Scott Horsley

Scott Horsley is a White House correspondent for NPR News. He reports on the policy and politics of the Obama Administration, with a special emphasis on economic issues.

The 2012 campaign is the third presidential contest Horsley has covered for NPR. He previously reported on Senator John McCain's White House bid in 2008 and Senator John Kerry's campaign in 2004. Thanks to this experience, Horsley has become an expert in the motel shampoo offerings of various battleground states.

Horsley took up the White House beat after serving as a San Diego-based business correspondent for NPR where he covered fast food, gasoline prices, and the California electricity crunch of 2000. He reported from the Pentagon during the early phases of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Before joining NPR in 2001, Horsley was a reporter for member station KPBS-FM, where he received numerous honors, including a Public Radio News Directors' award for coverage of the California energy crisis.

Earlier in his career, Horsley worked as a reporter for WUSF-FM in Tampa, Florida, and as a news writer and reporter for commercial radio stations in Boston and Concord, New Hampshire. Horsley began his professional career as a production assistant for NPR's Morning Edition.

Horsley earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University and an MBA from San Diego State University.

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Election 2012
2:37 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Obama Tries To Regain Female Voter Advantage

Originally published on Thu October 18, 2012 10:11 am

Transcript

SCOTT HORSLEY, BYLINE: And I'm Scott Horsley, traveling with President Obama, who's eager to regain the advantage he once enjoyed with women voters. The Obama campaign spent much of yesterday taking Governor Romney to task for what some regard as his out-of-date comments about women in the workplace.

Mr. Obama drove the point home last night in front of 14,000 supporters on a college campus in Athens, Ohio.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

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Presidential Race
3:24 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Obama Focused, Energetic After Second Debate

Originally published on Wed October 17, 2012 5:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. President Obama stood today in Iowa, in front of a crowd of enthusiastic college students and struck a seemingly humble pose about last night's debate.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: You know, I'm still trying to figure out, you know, how to get the hang of this thing, debating. But we're working on it.

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Presidential Race
4:09 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Obama Needs To Make Up For First Lackluster Debate

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 5:06 pm

President Obama faces a challenge in the second debate with Mitt Romney after a lackluster performance two weeks ago.

Presidential Race
3:31 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Biden Brings High Energy To Vice Presidential Debate

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 3:59 pm

One day after his debate with Paul Ryan, Vice President Joe Biden took to the campaign trail. He spoke at a rally in LaCrosse, Wis.

Election 2012
2:32 am
Wed October 10, 2012

As Election Nears, Ohio Gets More Attention

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 4:48 am

With the presidential race tightening, both candidates are eying the same prize: Ohio. President Obama and Republican rival Mitt Romney both campaigned there Tuesday. It was Obama's second visit to Ohio in five days.

Presidential Race
5:58 am
Sat October 6, 2012

Economic News Brightens Obama Rally

Originally published on Sat October 6, 2012 5:55 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Presidential Race
2:45 pm
Fri October 5, 2012

Jobs Report Buoys Obama On The Campaign Trail

Originally published on Fri October 5, 2012 9:07 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block. Another page turned today in the presidential campaign. After a day of debate analysis giving Mitt Romney a leg up, President Obama got some news he can play to his advantage - the jobs numbers, which show the unemployment rate dropped sharply to its lowest level since he took office, 7.8 percent.

And quickly, both candidates started the spin.

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Around the Nation
5:04 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Wis. Crowd Welcomes Obama After Lackluster Debate

President Obama's campaign acknowledges that GOP challenger Mitt Romney had the stronger performance in this week's debate. One of Obama's closest advisers acknowledges the president will "have to adjust" his approach to future debates.

Africa
3:28 pm
Wed October 3, 2012

GOP Seizes On Shifting Accounts Of Libya Attack

Originally published on Wed October 3, 2012 4:40 pm

When the Libyan consulate was attacked and the American ambassador killed, the immediate word from the administration was that the strike was a spontaneous reaction to a controversial film. In the immediate aftermath, Republican challenger Mitt Romney harshly criticized the Obama administration and soon found himself at the center of controversy. In the weeks since, however, the administration story has evolved and now a congressional hearing on the matter is scheduled for next week.

