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.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. We're going to start the day talking about politics. Obama is back home after a trip to Asia. And Secretary of State John Kerry is on an overseas tour of his own now. He's in Africa meeting with heads of state. Yesterday, he warned African union officials in Ethiopia about the threat of possible genocide in South Sudan.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm Steve Inskeep.
A Supreme Court justice famously said that sunlight is the best disinfectant. Louis Brandeis meant that publicity changes bad behavior, and this appears to be the theory followed by the U.S. Department of Education. For the first time, the department released names of colleges and universities that are currently under investigation for the way they have handled sexual assaults.
Thursday, the federal government sent a message that it's taking sexual harassment on college campuses seriously. Education officials released the names of 55 schools facing investigation for their handling of sexual abuse allegations.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. We're going to start the program today talking about the death penalty. You might have heard by now about Clayton Lockett. He was convicted of rape and murder in Oklahoma and he was scheduled to die from a lethal injection earlier this week.
The minimum wage may go up anyway in Seattle. Politicians there want to raise the local minimum higher than current 7.25, and higher than President Obama's goal of 10.10. [POST-BROADCAST CORRECTION: Seattle's current minimum wage, like all of Washington state's, is $9.19 per hour.] Seattle is seriously considering setting the minimum wage at $15.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
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And I'm Robert Siegel. Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens testified in a Senate hearing today on the surge of secret money in politics. Stevens retired from the court a few months after the Citizens United ruling in 2010. He had issued an emphatic dissent in the case, which allowed corporations and unions to spend without limits in campaigns.
The Obama administration has sent Congress a $302 billion measure to fund highway and other infrastructure. The White House contends that unless Congress acts, the Highway Trust Fund will run out of money this summer.
Here's NPR's Brian Naylor.
BRIAN NAYLOR, BYLINE: The Obama administration proposes closing some corporate tax loopholes to augment money raised by the gas tax. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx also wants to give states the authority to put new tolls on interstate highways.