Politics

It's All Politics
4:01 am
Sat October 12, 2013

Would The U.S. Be Better Off With A Parliament?

A view of the German Bundestag, or federal Parliament, in Berlin.
Michael Sohn AP

Originally published on Sat October 12, 2013 1:31 pm

There are many reasons for the gridlock in Washington. Some are recent developments, as the U.S. becomes more politically polarized. Others are structural, built into the American political system.

Regardless, the extreme paralysis that has recently become the norm in D.C. almost never happens in Western European democracies.

"You're asking: Do other democracies have this problem? And the answer is: Not many," says Jane Mansbridge, a professor at the Harvard Kennedy School.

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It's All Politics
4:57 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Worst Since Nixon? Report Slams White House Leak Policy

President Obama arrives to make a statement to the press at the White House.
Charles Dharapak AP

The most open and transparent administration in history? That's not how some veteran members of the press see it.

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Business
3:42 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

At Global Gathering, Many Worry About U.S. Strength

The annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank began Thursday in Washington amid a partial government shutdown. Many delegates are concerned that the U.S. budget impasse may threaten global economic stability.
Jose Luis Magana AP

Originally published on Sat October 12, 2013 9:19 am

When you invite guests over, you probably straighten up the house to make a good impression.

This week, the nation's capital is welcoming guests from all over the world. Thousands of finance ministers, central bankers, scholars and industry leaders are in Washington, D.C., for the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

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It's All Politics
3:26 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Shutdown Takes A Toll On GOP In Virginia Governor's Race

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:38 pm

With the government shutdown now in its 11th day, polls show that voters think Republicans bear the biggest share of the blame.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in Virginia — a state that's home to some 172,000 federal civilian workers and where federal spending is a big part of the economy. In the race to be Virginia's next governor, GOP candidate Ken Cuccinelli is falling in the polls.

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Politics
3:22 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Message To Congress In One Georgia District: Don't Back Down

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Both sides have gone to great lengths to make one thing clear, while they're talking, they're not yet compromising. That's because many lawmakers don't want to. For House members backed by the Tea Party who come from strongly Republican districts support is high for taking a hard line.

NPR's Don Gonyea visited one district this week. It's in the northwest corner of Georgia, and it's home to Congressman Tom Graves. He was elected in 2010 and has helped lead the movement to defund the health care law.

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Politics
3:22 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Hope For Solution As Obama, Boehner Agree To Keep Talking

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The government is still shut down. And the debt ceiling still needs to be raised or the country may not be able to pay all of its bills after next week. And how either of those issues is resolved remains unclear. But as NPR congressional correspondent Tamara Keith reports, there has been some movement.

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Around the Nation
3:22 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Billionaire's Gift Reopens Some Head Start Programs

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

The government shutdown means that more than 9,000 children have been shut out of Head Start, which provides meals and preschool programs for low-income children. Last week, we heard from a regional director for Head Start in Alabama, Dora Jones. She told us she had to close programs serving 770 children in six counties.

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Politics
3:22 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Week In Politics: Two Weeks Of Shutdown, And Debt Ceiling Talks

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

We're going to talk politics now with our Friday regulars, David Brooks of the New York Times and E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and the Brookings Institution. Welcome to both of you.

DAVID BROOKS: Good to be here.

E.J. DIONNE: Good to be with you.

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Politics
3:22 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

More Meetings But No Deal Yet On Debt Ceiling, Shutdown

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:38 pm

President Obama met this afternoon with Senate Republicans. There's no agreement yet but the parties appear to be working towards a deal to raise the federal debt limit and re-open the government.

Politics
2:31 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

David Dinkins: Leading New York Is The 'Greatest Job There Is'

David Dinkins served as New York City's first African-American mayor. But his rise through the political ranks came with hard-learned lessons. Host Michel Martin speaks with former Mayor Dinkins about his book, A Mayor's Life: Governing New York's Gorgeous Mosaic. This segment initially aired September 2, 2013 on Tell Me More.

The Two-Way
11:25 am
Fri October 11, 2013

At Urban Summit, A Feeling Of 'The Feds Can't, But We Can'

Political theorist and author Benjamin R. Barber (left) spoke at the CityLab summit this week in New York. He is proposing the formation of a "World Parliament of Mayors."
Courtesy of The Atlantic

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 1:19 pm

The partial government shutdown was part of the buzz this week at an international gathering of mayors, city planners and urban experts in New York City.

