Politics

It's All Politics
3:36 am
Sun January 27, 2013

The GOP And Taxes: In The States, It Can Get Complicated

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence delivers his State of the State address to a joint session of the Legislature in Indianapolis on Tuesday.
Darron Cummings AP

When Republican Mike Pence replaced Mitch Daniels as governor of Indiana this month, he wasted no time setting out to establish his conservative fiscal bona fides.

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It's All Politics
3:27 am
Sat January 26, 2013

Obama Administration Takes Gun Control Fight Outside Washington

Vice President Joe Biden participates in a round-table discussion on gun violence at Virginia Commonwealth University with Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., on Friday. The panelists included people who worked on gun safety after the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting.
Steve Helber AP

Originally published on Sat January 26, 2013 3:36 pm

The Obama administration is taking its push for gun legislation outside of the Beltway — possibly in a nod to the obstacles any gun control bills will face in Washington.

On Friday, Vice President Joe Biden held a round-table discussion in Richmond, Va., speaking with people who worked on gun safety after the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting.

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It's All Politics
3:27 am
Sat January 26, 2013

For GOP Comeback, Leaders Urge Stepped-Up Outreach

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, shown at the Republican National Convention in August, has been re-elected to another two-year term.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Sat January 26, 2013 3:36 pm

In their first big party gathering since Election Day, Republican leaders from around the country met in Charlotte, N.C., this week.

The GOP is promising a great deal of change in advance of the next election, but one area where there will be no change for the party is in its leadership. Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus was elected to another two-year term.

In his acceptance speech, he cited a simple reason why Republicans failed to win the White House and lost seats in the House and Senate in November.

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It's All Politics
3:12 pm
Fri January 25, 2013

Court Ruling Upsets Conventional Wisdom On Recess Appointments

President Obama "strongly but respectfully disagrees with the ruling" on recess appointments by a federal appeals court, says White House spokesman Jay Carney.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 4:51 pm

In a bombshell decision on the limits of executive power, a federal appeals court panel in Washington, D.C., has invalidated President Obama's recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board.

Legal experts say the court's reasoning upends decades of conventional wisdom and deals a big victory to Senate Republicans in an era of congressional gridlock.

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World
1:38 pm
Fri January 25, 2013

Spain's Strapped Towns Look To Churches For Cash

The Cathedral of Alcala de Henares is one of many buildings owned by the Catholic Church in Alcala de Henares, Spain. The town, which is outside Madrid, is broke and is pursuing a plan to have the church pay additional taxes.
JMN JMN/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 3:12 pm

The Catholic Church is Spain's largest and richest landowner, though its nonprofit status means it is exempt from paying most taxes.

But amid the current economic crisis, that may be changing.

One college town just outside Madrid is leading an effort by some Spanish municipalities to serve the church an up-to-date property tax bill.

Alcala de Henares is re-evaluating the status of hundreds of church holdings that have been exempt from paying property tax for hundreds of years.

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It's All Politics
1:02 pm
Fri January 25, 2013

Some In GOP Want New Electoral College Rules

Originally published on Mon January 28, 2013 2:00 pm

Not many Americans are fans of the Electoral College. But trying to change the way electoral votes are allocated makes lots of people unhappy, too.

That's what Republicans in a number of states are finding just now. There are a half-dozen states that President Obama carried last November where both the legislature and the governor's office are controlled by the GOP — Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida and Virginia.

In most of those states, there are efforts under way to change how electoral votes are distributed.

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It's All Politics
11:26 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Another Senator Announces Retirement Blaming 'Legislative Gridlock'

Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., announced Friday that he won't seek a third term in 2014.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., won't seek re-election next year, he announced Friday.

The conservative Capitol Hill veteran faced recent criticism from the right for seeking a bipartisan compromise on deficit issues, and for being among the first high-level Republicans to question fidelity to Grover Norquist's no-new-taxes pledge after the November elections.

Those stances had raised speculation about a possible Tea Party-backed GOP primary challenge next year, when Chambliss would have been seeking a third six-year term.

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Education
9:48 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Amid Gun Debate, What Will Actually Protect Kids?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we'll talk with a minister whose latest assignment has provoked unexpected questions about race and faith. More on that in our weekly Faith Matters conversation. But first we return to the issue that's still so much on the minds of the nation and national leaders, which is how to keep citizens safe from gun violence while still balancing this country's historic commitment to gun rights.

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Barbershop
9:48 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Did President Obama Misuse MLK's Bible?

