U.S. News

It's All Politics
9:01 am
Sun November 3, 2013

Va. Governor's Race: Nationally Significant Or Just Nasty?

Virginia gubernatorial candidates Democrat Terry McAuliffe (left) and Republican Ken Cuccinelli.
Steve Helber AP

Originally published on Mon November 4, 2013 8:30 am

Virginians go to the polls Tuesday to pick the man they dislike the least to be their new governor: long-time Clinton moneyman Terry McAuliffe or hardline Tea Party conservative Ken Cuccinelli.

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Law
5:11 am
Sun November 3, 2013

N.Y. Stop-And-Frisk Reforms On Hold For New Year, New Mayor

New York police officers walk through a Brooklyn housing development in August.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 1:45 pm

In New York City, the country's largest police force has been involved in a high-profile legal battle over its stop-and-frisk policy.

Few policies of outgoing New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg have been as controversial as stop-and-frisk, the tactic New York police use to stop people on the streets without a search warrant.

The police department says it's been vital in catching criminals and reducing the city's crime rate.

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Around the Nation
2:30 am
Sun November 3, 2013

Run For Coroner, No Medical Training Necessary

In St. Lawrence County, N.Y., the position of coroner is still elected.
Sarah Harris NCPR

Originally published on Sun November 3, 2013 10:18 am

It's a windy Thursday afternoon in Ogdensburg, part of a sprawling rural county in northern New York.

The choir at the Episcopal Church is practicing, and Eric Warner is behind the piano. He's a former funeral director, an organist and a stay-at-home dad who raises Clydesdale horses.

He's hoping to become one of St. Lawrence County's four elected coroners — there are two open seats this year — and he's running as a Democrat.

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The Salt
2:23 am
Sun November 3, 2013

5 Things You Might Not Have Known About God And Beer

Beer and Hymns is an event at the annual Greenbelt Festival in London. Since 1974, Greenbelt has brought people together to explore faith, arts and justice issues.
Drew McLellan Courtesy of Greenbelt

Originally published on Sun November 3, 2013 10:35 am

On Weekend Edition Sunday, NPR's John Burnett describes how some churches are trying to attract new members by creating a different sort of Christian community around craft beer.

This is actually nothing new. For centuries, beer has brought people together to worship God. And God has inspired people to make beer. We've selected a few of the best examples:

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Shots - Health News
2:22 am
Sun November 3, 2013

Minnesota Reaches Out To Uninsured Latinos, Wherever They Are

Health workers know places like Karina Cardoso's beauty salon in St. Paul, Minn., are prime places share information about the state's new health insurance options.
Elizabeth Stawicki for NPR

Originally published on Sun November 3, 2013 10:18 am

Minnesota's new online health insurance marketplace, MNsure, has been open for about a month, but getting the word out to hard-to-reach populations is just ramping up.

Outreach efforts have been slow to start due to delays in training navigators and finalizing MNsure's contracts with organizations who provide one-on-one help.

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Health
3:49 pm
Sat November 2, 2013

With Rise Of Painkiller Abuse, A Closer Look At Heroin

The amount of prescription painkillers sold to pharmacies, hospitals and doctors' offices quadrupled between 1999 and 2010, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Toby Talbot AP

Originally published on Mon November 4, 2013 9:26 am

Abuse of prescription painkillers is a "growing, deadly epidemic," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On Oct. 24, the Food and Drug Administration recommended putting new restrictions on hydrocodone, sold as Vicodin and other brand names.

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Politics
3:49 pm
Sat November 2, 2013

How Is White House Handling HealthCare.gov Debacle?

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

This week, the secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, testified before Congress about the botched rollout of the HealthCare.gov website. It was the latest attempt at damage control by the Obama administration since the site went live a month ago.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

SECRETARY KATHLEEN SEBELIUS: The website has never crashed. It is functional but at a very slow speed and very low reliability - and has continued to function.

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Around the Nation
3:49 pm
Sat November 2, 2013

Aftermath At The Airport: LAX Tries To Turn Back To Business

Nearly 1,000 scheduled flights and 100,000 passengers were affected at Los Angeles International Airport, where a gunman on Friday killed a TSA agent and wounded others. On Saturday afternoon, a major terminal in one of the nation's busiest airports finally reopened, FBI agents continued their investigation, and thousands of passengers tried to catch their flights.

Shots - Health News
2:38 pm
Sat November 2, 2013

Adding To Insurance Confusion, Outside Groups Try To Cash In

"Obamacare Enrollment Teams" give presentations on health insurance options and the Affordable Care Act, but are not actually affiliated with the government.
Lynn Hatter WFSU

Originally published on Sun November 3, 2013 4:51 am

Thirty or so attendees at St. Mary Primitive Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Fla., gathered on a recent evening to hear a presentation by the Obamacare Enrollment Team on their options to get insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

"If anybody is interested in getting enrolled, we can get you enrolled tonight," they were told.

Signs outside the church looked official: A familiar, large "O" with a blue outline, white center and three red stripes.