Presidential Race
2:35 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Obama Must Keep Wordiness In Check At Debate

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 4:14 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

President Obama and Mitt Romney had no public events on their campaign schedules today. They're both busy preparing for tomorrow's big event: a prime-time debate that could be one of their last opportunities to sway undecided voters. Yesterday, we heard from NPR's Ari Shapiro about Mitt Romney's preparations. And today, we get a scouting report on President Obama from NPR's Scott Horsley.

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Election 2012
3:24 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Romney Has Mile-High Expectations For Colo. Debate

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 11:08 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Both the presidential candidates are preparing for debates while staying in swing states. For a few days, each becomes a kind of candidate-in-residence.

INSKEEP: And so it was that President Obama abruptly appeared at a campaign office in Henderson, Nevada yesterday and delivered pizzas to the staff. Who knows? Maybe these candidates will be delivering pizzas to swing voters before we're all done.

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Solve This
2:47 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Obama, Romney On Taxes: Similar Plans, Few Details

Both President Obama and rival Mitt Romney say the tax code is too complicated. But they haven't been specific about which tax breaks they want to eliminate.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 4:20 pm

Here's something President Obama and Mitt Romney agree on: America's tax system is too complicated. Both men have outlined changes that are broadly similar, but with some important differences.

The Problem:

Today's tax code is like a department store, where the price tags are high, but there are lots of coupons, sales and weekend specials. That creates some inequities. Just as shoppers can pay different prices depending on which day they buy, taxpayers with the same income can pay very different rates depending on which deductions they qualify for.

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Election 2012
3:13 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Obama Preps For 1st Debate With Romney In Nevada

President Obama and GOP challenger Mitt Romney are busy cramming for their first debate. The face-off Wednesday night in Denver could be their best opportunity to sway undecided voters. The two men are squeezing in a bit of campaigning between practice sessions. Romney holds a campaign rally in Denver Monday, while Obama rallied with supporters in Las Vegas Sunday.

Presidential Race
3:35 am
Sun September 23, 2012

As Candidates Battle From Afar, Key Phrases Stick

President Obama greets supporters during a campaign rally on Saturday in Milwaukee.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 23, 2012 10:43 am

President Obama and his Republican rival, Mitt Romney, seem to have switched places in recent days.

The incumbent president is promising to change Washington from the outside. Meanwhile, Romney, who made his fortune turning businesses around, says he wants to work within the existing political system.

The contrast was on display Saturday in Wisconsin, where Obama held one of the biggest rallies of his re-election campaign.

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Election 2012
4:25 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Obama Pressed On Slow Changes To Immigration Law

President Obama says he hasn't given up on overhauling immigration law despite opposition from Republicans in Congress. Obama faced some tough questions during a forum on Univision including what would be different if he won four more years in the White House.

Election 2012
3:24 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Romney: Immigration System Needs To Be Fixed

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney promised to pursue a permanent fix for the country's "broken" immigration system during a Univision forum. Despite pointed questioning, Romney offered few details about how he would deal with millions of immigrants who are already in this country illegally.

Presidential Race
3:07 pm
Tue September 18, 2012

Romney Conflated Different Groups With '47 Percent'

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney admits he could've used more elegant language, but he's not backing down. Romney was secretly recorded speaking at a fundraiser in May and his comments were publicized yesterday by the liberal magazine, "Mother Jones." Here he is telling wealthy backers that President Obama has a built-in base of support.

(SOUNDBITE OF VIDEO)

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Business
4:11 am
Tue September 18, 2012

Obama Gets Tough On China's Auto Subsidies

GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney has criticized President Obama for not taking a harder line against China. On Monday, the White House announced a new trade complaint over what the administration calls China's unfair subsidies for auto parts. The news came as Obama campaigned in Ohio, where auto parts are big business.

Presidential Race
3:01 am
Mon September 17, 2012

Presidential Campaigns Target 'Likely' Voters

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 7:52 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Well, as Cokie suggested, a lot is riding on how well each candidate gets out the vote. President Obama is campaigning this week in Ohio, Florida and Virginia, three key states where an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll shows him leading his Republican opponent, Mitt Romney, at this point in time. Of course, talking to a pollster is one thing and again, yeah, casting a ballot is something else.

NPR's Scott Horsley reports.