The fact that President Obama's second inauguration took place on the same day as the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday felt right to many people, but some critics say the comparison is all wrong. Host Michel Martin and the Barbershop guys weigh in on that and other news.

Politics
9:40 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Forget 2016. The Pivotal Year In Politics May Be 2020

Latino voters, shown here on Election Day in Los Angeles, will grow in electoral power by the year 2020.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 11:26 am

Now that President Obama is ensconced in his second term, speculation about the future of American politics is wildfire-ish.

In a post-inaugural story, the Associated Press reports that the name of Democratic Vice President Biden "has surfaced as a potential presidential candidate in 2016." Politico says Biden is intoxicated by the prospect.

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The Two-Way
9:06 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Obama To Name New Chief Of Staff, New Counterterrorism Adviser

New White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough (left), at Friday's announcement. Behind the president: outgoing Chief of Staff Jacob "Jack" Lew, who has been nominated to be Treasury secretary.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 11:05 am

Saying he is choosing "one of my closest friends and one of my closest advisers" for the job, President Obama on Friday said that longtime aide Denis McDonough will be his next chief of staff.

During a midday event at the White House that was remarkable for the expansive comments the president made about his friend's character, his dedication and the respect he gets from those who work in the administration, Obama said McDonough has "the kind of heart that I want in the White House."

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'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup
7:28 am
Fri January 25, 2013

It's All Politics, Jan. 24, 2012

Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 12:31 pm

  • Listen to the Roundup

This week, NPR's Ken Rudin and Ron Elving lip sync the entire podcast, focusing on the themes from the inauguration as well as musing over what has changed since 2009 — for America as well as President Obama. Plus: Hillary Clinton's give-and-take with congressional Republicans over Benghazi and a sleight-of-hand move by the GOP in Virginia.

The Two-Way
5:21 am
Fri January 25, 2013

'March For Life' Rally Draws Large Crowd In Washington

An anti-abortion activist at the March for Life rally Friday in Washington, D.C.
Brendan Hoffman Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 5:54 pm

Organizers say today's March for Life rally in the nation's capital may bring more anti-abortion activists to the streets than last year's estimated 400,000. By midday, a large crowd was gathered in the National Mall, listening to speeches from former GOP presidential contender Rick Santorum and others and preparing to march toward the Capitol and the Supreme Court.

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Politics
4:46 am
Fri January 25, 2013

GOP To 'Aggressively Court' Minority Voters

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 7:14 am

GOP leaders are in Charlotte, North Carolina, trying to map out a comeback from the drubbing they took in the November elections. The Republican National Committee says it will not abandon core conservative principles. But party officials are looking to attract Latinos and other minority voters, along with young people.

Politics
3:21 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Ex-Prosecutor Mary Jo White Nominated To Head SEC

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 7:14 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

Of all the prosecutors' jobs in America, the one with the highest profile may well be the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York - that federal prosecutor overseas investigations of everything from the mafia to terrorism to financial crimes. During an especially busy time in the 1990s, that U.S. Attorney became Mary Jo White.

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Politics
3:15 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Kerry Sails Through Confirmation Hearing

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 7:14 am

Secretary of State nominee John Kerry testified at his confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday. He pledged to prevent Iran from securing nuclear weapons and urged Congress to work out its issues over the federal budget.

NPR Story
2:38 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Senate Changes Filibuster Rules

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 7:14 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

When and if the U.S. Senate is ready to confirm Mary Jo White to head the SEC, she may find her path somewhat smoother - thanks to a rule change the Senate agreed to last night. The new Senate rule makes it just a little bit harder to block nominations, and a little easier to reach resolution than it was for President Obama's nominees in his first term. It's part of a subtle revision of the most potent weapon of the minority party: the filibuster. Here's NPR's David Welna.

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It's All Politics
12:49 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Sponsors Of Assault Weapons Ban Hope Newtown Shooting Changes Minds

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., speaks at a news conference Thursday announcing her plan to introduce a bill to ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 7:14 am

Congressional Democrats appeared on Capitol Hill Thursday to push for a new ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.

The bill's author, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, started her remarks with a roster of tragedy: "Columbine. Virginia Tech. Aurora. Tucson. Oak Creek. The common thread in these shootings is each gunman used a semiautomatic assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition magazine."

