Sam Sanders

Sam has worked at Vermont Public Radio since October 1978 in various capacities â

You might have seen the article by now: " 'No Way To Prevent This,' Says Only Nation Where This Regularly Happens." The Onion, a satirical news site that runs fake news stories, has published a story with that headline three times over the last year and a half: this week after a shooter killed nine people at an Oregon community college; in June of this year after a violent rampage in a black Charleston church that also killed nine people; and last May, after a shooting at the University of California Santa Barbara that killed seven.

Twitter seems simple — just type in 140 characters and hit enter, right? But Twitter can be tough. Building an audience. Keeping that audience. Finding a voice. Cutting through all the chatter. It's a lot, especially if you're a busy elected official.

Well, elected officials, fear not! Twitter itself is here to help. NPR recently discovered that the social media giant has a very special handbook just for people running for elected office. And it's 136 pages long.

There's getting a little choked up. There's shedding a few tears. There's full-on crying. And then, there's John Boehner, American politics' crier-in-chief.

This week, (soon to be former) Speaker of the House Boehner's tear ducts stole the show yet again, definitely upstaging the Pope's little black Fiat and newly-named baby panda Bei Bei to become our #MemeOfTheWeek.

So, what happened?

Sometimes on the campaign trail candidates will say a thing that reveals something not just about them, but about the nation. One of those moments seems to have come over the issue of faith in presidential politics, after Ben Carson and Donald Trump each spoke about Muslims in America.

Sunday on NBC's Meet The Press, Carson was asked by host Chuck Todd what could have been a pretty innocuous question: Should your faith matter to voters?

Carson began his response, "Well, I guess it depends on what that faith is."

We knew going into this week that any meme we picked would be associated with this Wednesday's GOP debates at the Reagan Library. And because the Internet is consistently awesome, we weren't disappointed. This week, the meme we loved most was Vine-ification of this week's debates.

How'd We Pick This One?

Pundits and campaign surrogates held court with dozens of journalists after both GOP debates Wednesday night in the spin room.

A spin room is a chaotic mob scene where reporter could ask maybe seven people the same question, and get at least eight answers.

On Wednesday night, I took it upon myself to ask as many campaign surrogates in the spin room as I could the same question: Who do you think won last night's debate? Here were some of the answers I got from campaign surrogates:

"Oh, Sen. Graham won, and he won big."

Here's a riddle: Two senators and two governors walk into a presidential library. Where are they seated once they arrive?

Answer: The kids' table. Well, the kids' table DEBATE. That's what a lot of people have taken to calling the second-tier Republican presidential debates, those held for GOP contenders who haven't cracked the Top 10 in polls.

Last week, we highlighted the Internet's highjacking of the #StandWithRand selfie. It was an example, we pointed out, of the Internet being the place "where things go to go wrong."

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit



Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit