Politics

The Two-Way
11:13 am
Sun October 27, 2013

Hawaii Set To Take Up Gay Marriage In Special Session Monday

Hawaii's Gov. Neil Abercrombie announced the special session on gay marriage at the Hawaii Capitol in Honolulu in September. The session will begin Monday, Oct. 28.
Oskar Garcia AP

Originally published on Sun October 27, 2013 4:17 pm

The next state to legalize same-sex marriage may be Hawaii, where the state's Legislature will begin a special session on the issue Monday. The governor called the session so that lawmakers could consider the Marriage Equality Act, which would allow same-sex couples to wed.

NPR's Nathan Rott reports for our Newscast unit:

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It's All Politics
1:39 pm
Sat October 26, 2013

PR Experts: Obamacare Message (Not Just The Site) Needs Fix

A woman looks at the HealthCare.gov insurance exchange site on Oct. 1 in Washington, D.C.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

There's little doubt that the Obama administration would like a health care website do-over.

Since its rollout Oct. 1, Obamacare's online insurance exchange sign-up, critical to success of the health care overhaul, has been a well-documented disaster.

The White House, in addition to managing considerable political fallout, also is dealing with a big, fat public relations problem. Just how does the administration go about winning the trust of the American people after the October Obamacare debacle?

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Politics
9:19 am
Sat October 26, 2013

Bipartisan Anger, Competing Interests Over HealthCare.gov

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. With the drama of the 17-day government shutdown over, the spotlight returned this week to the troubled rollout of the Obamacare insurance exchanges. Both Republicans and Democrats expressed anger over the crippled HealthCare.gov website during hearings that were conducted this week, but of course there are competing agendas, as there always are.

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Politics
6:07 am
Sat October 26, 2013

Pondering A Presidential Run? Cruz Dines In Iowa

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) speaks on Friday during the Republican Party of Iowa's Reagan Dinner in Des Moines.
Scott Morgan AP

Originally published on Sat October 26, 2013 9:19 am

Sen. Ted Cruz, the Texas Republican and Tea-Party darling, was in Iowa Friday headlining a fundraising dinner for the state Republican Party. It was Cruz's third visit to Iowa in as many months, but this time was different.

It was his first time back since the government shutdown and his 21-hour, anti-Obamacare talkathon that preceded it — events that catapulted him from junior senator to a conservative hero and household name.

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Politics
6:07 am
Sat October 26, 2013

Dealing With The Diplomatic Damage Of Leaks

Originally published on Sat October 26, 2013 9:19 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Health Care
6:07 am
Sat October 26, 2013

'Loyal Soldier' Sebelius Vows To Stay Put, Fix HealthCare.gov

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius speaks Thursday in Phoenix.
Laura Segall Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 26, 2013 9:19 am

This has not been an easy month for Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

Republican Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas — who learned the political ropes working for Sebelius' father-in-law, then a Kansas congressman — called for her to step down over the debut of HealthCare.gov, the problem-plagued website where people are supposed to apply for coverage under the Affordable Care Act.

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Shots - Health News
3:30 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Pennsylvania Governor Talks Up Plan To Expand Medicaid His Way

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett speaks at St. Christopher's Hospital for Children in Philadelphia on Wednesday. Corbett visited the hospital to promote his Healthy Pennsylvania initiative.
Matt Rourke AP

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 5:55 pm

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett may have been watching fellow Republican Gov. John Kasich of Ohio who bypassed the Republican Legislature in his state this week to expand Medicaid.

As part of the Affordable Care Act, states have the option to make coverage available to low-income adults, with the federal government picking up the entire tab for the first three years.

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Politics
3:30 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Is It Ever Too Early To Launch A 2016 Presidential Bid?

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 5:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

As we just heard, Republican Party approval ratings are lower than ever, but that's not stopping Texas Senator Ted Cruz from taking a post-shutdown victory lap in Iowa tonight. Cruz is headlining the state Republican Party's annual Reagan dinner and he's often talked about as a potential presidential candidate. Iowa, of course, holds the first presidential caucus. NPR's Tamara Keith is in Des Moines to hear the speech and she joins us now. Hey there, Tamara.

TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: Hey, Audie.

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Politics
3:30 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Tarnished Republican Brand Needs New Sheen Ahead Of Midterms

Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 3:16 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. We're going to focus now on the aftermath of the government shutdown and the fight over the debt ceiling. The past few weeks have been tough on Republicans. The fight failed to defund or delay the health care law, as they'd hoped. And it drove public approval of the GOP to historic lows. But is that enough to keep some in the party from attempting another shutdown in the months ahead? NPR's S.V. Date reports.

