Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., Wednesday where she sought to use the symbolism of a historic landmark to draw parallels to a present-day America that is in need of repairing deepening racial and cultural divides.

The Old State Capitol — where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous "A house divided" speech in 1858 warning against the ills of slavery and where Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in 2007 — served as the backdrop for Clinton as she spoke of how "America's long struggle with race is far from finished."

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

1 hour ago

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

5 hours ago
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Britain To Build New Nuclear Plant, Bucking European Trend

Oct 21, 2013
Originally published on October 21, 2013 1:13 pm

Britain has approved the construction of the country's first nuclear power station in 20 years.

NPR's Philip Reeves, reporting on the announcement for our Newscast unit, said the move goes counter to a European trend to phase out nuclear power in the aftermath of Japan's Fukushima disaster in 2011.

"Most of Britain's 16 nuclear reactors are coming to the end of their lives. Now the government's inked an agreement with a consortium led by the French company EDF Energy to build two new nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point in southwest England. Two state-owned Chinese companies are expected to have a sizable stake. Anti-nuclear sentiment in Britain is low-key compared to some European nations: Germany's phasing out nuclear power after the Fukushima disaster. But this deal will be controversial. Attention is focusing on China's involvement — and the price. The consortium is footing the massive construction costs in return for a guaranteed fixed price for the electricity it produces — that's far higher than current rates."

But as the BBC notes the announcement isn't legally binding. EDF will make a final decision on the project in 2014. The project also needs European Commission clearance.

Still, the news prompted us to look at nuclear energy use across Europe and elsewhere. Here's what we found:

As has been the case for years, France relies on nuclear power for more than three-quarters of its energy needs. And nuclear power enjoys broad public support in the country — at least until the Fukushima disaster.

But France and now Britain are among the few European states that see nuclear power as playing a significant role in the future. Across much of Europe, it's a different story.

Existing plants are being phased out, including in Belgium and Germany.

Indeed, Germany's goals are far-reaching: It plans to close all nuclear power stations by 2022. The aim, as NPR's Eric Westervelt reported last year, is "to have solar, wind and other renewables account for nearly 40 percent of the energy for Europe's largest economy in a decade, and 80 percent by 2050."

But, there are growing doubts about that timeline, too, as Eric noted:

"The fact is, the post-Fukushima consensus in Germany has given way to growing concerns about rising energy costs. The debate is intensifying over just who will pay for the transition to renewable energy, how it will happen, how fast — and through whose backyards."

Further afield, Japan was a major proponent of nuclear power until the Fukushima disaster. Until 2011, about 30 percent of electricity in Japan came from nuclear sources. The plan was to increase the share to 40 percent by 2017. But last year, just 2.1 percent of Japan's electricity came from its nuclear plants.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.