Politics

The Message Machine
3:24 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Campaigns Targeting Hispanics, But With Tight Focus

A volunteer hands out buttons before first lady Michelle Obama speaks at a Hispanic caucus on Sept. 5 in Charlotte, N.C.
David Goldman AP

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 4:17 pm

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Politics
2:35 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Republican Firm Tied To Voter Fraud Allegations

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 4:14 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. Congressional Democrats are looking into allegations that a Republican consulting firm committed voter registration fraud. The head of the company is an Arizona operative with a reputation for aggressive tactics, as NPR's Peter Overby reports.

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Presidential Race
2:35 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Obama Must Keep Wordiness In Check At Debate

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 4:14 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

President Obama and Mitt Romney had no public events on their campaign schedules today. They're both busy preparing for tomorrow's big event: a prime-time debate that could be one of their last opportunities to sway undecided voters. Yesterday, we heard from NPR's Ari Shapiro about Mitt Romney's preparations. And today, we get a scouting report on President Obama from NPR's Scott Horsley.

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Law
2:34 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Pennsylvania Judge Blocks Controversial Voter ID Law

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 4:14 pm

In Pennsylvania, a judge has issued a preliminary injunction against the state's controversial voter ID law. In effect, the judge's ruling will allow registered voters to cast ballots in the upcoming election, without showing the government-issued ID required by the law.

It's All Politics
2:33 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

A Poll's Query About Partisan Bias Of Pollsters Finds The Tilt Is With Voters

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 2:55 pm

You can believe this latest poll result if you'd like. Or not.

A survey released Tuesday that was conducted by Public Policy Polling asked people if they thought pollsters were rigging their results to show President Obama leading Mitt Romney (h/t Josh Voorhees at The Slatest).

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Political Junkie
2:04 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

It's ScuttleButton Time!

This can be yours!
Lauren Rock NPR

Today, at 6 p.m. Eastern time, is the deadline for you to send in your Electoral Vote predictions for Obama and Romney. It is a strict deadline, but worth it. The winner gets a Political Junkie t-shirt!

Of course, you can also get a shirt by solving this week's ScuttleButton puzzle, but the odds are much steeper. But you have several days to send in your answer for that one.

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Shots - Health Blog
1:28 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Democrats And Republicans Differ On Medicaid Fix

Isabelle "Simone" Svikhart, 3, has spent 13 months in the hospital for treatment of a range of health conditions. The Children's Hospital Association distributed a trading card with her picture and details of her case to lobby against Medicaid cuts.
Children's Hospital Association

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 4:14 pm

Medicaid is already the nation's largest health insurance program in terms of number of people covered: It serves nearly 1 in 5 Americans. Yet at the same time it's putting increasing strain on the budgets of states, which pay about 40 percent of its costs.

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It's All Politics
1:22 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

5 Myths About The Presidential Race

The flaps and "fun things" that happen during a political campaign might be gifts for the media, but do they really matter?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 2:20 pm

There's always a lot of noise around a presidential campaign — minor flaps that suck up a lot of media attention but are forgotten by Election Day.

John Sides, a political scientist at George Washington University and a founder of the blog The Monkey Cage, says there's no need to worry about a lot of the ephemera that news coverage tends to focus on.

"I'm telling you, all the fun things don't matter," Sides says.

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Pop-Up Politics
9:00 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Pop-Up Politics: Beyond The Speeches

Pop-Up Politics
NPR

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 10:55 am

If you want a little background and perspective to what the presidential candidates are saying — as they're saying it — then our "Pop-Up Politics" videos are for you. As VH1 did with music videos, we've added pop-up bubbles and animation to stump speeches to give context to the candidates' statements on the war in Afghanistan, energy and the economy.

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The Two-Way
8:27 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Judge Puts Pennsylvania Voter ID Law On Hold Through Election

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 12:06 pm

A judge is basically "postponing Pennsylvania's tough new voter identification requirement, ordering that it not be enforced in the presidential election," The Associated Press writes.

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Election 2012
3:24 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Romney Has Mile-High Expectations For Colo. Debate

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 11:08 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Both the presidential candidates are preparing for debates while staying in swing states. For a few days, each becomes a kind of candidate-in-residence.

INSKEEP: And so it was that President Obama abruptly appeared at a campaign office in Henderson, Nevada yesterday and delivered pizzas to the staff. Who knows? Maybe these candidates will be delivering pizzas to swing voters before we're all done.

