.

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President Obama is laughing off Donald Trump's sudden turn-around on his birth.

"There's an extra spring in my step tonight," Obama said to a dinner hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation in Washington, D.C., on Saturday night. "I don't know about you guys, but I am so relieved that the whole birther thing is over. I mean, ISIL, North Korea, poverty, climate change, none of those things weighed on my mind like the validity of my birth certificate."

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Talking about God is pretty standard for American politicians. But a line that has been popping up often in Donald Trump's recent campaign speeches seems to go further.

At a recent gathering of conservative Christians in Washington, D.C., Trump promised that if he is elected president, "we will be one American nation." The Republican nominee quoted the Bible and spelled out his vision for American unity:

Americans who endured the brutal 2007-2009 recession and slow recovery now are seeing an economic sunrise: Wages are up, jobs are growing and more families are lifting themselves up out of poverty.

And yet, dark clouds are still hanging over millions of Americans.

No set of sunny statistics can help an unemployed coal miner in Kentucky pay the mortgage. Upbeat wage data won't reassure a Michigan factory worker who is nervously watching robots replace his co-workers.

It's a headline you can write every election year:

FLORIDA THE BIG BATTLEGROUND IN THIS YEARS' RACE TO THE WHITE HOUSE

But that banner belies significant changes taking place in rapid fashion.

In fact, if your image of Florida politics is senior citizens peppering candidates with questions about Social Security and Medicare, it's time for an update. Or a new headline.

Perhaps something like this:

MILLENNIALS A RISING FORCE IN FLORIDA ELECTIONS

Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence is in "excellent general and cardiovascular health," according to a letter from his doctor that was released by his campaign, Saturday.

The letter, written by Michael Busk, a physician at St. Vincent Health, Wellness and Preventative Care Institute in Indianapolis, goes on to say that the 57-year-old Pence is "medically able to maintain [his] high level of professional work and [his] physical activity programs without limitations."

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