Frank James

Frank James joined NPR News in April 2009 to launch the blog, "The Two-Way," with co-blogger Mark Memmott.

"The Two-Way" is the place where NPR.org gives readers breaking news and analysis — and engages users in conversations ("two-ways") about the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

James came to NPR from the Chicago Tribune, where he worked for 20 years. In 2006, James created "The Swamp," the paper's successful politics and policy news blog whose readership climbed to a peak of 3 million page-views a month.

Before that, James covered homeland security, technology and privacy and economics in the Tribune's Washington Bureau. He also reported for the Tribune from South Africa and covered politics and higher education.

James also reported for The Wall Street Journal for nearly 10 years.

James received a bachelor of arts degree in English from Dickinson College and now serves on its board of trustees.

Pages

1:48pm

Mon May 12, 2014
It's All Politics

Veteran Congressman Makes A Career-Threatening Mistake

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 3:27 pm

Michigan Rep. John Conyers, at a congressional hearing last week. The Democrat and longtime congressman faces the prospect of not being on Michigan's August primary ballot after failing to present the required number of valid signatures.
Carolyn Kaster AP

It's basically Politics 101. To get on the ballot in many states, candidates for office must first collect a designated number of valid signatures from voters, and present those petitions to election administrators.

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8:18pm

Fri May 9, 2014
It's All Politics

New Rules Aim To Streamline GOP's 2016 Nominating Process

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 8:21 pm

The RNC wants to see many fewer of these presidential debate scenes in 2016. Before a November 2011 Michigan showdown, from left: former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum; Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann; former House Speaker Newt Gingrich; former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney; businessman Herman Cain; Texas Gov. Rick Perry; Texas Rep. Ron Paul; former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman.
Paul Sancya AP

If there are other Herman Cains and Michele Bachmanns out there with 2016 presidential hopes, it may be much harder than it was in 2012 for them to go from "who?" to Republican presidential contenders. That's because of new rules adopted Friday by the Republican National Committee at its meeting in Memphis, Tenn.

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7:00pm

Thu May 8, 2014
It's All Politics

Latest Partisan Flashpoint: GOP Benghazi Fundraising

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 7:09 pm

NRCC screenshot

The name "Benghazi" used to just inflame conservatives. Now it is demonstrating its power to outrage progressives as well, though for different reasons.

To be precise, Democrats are angered not just by the House GOP's creation of a special committee to probe the 2012 terrorist attacks in Libya that left four Americans dead but by Republican fundraising in connection with the Benghazi probe.

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7:03am

Wed May 7, 2014
It's All Politics

Democrats Play Wait-And-See On Benghazi Panel

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 12:05 pm

A Libyan man is shown inside the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, after an attack that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, on Sept. 11, 2012.
Mohammad Hannon AP

Updated on May, 7, 2014 at 10:46 am

Late Tuesday, House Republicans made public on Speaker John Boehner's website their draft resolution to create the Benghazi select committee. The resolution calls for a panel of seven Republicans and five Democrats and no written rules for the panel.

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3:15pm

Mon May 5, 2014
It's All Politics

The Energy Behind Repealing Obamacare May Be Ebbing

Originally published on Mon May 5, 2014 5:39 pm

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., and Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, have backed off pushing for repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Sure, you can still hear congressional Republicans talking about repealing the Affordable Care Act.

But there's clearly something different about the current climate, and the GOP approach to Obamacare. The thrill of repeal may not be gone for Republicans, but much of the urgency of repeal is.

For starters, the House GOP doesn't have more repeal votes lined up for these weeks after the spring recess.

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5:35am

Sat May 3, 2014
It's All Politics

John Boehner Faces A Primary Challenge, But Only Barely

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 8:21 pm

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, listens to House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., before talking to reporters at the Republican National Committee headquarters on April 29.
AP

Let's stipulate that Speaker John Boehner doesn't really have to worry about his Republican primary challengers Tuesday.

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4:13pm

Tue April 29, 2014
It's All Politics

Poll: Young Voters Uninterested In November 2014 Elections

Originally published on Tue April 29, 2014 4:57 pm

A young Miami voter wears her "I voted today" sticker in October 2012.
J Pat Carter AP

Youth is a time of idealism and energy, except, perhaps, when it comes to voting in the midterm elections.

A new Harvard Institute of Politics poll finds that interest in voting in the November 2014 elections among 18- to 29-year-old voters is lower now than just several months ago — and even lower than it was at a similar point in 2010.

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2:53pm

Fri April 25, 2014
It's All Politics

Boehner Mocks GOP Colleagues For Immigration Fears

Originally published on Fri April 25, 2014 6:00 pm

House Speaker John Boehner leaves the chamber of the Portuguese Parliament during an April 17 visit in Lisbon. Boehner was in Lisbon as part of an international trip that included visits to Afghanistan and Abu Dhabi.
Francisco Seco AP

Voting to overhaul the nation's immigration laws would be a difficult vote for many House Republicans at any time, but especially in an election year.

Which explains why many of them don't want the issue to come to the floor this year for a vote.

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2:37pm

Fri April 25, 2014
It's All Politics

Maryland's Obamacare Stumble Fails To Sway Governor's Race

Originally published on Mon April 28, 2014 11:04 am

Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown at a January 2014 minimum-wage rally outside the Maryland State House.
Jose Luis Magana AP

Here's a measure of Maryland's Democratic tilt: Even an epic failure in launching the state's health care website isn't enough to derail the political fortunes of the official responsible for it. The Affordable Care Act is that popular.

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3:27pm

Wed April 23, 2014
It's All Politics

Pennsylvania Congresswoman Goes All In For Obamacare

Originally published on Wed April 23, 2014 5:01 pm

Rep. Allyson Schwartz is flanked by Katie McGinty, former state environmental protection secretary, and Tom Wolf, a businessman, at a forum for Pennsylvania Democratic candidates for governor.
Jacqueline Larma AP

Now that Allyson Schwartz has become perhaps the first Democratic candidate to warmly embrace the Affordable Care Act in a 2014 campaign ad, will other Democrats in statewide races follow suit?

Unlikely.

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