Politics

House & Senate Races
3:53 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Allen West Faces Challenge After Redistricting

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 4:53 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

Among the hundreds of races underway for seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, one of the most expensive and nastiest is in a district on Florida's Atlantic Coast. Although he's just a freshman, Republican Allen West is known nationally for his Tea Party conservatism, his frequent appearances on Fox News and his provocative statements. He once called House Democrats members of the communist party.

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Presidential Race
3:53 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

In Context: Mitt Romney, Ohio And The Auto Bailout

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 4:53 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

I'm Robert Siegel.

And in the presidential race this week, the focus in the pivotal state of Ohio has been on the federal bailout of General Motors and Chrysler. President Obama backed it. Mitt Romney opposed it, and the Romney campaign is running some controversial ads on the subject in Ohio.

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Around the Nation
3:27 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Obama, Christie Unlikely Partners After Sandy

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 4:53 pm

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 most populous city in the country is drying out and beginning a long and complicated recovery. One positive sign: Tomorrow, some New York City subway routes are scheduled to reopen. But today, gridlock ruled as people took to their cars. And that means it's car pool time.

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It's All Politics
1:46 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Auto Legend Iacocca Backs Romney In Ohio Car Wars

Mitt Romney campaigns Monday in Avon Lake, Ohio.
Tony Dejak AP

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 3:06 pm

As the presidential race zeroes in on Ohio, and the auto industry gets renewed focus in the all-important swing state, Mitt Romney's campaign is touting the backing of former Chrysler CEO Lee Iacocca and the company's former president, Hal Sperlich.

"In our opinion, Mitt Romney is the leader we need to help turn our economy around and ensure that the American auto industry is once again a dominant force in the world," Iacocca and Sperlich write on Romney's website.

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Election 2012
12:08 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Sandy's October Surprise May Change 2012 Race

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. The storm stops top-of-the-ticket campaigning for a couple of days; the president plays chief of state; Romney collects cans and water for disaster relief; it's Wednesday and time for a...

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Sandy...

CONAN: Edition of the Political Junkie.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)

PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: There you go again.

VICE PRESIDENT WALTER MONDALE: When I hear your new ideas, I'm reminded of that ad: Where's the beef?

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It's All Politics
11:59 am
Wed October 31, 2012

In Sandy's Wake, Romney Struggles To Regain Attention

Mitt Romney helps collect and pack donated goods for those affected by Hurricane Sandy, in Kettering, Ohio, on Tuesday.
Emmanuel Dunand AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 1:53 pm

It's not yet time to change the subject. That might pose a problem for Mitt Romney.

Media coverage of Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath has been intense in recent days, dominating regular news shows and prompting prime-time specials. With just a few days left before the election, the presidential contest has become an afterthought.

"It interrupted the news cycle at a time when there were favorable horse race stories for Mitt," says Tom Rath, a senior adviser to the Romney campaign. "In a campaign, you don't get to design the racetrack; you play the cards you're dealt."

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It's All Politics
9:56 am
Wed October 31, 2012

In Ohio, Teachers Run For Statehouse — And Could Give Obama A Boost

An attendee holds up a button at a speech by President Obama on Sept. 17 in Cincinnati.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 1:08 pm

Teachers unions in Ohio are supporting President Obama in the race for the White House. But way down the ballot, in races for the state Legislature, it's teachers themselves who want some support on Nov. 6.

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Political Junkie
9:15 am
Wed October 31, 2012

It's ScuttleButton Time!

Ken Rudin collection

In the wake of the devastation of the East Coast these past horrific days, this is not the time to be cute or clever. So we'll just cut to the chase and offer this week's ScuttleButton puzzle.

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It's All Politics
8:53 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Presidential Race: What If There Are Two Winners?

Kimberly Fisher cast her ballot Wednesday at a polling place at the Wicomico County Youth and Civic Center in Salisbury, Md.
Alex Brandon AP

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 2:10 pm

Even before Hurricane Sandy came roaring up the East Coast, political prognosticators were worried about next week's election being thrown into chaos and confusion.

The reason is that with the race between President Obama and Mitt Romney so close, there's a possibility of something other than a clean outcome.

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It's All Politics
5:10 am
Wed October 31, 2012

There's No Contingency Plan If Disaster Strikes On Election Day

A crowd listens at a rally with former President Bill Clinton and Vice President Joe Biden in Youngstown, Ohio, on Monday. President Obama canceled his appearance to return to the White House to monitor Hurricane Sandy. Both campaigns have urged supporters whose states allow early voting to vote as soon as possible.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 11:36 am

Suppose Sandy had struck a week later. With power out across multiple states, how would people be able to vote on Election Day?

