There's a long-held assumption that women are more likely than men to collaborate. As the number of women in Congress has increased, however, so has the partisanship and gridlock. So does a woman's touch actually help on Capitol Hill?
There's a lot of academic research that supports the idea that women are better at building bipartisan coalitions. Studies have found that women in Congress not only sponsor more bills but also collect more co-sponsors for those bills.
Daniel Smith's house is barely standing after a tornado in Arkansas late last month killed 16 people. The EF4 tornado ripped a gash through the rural communities of Mayflower and Vilonia. Homes were wiped clean to their slabs, businesses shredded beyond recognition.
Wednesday, President Obama went to see the damage for himself, and to meet with residents like Smith. It's a task that he and many presidents before him have had to do far too often.
Late Tuesday, House Republicans made public on Speaker John Boehner's website their draft resolution to create the Benghazi select committee. The resolution calls for a panel of seven Republicans and five Democrats and no written rules for the panel.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm Steve Inskeep.
Congressional elections do not come for months, but in many districts the real action is now. Its primary season and yesterday voters went to the polls around the country. In North Carolina's Republican Senate primary, Thom Tillis, the State House speaker, won a big enough margin to avoid a runoff.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. Everybody makes conversation about the weather. And today that includes President Obama. He's appearing on three network TV shows to discuss a new government report on climate change. It's on a day when the president also visits Arkansas to survey the damage from last week's tornadoes.
North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis won the Republican U.S. Senate nomination Tuesday, a victory for GOP establishment forces over the Tea Party in a battleground state that will feature one of the nation's most competitive Senate races this fall.
Tillis, who avoided a runoff by winning more than 40 percent of the vote, will face first-term Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in November. Hagan rates among the most vulnerable Senate Democrats.
Three states are holding primaries Tuesday, and voters might understandably be confused over what kind of identification they need to show at the polls.
In Indiana, it has to be a government-issued photo ID. In Ohio, you can get by with a utility bill. In North Carolina, you won't need a photo ID until 2016. But that law, along with ID laws in many other states, faces an uncertain future.
In its 168 years, Iowa has never elected a woman to Congress or picked one as its governor.
For many residents who pride themselves on a progressive civil rights history that predates statehood, that political reality has become an exasperating distinction shared with only one other state — Mississippi.
Women make up less than 20 percent of those serving in Congress, but more than half the population. There are many reasons for this, but one simple answer comes back again and again. It's about recruiting.
When Monica Youngblood got the call, she thought it was a joke. The call came from a man she had worked to help get elected.
"It's your time," she says he told her. "We need people like you in Santa Fe. We need a voice like yours who's lived here, who's been through what you've been through. I think you need to really consider it."
Voters in three states go to the polls tomorrow in North Carolina, Indiana and Ohio. It's the beginning of an eight-week stretch of primaries that should give us a good idea of how the political landscape is shaping up for this November.
NPR's political editor Charlie Mahtesian joins us now to talk about that. Hey, Charlie.
The John F. Kennedy Library gave an award to the first President Bush. Kennedy wrote a book called "Profiles in Courage," about politicians who made unpopular decisions they believed to be right. George HW Bush now gets the Profiles in Courage Award. In 1990, he broke his own read-my-lips-no-new-taxes pledge and accepted higher taxes to cut the federal deficit. It may have caused Bush's job but for many reasons the deficit went down.
There's a fight in Washington over the future of homeownership in America. At issue is a bipartisan bill to dramatically reshape the housing finance industry — the industry that was at the heart of the financial crisis. It's also an industry that's at the heart of the American dream — and the bill before Congress may affect who can afford to buy a house.
The Obama administration supports the bill. But civil rights groups and housing advocates say it would weaken rules that push banks to lend to low- and moderate-income homebuyers.
In a midterm election that's expected to hinge on the demographic composition of the electorate, single women could be the key to Democratic chances to hold on to the Senate in November.
While Republicans have a longstanding problem with female voters, this year it's Democrats who have the more urgent problem: how to get their most reliable female supporters to become more reliable voters.
Here are five things to know about single female voters.
Recent polls have President Obama's approval ratings hovering around 40 percent. That's a new career low. NPR's Arun Rath talks with correspondent Mara Liasson about what that means for Democrats in November's midterm elections.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. We are six months away from this year's midterm elections, and Democrats and Republicans are ramping up campaign messaging. Both parties agree women could hold the key to victory in November. And many of the most endangered incumbents and high-profile challengers are also women.
President Obama made fun of himself at the White House Correspondents Association dinner on Saturday, the annual nerd-ball schmooze fest where Washington's media stars get comfy with a mix of political bigwigs and Hollywood beautiful people to celebrate a year of journalism.
Obama, known for his comic timing and delivery, didn't disappoint.
Ralph Nader has never been elected president, but his new book has a broad-based coalition of endorsements that range from Grover Norquist on the right to Robert Reich and Cornel West on the left, in which Mr. Nader finds in a partisan time the outlines of a new political force that crosses all party lines. His new book is "Unstoppable: The Emerging Left-Right Alliance To Dismantle The Corporate State." Ralph Nader joins us in our studios. Thanks so much for being with us.