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Politics
3:30 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Fla. Special Election Will Reflect Shutdown's Impact

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 5:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Last week's death of Florida Republican Bill Young left a seat open in the House of Representatives. Young represented a closely divided district. The election to replace him will be the first one in a swing district since the government shutdown and debt ceiling battles earlier this month. Congressman Young was buried yesterday.

The governor has not yet picked a date for the election to replace him, but the race is expected to be expensive, and recent events in Washington are likely to fuel the debate. NPR's Don Gonyea reports.

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Politics
3:30 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Week In Politics: Spying, ACA Rollout And The Va. Governor's Race

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 5:55 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And now to our Friday political commentators E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and David Brooks of The New York Times. Welcome back to you both.

DAVID BROOKS: Good to be here.

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

BLOCK: So this week, Angela Merkel apparently joining the list of world leaders whose cell phones have been monitored by the NSA. And it was enough to draw in a cry of enough is enough from the French European Commissioner Michel Barnier, talking to the BBC.

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It's All Politics
12:59 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

'Ready For Hillary' SuperPAC Gains Backing From Soros

George Soros, seen at a forum in Berlin last year, joined a superPAC backing a Hillary Clinton presidential run in 2016.
Sean Gallup Getty Images

It may not officially have a candidate to back quite yet, but for months Ready for Hillary has been revving up for 2016. Now, the superPAC has earned the support of a prominent Democratic donor.

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The Two-Way
11:46 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Administration: A Month Needed To Fix Obamacare Enrollment Site

The HealthCare.gov insurance exchange site shown on Oct. 1, when it opened. Since then, it's been plagued with problems.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 1:37 pm

A subcontractor that built a portion of the HealthCare.gov website that's now working relatively well is being promoted to oversee a thorough revamping of the entire glitch-prone portal, and work will be done by the end of next month, the White House says.

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Shots - Health News
10:57 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Why Hiking The Age For Medicare Eligibility Wouldn't Save Much

President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio talk with reporters at the White House after a meeting about the federal budget deficit and economy in Nov. 2012. Some Republicans have proposed raising the Medicare eligibility age to 67.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Americans are living and working longer than ever. And Medicare, the health plan that's supposed to help senior citizens, is facing budget problems sooner rather than later.

By 2023, about 70 million people will get health care paid for by Medicare, and their tab is expected to hit about $1.1 trillion in that year.

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Barbershop
9:27 am
Fri October 25, 2013

'Shop-And-Get-Frisked' When You Spend $350 At Barneys

A young black man is suing high-end retailer Barneys, saying he was arrested after buying a $350 belt. Host Michel Martin checks in with the Barbershop guys for a fresh cut on that story and the rest of the week's news.

World
9:27 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Do Pakistanis Support U.S. Drone Attacks?

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 7:44 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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It's All Politics
7:26 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Friday Morning Political Mix: Monkeys, Donkeys and the NSA

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 8:48 am

Good morning.

Your erstwhile members of Congress are high-tailing it out of Washington for the weekend (no votes in the House, and the Senate took the day off but promises to return Monday).

But there's plenty to digest.

Fallout from Thursday's House hearing on computer problems marring the health care overhaul rollout. Across-the-pond anger over America's spying on allies. And, yes, donkeys. We'll get to that.

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Politics
4:43 am
Fri October 25, 2013

GOP Lacks A Clear Favorite For Iowa Senate Race

With Democrat Tom Harkin retiring, Iowa will have an open U.S. Senate seat for the first time in nearly 30 years. For Republicans hoping to gain a majority in the Senate, this is a key opening. But the GOP is far from settling on a candidate.

Politics
4:43 am
Fri October 25, 2013

House Unlikely To Turn To Immigration Anytime Soon

As House Republicans pummeled the White House at a hearing Thursday on the rocky online debut of federal insurance exchanges, President Obama tried changing the subject. He again urged Republicans in the House to do as the Senate has done and pass a broad rewrite of the nation's immigration laws. But the chances that could happen any time soon appear remote.

Health
1:27 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Clinics Close As Texas Abortion Fight Continues

In July, abortion rights advocates marched in Austin, Texas, to protest legislation that could shut down all but five abortion clinics and restrict abortion rights throughout the state.
Tamir Kalifa AP

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 8:52 am

The fight over abortion in Texas is being played out in federal court, where abortion rights activists are challenging a new state law.