"If this were happening next week, we have no provisions for dealing with this in law," says Thad Hall, a political scientist at the University of Utah.

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All Tech Considered
2:26 am
Wed October 31, 2012

The Night A Computer Predicted The Next President

Walter Cronkite (right) listens as Dr. J. Presper Eckert (center) describes the functions of the UNIVAC I computer he helped develop in the early 1950s.
AP

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 11:55 pm

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It's All Politics
4:23 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

The Political Odd Couple: Jersey Shore Edition

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gives a press conference on Hurricane Sandy in Old Bridge, N.J., on Monday.
Marcus DiPaola Xinhua /Landov

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 4:41 pm

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It's All Politics
3:23 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Sandy Could Dent The Vote, But It's Unclear If It Hurts Obama Or Romney More

First responders rescue flood-stranded people in Little Ferry, N.J., on Tuesday.
Craig Ruttle AP

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 9:36 pm

With the death, destruction, flooding, power outages and transportation disruptions caused by Sandy the Superstorm, it may seem crass to ask about the impact on next week's election.

But here's a question: Could the trail of devastation left by the storm in a part of the nation whose states are generally colored blue in presidential races depress turnout in those states, especially among Democrats?

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Media
3:21 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

'Seattle Times' Under Fire For Free Political Ads

Staffers at The Seattle Times are protesting the newspaper's decision to run free political ads for Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna and for the state's referendum that would legalize same-sex marriage. The company says the ads are part of a pilot project to prove that political advertising in newspapers can work. But journalists at the paper say giving away the space diminishes their journalistic integrity.

Presidential Race
3:18 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Romney Blurs Campaigning Line At Ohio Event

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

Mitt Romney did not officially campaign today out of respect for those recovering from Sandy or still enduring the giant storm, but he did appear in a crucial swing state before thousands of cheering supporters.

NPR's Ari Shapiro reports on Romney's balancing act one week before the election.

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Election 2012
3:17 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Large Power Outages Raise Concerns For Election Day

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

Looming over the recovery from Super Storm Sandy is what to do about next Tuesday's election? The prospect that some voters could still be displaced or without power a week from today has election officials trying to come up with alternative plans.

It even has some people talking about the highly unusual step of delaying the vote, as NPR's Pam Fessler reports.

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It's All Politics
2:54 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Re-Election Campaign Reveals A President Looking For The Right Balance

President Obama's performance in the first presidential debate cost him a lot.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 3:26 pm

As this long election comes to end, Superstorm Sandy is offering a chance for President Obama to showcase his leadership skills one last time.

For Obama, this campaign has truly been a fight against the elements: a painfully slow economic recovery and a political landscape in which the Republicans swept the table just two years ago. The Obama campaign, with its trademark discipline and meticulous organization, set out to overcome these obstacles.

But the long campaign has also put the spotlight on features of Obama's own personality and performance.

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Election 2012
9:39 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Why Do Election Polls Vary So Much?

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 10:13 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, Shirley Sherrod lost her job at the U.S. Department of Agriculture after she was accused of making racist statements in a speech, an accusation that was false and a smear. Now she's telling her own story in her own way. She has a new book out and she'll tell us more about it in a few minutes.

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Politics
9:39 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Shirley Sherrod Stands Up To The Politics Of Fear

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 10:16 am

Shirley Sherrod was forced out of the Department of Agriculture because of a misleading video. An edited clip appeared to show her saying she didn't want to help white farmers save their land. But the entire speech made it clear that Sherrod was actually saying racism is wrong. She talks with host Michel Martin about her book The Courage To Hope.

Shots - Health News
9:13 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Could Romney Repeal The Health Law? It Wouldn't Be Easy

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks about the Supreme Court ruling on health care in Washington on June 28.
Charles Dharapak AP

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 11:41 am

You can barely listen to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney make a speech or give an interview without hearing some variation of this vow:

"On Day 1 of my administration, I'll direct the secretary of Health and Human Services to grant a waiver from Obamacare to all 50 states. And then I'll go about getting it repealed," he told Newsmax TV in September 2011.

