This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
And I'm Audie Cornish. The race for the Senate seat held by Missouri Democrat Claire McCaskill, has seen some wild swings this year. Republicans initially thought their candidate, Congressman Todd Akin, had the race locked down. But that changed dramatically in August, when a controversial remark by Akin swung the race in McCaskill's favor. Now, Akin's recovered some of that lost support. NPR's David Welna has this update.
Originally published on Fri October 26, 2012 4:17 pm
Six states and the nation's capital have recognized the legality of same-sex marriages, either by law or by court order.
But over the past decade and a half, each of the 30 states to consider constitutional amendments that would outlaw such unions has adopted the ban — from Alaska in 1998 to North Carolina earlier this year.
That may change on Election Day, when voters in Maryland, Washington, Maine and Minnesota — awash in money, messages and advertisements from both sides of the issue — will make their decision on whether to recognize gay marriage.
The U.S. economy remains in a gray area, so it's no wonder that the presidential race is essentially tied.
Gross domestic product grew at a 2 percent annual rate between June and September, according to figures out Friday. The White House says this means the economy has been growing for 13 straight quarters.
Now comes the debate over the debates. No matter who "won" or "lost," it's clear that there has been momentum building toward Mitt Romney since he first debated President Obama early this month in Denver. Plus, a look at the competitive Senate races. And the comment by Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock about rape, pregnancy and God has put a GOP Senate seat in jeopardy.
Join NPR's Ron Elving and Ken Rudin for this week's political roundup.
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. There it was in big, bold type on the Fox News website, how Twitter may have tipped the election for Romney. A column written by Juan Williams, who points out that Twitter reported there were, quote, a whopping 10.3 million tweets during the first debate, unquote.
President Obama holds a copy of "The New Economic Patriotism: A Plan for Jobs & Middle-Class Security," which outlines some of his agenda for a second term, during a rally in Richmond, Va., on Thursday.
It's been a bit of a mystery throughout the campaign. The president seems to devote at least as much time criticizing his Republican opponent Mitt Romney as he does explaining what he'd like to do if returned to office.
Obama has taken some heat for his silence and sought to answer such complaints this week. But even as he's made his priorities more clear, he hasn't answered what may be the biggest outstanding question: how he'll get congressional Republicans to go along with his agenda.
Democrats and Republicans are on track to spend about $1 billion each on television advertising in the presidential race. Most of it is negative, and almost all of it is concentrated in nine battleground states.
If you live in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia or Wisconsin, you cannot get away from the ad blitz being waged by both sides. For the folks who track political advertising at Kantar Media CMAG, these commercials tell a story.
Political history was made last night when President Obama's campaign, including affiliated Democratic Party committees, announced that it has raised in total more than $1 billion this election cycle, NPR's Peter Overby reports.
The number turned up as Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney made their final campaign finance disclosures before Election Day.
With 13 days left until the Nov. 6 election, President Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, both included trips to Iowa and Nevada on their schedules. Each tried to fire up his supporters and cast doubts about the other to gain an advantage in a race that appears essentially tied.
At rallies in Davenport, Iowa, and Denver, both swing states where the election is fluid, Obama trotted out attack lines he's used in recent days against the former Massachusetts governor.
Women's issues were back front and center in politics on Wednesday after Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock said in a debate Tuesday night that when a rape results in pregnancy "it is something that God intended to happen." Democrats pounced and Mitt Romney distanced himself from the remarks. But the Romney campaign did not ask Mourdock to pull down a TV ad Romney taped for him. Mourdock is in a tight race with Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly in an overall fierce contest for control of the U.S. Senate.
It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block.
Most polls in the presidential race show the national popular vote to be a virtual tie. But as we know, the popular does not pick the president. That's the job of the Electoral College. And some election number crunchers are starting to explore the nightmare scenario of an Electoral College tie. It's a remote possibility, but a possibility nonetheless.
President Obama is matching his opponent mile for mile, campaigning today across the country and late into the night. He set off this morning on tour that will take him to half a dozen battleground states before he returns to the White House late tomorrow. NPR's Scott Horsley is tagging along with the president.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: This is where it got started, Iowa. I believe in you and I'm asking you to keep believing in me.
Audie Cornish talks to Jon Ralston, host of the Nevada TV show Ralston Reports. He talks about the unprecedented number of political ads airing in Nevada this year. Many shows, including his, have been shortened to create more time for ads to run.
Originally published on Wed October 24, 2012 1:46 pm
Rep. David Rivera, R-Fla., was charged Wednesday by Florida authorities with alleged ethics violations while he was in the state Legislature, perhaps imperiling his bid for re-election to the House in an already tight contest.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. First the Democratic debacle in the Denver debate, then a show of teeth in Tennessee, last week hells-a-poppin' at Hofstra, and this week a comparative Kumbaya in Boca. It's Wednesday and time for a...
Originally published on Wed October 24, 2012 11:35 am
Pundits and prognosticators have long opined about President Obama's built-in advantages in Nevada, where he captured more than 55 percent of the vote in 2008. And with good reason.
Democrats have a commanding voter registration lead, including among Latinos, and Obama's on-the-ground effort is fueled by the 55,000-member Culinary Union and Nevada Sen. Harry Reid's formidable state party organization.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, Apple just unveiled its new iPad Mini, but it's not the only company trying to tempt you with new gadgets. Our digital lifestyle expert, Mario Armstrong, is going to stop by to tell us what's worth checking out. That's a little later.
Mitt Romney appeared to shift his position on contraception in the town hall-style presidential debate last week. And his campaign released an ad, stressing Romney's support for abortion rights under limited circumstances. Social conservatives in Iowa weigh in on whether Romney's shifts on these issues trouble them.
Originally published on Wed October 24, 2012 9:57 am
After saying during a debate Tuesday night that a pregnancy caused by rape is "something that God intended to happen," the Republican candidate for Senate in Indiana is arguing that it is "twisted" to suggest he thinks God wants some women to be raped.
With the advent of radio and television, presidential charisma became a more important personality characteristic. Above, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who is rated one of the most charismatic presidents; John F. Kennedy; Bill Clinton.
Credit Getty Images
Charisma wasn't an early requirement for presidents, since many decisions were made behind closed doors, says psychology professor Dean Simonton. His analysis of the charisma of these three commanders in chief: John Adams: "Average." Thomas Jefferson: "Average." Andrew Jackson: "Well above average."
As part of NPR's coverage of this year's presidential election, All Things Considered asked three science reporters to weigh in on the race. The result is a three-part series on the science of leadership. In Part 2, Jon Hamilton examined leadership in the animal kingdom.
Charming or cold. Flexible or rigid. Paranoid or impulsive or calculating.