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It's All Politics
6:03 am
Sat November 2, 2013

Obama Ratings Sink As Trustworthiness Comes Into Question

President Obama walks off stage after speaking at the "SelectUSA Investment Summit" on Thursday. A poll released the same day found that the president's job approval rating had reached an all time low.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Sat November 2, 2013 1:15 pm

Barack Obama has been subjected to as many personal attacks as any modern president.

Terrorist. Traitor. Hater of America. Secret Muslim.

Unusually for a politician, however, the one thing he hasn't been called much is a liar, except by his most adamant critics.

That's all changed now. Obama is being widely called out for having claimed, repeatedly, that under the Affordable Care Act, people who liked their health insurance plans could keep them.

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NPR Story
4:46 am
Sat November 2, 2013

A Controversial Week For The NSA

Originally published on Sat November 2, 2013 9:36 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This week, the National Security Agency fought back against criticism of it's operations following leaks from former contractor Edward Snowden that have revealed some of the scale of the agency's surveillance of Americans and people overseas, including heads of state of U.S. allies. NPR's Larry Abramson has been covering the story and joins us. Larry, thanks so much for being with us.

LARRY ABRAMSON, BYLINE: Hi Scott.

SIMON: Bring us up to date. What happened this week that's pushed the scandal into the news again?

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Education
3:42 am
Sat November 2, 2013

How To Turn Adult Education Into Careers, Quickly

C.J. Forza, a student in the I-BEST program in Washington state, repairs a car for class at Shoreline Community College.
Kavitha Cardoza WAMU

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 1:34 pm

This is the third report in a four-part series on adult education.

Adults wanting to go back to school have the odds stacked against them. They juggle many responsibilities, there are long waitlists for classes and often there isn't a connection between what they learn in class and the skills they need to get a job.

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Shots - Health News
3:34 am
Sat November 2, 2013

So You Found An Exchange Plan. But Can You Find A Provider?

New York University's Langone Medical Center in New York City is considered in-network for relatively few of the health plans offered in the state marketplace.
Glen Argov Landov

Originally published on Sun November 3, 2013 4:51 am

Consumers shopping for coverage on the new health insurance exchanges have been focused on the lowest-cost options. But some shoppers are trying to determine which plans offer the widest array of doctors and hospitals — and are finding that can be trickier than it sounds.

John Batteiger applied for insurance coverage on the New York state exchange. But after he'd selected a plan, he had second thoughts: He'd forgotten to check if the plan he picked included a hospital near him.

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It's All Politics
5:24 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

3 Lessons For Future Presidents From Obamacare's Ills

President Obama speaks about the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday in Boston.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 6:04 pm

The Affordable Care Act's early travails are yielding some lessons for future presidents and lawmakers. Here are three:

1) Presidents can't be too careful about making high-profile promises.
President Obama dented his credibility significantly by repeatedly promising that the Affordable Care Act would allow Americans with insurance they liked to keep those policies.

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U.S.
4:20 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Pentagon Pushes States On Benefits For Same-Sex Couples

The Pentagon extended military benefits to same-sex spouses this summer, but some states have been resisting. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel called that resistance "wrong" on Thursday.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:49 pm

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel has directed the National Guard Bureau to resolve a dispute that is making it difficult for same-sex couples to receive military benefits.

The Pentagon started to recognize same-sex marriages soon after the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act this summer. But some states are resisting.

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Around the Nation
3:51 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Gunman Opens Fire At Los Angeles International Airport

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:49 pm

A lone gunman opened fire Friday at Los Angeles International Airport, police say. Police fired on the alleged shooter, who is now in police custody. The attack left one TSA officer dead and at least seven people needing medical treatment (including the shooter), officials said. The shooting forced the evacuation of a terminal and more than 45 flights into and out of LAX have been cancelled.

National Security
3:51 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

The NSA Doesn't Think Your Joke Mug Is Funny

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:49 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And now the latest twist in the ongoing NSA story, this time in the form of a coffee mug. A satirical artist, Dan McCall, makes a living off creating political parodies and selling them on mugs and T-shirts and bumper stickers. And in response to the revelations of leaker Edward Snowden, McCall decided to put the NSA seal to good use with a few tweaks.

DAN MCCALL: I put peeping while you're sleeping on the logo, which is sort of an homage to a Snoopy Doggy Dogg song, which I thought was kind of funny.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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Economy
3:51 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Reduced Foodstamps Payouts Could Hurt The Economy

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:49 pm

Food stamp recipients will see a cut in their benefits starting Friday. For the hungry and unemployed, more cuts may be coming. That's a challenge for the affected families, but it could also be a drain on the broader economy.

Around the Nation
3:51 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

An East L.A. Football Rivalry, Unchanged For 79 Years

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:49 pm

An East Los Angeles rivalry has become the largest high school football game west of the Mississippi. The football teams of Garfield High School and Roosevelt High School will meet on the gridiron Friday night for the 79th year. The game is expected to draw 20,000 fans.

The Two-Way
3:30 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Appeals Court Sides With Employers On Covering Birth Control

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:06 pm

A federal appeals court has sided with the owners of a fruit and vegetable distributor who challenged part of the 2010 health care law requiring employers to provide insurance coverage for birth control. Federal courts have split on the issue, which is the subject of dozens of similar cases.