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Politics
2:03 pm
Sat September 15, 2012

Obama Polishes His 'Regular Guy' Image With Beer

President Obama toasts others at the Dubliner Restaurant and Pub in Washington, D.C., on March 17.
Joshua Roberts Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 3:48 pm

There's an old shorthand for likeability in politics: "Which candidate would you rather have a beer with?"

Polls show President Obama has been winning that likeability contest. And he's been raising a lot of frosty mugs on the campaign trail, hoping to press his advantage over the teetotaling Mitt Romney.

The strategy could come to a head in the swing state of Colorado.

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Presidential Race
1:31 am
Tue September 11, 2012

Rhetoric Aside, Few Details Of Romney's Tax Plan

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney campaigns at PR Machine Works in Mansfield, Ohio, on Monday.
Charles Dharapak AP

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 1:59 pm

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's proposal to overhaul the tax code continues to draw scrutiny.

Romney says it is possible to cut tax rates without driving the government deeper into the red, and that he can make up for the lost revenue by closing tax loopholes. But analysts have had a hard time testing Romney's claim because he hasn't offered many specifics.

When he was pressed by NBC's David Gregory this weekend to give an example of a loophole he would close, Romney didn't offer much detail.

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Election 2012
3:17 am
Mon September 10, 2012

Who's Responsible When A Business Succeeds?

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

A recurring debate in the American presidential contest is who is responsible when a business succeeds. Campaigning in Virginia this weekend, Mitt Romney repeated his assertion that it's individual entrepreneurs.

MITT ROMNEY: I've been impressed by the American spirit of people who are can-do and take-charge, want to start and build things. And by the way, they do build it themselves.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Politics
6:16 am
Sat September 8, 2012

Labor Report Has Romney And Obama On Down Note

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The presidential candidates are back on the campaign trail, sprinting, now that the political conventions are behind them. President Obama and Mitt Romney were both in Iowa and New Hampshire yesterday. Both of their message were affected by some bad news on the job's front as NPR's Scott Horsley reports.

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Politics
2:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Obama More Partisan, Practical Than Four Years Ago

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 5:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

Four years ago, then-Senator Barack Obama took the stage in Denver to accept his party's presidential nomination. He spoke of overcoming partisanship and economic turmoil. Well, tonight, President Obama will do it again with four years of experience under his belt. Since taking office, he has struggled to overcome a crushing recession, a weak recovery and a deeply divided electorate.

NPR's Scott Horsley has this story on the path the president has traveled.

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Around the Nation
10:38 am
Tue September 4, 2012

On Campaign Break, Obama Tours La. Storm Damage

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Having spent much of the summer hammering Mitt Romney, President Obama is working to sell his record this week. Yesterday, administration spokesmen insisted that Americans are better off than they were four years ago.

INSKEEP: That's a change from the previous day's message, when key Obama backers would not make that claim. Yesterday, the president himself pointed to a success story.

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Election 2012
2:04 am
Mon September 3, 2012

In Convention Run-Up, Obama Targets Three States

President Obama waves as he walks on stage during a campaign stop on the campus of the University of Colorado in Boulder on Sunday.
David Zalubowski AP

Originally published on Mon September 3, 2012 3:01 pm

President Obama holds a Labor Day campaign rally in Toledo, Ohio, on Monday, and then flies to Louisiana to inspect the damage from Hurricane Isaac. The Toledo rally is part of a long weekend of campaigning, leading up to the Democratic National Convention, which starts Tuesday in Charlotte, N.C.

The president held a rally with thousands of students at the University of Colorado over the weekend. Just five days earlier, he'd been at Colorado State. Obama is hoping to harness the cross-state rivalry between the schools in the service of his re-election campaign.

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Election 2012
2:44 am
Fri August 31, 2012

Obama Asks Young Voters 'To Believe'

Originally published on Fri August 31, 2012 10:48 am

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.

College students have been heading back to school, and so has President Obama. For the last two weeks, the president has been visiting campuses in swing states around the country. He's been urging students to register and vote. His campaign says it is also working to win the votes of young people who are not in school. Here's NPR's Scott Horsley.

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Politics
8:16 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Ahead Of Conventions, Candidates Hone Message

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Republicans and Democrats will talk a lot about the economy during their national conventions over the next couple of weeks. And yet, the man who is about to be nominated by the Republican convention, Mitt Romney, briefly strayed from an economic message yesterday, while speaking in the Detroit suburb of Commerce, Michigan.

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