This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. A double-switch on gay marriage, Sanford back in the South Carolina sun, and you think Reince Priebus has been listening to the show? It's Wednesday and time for a...
REINCE PRIEBUS: Stuffy old men.
CONAN: ...edition of the Political Junkie.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: There you go again.
VICE PRESIDENT WALTER MONDALE: When I hear your new ideas, I'm reminded of that ad: Where's the beef?
This is TELL ME MORE, from NPR news. I'm Michel Martin. Today, we are going to spend some time across North Africa and the Middle East. It's the first day of spring, and that means it's the Persian New Year. We are going to celebrate Nowruz later in the program, with a comedian who's putting a new spin on the holiday. That's in just a few minutes.
The state's utility regulatory board has scheduled three meetings focusing on the rates for Alabama Power Co.
The Public Service Commission says the public meetings will be May 8, June 18 and July 17 in Montgomery. Each meeting will start at 8:30 a.m. at the PSC's headquarters. The PSC says the structure of each meeting will be announced later.
The PSC's rate stabilization plan for Alabama Power has provided the state's largest electric utility with a rate of return on common equity of 13 percent to 14.5 percent since 1982.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.
Horizontal hydro-fracking has transformed the energy market. Drillers get natural gas out of the ground by drilling down, then sideways, using water pressure to unlock energy - natural gas. But for all the money coming out of the ground in some places, the technique is contentious and New York does not allow it; which causes landowners to feel they're being left behind.
One of the longest serving members of the Legislature, Democratic Rep. Richard Lindsey of Centre, says he's never seen state services cut to their current level.
Lindsey says cuts began in 2008, and they have continued each year since then. Lindsey says prison guards are at a bare minimum, schools don't have enough supplies, and fewer state troopers are patrolling the highways.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 5:19 pm
Bosco Ntaganda, the Congolese warlord and rebel leader wanted by the International Criminal Court, showed upatthe U.S. Embassy in Kigali on Monday in a taxicab. He was apparently unexpected.
"We did not have any prior notice or consultations with him to indicate that he would do that," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said Tuesday. "He was a walk-in, in the truest sense of the word."
She said the U.S. is now "working to facilitate his request" to be transported to the Netherlands to stand trial.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 5:04 pm
One of the most interesting observations we've seen regarding the Republican National Committee's latest effort to win the hearts and minds of minorities, women and young voters was to be found on a blog that promotes a
As we just heard, Palestinians have condemned the E1 settlement project, saying it would effectively cut the West Bank in two. Israeli officials dismiss that criticism, and they say that there are alternative routes for Palestinians who want to travel between the northern and southern parts of the West Bank.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 3:48 pm
The prospects of an assault weapons ban emerging as part of any post-Newtown gun control law looks highly unlikely after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid opted not to include it in a Democratic proposal to be offered on the Senate floor in coming weeks.
"My understanding is it will not be [part of the base bill]" to be introduced on the Senate floor, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said after meeting with Reid on Monday, according to Politico. "The leader has decided not to do it."
In practical terms, a project known as E-1 would provide 3,000 or so new housing units for Israelis in an area between east Jerusalem — which the Palestinians hope will someday be their capital — and the large Israeli settlement of Maaleh Adumim.
But numbers can be deceiving: Palestinians are renewing their objections to the growing number of Israeli settlements, and many fear E-1 could tip the balance in a way that makes an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement impossible.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 1:02 pm
Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky doubled down Tuesday on a previous call for a path to citizenship, telling a major Hispanic business group that his message to the nation's illegal immigrants is: "If you wish to live and work in America, then we will find a place for you."
Conservatives, he told the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, must "become part of the solution" to immigration, including dealing with the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants now living in the U.S. In his Washington speech, Paul said:
Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 8:18 am
Every American president since Harry Truman has wrestled with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, to no avail. Yet they keep trying based on the notion that the Middle East will never be calm until there's peace between these protagonists.
But as President Obama heads to Israel and the West Bank, expectations could hardly be lower. What's more, this long-standing feud, often seen as the holy grail of American diplomacy, no longer seems to hold the same urgency, according to many analysts.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 2:24 pm
The release of a "postmortem" report on the 2012 national election by the Republican National Committee is either the first step toward the GOP's recovery or the latest sign that the party is headed for a breakup.
A three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments as former Health South CEO Richard Scrushy appeals a lower court decision denying his request for a new trial of his 2006 conviction in a government corruption case.
Former Alabama Gov Don Siegelman was also found guilty in that case and is serving a sentence in a federal prison in Louisiana. Scrushy is out of prison and living in Houston after having completed his sentence.