Passing mentions of the U.S. government during several seminars at the CityLab conference sent knowing chuckles rolling through the audience. As in: "Those guys? They're closed for business! At least we're still on the job."

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It's All Politics
7:01 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Trickle-Down Stories: How The Shutdown Feels Across America

A sport fishing guide in the Florida Keys protests the closure of Everglades National Park waters for fishing as part of the U.S. government shutdown.
Joe Skipper Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 12:25 pm

Most Americans say they aren't directly affected by the shutdown. But some pockets of society, beyond furloughed federal workers and their families, are being severely hit.

We used NPR's social media network to ask about the impact and were deluged by messages from people who are worried and scared, especially veterans and the disabled, and many others who are angry and frustrated.

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It's All Politics
6:19 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Friday Morning Political Mix

House Republicans, led by Speaker John Boehner, took steps to talk with Democrats with the goal of ending the fiscal impasse.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 7:05 am

Happy Friday, fellow political junkies. It's the 11th day of the partial federal government shutdown, 2013 edition.

President Obama and House Republicans at least opened a line of communications before the second week of the shutdown ended, so that was good news.

Less positive was that it came only a week before the Oct. 17 expiration date Treasury Secretary Jack Lew gave for when he would run out of tricks to keep the U.S. government from defaulting on its obligations.

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Politics
2:02 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Reason For Optimism? Two Sides Talking On Debt Ceiling

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 9:02 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Let's sort out the talks over the partial government shutdown and the debt ceiling with NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson, who's on the line. Mara, good morning.

MARA LIASSON, BYLINE: Good morning.

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Politics
2:02 am
Fri October 11, 2013

In History, House Speaker Has Never Been Removed At Midterm

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 3:19 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

There's been a lot of speculation about whether John Boehner could lose his job as speaker of the House if he doesn't placate the Republican's vocal Tea Party faction. So far there's been no attempt to oust Boehner.

And as NPR's Ailsa Chang reports, it would actually be quite hard to kick him out of the job in the middle of a congressional term.

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Politics
2:02 am
Fri October 11, 2013

Mood Changes: Parties Are Talking About Budget Deadlock

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 9:02 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

One sign of potential progress in Washington is what President Obama and House Republicans did not say. After meeting last night at the White House, the two sides issued polite and diplomatic statements stripped of partisan rhetoric. They have not agreed to extend the federal debt ceiling or reopen the government, but they suggested they're working on it. Their meeting came at the end of an eventful day.

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It's All Politics
3:47 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Main Street Frustrated By Washington's 'Total Absurdity'

Local chamber of commerce leaders are frustrated with D.C. and fear that Main Streets like this one in Catskill, N.Y., will suffer economic fallout from the unending bickering.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 7:49 am

Steve Stevens wants politicians in Washington to know that the budget stalemate is having real consequences back home.

"There comes a point where they've got to know about the pain in their district," says Stevens, who is president of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. "We've got to put a real face on it."

That kind of argument isn't having much effect, at least not in his own backyard. The local congressman, Rep. Thomas Massie, is a freshman Republican who has remained an adamant supporter of his party's shutdown strategy.

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Politics
3:45 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

GOP's Short-Term Debt Deal May Be Hard Sell For House Democrats

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 6:33 pm

A possible deal is brewing between the White House and the GOP House leadership, but it's unclear if Congressional Democrats will go along with it. To find out, Robert Siegel talks to Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen, the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee, to hear how the proposal to extend the debt ceiling deadline into late November is being received by his fellow party members.

Politics
3:45 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

House Republicans Move To Avert Debt Crisis...For A While

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 6:33 pm

The 10-day-old government shut down and the need to raise the federal debt limit next week have been tied together as a single political crisis. But now, House Republicans seem ready to cleave the debt ceiling debate. Economists of all stripes say breaching the debt ceiling could be catastrophic, and on Thursday, House Speaker John Boehner said he is prepared to support a bill to raise the debt ceiling for six weeks if the president will agree to negotiations on long-term deficit reduction.

Politics
3:45 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Here Comes The Debt Ceiling...But Does That Mean?

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 6:33 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

As the debate over the debt ceiling continues, we thought it'd be helpful to explain just how the Treasury pays bills and how many bills it pays. To help with that, we brought in Tony Fratto. He was assistant secretary for public affairs at the U.S. Treasury under the George W. Bush administration.