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It's All Politics
1:35 am
Tue October 2, 2012

In North Carolina, Latino Voters Could Be Crucial To Winning The State

A sign directs voters to polls at a polling station on Nov. 4, 2008, in Shallotte, N.C.
Logan Mock-Bunting Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 11:24 am

In this year's presidential campaign, $11 million has been spent so far on ads targeting Hispanics, according to ad-tracking firm Kantar Media/CMAG.

That's eight times the amount spent four years ago on Spanish-language ads, and it's focused in just a handful of battleground states: Florida, Nevada, Colorado and, perhaps most surprisingly, North Carolina.

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It's All Politics
1:33 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Colorado's Undecided Voters Are A Hot Election Commodity

A rare thunderstorm produced hail, torrential rain and a double rainbow in downtown Fort Collins, Colo., last month.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 11:08 am

Throughout the series First and Main this election season, Morning Edition is traveling to contested counties in swing states to find out what is shaping voters' decisions.

The series started in Florida and the hotly contested county that includes Tampa, then continued to a county in Wisconsin that voted twice for George W. Bush and then swung to Barack Obama.

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It's All Politics
3:08 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Montana Democrat Faces An Uphill Battle To Keep His Senate Seat

Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., (center) campaigns at a parade Saturday in Belgrade, Mont.
Martin Kaste NPR

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:23 pm

Republicans are still within reach of a big political goal this year: retaking control of the Senate. They lost the majority in 2006, in part because of the razor-close victory of Democratic challenger Jon Tester in Montana.

Now, Tester is the incumbent facing a tough challenge of his own. And if he's going to win re-election, he has to turn out a lot of younger voters, the way he did in 2006. And on that front, he does have some allies.

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Presidential Race
2:55 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Campaigns Beat Up On Their Own Ahead Of Debates

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:20 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Now, despite all that debate training, if you listen to the campaigns, you might think the candidates are preparing to fail on Wednesday night.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

That's right. Every four years in the lead-up to presidential debates, we've come to expect a game of sorts. Let's call it the expectations limbo.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "LIMBO ROCK")

BLOCK: That's when campaign surrogates suddenly beat up on their own guy. So how low can they go?

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Presidential Race
2:54 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Stakes High For Romney At First Presidential Debate

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:20 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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Solve This
2:47 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Obama, Romney On Taxes: Similar Plans, Few Details

Both President Obama and rival Mitt Romney say the tax code is too complicated. But they haven't been specific about which tax breaks they want to eliminate.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:20 pm

Here's something President Obama and Mitt Romney agree on: America's tax system is too complicated. Both men have outlined changes that are broadly similar, but with some important differences.

The Problem:

Today's tax code is like a department store, where the price tags are high, but there are lots of coupons, sales and weekend specials. That creates some inequities. Just as shoppers can pay different prices depending on which day they buy, taxpayers with the same income can pay very different rates depending on which deductions they qualify for.

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Politics
2:18 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Presidential Campaigns Rock The Gamer Vote

An ad for President Obama's re-election campaign appears in Madden NFL 13.
EA Games

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:27 pm

Let's say you're pushing 115 mph on the highway, racing neck and neck with a Chevy Camaro — in an online video game, of course.

Right as you're pulling into the lead, you notice a billboard pop up on your TV screen. Early voting has begun? Voteforchange.com? Whoa, keep your eyes on the road!

This is Need for Speed: Carbon, one of 18 games that the Obama campaign advertised in during the 2008 campaign. This year, President Obama is back at it, running ads in Madden NFL 13, on the free online game site Pogo.com, and in mobile games like Tetris.

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It's All Politics
2:01 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Pelosi Rival's New Ad Features Two Sacrificial Lambs, Including Himself

Actors depict Rep. Nancy Pelosi and zombies in a campaign ad by her Republican challenger.
Screenshot of John Dennis For Congress Ad

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 3:31 pm

Rep. Nancy Pelosi's Republican challenger, John Dennis, won just 15 percent of the vote versus her 80 percent in the 2010 midterm elections, a very good year for the GOP, which took over the House after delivering a historic beat-down to the Democrats.

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Presidential Race
12:30 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Political Ad Wars Fought On New Battlegrounds

NPR's Ari Shapiro spent a week in one city in a battleground state, Colorado Springs, where campaign spending has tripled since 2008. He discovered how it's changing, and the campaign strategy behind targeting specific ads for specific markets in hopes of winning over undecided voters.