According to the National Women's Law Center, "a total of 88 lawsuits have been filed" over the issue of contraceptive coverage. Of that number, 63 cases are still pending; the other 25 have been closed.

NPR's Julie Rovner reports for our Newscast unit:

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The Salt
3:30 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Kraft Dims Artificial Orange Glow Of Its Mac And Cheese

Some Kraft Macaroni and Cheese will no longer be so ... orange.
Matt York AP

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:35 pm

One of the iconic foods of American childhood is becoming a bit less startlingly orange.

Kraft Foods plans to remove artificial food coloring from mac and cheese products that are marketed for children, starting early next year.

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It's All Politics
3:27 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

GOP Establishment Digs Deep For Alabama Special Election

Republican Dean Young (above) is backed by the Tea Party. He faces Bradley Byrne in a special runoff election Tuesday to fill Alabama's 1st Congressional District seat.
Phillip Rawls and Campaign of Dean Young AP

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:12 pm

If the Republican establishment doesn't get its preferred candidate in Tuesday's Alabama special congressional runoff election, it won't be for want of an overwhelming cash advantage.

Bradley Byrne, a former head of the state's community college system, has outraised Tea Party favorite Dean Young $689,000 to $260,000, according to the latest Federal Election Commission filings. And Young's total includes $175,000 the real estate developer and political consultant has lent himself, meaning the actual fundraising ratio is more like 8 to 1.

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All Tech Considered
3:06 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

HealthCare.gov's Rocky First Month Leaves Plenty Of Questions

Suzanne Cloud on the first day the health exchange marketplace opened, Oct 1. Because of problems with the HealthCare.gov website, she's now planning to use a paper application.
Elana Gordon WHYY

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:49 pm

When the federal health exchange marketplace opened Oct. 1, we visited jazz musician Suzanne Cloud in Philadelphia. She tried to start an account early in the morning, but technology thwarted her plans.

She wasn't alone, as it became clear quickly that the unprecedented system for Americans in 36 states to shop and enroll for health insurance was broken in several places. A week into her failed attempts, Cloud stayed positive.

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The Two-Way
1:52 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Rule Change Allows Rollover For Flexible Spending Accounts

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 2:43 pm

Workers who put money into "use it or lose it" Flexible Spending Accounts each year could benefit from a new Treasury Department rule change letting them roll over up to $500 at the end of each year.

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Environment
10:26 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Hurricane Sandy Recovery, One Year Later

A year after Hurricane Sandy, recovery efforts are still ongoing, and questions remain about how to rebuild and prepare the coastlines for the next storm. A group of experts discusses rebuilding and protective options — from sea walls to "oyster-tecture" — and considers calls for a "managed retreat" from the shore.

Law
10:18 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Sanford's New Rules Say No Guns On Neighborhood Watch

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 2:11 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

As we mentioned, the new police chief of Sanford, Florida, where the Trayvon Martin shooting took place, has now issued new guidelines for neighborhood watch groups and volunteers. We wanted to hear more about that, so we've called NPR correspondent Greg Allen, who's been covering the story. Greg, thanks so much for joining us once again.

GREG ALLEN, BYLINE: Oh, my pleasure, Michel.

MARTIN: So what specifically are the major changes called for in these guidelines?

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U.S.
3:11 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Food Stamp Benefits Set To Shrink

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:46 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

On a Friday, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The 47 million Americans who rely on food stamps will have to make do with less starting today. The officially-name Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is losing $5 billion of funding. That's because a temporary increase in benefits that was part of the economic stimulus in 2009 is expiring - which means a family of four could lose up to $36 a month in benefits.

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Education
1:20 am
Fri November 1, 2013

What It Takes (And Means) To Learn English As An Adult

Millions of adults who grew up speaking a language other than English are still held back by their language skills.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 1:33 pm

This is the second report in a four-part series on adult education.

Ana Perez never made it to high school. Her education ended after the sixth grade, when war broke out in her native El Salvador. She says she's "desperate" to learn English, but she gets nervous trying to speak it.

Immigrants like Perez see English as the key to a better life. Many hope learning the language will help lift them out of poverty and integrate them into American society. But gaining English proficiency is a difficult task amid everyday obligations.

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The Salt
1:18 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Are Farm Veterinarians Pushing Too Many Antibiotics?

Cattle crowd inside a feedlot operated by JBS Five Rivers Colorado Beef in Wiley, Colo.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 3:27 pm

In a barn outside Manhattan, Kan., researchers from Kansas State University are trying to solve the riddle of bovine respiratory disease. They're sticking plastic rods down the noses of 6-month old calves, collecting samples of bacteria.

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All Tech Considered
1:18 am
Fri November 1, 2013

For The Tablet Generation, A Lesson In Digital Citizenship

Coachella Valley High School math teacher Eddie Simoneau uses iPads with his students.
Matt Hamilton Coachella Valley Unified School District

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 4:46 am

This week on All Tech, we're exploring kids and technology with posts and radio pieces about raising digital natives. Look back at the stories and share your thoughts and ideas in the comments, by email or tweet.

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