TONY FRATTO: The best estimates are around four million transactions a day, on the order of around 100 million transactions a month, so it's a lot.

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Politics
3:45 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Boehner's New Pitch To Republicans And Obama: Push Back Debt Deadline

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 6:33 pm

House Speaker John Boehner pitched his Republican caucus Thursday on the idea of pushing back the debt limit deadline from next week to late November.

It's All Politics
2:35 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

How Political Miscalculations Led To The Shutdown Standoff

The Capitol is seen under an overcast sky at dawn on Monday.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 6:33 pm

The standoff over the debt ceiling and the government shutdown showed signs of softening Thursday.

House Speaker John Boehner said he would bring a temporary hike in the debt ceiling to the House floor in exchange for negotiations on government spending and taxes. Democrats say if the House votes to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the government, they will negotiate.

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The Two-Way
11:59 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Former Detroit Mayor Kilpatrick Sentenced To 28 Years

Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick on his way into court in March in Detroit.
Regina H. Boone MCT /Landov

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 12:45 pm

A federal judge on Thursday sentenced former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who was once a rising star in the Democratic Party, to 28 years in prison over charges of corruption.

As we've reported, "Kilpatrick has faced a small mountain of charges in recent years and already served some time in prison for other crimes."

The AP reports:

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The Two-Way
9:51 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Treasury Secretary: Debt Default Would Have Dire Consequences

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew testifies during a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Thursday.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 11:49 am

Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew urged lawmakers on Thursday to raise the government's borrowing limit or face the prospect of causing lasting damage to the U.S. economy.

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The Two-Way
9:42 am
Thu October 10, 2013

After White House Meeting, Both Sides Agree To Keep Talking

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio arrives on Capitol Hill on Thursday.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 5:48 pm

This post was last updated at 7:19 p.m. ET.

After an hour-long meeting with President Obama, Republicans said they have agreed to keep talking, in hopes of bridging a gulf that has already led to a government shutdown and is threatening the first default in U.S. history.

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It's All Politics
9:25 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Koch Industries Pushes Back Against Harry Reid

David Koch addresses attendees of the Defending the American Dream Summit in Orlando, Fla., on Aug. 30.
Phelan M. Ebenhack AP

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 12:26 pm

Most business interests would do anything to avoid a public fight with the most powerful man in the Senate.

Not Koch Industries.

The privately owned conglomerate of conservative billionaires David and Charles Koch is busy trading volleys with Majority Leader Harry Reid in the battle over the Affordable Care Act and the government shutdown.

What's unusual here is the word trading. It wasn't so many years ago that the Koch brothers and their company would have said nothing, just absorbed political slams without comment.

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Author Interviews
9:20 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Rep. Gutierrez: I Am A Product Of The Civil Rights Movement

Rep. Luis Gutierrez at NPR's Washington DC studios.
Amy Ta NPR

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 12:03 pm

The nation is in the 10th day of a government shutdown, and the deadline over raising the debt limit is quickly approaching. But all that might seem like a day at the park for Congressman Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.). He explains why in his new memoir Still Dreaming: My Journey from the Barrio to Capitol Hill.

He speaks with Tell Me More host Michel Martin about his political journey and the fight for immigration reform.

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The Government Shutdown
9:12 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Boehner Proposes 6-Week Increase In Debt Limit

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning.

Seven days from now - according to the U.S. Treasury Department - the U.S. approaches the point where it can no longer pay its bills. The federal budget deficit has been dropping dramatically. But in the wake of the Great Recession, it is still very high.

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It's All Politics
6:32 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Thursday Morning Political Mix

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and a sign of the times.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 7:02 am

Good morning, fellow political junkies. It's Day 10 of the federal government's partial shutdown. And while it's a dreary, rainy day in Washington, there did appear to be more glimmers of hope this morning than in recent days.

Today's theme is movement, as in, there seem to be some tentative steps towards resolving the current fiscal impasse as President Obama and House Republicans are scheduled to meet at the White House later Thursday.

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The Two-Way
5:39 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Shutdown Day 10: Obama, GOP To Meet Amid Signs Of Possible Thaw

Chairman of the House Budget Committee Paul Ryan at the U.S. Capitol on Thursday. Ryan has outlined the framework of a possible deal on the federal shutdown and the debt ceiling.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 9:04 am

It's Day 10 of the partial federal government shutdown, and the big news is a meeting between President Obama and a select group of House Republicans.

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