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It's All Politics
7:35 am
Tue October 30, 2012

How To Read The Post-Sandy Polls

Air Force One arrives at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland on Monday. President Obama returned from campaigning to monitor the storm.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 12:58 pm

Hurricane Sandy's on-the-ground devastation has yet to be cataloged, and how the violent storm may affect the presidential campaign with just a week to Election Day is equally uncertain.

Will President Obama's response to the disaster help or hurt his re-election prospects? Or will the campaign's new trajectory — canceled appearances, postponed early voting — ultimately benefit Republican Mitt Romney?

Not really thinking much about that, are you?

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It's All Politics
8:36 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

NPR Poll Finds Presidential Race Too Close To Call

A new NPR poll shows the outcome of the Nov. 6 election is too close to call. Mitt Romney leads President Obama nationwide; Obama leads Romney in key battleground states. Both leads are within the poll'€™s margin of error.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 11:20 am

The latest and last NPR Battleground Poll for 2012 shows former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney holding the narrowest of leads in the national sample, but trailing President Obama in the dozen states that will decide the election.

The poll adds evidence that the Oct. 3 debate between the two men redefined the race. But the movement toward Romney that emerged after that night in Denver also seems to have stalled after the race drew even — leaving the outcome difficult to call.

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Election 2012
3:14 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Voter Turnout Efforts Going Full Steam In Wisconsin

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 3:15 pm

Wisconsin is in the small group of remaining battleground states that could determine the outcome of the presidential election. Turnout operations are an important part of the Mitt Romney and President Obama campaigns in all the critical states. But in Wisconsin, get-out-the-vote efforts grew out of the state's hard-fought gubernatorial recall election.

It's All Politics
3:01 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Romney Retrospective: The Business Candidate, Still Working To Close The Deal

Mitt Romney greets supporters Sunday during a campaign rally in Findlay, Ohio.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 6:17 pm

Looking at this year's Republican primary field, Sigmund Freud might have divided the candidates into superego and id.

The id is all about passion and zeal — and that defined most of Romney's challengers: Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, businessman Herman Cain, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich all made pulses race.

The superego is more measured.

This much smaller column consisted briefly of former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, and more notably, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

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Election 2012
3:01 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Sandy Disrupts Early Voting, But Impact May Be Small

A number of East Coast states shut down early voting sites or made other election adjustments because of Hurricane Sandy on Monday. However, it's not likely to have a great impact on the election.

It's All Politics
3:01 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Pew Poll: Race Evens Up, But Romney Holds Turnout Advantage

Mitt Romney speaks Monday at a campaign event at Avon Lake High School in Avon Lake, Ohio.
Tony Dejak AP

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 4:02 pm

A poll released Monday by the Pew Research Center shows that President Obama has failed to regain much of the support he lost in the days after the first presidential debate.

The poll shows that among likely voters, the race is now a statistical dead heat with both Obama and Mitt Romney receiving 47 percent support. Among registered voters there is what Pew calls a "statistically insignificant two-point edge" of 47 percent to 45 percent for Obama.

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Law
2:24 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Despite Hurricane, Justices Hear Surveillance Case

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 4:22 pm

The rest of the government may have been shut down for the hurricane, but not the U.S. Supreme Court.

The justices were in court Monday to consider a challenge to the 2008 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, known as FISA. The new law broadly expanded the government's ability to conduct large-scale monitoring of international phone calls and emails to and from people in the United States.

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It's All Politics
1:38 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Supreme Court Soldiers On, Despite Sandy

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 4:34 pm

While the rest of the federal government shut down Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court was open for business as usual — at least long enough to hear two cases argued.

It is hardly the first time that the high court was the macho guy in town, staying open when the rest of the government was closed. The reason appears to be tradition, albeit a modern tradition.

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It's All Politics
1:20 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Obama And Romney Respond To Sandy With Election (And Katrina) In Mind

President Obama walks toward the White House on Monday after returning to Washington to monitor the government response to Hurricane Sandy.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 1:48 pm

Thanks to Hurricane Sandy, the week before Election Day is certainly not turning out the way anyone expected, especially the presidential candidates.

President Obama and Mitt Romney found themselves ditching their schedules for the start of the week as they responded to exigencies created by the massive hurricane raking the U.S. Eastern Seaboard.

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Politics
12:52 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Politics At Work: What Crosses The Line?

With just over a week left before what may be another very tight election, many offices are seeing more and more heated conversations about politics. But what are the rules? Employment lawyer John Barr and human resources expert Lynn Taylor talk about the collision of politics and the workplace.

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