Politics

The Two-Way
10:55 am
Sat April 27, 2013

U.S. Citizen Faces Trial In North Korea

North Korea has accused an American tourist of committing crimes against the state and trying to bring down the country's regime, according to the North's official news agency.

The KCNA said Saturday that 44-year-old Kenneth Bae, imprisoned since November, confessed to the crimes and would be facing judgement in a North Korean court. He is identified in the report by his Korean name, Pae Jun Ho.

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It's All Politics
9:07 am
Sat April 27, 2013

Plan Would Force Public Companies To Reveal Political Giving

iStockphoto.com

The 2012 election was the most expensive in history, but there remain some gaping holes in our knowledge about who paid for what. The Securities and Exchange Commission is considering a proposal to add more transparency in future elections, but it won't happen without a fight.

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NPR Story
4:43 am
Sat April 27, 2013

Congress Acts On Flight Delays, What's Next?

Originally published on Sat April 27, 2013 1:57 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The first great sequester showdown has ended and the White House says President Obama will sign a bill that effectively ends furloughs for air traffic controllers. The House yesterday approved the measure, which was passed by the Senate Thursday night, and the action comes after a week of flight delays that angered air travelers and set off a flurry of finger-pointing in Washington, D.C. NPR's Brian Naylor reports.

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It's All Politics
3:03 am
Sat April 27, 2013

Bloomberg Aims His Money At Gun Control Opponents

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks at a news conference at City Hall on April 25. The billionaire mayor has been spending from his personal fortune to provide a "political counterweight to the NRA," his policy adviser says.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Sat April 27, 2013 1:57 pm

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg seems determined to become the formidable adversary the National Rifle Association has never had.

The billionaire mayor is spending from his personal fortune to help defeat lawmakers who voted against gun control proposals last week and to prop up those who supported the measures.

Bloomberg's first target is a Democratic senator facing a tough fight for re-election in 2014: Mark Pryor of Arkansas.

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It's All Politics
3:23 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

Democrats Invoke Boston, West To Defend Government's Role

Last week, FBI investigators and a Watertown, Mass., police officer investigate the scene near the boat where bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was hiding. Democrats have argued that the way the government responded to the Boston attacks makes a case for not cutting too deeply.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

President Obama has spoken at two memorial services in just over a week — one for victims of the Boston Marathon attack and one for those who died in the chemical plant explosions in West, Texas. In both speeches, he focused on victims and survivors.

But other Democrats are using these events to talk about another subject: the role of government.

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Politics
2:47 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

Pressure Builds On White House To Intervene In Syria

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. The White House tried to clarify its message on Syria today, saying it is still studying evidence that the government there has used chemical weapons. Here's press secretary Jay Carney.

JAY CARNEY: We are continuing to work to build on the assessments made by the intelligence community. The degrees of confidence here are varying, this is not an airtight case.

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Around the Nation
2:47 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

Flight Delays Prompt End To Air Traffic Controller Furloughs

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

We also have some sequester news today. The House approved a bill, and the president says he'll sign it, to end the furlough of air traffic controllers. Short-staffed control towers translated into thousands of flight delays this week, all because of those automatic across-the-board spending cuts. NPR's Tamara Keith has that story.

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It's All Politics
2:11 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

Budget Politics Forcing Congress To Pick Favorites

Call it the Whac-a-Mole approach to budgeting.

Congress restored budget flexibility so the FAA can keep air traffic controllers working, just days after their furloughs had started and flight delays began stacking up.

With spending cuts caused by sequestration rolling throughout the government, the question becomes which programs Congress might address next — and why.

"That's the parlor game in Washington," says Scott Lilly, a former staff director of the House Appropriations Committee. "There are dozens and dozens of candidates."

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It's All Politics
12:00 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

Obama Says New Abortion Laws Turn Back The Clock

President Obama addresses the Planned Parenthood national conference in Washington on Friday.
Nicholas Kamm AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 1:33 pm

President Obama on Friday became the first sitting president to address Planned Parenthood's annual meeting, delivering a strongly worded speech defending the embattled organization.

"We shouldn't have to remind people that when it comes to women's health, no politician should get to decide what's best for you," said Obama, who was greeted by sustained applause when he took the stage.

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The Sequester: Cuts And Consequences
11:53 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Flight Delays Push Congress To End Controller Furloughs

Travelers stand in line at Los Angeles International Airport on Monday. Congress moved quickly this week to give the Federal Aviation Administration flexibility to end air traffic controller furloughs that resulted in flight delays at several airports.
Damian Dovarganes AP

The U.S. Congress — a body not exactly known for its swift feet — raced Friday to complete legislation to help travelers avoid delays at airports.

The House voted 361-41 to approve legislation that the Senate passed without objection late Thursday. The bill gives the Federal Aviation Administration more spending flexibility to cut its budget while avoiding furloughs of air traffic controllers.

