Congress faces a battle over gun laws that could be the biggest in a generation.
Leading the charge for gun rights is the National Rifle Association, with its huge budget and grass-roots operations. On the other side, a new leader has emerged in recent years: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is not only outspoken on gun control, he has also opened his substantial wallet for the cause.
Originally published on Tue January 22, 2013 2:46 pm
President Obama mentioned him five times in Monday's inaugural address — God, that is.
In modern times, religion has become so intertwined in our political rhetoric that the failure of any president to invoke God in a speech as important as the inaugural could hardly escape notice. Thanks to this graphic in The Wall Street Journal, we noticed the presidents who did (nearly all) and the few who didn't (Teddy Roosevelt, Rutherford B. Hayes).
Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., arrives at President Obama's inauguration Monday on Capitol Hill. On Tuesday, Ryan, who ran for vice president on the losing Republican ticket last year, said Obama's inaugural address showed a "proud and confident liberal progressive."
Yes, sometimes it's true, I do bend the rules to suit ScuttleButton. Sometimes I completely violate the precepts that ScuttleButton was founded on. So yes, many of you who write in to complain do have valid points.
But this week I may have gone too far. You'll see what I mean once you figure out the puzzle. I just want you to know that there was a serious rule violation this week and that I'm aware of it.
Originally published on Wed January 23, 2013 11:13 am
President Obama made history in his inaugural address when he mentioned Stonewall in the same breath as Selma, the Alabama town considered the birthplace of the black-rights movement, and Seneca Falls, the upstate New York site of the first women's-rights convention.
But Obama's reference was very likely lost on many in the generations that have come of age long after gay men resisted police harassment at the Stonewall Inn gay bar in New York City.
OK, if you stood near where the president stood yesterday at the west front of the Capitol, looking down from there, you see down the long strip of grass that is the National Mall, past the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial.
Alright, an inauguration is never complete without a night of inaugural balls. Both official events were held at the Washington Convention Center.
NPR's Allison Aubrey went to check out the scene and meet the guests who were there. Turns out, when you get a ticket to a ball with the president of the United States, you just get to Washington. Who needs a hotel?
In his inaugural address yesterday, President Obama pressed Americans to put aside mindless partisanship. He said we cannot treat name-calling as reasoned debate. At the same time, he strongly defended his political views, voicing support for gay rights and the role of government.
The crowd of supporters out on the National Mall liked it. Republicans watching in Texas had a different view. Here's NPR's Wade Goodwyn.
First lady Michelle Obama arrives at the Senate carriage entrance for the presidential inauguration ceremonies at the U.S Capitol.
Credit Win McNamee / Getty Images
Malia Obama (left) is wearing a J.Crew coat; her sister, Sasha, wears a coat from American designer Kate Spade.
Credit Kevin Lamarque / Reuters /Landov
The first lady and her daughters arrive for the swearing-in of President Obama at the Capitol.
Credit Charles Dharapak / AP
Obama and Michelle walk in the inauguration parade near the White House. The first lady chose a coat by designer Thom Browne.
Credit Doug Mills/Pool / AP
On Sunday, during the official swearing-in ceremony at the White House, the first lady wore a dress and cardigan by Reed Krakoff. Women's Wear Daily reports she wore the same cardigan on Monday.
Credit Mark Wilson / Getty Images
Sasha and Malia Obama clap from the reviewing stand in the nation's capital as they watch the presidential inaugural parade.
Credit Evan Vucci / AP
President Obama greets first lady Michelle Obama on stage during the Commander-In-Chief inaugural ball. Michelle's dress was designed by Jason Wu.
Credit Bill Clark / UPI/Landov
Vice President Biden, President Obama and Mrs. Obama pause to pay their respects at the Martin Luther King Jr. statue in the Capitol rotunda as they leave the inaugural luncheon. The first lady wore a cardigan she wore just the day before.
Originally published on Tue January 22, 2013 11:24 am
Update at 9:05 p.m. ET Michelle Obama's Dress
NBC News is reporting that the first lady is wearing a custom Jason Wu ruby-colored chiffon and velvet gown, Jimmy Choo shoes and a ring by Kimberly McDonald to the Commander in Chief Ball. The White House said that the outfit and accompanying accessories will go to the National Archives at the end of the inaugural events.
Originally published on Mon January 21, 2013 7:01 pm
President Barack Hussein Obama, sobered but resolute after four years as the nation's first African-American head of state, began his second term Monday with an ardent defense of government as essential to the nation's economic and moral fiber, and a call to citizens to accept their obligation to shape the national debate.
This is special coverage from NPR News. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. Just over two hours ago, President Barack Obama took the oath of office on the west steps of the Capitol before a throng gathered on the National Mall and millions listening on radio and TV. As he begins his second term in the White House, he leads a nation deeply divided on the size and purpose of government, on gay marriage, on guns.
Originally published on Mon January 21, 2013 6:59 pm
President Obama began his second term with an unapologetically liberal inaugural address, calling on Americans to work together to preserve entitlements, address climate change and extend civil rights.
"Together, we discovered that a free market only thrives when there are rules to ensure competition and fair play," the president said. "Together, we resolved that a great nation must care for the vulnerable and protect its people from life's worst hazards and misfortune."
Hope and change were two of the watch words of President Obama's first presidential campaign. As he begins a second term, Tell Me More speaks with people gathered in the nation's capital about what they think the next four years will be about.
President Barack Obama delivered his second inaugural speech today. Host Michel Martin explores how his words may have resonated with Americans --those who voted for him and those who didn't-- with two former White House insiders.
On this day, when we observe the inauguration of the nation's president and, as well, the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, we decided to send TELL ME MORE producer Emily Ochsenschlager to the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial to hear what visitors there had to say about what today's events mean to them.
Carrie Haskins(ph) came in for the inauguration from Fort Lee, Virginia.
A group of women traveled 18 hours by train from Chicago to Washington, D.C., for Inauguration Day. We hear about why they and others decided to attend this year's festivities, which fall on Martin Luther King Day.
Steve, thanks very much. Now let's go just beyond the capital building, into the National Mall. That's where NPR's Ailsa Chang is. And she's between the Capitol, as I understand it, Ailsa, and the Washington Monument, right there in the thick of things.
Well, from the studio, I'm going to go out again to talk to NPR's Linda Wertheimer. She is at a place that has a very good view of the activities there on the Mall. That happens to be the Canadian embassy. And just one thing: the West Front of the Capitol is decorated in red, white and blue. That is the backdrop for President Obama's second Inauguration. And Linda has seen every Inauguration since the second time President Richard Nixon was sworn into office, his second inaugural. Good morning.
Besides President Obama's oath and address, Monday's festivities will include an invocation by Myrlie Evers-Williams, Vice President Joe Biden's oath and poet Richard Blanco. Looking ahead to Obama's second term, politics in Washington seems as broken and gridlocked as ever.
See what NPR users want President Obama to remember in his second term — then send us your own thoughts. And chat with NPR reporters about the day's events and the issues looming in Obama's second term.
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