The measure bans abortions at 20 weeks, adds building requirements for clinics and places more rules on doctors who perform abortions. Some clinics have shut down, saying they can't comply with the law set to go into effect Oct. 29.

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It's All Politics
4:04 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Teen Drinking Party Leaves Md. Attorney General With Headache

In this Instagram photo, Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler (center, in white shirt holding cellphone) is seen at a summer party where underage drinking appears to be taking place.
Via The Baltimore Sun

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 5:12 pm

Doug Gansler is Maryland's top law enforcement official. As the state's attorney general, he's spoken out against the perils of underage drinking.

So, naturally, the posting of an Instagram photo of Gansler in the middle of what appears to be a wild underage drinking party — the attorney general is surrounded by shirtless dancing teenagers and red plastic cups — is proving to be a big political problem.

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Politics
2:23 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Outside Political Money Floods Virginia Races

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 4:25 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Virginia holds elections next month for state offices, including governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general. But what was historically a pretty sedate affair is, this year, drawing millions of dollars from all over the country.

NPR's Peter Overby reports.

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Politics
2:23 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Hearing On HealthCare.gov Keeps Obamacare Politics Alive

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 4:25 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Today's hearing may not have cleared up many questions about exactly what's wrong with the health care website, but it does represent a new chapter in the political fight over the Affordable Care Act.

Joining us now is NPR's national political correspondent Mara Liasson. And, Mara, just after Republicans failed in their efforts to defund or delay the health care law through budget fights, the program's right back in the spotlight. Where does the political debate stand?

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Politics
2:23 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Obamacare Contractors Head To Capitol Hill For House Hearing

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 4:25 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

On Capitol Hill, it was a day of tough questions and finger-pointing. Lawmakers got their first chance to grill government contractors over the botched rollout of the new government health insurance website. It was the first in a series of hearings. And as NPR's Ailsa Chang reports, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle directed their anger at the contractors and at each other.

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It's All Politics
2:01 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Texas Vs. Utah: A Tale Of Two Government Shutdowners

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah (left), and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, walk to the Senate floor on Oct. 16 to vote on a bill to raise the debt ceiling and fund the government.
Evan Vucci AP

Two Tea Party-backed, defund-Obamacare-or-we'll-shut-down-the-government Senate leaders. Two very different outcomes.

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Shots - Health News
12:46 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

What's The Real Deadline For Buying Health Coverage?

Which date should be circled on your insurance calendar?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 7:56 am

Under the Affordable Care Act, nearly everyone will be required to have health insurance. If they don't, they'll have to pay the federal government a tax penalty.

But it turns out this is a case where there are deadlines, and then there are hard deadlines.

And with the federally run health insurance exchange at HealthCare.gov so mired in technology problems, figuring out the what counts as a real deadline has become a very hot topic.

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It's All Politics
10:59 am
Thu October 24, 2013

Government Shutdown Makes Its Debut In Campaign Ads

Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., speaks in Stuttgart, Ark., in August. Pryor's latest ad in his re-election campaign hammers his GOP opponent's position on the government shutdown.
Danny Johnston AP

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 11:19 am

The federal government shutdown ordeal only recently ended, but candidates on both sides of the aisle are already on the air with ads aiming to turn the impasse to their advantage.

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The Two-Way
10:48 am
Thu October 24, 2013

VIDEO: Russell Brand And His Call For Revolution

A BBC interview with comedian/actor Russell Brand is getting attention today because, it's said, he speaks for many younger adults who are fed up with politics and politicians.

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Health Care
10:07 am
Thu October 24, 2013

Obamacare Website Mess: Whose Fault Is It?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, it's no secret that it's getting harder to move on up in this country, to achieve upward mobility that is. Last week, we asked whether the ability of Americans to literally move to different parts of the country is playing a role in this. We heard from so many listeners about this that we decided to dig into the story a bit more, and we'll have that in just a few minutes.

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It's All Politics
6:51 am
Thu October 24, 2013

Thursday Morning Political Mix: Healthcare Techs In Hot Seat

Good morning.

This is Washington, so there will be hearings.

Today's centerpiece of congressional inquiry bears the title, "Affordable Care Act Implementation Failures: Didn't Know or Didn't Disclose?" See where this is going?

The morning gathering will be the first in a promised series of GOP-led House Energy and Commerce Committee hearings into the implementation of Obamacare and its well-documented challenges.

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