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The Two-Way
10:16 am
Fri April 26, 2013

House OKs Bill To End Air Traffic Controllers' Furloughs

The furloughs of air traffic controllers that have slowed air travel in the past week and frustrated thousands of fliers should soon come to an end.

By a vote of 361-41, the House of Representatives just passed legislation that would allow the secretary of transportation to shift up to $253 million in funds so that controllers no longer have to be furloughed to meet the requirements of sequestration (the mandated, across-the-board spending cuts that began taking hold March 1).

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Around the Nation
9:49 am
Fri April 26, 2013

ACLU Says Detroit is Dumping its Homeless

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

Now we turn to Detroit, where police have been reportedly using a pretty controversial method to deal with vagrancy. Allegedly, police are taking homeless people off city streets - particularly in high tourist areas - then driving them outside of the city limits and leaving them there. The American Civil Liberties Union recently sent a letter to city officials and the Detroit Police Department demanding an end to this practice, and the group also filed a complaint with the Department of Justice, requesting an investigation.

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Around the Nation
9:49 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Has Time Been Kind To 'Dubya?'

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

I'm Celeste Headlee, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. And it is time for a visit to the Barbershop. That's where the guys talk about what's in the news and what's on their minds.

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Politics
9:49 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Why Can't Traumatic Events Bring Politicians Together?

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Coming up, an unexpected death can be a test of faith for just about anyone, but what happens when that death is a suicide? We'll talk about that in just a few minutes, but first when it comes to politics it's become something of a cliché to say 9/11 changed everything. And in the immediate days following those terrorist attacks, Republicans and Democrats came together.

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It's All Politics
9:36 am
Fri April 26, 2013

FEC: DOMA Limits Political Donations By Gay Married Couples

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Dan Winslow of Massachusetts wants same-sex married couples to have the same right to pool their money for political donations as other married couples. But the Federal Election Commission says the Defense of Marriage Act won't allow it. The constitutionality of DOMA is now before the Supreme Court.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 1:46 pm

Maybe it's not your first thought after saying "I do," but federal election law gives married couples some advantages in making political contributions. The Federal Election Commission tried Thursday to make those same breaks available to couples in same-sex marriages — but commissioners said they're thwarted by the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

True, President Obama's Justice Department no longer defends DOMA, and the Supreme Court is weighing whether to get rid of it. But the FEC didn't want to get too far out in front. The vote was a reluctant 5-0.

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'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup
7:19 am
Fri April 26, 2013

It's All Politics, Apr. 25, 2013

Kevork Djansezian Getty Images
  • Listen to the Roundup

Politics has been especially gloomy lately, but NPR's Ken Rudin and Ron Elving try their best to improve the mood in this week's podcast, offering analysis on the politicization of the Boston bombings, Max Baucus' potential successor and Senate primary battles in Massachusetts and Hawaii. Plus: Jeb Bush gets some 2016 advice.

Business
3:17 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Senate Moves To Update Federal Online Privacy Laws

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 4:59 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Yesterday, the Senate took a step toward updating the federal online privacy law. It's a law that dates back to a time when most people had never heard of the Internet.

NPR's Martin Kaste reports.

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Politics
3:17 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Koch Brothers' Newspaper Takeover Could Spark 'Culture Clash'

The Tribune Co. is considering the sale of all of its daily newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun and the Los Angeles Times, whose building is pictured above.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 4:59 pm

The Tribune Co., emerging from bankruptcy and looking to reshape itself, is now considering the sale of all its newspapers — including the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, The Baltimore Sun and five other regional newspapers. It's still very early in the sale process; although the newspaper unit has been valued at $623 million, significant debts are also attached, and Tribune has signaled that it reserves the right not to sell if there isn't a worthy bid.

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Around the Nation
3:17 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Presidents Overlook Differences At Bush Center Opening

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 4:59 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The president's appearance at that memorial service came on the same day he joined with all his living predecessors. He met with Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, whose presidential library was dedicated in Texas.

A photograph, sent out on Twitter incidentally, by former President Clinton, shows the five men in a circle, chatting. Three Democrats joined two Republicans on a day when political differences were overlooked.

Here's NPR national political correspondent Don Gonyea.

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Planet Money
1:02 am
Fri April 26, 2013

The Lollipop War

Spangler Candy via Flickr

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 4:59 pm

I recently got a tour of the Spangler Candy Co., a family-owned firm in Bryan, Ohio. The company makes 10 million Dum Dums lollipops there every day, and it has a whole separate building where it stores the sugar — enough to fill eight Olympic-size swimming pools.

The CEO, Kirk Vashaw, says he wants to expand the factory and make even more candy there. There's just one thing he needs.

"Let us buy sugar on the free market," he says.

