Politics & Government

Latin America
10:55 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Any Praise For Hugo Chavez?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, officials in a number of major cities around the country are looking to close public schools to save money, but some parents and activists say the cost of that move is higher than you might think. We'll talk with a reporter and an activist in her city in just a minute.

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Politics
10:55 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Exit Interview: US Trade Representative Ron Kirk

Look around your kitchen table and you'll see the work of Ambassador Ron Kirk. He's the United States Trade Representative, which is a cabinet-level position, and he's negotiated trade deals all around the world. Host Michel Martin talks to him about why he's choosing to step down from his post and the importance of U.S. trade.

School safety legislation
6:42 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Ala. Governor Vetoes School Firearms Legislation

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley has vetoed a Franklin County school safety bill that would have authorized some teachers to carry firearms.


The bill would allow teachers and other school personnel in Franklin County and Russellville city schools to train as reserve county sheriff's deputies and then carry firearms in school.

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It's All Politics
2:45 am
Wed March 6, 2013

The Boehner Rule? Speaker Bucks House GOP For Some Legislation

House Speaker John Boehner answers reporters' questions after the weekly House Republican caucus meeting with (from left) Rep. Kevin McCarthy, Rep. Lynn Jenkins, Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Rep. Steve Daines on Tuesday.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 6, 2013 10:18 am

House Speaker John Boehner held a news conference the day after the November election.

"The American people have spoken," he said. "They've re-elected President Obama. And they've again re-elected a Republican majority in the House of Representatives."

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The Two-Way
5:40 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Judge Intervenes In Heated Battle Over Alabama's Education Bill

Circuit Court Judge Charles Price hears arguments in in Montgomery, Ala., Tuesday on a bill that provides private school tax credits. The judge halted the bill from being delivered to the governor.
Dave Martin AP

A judge in Alabama has blocked the state's governor from signing a school choice bill, after a lawsuit alleged that lawmakers bypassed state rules when they substantially revised the legislation in committee. The vote to pass the bill last week was marked by confusion, anger, and accusations of "sleaziness" and "hypocrisy," as AL.com reported.

Here was the scene last week, as the bill's backers sought to end debate and hold a vote:

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Politics
5:20 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Jeb Bush May Have Changed His Mind On Immigration With 2016 Bid In Sight

When former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush got to work on his new book on immigration, he was expected to be out in front of his party urging a broader conversation with Hispanics and more open legislation. After all, he had previously supported a pathway to citizenship for immigrants here illegally. Instead, it's fellow Florida Republican Marco Rubio in the lead, and Bush who's explaining an apparent reversal on the issue of citizenship. Both are likely candidates for president in 2016.

Private School Tax Credits
4:49 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Ala. Judge Plans To Rule On School Tax Credits

A judge plans to rule Wednesday on whether the governor can sign into law a bill providing private school tax credits.
Credit Trance Mist / Flickr

A judge plans to rule Wednesday on whether the governor can sign into law a bill providing private school tax credits.


Gov. Robert Bentley had planned to sign the bill Tuesday afternoon, but Montgomery Circuit Court Judge Charles Price temporarily put that on hold while he considers a lawsuit filed by the Alabama Education Association.


Price heard arguments Tuesday afternoon on whether the Legislature violated Alabama's open meeting law and its own operating rules in passing the bill in a series of quick votes Thursday night.

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Politics & Government
4:45 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Rivalries And Infighting Could Follow In Wake Of Chavez's Death

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Joining us now to talk about what comes next is NPR's Tom Gjelten. He's covered Latin America for us.

And, Tom, Hugo Chavez, such a dominating figure in Venezuela. What happens now in the immediate aftermath of his death?

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Legislature-Abortion
4:42 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Governor Bentley Endorses Abortion Clinic Regulations

Governor Robert Bentley says if the state Senate approves tougher abortion clinic regulations then he will sign them.
Credit State of Alabama

Alabama's governor says he will sign tougher abortion clinic regulations if the state Senate approves them.


Gov. Robert Bentley spoke Tuesday at a rally organized by abortion opponents in Montgomery. Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey and House Speaker Mike Hubbard also attended the rally.


The clinic regulatory bill has passed the House and is scheduled for a vote Wednesday in the Senate Health Committee. Committee Chairman Greg Reed says he expects the committee to approve the bill and send it to the Senate.

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NPR Story
3:50 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Posthumous Pardon For Heavyweight Boxer Jack Johnson A Bipartisan Effort

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Some members of Congress have put aside partisan sparring in defense of a legendary fighter. Republican Senator John McCain and Democratic Senator Harry Reid are among those calling for a posthumous pardon for the heavyweight boxing champion Jack Johnson. Johnson became the first black man to win that title back in 1908. His next win in 1910 sparked race riots and his relationships with white women added to the controversy.

Here's actor Samuel L. Jackson as Johnson in the 2005 Ken Burns documentary, "Unforgivable Blackness."

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It's All Politics
3:00 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

In Jeb Bush's Immigration Mishmash, One Thing's Clear: 2016 Race Is On

Mark Humphrey AP

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:34 pm

If Nov. 7 brought pangs of withdrawal from the end of the presidential race — good news!

The next one has already started.

Witness last week's dust-up over the American Conservative Union's failure to invite New Jersey's Chris Christie, one of the most popular Republican governors in the country, to its annual Conservative Political Action Conference. And if that flew under the radar, this week's book tour launch by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has removed all doubt that the countdown to Iowa has begun.

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Politics & Government
2:46 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

With Approval Of Committee, Brennan's Nomination Moves To Full Senate

John Brennan, President Obama's nominee to lead the CIA, testified at his confirmation hearing Thursday before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Alex Wong Getty Images

By a vote of 12 to 3, the Senate Intelligence Committee approved the nomination of John Brennan as the head of the Central Intelligence Agency.

The nomination now goes to the full Senate for their confirmation. Reuters reports that timing of that vote is still unknown.

As we've reported, Brennan's nomination has drawn opposition from Senators who "want to know more about last September's attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya."

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Governing
12:44 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Old Triumph Over Young In Federal Spending, And Sequester Makes It Worse

Federal spending on seniors already far outpaces that devoted to children. Last year, overall spending on children dropped for the first time in 30 years. The sequester, which expressly protects programs for the elderly, will exacerbate that difference.
Anne de Haas iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:23 pm

For years, federal programs for seniors and those that help kids have been on a collision course.

Now, given the automatic spending cuts taking place under sequestration, the moment for real competition may have arrived.

While Medicare and Social Security will come through the sequester mostly unscathed, a broad swath of programs targeted toward children — Head Start, education, nutrition assistance, child welfare — stand to lose hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars.

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Governing
10:39 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Can Michigan Right The Ship For Detroit?

If Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has his way, Detroit will become the sixth and largest city there to come under state control. But steering a city out of crisis can be a tricky task. Host Michel Martin speaks with Jerome Vaughn, of WDET, and Robert Bobb, a former emergency financial manager for Detroit Public Schools, about the situation.

Private Schools Tax Credit
6:25 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Ala. Governor to Sign Private School Tax Credits

Gov. Robert Bentley says he'll sign legislation that provides tax credits to parents who move their kids out of failing public schools into private schools.
governor.alabama.gov

Gov. Robert Bentley is ready to sign legislation providing tax credits to parents who move their children from failing public schools to private schools.

Republicans in the Legislature passed the bill on a party-line vote Thursday night, but the Legislature can't officially deliver the bill to the governor until Tuesday afternoon. Bentley says he will sign it after getting it. He calls it one of the best pieces of legislation passed in years.


The Alliance for School Choice says Alabama with become the 12th state with a tax credit program.

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