Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

NPR Politics presents the Lunchbox List: our favorite campaign news and stories curated from NPR and around the Web in digestible bites (100 words or less!). Look for it every weekday afternoon from now until the conventions.

Convention Countdown

The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped vegetables and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.


Analysis: Romney Debate Strategy Shows He Thinks He's In the Driver's Seat

Oct 23, 2012

In his third debate with President Obama, Mitt Romney dialed up "cool and cautious" on his mood meter. And that tells you a great deal about where this presidential race stands with two weeks to go.

Romney had to know the president would be coming after him in Boca Raton, Fla., but he decided to avoid the aggressive and even angry notes he had struck in the first two debates. He had achieved what he could with this approach in the initial clash in Denver on Oct. 3, when he seemed the more decisive and strong-willed candidate on stage. Its usefulness was visibly waning in the town-hall format in Hempstead, N.Y., on Oct. 16.

In Boca, Romney & Co. sensed a moment to ease off a bit and make a more positive impression. Their clear targets were women, undecided independents and others who might have been turned off by the contentious, uncivil tone of the earlier confrontations.

And Romney got the new persona across, at least in part. In one of the instant polls done after the event, the pollsters and political scientists at YouGov found debate watchers thought Obama had won the evening but that Obama had also been the more negative candidate.

All this emphasizes once again the critical importance of timing.

In the first debate, Obama may have won the likability contest but booted the rest of the test. In the final debate, he could not risk having this happen again. That led to the role reversal that had nearly as many people shaking their heads: the president playing the restless attacker, finding fault with his rival even when the two agreed on policy basics, while Romney smiled a lot and went out of his way to be level-headed, embracing agreement with the president wherever possible.

This retracting of the Romney horns was too obvious to be spontaneous. That is not the way the GOP nominee and his team operate. They have decided that recent polls in their favor are now the defining factor in the contest. So their tactics for the third debate went from "go after him" to "don't blow it."

In football terms, why throw the ball deep when you're ahead?

This implies that the Republicans are placing a hefty bet on their analysis of the race, and on the rightness of their overall late-surge strategy. They decided that by winning the first debate and looking like a leader, Romney had altered the dynamics of the fall campaign for good in a single night.

They also decided that the electorate had reached and passed a tipping point with respect to their judgment of the challenger. So, having already secured the respect of enough swing voters to win, he needed only to avoid alienating too many of them with his personality.

That is the Romney theory of the case. His campaign has decided that inconsistency is simply not going to cost him the presidency. After all, his Republican primary rivals ripped him mercilessly for shifting issue positions depending on the moment and the audience at hand. That did not prevent his nomination, nor has it kept him from consolidating the Republican vote in the fall campaign. You have to look hard to find conservatives who plan to defect or sit this one out.

As a late-inning strategy, this may seem too cautious for a challenger who has only this month pulled even with the incumbent president. But it reflects both confidence in the polling trend and a deeper sense of assurance that this is not a year in which the usual incumbent advantage applies.

We should remember too that Romney has been at this presidential game since at least the middle of the last decade, when he decided not to seek a second term as governor of Massachusetts. Some would say he had the White House on his mind even earlier, when he challenged Edward Kennedy for his Senate seat in 1994. Or earlier still, perhaps as a young man at Cranbrook Prep.

Having spent so much of his adult life making this moment possible, the prudent investment banker does not want to take any unnecessary risks now.

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