Originally published on Thu September 27, 2012 11:26 am
A slew of new presidential polls released this week not only confirm a long-established gender gap among voters, but also suggest that the male-female preference divide in this year's presidential contest could hit historic levels.
It may surprise that that divide appears not driven by social issues and arguments over reproductive care or choices, analysts say, but largely by the national conversation over the size of government.
Originally published on Thu September 27, 2012 8:52 am
With voters in the swing state of Iowa today joining those in two-dozen other states who can already cast their vote for president, the surge in early voting is necessitating a change in campaign strategy, says Paul Gronke, director of the Early Voting Information Center.
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's swing through Ohio took him from the suburbs of Columbus through parched cornfields and pumpkin patches to industrial corridors near Cleveland and Toledo. Romney says his policies will make things better for struggling Americans.
Originally published on Thu September 27, 2012 4:22 am
Those who have made up their minds, both Democrats and Republicans, take advantage of early voting. Paul Gronke, a Political Science professor at Reed College, talks to David Greene about who votes early, and how early voting has changed the way people go to the polls. Gronke is Director of the Early Voting Information Center.
The first sign that getting a new ID isn't going to be easy for Beverly Mitchell and Kathleen Herbert comes before the pair have even left their downtown Philadelphia senior center. As they wait for a ride to a nearby Department of Motor Vehicles office, they get the news: The van that was supposed to take them is broken.
A battle is under way in Iowa over whether a state Supreme Court justice can keep his job.
Critics have launched an all-out campaign to throw him off the bench because of his ruling three years ago clearing the way for same-sex marriage. The judge's supporters are fighting back, but they may need to get over their reluctance to mix politics and the judiciary.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are spending a lot of time in Ohio this week. The battleground state is being pounded with TV ads. Many of the pro-Romney spots come from the outside groups that sprang up after the Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling. But that decision isn't just benefiting conservative causes.
NPR's Peter Overby reports from Ohio on what Citizens United has done for organized labor.
One topic you don't hear much about from Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney is climate change. Like so much else, it's become politically divisive, with polls showing Republicans far less likely to believe in it or support policies to address it.
But two new groups aim to work from within, using conservative arguments to win over skeptics.
And now to Wisconsin, where people are still livid. It's been two days since a blown call by the NFL's replacement referees cost the Green Bay Packers a win against the Seattle Seahawks. Wisconsinites of opposing political persuasions were briefly united in their anger. But in a state with a Republican governor best known for attacking unions, even the issue of replacement refs is becoming a political football.
President Obama made two campaign stops in Ohio on Wednesday. The state's economy is slightly better than the national average, and the auto bail out is seen as one key to that success. The president's Republican rival, Mitt Romney, was also in Ohio. For now, the swing state is looking favorably at Mr. Obama. Ari Shapiro talks to Melissa Block.
Nevada is one of the eight most hotly contest battleground states of the 2012 election. President Obama carried it by a wide margin four years ago. But since he took office, the Nevada unemployment rate has gotten significantly worse and is now at 12.1 percent. Still, polls continue to show the race is very close there, with Mr. Obama holding a narrow lead, while Mitt Romney has so far been unable to capitalize on the state's deep economic woes.
Originally published on Wed September 26, 2012 3:41 pm
It's no secret that TV watchers in swing states are getting flooded, bombarded, practically drowned in political ads.
According to data from Kantar Media, as of a week ago, nearly 700,000 political ads had aired throughout the country during the general election campaign. The estimated spending on those ads: $395 million.
Early voting is now an option in most of the country, and roughly a third of all Americans casting a ballot in the 2012 presidential race are expected to do so before Nov. 6, Election Day. For an early voting calendar and state deadlines for voter registration, visit http://apps.npr.org/early-voting-2012/
Originally published on Wed September 26, 2012 3:04 pm
Nevada, with its six electoral votes, is far from the biggest Election Day prize sought by President Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney.
But in a race that could be so close that neither candidate can afford to concede a single electoral vote, Nevada is being courted by the candidates to a degree far greater than its size would suggest.
Also, while Obama carried the state by 12 percentages points in 2008, the Great Recession hit the state hard, with widespread foreclosures and high unemployment.
If you don't think a third party candidate can play a role in a presidential election, just ask George HW Bush about Ross Perot or ask Al Gore about Ralph Nader.
This fall, the Libertarian Party will have a candidate on the ballot in at least 47 states. Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson probably won't be invited to the debates and pollsters don't usually even bother asking about him. But he could influence the outcome of a close election, as NPR Joel Rose reports.
Democrats in Florida think they have a chance in November to take back some congressional seats now held by Republicans. Near the top of the list is the 26th Congressional District near Miami.
It's a largely Hispanic district currently represented by Republican David Rivera. Although just a freshman in Congress, Rivera is a well-known Miami politician. Before being elected to Congress, he served eight years in the Florida Legislature and shared a house with longtime friend Marco Rubio.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
The presidential campaigns converged on New York City today. Mitt Romney and President Obama were both in town to talk foreign policy. The president addressed the annual meeting of the United Nations, and both candidates spoke at a gathering for the Clinton Global Initiative. As NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson reports, the Clinton event brought a welcome reprieve from the usual partisan wrangling.
I know what you're thinking. How could anyone expect President Obama to have time to meet with foreign leaders at the U.N. when he needs to deal with those terrorists at "The View," especially that notorious Barbara bin Walters?
Just know that nothing can take me away from ScuttleButton.
Earlier today, both of the major party candidates for president spoke on foreign policy in New York. Former Governor Mitt Romney at the Clinton Global Initiative and President Barack Obama before the General Assembly of the United Nations. We're going to play back substantial excerpts from both. Governor Romney spoke first after an introduction by the former president who delivered a well-received speech on behalf of his opponent at the Democratic National Convention.
As this presidential election year was kicking off, strategists were saying the focus would be on the economy. But now — even as absentee ballots are being filled in — the candidates are still dodging details about how to improve growth.
"President Obama doesn't have a plan," says Kevin Hassett, an economic adviser to Republican candidate Mitt Romney.
Jeffrey Liebman, an economic adviser to President Obama, says Romney has revealed no plan other than "going back to the failed policies of the past decade."