It's All Politics
11:03 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Voters Angry At Washington Gridlock May Want To Look In The Mirror

Voters these days often reward politicians who sit at either end of the ideological spectrum while punishing those seen as compromisers.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 1:00 pm

Like plenty of other voters, Tony Hocamp is disgusted by Washington. Too often, he says, politicians put their partisan interests ahead of doing what's right for the country.

"The politicians we have in office right now are concerned about nothing but themselves and getting re-elected," says Hocamp, who runs a motel in Marengo, Iowa.

It's easy to get upset during a political era in which the leaders of the two major parties seem incapable of putting aside their differences and working together to solve the nation's problems.

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The Two-Way
6:15 am
Mon October 1, 2012

With First Debate This Week, We Really Are In Campaign's Final Stretch

The contenders.
Alex Wong (photo of Mitt Romney); John Gurzinski (photo of President Obama) Getty Images

We're nearly to the last of the many milestones that come along during presidential campaigns.

The primaries? Long over.

The conventions? All wrapped up.

Labor Day, when voters supposedly start paying attention? That was four weeks ago.

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Political Junkie
4:48 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Will The Debates Determine The Outcome? History Says It's Debatable

Ken Rudin collection

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 1:20 pm

The candidates have gone through the primaries and caucuses, the delegate counts and the conventions. At this point, they're traveling the country, trying to make their case. Now comes the most widely anticipated event in the race for the White House: the presidential debates.

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Election 2012
3:13 am
Mon October 1, 2012

GOP Distances Itself From Registration Scandal

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:05 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

On a Monday, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

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Election 2012
3:13 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Obama Preps For 1st Debate With Romney In Nevada

President Obama and GOP challenger Mitt Romney are busy cramming for their first debate. The face-off Wednesday night in Denver could be their best opportunity to sway undecided voters. The two men are squeezing in a bit of campaigning between practice sessions. Romney holds a campaign rally in Denver Monday, while Obama rallied with supporters in Las Vegas Sunday.

Politics
3:13 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Jesse Jackson Jr., MIA From The Campaign Trail

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:33 am

Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. is still running for office but has been out of sight for months. He is being treated for a bipolar disorder, and his wife says he will return to work when he gets his physician's permission. Three other candidates are campaigning for the seat.

Politics
12:43 pm
Sun September 30, 2012

Being 'Better Off' May Not Be Enough To Win Colo.

President Obama speaks during a campaign event at University of Colorado Boulder Sept. 2. He and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, will have their first debate at the University of Denver on Wednesday.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Sun September 30, 2012 5:11 pm

Colorado is a good venue for a presidential debate focusing on domestic issues. The first of three highly anticipated debates between President Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, will take place Wednesday at the University of Denver.

The state is known for its independent voting streak, and much like the rest of the country, there are sharp political divides about the role of government in the economy. In Colorado, those differences grow from two distinct population centers.

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Presidential Race
5:45 am
Sun September 30, 2012

Candidates Push For Colo. To Swing In Their Favor

Originally published on Sun September 30, 2012 6:04 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Presidential Race
5:45 am
Sun September 30, 2012

Campaigns Prepare For Highly Anticipated Debates

Originally published on Sun September 30, 2012 6:04 am

Wednesday, President Obama and former Gov. Mitt Romney will face each other on the same stage for the first time. It will be one of three opportunities before the election. It could be one of the last opportunities for the candidates to sway voters who haven't yet made up their mind. Host Rachel Martin talks with NPR's Scott Horsley and Ari Shapiro, who have been on the trail with the Romney and Obama campaigns.

Presidential Race
5:00 pm
Sat September 29, 2012

Ohio County A Historic Predictor Of State's Vote

President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney both campaigned in the battleground state of Ohio this week.
AP

Originally published on Sat September 29, 2012 6:35 pm

President Obama and Republican rival Mitt Romney both barnstormed Ohio this week, holding rallies just miles apart in the state's northwest. Obama's event was smack in the middle of Wood County, with Romney's just north.

The county may have a population of only 125,000, but it has an outsized importance in presidential elections.

"Since 1960, [Wood County] has predicted every election except for one," says Wood County GOP Chairman Matt Reger. "I think that it is a microcosm of Ohio, which in some parts is a microcosm of the United States."

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