Politics & Government

It's All Politics
10:03 am
Sat September 13, 2014

How To Spot A Vulnerable House Democrat

Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., (right) poses with House Speaker John Boehner at the start of his 19th term last year. Rahall is running for re-election in a district that President Obama lost by 32 points in 2012.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 10:07 am

If there's any confusion as to which House Democrats are most worried about their coming races, a pair of rock-vs-hard place votes this week ought to help clear things up.

One of the advantages of controlling a legislative chamber is the ability to schedule votes designed to put vulnerable members of the opposing party on the spot. That's what House Republicans did this week in what could be the final two such votes heading into the November mid-terms.

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Author Interviews
9:57 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Wendy Davis Tells Of Her Own Difficult Abortions In 'Forgetting'

Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis has a new memoir, Forgetting to Be Afraid.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 12:21 pm

Wendy Davis, the Democratic candidate for the governor of Texas, came to the attention of most Americans outside Texas when, as state senator, she filibustered a highly restrictive abortion bill for 11 straight hours.

Now Davis is making headlines for her newly released memoir, Forgetting to Be Afraid. In the book, Davis revealed for the first time that she had two abortions herself. She also details her gritty and sometimes unhappy life growing up, first in Rhode Island and then Texas, Oklahoma and California.

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It's All Politics
8:34 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Obama's Hawkish Plan For Islamic State Puts Doves In A Quandary

President Obama's plan to degrade and destroy the Islamic state poses a challenge for members of his own party, who have traditionally provided the anti-war voices in Congress.
Saul Loeb AP

Originally published on Sat September 13, 2014 2:47 pm

President Obama arguably won the Democratic primary in 2008 because of his strong opposition to the Iraq war. Now he's arguing he doesn't need congressional approval to ramp up a bombing campaign in Iraq and expand air strikes into Syria.

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Law
6:40 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Domestic Violence Protections Still Resonate 20 Years After Crime Bill

Vice President Joe Biden hugs Ruth Glenn, of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, at a commemoration of the 20th Anniversary of the Act. Glenn says that as a victim in 1992, there was no place to turn.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Sat September 13, 2014 11:47 am

Twenty years ago today, former President Bill Clinton signed a massive crime-control bill that funded shelters for battered women and helped train police to investigate attacks. The anniversary of the law falls on a week when violence against women is front and center in the national conversation.

First, the Baltimore Ravens fired player Ray Rice after TMZ released a video where he knocked his then-fiancee unconscious. Then, a South African judge convicted sprinter Oscar Pistorius of negligently killing his girlfriend.

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Politics
6:40 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Judge: Government Can't Arbitrate The Truth In Politics

Originally published on Sat September 13, 2014 11:47 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

WADE GOODWYN, HOST:

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Politics
6:40 am
Sat September 13, 2014

White House Tries To Ease Hispanic Caucus Frustrations

Originally published on Sat September 13, 2014 11:47 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

WADE GOODWYN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. Scott Simon is away. I'm Wade Goodwyn.

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Politics
4:35 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Revamped Visitor Center Gives Public A Peek Into The White House

A model of the White House is seen in the renovated White House Visitor Center
Matt McClain The Washington Post/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:39 pm

Just about every day in Washington, rain or shine, tourists stand along Pennsylvania Avenue snapping photographs of the White House or just peering through the iron fence. But getting an inside look can be tricky. Visitors usually have to get tickets far in advance, either from a member of Congress or a foreign embassy.

Starting Saturday, there is another option.

A newly refurbished Visitor Center a few blocks away from the White House offers an up-close look at the executive mansion without having to run the gantlet of the Secret Service.

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Shots - Health News
5:11 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Opponents Spar In Court Over Texas Clinics That Do Abortions

Abortion-rights advocates filled the rotunda of the state capitol in July 2013 as Texas senators debated sweeping abortion restrictions. Some of those restrictions are now under federal review.
Tamir Kalifa AP

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 3:36 pm

A federal appeals court in New Orleans is reviewing whether 11 clinics that provide abortion in Texas must immediately close their doors because they don't comply with a state law requiring that they meet all the standards of an outpatient surgical center.

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Execution Drugs-Alabama
4:27 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Alabama Changes Execution Drug Combination

After adopting the new three drug protocol, the attorney general's office is asking the Alabama Supreme Court to set execution dates for nine death row inmates.
Credit The Birmingham News file

Alabama has adopted a new combination of drugs for executions and is once again seeking to put inmates to death.

The attorney general's office is asking the Alabama Supreme Court to set execution dates for nine death row inmates. Lawyers said the Department of Corrections this week adopted a new three-drug protocol for executions.

Executions in Alabama had come to a halt after Alabama and other states ran out of a key drug used in executions.

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Governing
3:21 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Do Americans Support President Obama's ISIS Plan?

Millions watched President Obama's prime-time address this week, like these patrons of a San Francisco nail salon. But whether Americans will support his plan remains unclear.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 5:45 pm

More than 34 million people tuned in this week to hear President Obama outline plans to degrade, and ultimately destroy, the militant group known as the Islamic State.

Polls show widespread support for using American air power against the militants, even though many people remain wary about getting dragged into another open-ended conflict in the Middle East.

The fight represents both a challenge and an opportunity for the president, whose handling of foreign policy has been widely criticized in the past year.

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Politics & Government
6:24 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Ex-Bush Staffer to Head Alabama Policy Institute

Caleb Crosby
Credit Alabama Policy Institute

A former Bush administration staffer is taking over as president of a conservative think tank in Birmingham.

Caleb Crosby has been named to lead the Alabama Policy Institute. He's been with the group for more than three years as vice president and chief financial officer.

Crosby worked with President George W. Bush's administration in the Environmental Protection Agency and as a financial adviser. He also worked at the Treasury Department.

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Politics
5:57 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Discovery Channel Finds A New Way To Cover Politics

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 12:03 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Politics
2:34 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Expanding ISIS Fight Scrambles GOP Plan To Extend Budget And Get Out

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, leaves after a news conference Thursday on Capitol Hill in Washington. Boehner responded positively to the proposals from President Obama about confronting Islamist militants in Iraq and Syria.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 12:03 pm

House Republicans were hoping for September to be a blissfully uneventful month, with election season just around the corner. But President Obama dashed those hopes this week, when he asked Congress for authorization to train and arm Syrian rebels against the group calling itself the Islamic State.

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Health
2:30 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Changing Tack, GOP Candidates Support Over-The-Counter Birth Control

iStockPhoto

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 1:32 pm

A string of Republican candidates for Senate are supporting an issue usually associated with Democrats: easier access to contraception.

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Politics
4:17 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

A Promise Fulfilled Upends Kansas Governor's Race

Republican Gov. Sam Brownback (left) listens while his Democratic challenger Paul Davis answers a question during their first debate at the Kansas State Fair.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 8:00 am

Kansas has become such a reliably red state in presidential elections that when other election years roll around, the results still seem a foregone conclusion. But the governor's mansion has switched parties often in the past 60 years, and Democrats may take it back this November.

Republican Gov. Sam Brownback is running for re-election, and for months now, polls have shown him consistently running well behind his Democratic challenger.

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