Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 5:06 pm
If nothing else, the Republican National Committee has gotten people thinking about Rosa Parks.
Of course, the RNC also gave its political opponents a chance to mock the GOP with its poorly worded tweet Saturday marking the 58th anniversary of the African-American civil rights activist's refusal to give up her bus seat to a white person, an event that sparked the Montgomery bus boycott.
In this, the first week of December, the Obama administration says it has met its self-imposed deadline of fixing the troubled healthcare.gov web site. And it says people should be able to sign up for health insurance. So, is it fixed and when will we know for sure?
This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.
The end of Thanksgiving weekend brings us closer to another deadline. The budget chairs of the Senate and the House, here in Washington, are continuing talks to set spending levels for the coming year and maybe beyond. They're leading a conference committee setup as part of the deal to end the partial government shutdown this past fall.
ATHENS, Ala. (AP) — City leaders in Athens are looking for ways to attack blight downtown and are leaning on owners of the buildings to show they're making progress. The Decatur Daily reports that the city has been trying to eliminate dilapidated structures by forcing owners to fix them or removing the problem and billing the owners. Laurie McGuire bought five empty stores downtown about five years ago, during the economic downturn. She used a grant to fund storefront improvements but hasn't had the funds to continue the work until she recently got a loan.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Students at Harvard University are getting a lesson about the Alabama tornado outbreak of 2011. Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox will speak at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government on Wednesday. Maddox will discuss the city's response to the massive EF-4 twister that hit the city on April 27, 2011. The tornado killed more than 50 people and destroyed or damaged thousands of structures, but Maddox received generally positive reviews for his handling of the disaster. He was re-elected earlier this year.
The online magazine Ozy covers people, places and trends on the horizon. Co-founder Carlos Watson joins All Things Considered regularly to tell us about the site's latest discoveries.
This week, Ozy deputy editor Eugene Robinson fills in for Carlos to tell NPR's Arun Rath about two dueling divas in Bangladeshi politics, the rising popularity of an obscure winter sport, and tattoos that you can wear to work.
MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — Mobile's new mayor is heading to Germany to meet with Airbus representatives about the company's upcoming assembly plant in the port city. Mayor Sandy Stimpson is among the local and state leaders traveling to Hamburg, Germany, for Aviation Forum 2013. Stimpson will tour an Airbus factory and meet with top European executives for an update on its progress with the $600 million manufacturing plant in Mobile. Stimpson says the trip is a chance to showcase Mobile before Airbus partners and suppliers. The group departs Sunday and will return on Thursday.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A state lawmaker has pre-filed a bill to remove the state Department of Education from the licensure and regulation processes for private schools. The Montgomery Advertiser reported Thursday that proposed legislation from Republican state Sen. Dick Brewbaker, of Montgomery, would also remove a state requirement asking that the schools carry a surety bond of at least $10,000. The proposed legislation would also shift the regulation of technical and professional schools to the Department of Postsecondary Education.
Ari Shapiro speaks with political commentators, EJ Dionne of the Washington Post and Brookings Institution and David Brooks of The New York Times. They discuss the latest on the HealthCare.gov Website and the discord over reaching a troop agreement between the U.S. and Afghanistan.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
And I'm David Greene. Good morning. We hope many of you are enjoying some time off for Thanksgiving, maybe doing some shopping, but meanwhile work is continuing on the website for the federal health care exchanges.
Unless Congress acts quickly, taking mass transit to work is about to get more expensive for some people.
For the past four years, public transportation users and people who drive their cars to work and pay for parking have been able set aside up to $245 a month in wages tax free if they're used for commuting costs or workplace parking.