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It's All Politics
3:26 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

Senate Filibuster Changes: More Evolution Than Revolution

Actor Jimmy Stewart in a scene from the 1939 movie Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, which popularized the notion of a "talking filibuster." Even under changes negotiated in the Senate, the talking filibuster remains a thing of the past.
AP

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 7:28 pm

Update at 9:25 ET Senate OKs Filibuster Deal

The Senate voted Thursday to limit filibusters in a rare bipartisan vote that would reduce but not end the number of times opponents can use the procedure.

Here's more from The Associated Press:

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Politics
3:12 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

Congress Could Limit Senators' Ability To Filibuster

Senate leaders have reached an agreement to limit filibusters in the new Congress, especially as they relate to presidential nominations. But they stopped short of requiring senators to hold the floor in person and in real time, as the classic filibuster required.

Politics
3:11 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

John Kerry Lauded At Senate Confirmation Hearing

Sen. John Kerry appeared before fellow members of his Senate Foreign Relations Committee for his confirmation hearing as the next secretary of state on Thursday.

It's All Politics
2:32 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

At Winter Gathering, GOP Asks: Where Do We Go From Here?

Reince Priebus, shown at the Republican National Convention in August, says Republicans need to "grow our party without compromising our principles."
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 3:22 pm

Some soul-searching is on the agenda as the Republican National Committee holds its winter meetings in Charlotte, N.C.

November's elections were a big disappointment for the GOP. The party has now lost the popular vote in five of the past six presidential elections.

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It's All Politics
1:05 pm
Thu January 24, 2013

Will Big Government Make A Comeback?

For his second inaugural address, President Obama defended government as central to harnessing the energy of American individuals.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 4:16 pm

For years, Democratic politicians have been shy about talking up the virtues of government. It was all the way back in 1996 that President Bill Clinton declared "the era of big government is over."

That may have changed with President Obama's second inaugural address. Obama declared that only through government and "collective action" can the nation achieve its full promise.

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The Two-Way
10:16 am
Thu January 24, 2013

Democrats Unveil Bill To Ban Assault-Style Weapons

Semi-automatic assault-style rifles on display at a gun show in Chantilly, Va., in 2009.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

As they said they would following the Dec. 14 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Democrats today unveiled legislation that would ban assault-style weapons.

The lead lawmaker, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, has summed up the legislation's key points this way:

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Politics
9:53 am
Thu January 24, 2013

Women In Combat: Why Now?

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 11:58 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, first lady Michelle Obama has taken on issues like childhood obesity and support for military families in the first term, but some feminists argue she should be doing more. We'll look at the politics of being first lady in just a few minutes.

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Middle East
9:53 am
Thu January 24, 2013

Politics And Kim Kardashian's Business In Bahrain

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 11:58 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

President Obama is just beginning his second term in office and we've been looking at some of the unresolved issues and unfinished business from his first four years. This week, we're turning our attention to foreign policy. Yesterday, we talked about the conflict in Syria. Today, we want to focus on another country where the Arab Spring uprising was not successful. It's a small island that often does not get a lot of attention, but plays an important geopolitical role in the Middle East. We're talking about Bahrain.

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Politics
9:53 am
Thu January 24, 2013

Does The First Lady Have Political 'Gravitas?'

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 11:58 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Now I want to turn to another conversation about the role women are or should be playing in our national life - or in this case, one woman in particular: The first lady, Michelle Obama. Just as commentators are now talking about the president's second term agenda, we wonder what projects the first lady will take on in these next four years.

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It's All Politics
9:38 am
Thu January 24, 2013

5 Things To Know About The Congressional Budget Fight

Sen. Dean Heller (left), R-Nev., and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., speak Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol about legislation to delay a potential clash over the debt ceiling until May — and to freeze the paychecks of lawmakers if they don't pass a budget resolution.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 10:11 am

As if the federal budget process isn't confusing enough, now we get the fog of partisan war created by the charges and countercharges flying between congressional Democrats and Republicans.

Republicans accuse the Democrats who control the Senate of shirking their duty by not producing "a budget" in recent years; Democrats accuse Republicans of not telling the whole truth.

What's going on? Here are five points to consider.

1) The Budget Control Act

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The Two-Way
6:53 am
Thu January 24, 2013

After Clinton's 'Outrage,' It's On To Kerry's Confirmation Hearing

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during her testimony Wednesday before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 7:22 am

The post-hearing stories about Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's appearances Wednesday on Capitol Hill are focusing on her strong response to Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson's charge that the Obama administration initially misled the nation about who was responsible for the attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, last September.

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Politics
3:12 pm
Wed January 23, 2013

House Pushes Off Debt Ceiling Deadline For Three Months

Originally published on Wed January 23, 2013 6:53 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, it's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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