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It's All Politics
3:57 pm
Thu April 25, 2013

Max Baucus Says He Was Montana's 'Hired Hand' On Gun Vote

Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., is trailed by reporters Monday on Capitol Hill after announcing that he'll retire in 2014.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 6:16 pm

Longtime Democratic Sen. Max Baucus of Montana announced this week that he would not seek re-election next year, ending four decades in Congress and leaving as chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee.

NPR's Robert Siegel spoke with Baucus Thursday about his recent vote against expanded gun background checks, his role in negotiations over President Obama's health care legislation, efforts to remake tax policy, and the legions of his former staffers now populating lobbying shops.

Background Checks

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Politics
2:59 pm
Thu April 25, 2013

Sen. Corker Calls On U.S. To 'Step Up' Efforts In Syria

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 6:16 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Tennessee Republican Senator Bob Corker is the ranking minority member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and joins us now. Welcome to the program, Senator.

SENATOR BOB CORKER: Glad to be with you.

SIEGEL: You said in light of what the White House said today, we should step up our efforts. What does that mean, we should step up our efforts in Syria?

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It's All Politics
11:08 am
Thu April 25, 2013

Why The Bush Library Won't Make History

Former President George W. Bush speaks alongside former first lady Laura Bush during the opening ceremony of the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on Thursday in Dallas.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 11:50 am

Will history judge George W. Bush more kindly than his contemporaries have?

The man himself seems fairly indifferent.

"I don't think he really cares much at all, to be honest with you," says Kevin Sullivan, who served as White House communications director during Bush's second term. "I think he cares very little about where his approval rating stands today, compared to 2005 or 2008."

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The Two-Way
10:20 am
Thu April 25, 2013

At Bush Library Dedication, Bipartisan Praise

President Obama, former presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter attend the opening ceremony of the George W. Bush Presidential Center on Thursday in Dallas, Texas. The Bush library, which is located on the campus of Southern Methodist University, with more than 70 million pages of paper records, 43,000 artifacts, 200 million emails and four million photographs.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 11:00 am

Four presidents praised another member of their exclusive club Thursday at the dedication of the George W. Presidential Library and Museum on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

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Africa
10:00 am
Thu April 25, 2013

Mo Ibrahim: The 'Bill Gates Of Africa'

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Now it's time for our Wisdom Watch conversation. That's where we learn from people who've made a difference through their work.

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The Two-Way
7:48 am
Thu April 25, 2013

'We've Had Enough Bushes,' Says Former First Lady Barbara

Former first lady Barbara Bush in March 2012.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 8:48 am

Thanks, mom.

On the day her son George's presidential library is being dedicated in Dallas, former first lady Barbara Bush has told NBC's Today show that "we've had enough Bushes" when it comes to seeing the presidency.

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The Two-Way
6:47 am
Thu April 25, 2013

5 Presidents Set To Help Dedicate George W. Bush's Library

Statues of former Presidents George W. Bush (left) and his father, George H.W. Bush, stand at the George W. Bush Presidential Center on the SMU campus in Dallas, where the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum will be dedicated Thursday.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 9:14 am

  • From 'Morning Edition': Former first lady Laura Bush talks with NPR's David Greene

We're due for one of those rare moments Thursday morning when the current president and all of his living predecessors will be together.

The occasion: The dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are due to be there along with, of course, George W. Bush.

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National Security
3:16 am
Thu April 25, 2013

Should Air Traffic Controllers Be Included In Furloughs?

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 12:46 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Air travelers are growing less and less happy. Automatic budget cuts are now leading to hundreds of flight delays, about half of all delayed flights this week.

NPR's Tamara Keith reports.

TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: Up until this point, the effects of the sequester have been scattered and hard to pin down: hiring freezes, delayed park openings. But then the furloughs of air traffic controllers the Federal Aviation Administration had been threatening for months hit and, bam, the sequester got real, real fast.

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Business
3:16 am
Thu April 25, 2013

House Panel Examines Government Loan To Fisker Automotive

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 12:46 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Auto executives got a grilling on Capitol Hill yesterday. Not the usual suspects from Detroit's Big Three. Think much, much smaller. Executives from the hybrid carmaker Fisker testified about hundreds of millions of dollars in loans Fisker got from the government. Today, the company is on the verge of collapse.

NPR's Sonari Glinton reports.

SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: Fisker, the car company, isn't dead yet. But Congress has already begun the autopsy.

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Business
1:32 am
Thu April 25, 2013

Shifting Retail Landscape Tilts Support For Online Sales Tax

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn. (left), leads a news conference about the Marketplace Fairness Act on Tuesday. The legislation would provide states with the authority to require out-of-state retailers to collect and remit taxes on purchases shipped into the states.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 12:46 am

The U.S. Senate may vote this week on the Marketplace Fairness Act, a bill that would allow states to collect sales tax from more online retailers. And as the political and retail landscape has shifted from the last time around, the Senate is expected to approve the measure.

The proposal to require online sellers to collect out-of-state sales tax has been kicked around for many years. For a decade, Amazon was a fierce opponent.

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