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.

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After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters, and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she made disparaging comments about him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb" comments about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":

Donald Trump wrapped up his public tryout of potential vice presidential candidates in Indiana Tuesday night with Gov. Mike Pence giving the final audition.

The Indiana governor's stock as Trump's possible running mate is believed to be on the rise, with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich also atop the list. Sources tell NPR the presumptive GOP presidential nominee is close to making a decision, which he's widely expected to announce by Friday.

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The unassuming hero of Jonas Karlsson's clever, Kafkaesque parable is the opposite of a malcontent. Despite scant education, a limited social life, and no prospects for success as it is usually defined, he's that rarity, a most happy fella with an amazing ability to content himself with very little. But one day, returning to his barebones flat from his dead-end, part-time job at a video store, he finds an astronomical bill from an entity called W.R.D. He assumes it's a scam. Actually, it is more sinister-- and it forces him to take a good hard look at his life and values.

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Donald Trump picked a military town — Virginia Beach, Va. — to give a speech Monday on how he would go about overhauling the Department of Veterans Affairs if elected.

He blamed the Obama administration for a string of scandals at the VA during the past two years, and claimed that his rival, Hillary Clinton, has downplayed the problems and won't fix them.

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Are Primary Republicans Chasing Romney Or The Reagan Rainbow?

Mar 21, 2012
Originally published on March 21, 2012 12:28 pm

Rick Santorum's underdog campaign limped out of Illinois to fight another day, but his campaign for the GOP presidential nomination goes forward under a long shadow.

It's not really the shadow of Mount Mitt, even though front-runner Romney's big win in Illinois heightened his pile of delegates. Romney creeps ever closer to inevitability, yet he too is caught in the same shadow of a man who left the stage two decades ago but dominates it to this day.

The man, of course, was Ronald Reagan, whose presidency made the conservative movement a governing and transformative force. Today, for Republicans of nearly every stripe, Reagan remains The Man.

The power of that image leaped out again this week as Santorum went to Reagan's birthplace in Dixon, Ill., for a speech beneath an equestrian statue of Reagan as a boy. An inspired concept, perhaps, the image suffered somewhat because the bronze statue loomed over the live candidate. Far from measuring up to his hero, Santorum in many camera shots seemed stuck somewhere down there with the horse.

The mismatch was especially unfortunate because Santorum was making such a bald appeal for the personal parallel. He compared his own "insurgent campaign" to the one Reagan ran against the incumbent Republican President Ford in 1976. Santorum said he had won nearly as many states as Reagan did that year, neglecting to mention their relative size or delegate count. (Or the fact that Reagan lost the nomination to Ford, who then lost to Jimmy Carter.)

But Santorum is far from egregious in reaching for Reagan's magic. For decades, countless Republican candidates for office at every level have bowed before the Reagan shrine, and the more conservative they are, the more slavishly they serve him.

Even when Reagan was still in office during the 1988 primaries, his would-be successors wrestled with each other for the mantle. George H.W. Bush had been Reagan's vice president, Alexander Haig his first secretary of state. Jack Kemp clearly regarded himself as Reagan's rightful heir.

And a generation later, the full Republican field of September 2011 would debate beneath the fuselage of Reagan's old Air Force One at the Reagan Library in California. The spirit of the Gipper soared above the proceedings that night just as his aircraft did, and one hopeful after another paid dutiful tribute.

So what's wrong with this picture? Nothing. It's traditional for political parties to extol the virtues of past heroes. Democrats have kept alive the memories and myths of FDR and JFK for far longer than the GOP has lionized Reagan.

The difference is that the Republican obsession with Reagan might be making it harder for them to find their next real hero — or elect their next president.

Think about it. Every time another candidate or commentator goes off on a panegyric about the 40th president, you can hear the old-timers saying to themselves: "Wish we had someone like that nowadays." And you can see the attention of younger voters wandering off.

Generational attitudes aside, it makes little sense to praise a past leader to the point where current leaders cannot compete. Even Reagan himself was not always the mythic figure he's made out to be today. Were he around today, one wonders if he would have the chance to grow into the figure he became.

In the end, all the hagiography may simply set a standard that is impossible for any prospective standard bearer to meet.

Elving is NPR's senior Washington editor.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.