MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Alabama Democrats cried foul when Republicans pushed through a sweeping education law that will create new income tax credits to help some parents pay private school tuition. Because they're an overwhelming minority in the Legislature, there wasn't much the Democrats could do. Now, with the session over, leading party figures tell The Decatur Daily (http://bit.ly/17hnl6u ) they'll use the Republicans' act as a primary issue in the 2014 legislative elections. Sen.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — With the unofficial start of boating season kicking off this Memorial Day weekend, Alabama Marine Police are encouraging boaters and swimmers to obey the laws and avoid drinking while boating. Lieutenant Jon Archer of the Alabama Marine Police tells The Montgomery Advertiser there were a total of 75 boating accidents across the state in 2012. Of those accidents, 13 involved alcohol, 45 people were injured and 17 people died. Two of those deaths involved drunken boat operators.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — An aide to Governor Robert Bentley says the administration will continue to explore its options after lawmakers adjourned Monday without acting on 70 nominees to various state boards. Jennifer Ardis, a spokeswoman in the governor's office, said the administration is worried that some boards may not have enough qualified members to do business. Many of the boards, however, allow sitting members to continue serving until their replacement are confirmed.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was in the capital of Ethiopia this weekend. He was attending the 50th anniversary summit of the African Union, and he was laying the groundwork for President Obama's trip to Africa in the next month. Our East Africa correspondent Gregory Warner is in Addis Ababa. He joins us now. Hi, Greg. Thanks for being with us.
GREGORY WARNER, BYLINE: Thanks, Rachel.
MARTIN: So, you spent the day with the secretary. How was he received?
President Obama gave a major speech Thursday intended to narrow the scope of the U.S. fight against terrorism. He addressed the administration's much-criticized drone program. Host Rachel Martin speaks with Adm. Dennis Blair, who was Obama's top intelligence adviser from 2009 to 2010, and a vocal critic of the administration's drone campaign.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News, I'm Scott Simon. In the two weeks since the Internal Revenue Service scandal erupted, the acting commissioner has been ousted, the head of the relevant section has been put on administrative leave. The Justice Department has begun investigating the scrutiny given to conservative groups that sought tax exempt status and three congressional committees have held hearings bombarding IRS officials with questions.
In his national security speech Thursday, President Obama discussed drone warfare and the Guantanamo detention camp. But a third controversial issue went largely unmentioned: the use of interrogation methods that are tantamount to torture.
It's difficult for an American president to govern through nuance, especially when it's necessary to persuade a majority of the people that certain actions are essential for national security. And effective persuasion usually requires clarity.
That's how you arrive at President George W. Bush's stark formulation "You're either with us, or you're with the terrorists" after Sept. 11, and much of what sprang from it.
Governor Robert Bentley has signed two bond issues into law, along with a bill changing Alabama's campaign finance law. One new law signed by the governor removes the limit on how much corporations can give to political candidates in Alabama. Corporate contributions are now unlimited like individual contributions. Bentley spokesman Jeremy King said Friday the governor also signed a $30 million bond issue to repair six schools damaged by tornadoes in 2011 and 2012. He also approved a $50 million bond issue to purchase equipment for technology training programs in public schools.