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

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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

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Countdown To Shutdown: It's GOP Senator Vs. GOP Senator

Sep 26, 2013

Thursday's highlights (and lowlights):

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid raised the possibility that the Senate might be able to finish its work on the budget bill by the end of the day, sending it to the House sooner rather later. If Republicans went along, that would give the House more time to act to avert a government shutdown next week.

Perhaps predictably, Republicans didn't go along. Sen. Mike Lee of Utah, and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, in particular.

After Reid asked for unanimous consent to accelerate the process so the Senate could vote Thursday, Lee and Cruz got into a rhetorical knife fight with fellow Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee. It was the Senate GOP civil war breaking out into the open.

Corker accused Lee and Cruz of wanting to delay the vote until Friday because they had sent out news releases to their Tea Party supporters to expect "a show" on Friday — and a Thursday evening vote would ruin their plans. Cruz and Lee didn't deny it.

Meanwhile, Senate Democrats and House Republicans showed themselves no closer to a compromise to keep the federal government funded past Monday.

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, was asked if Republicans controlling the House would accept from the Senate a so-called "clean" continuing resolution to fund the government — one stripped of House language to defund Obamacare.

"I don't, I do not see that happening," Boehner told reporters.

At a news conference on the other side of the Capitol, Reid, a Democrat from Nevada, said: "We want a clean CR. That's what we're going to get."

Turning to a flat-screen TV that was being used as a shutdown clock, Reid said: "If they want to shut down the government, here's how much time they have to figure it out: 4 days, 11 hours, 22 minutes and 15 seconds."

House Republicans also unveiled a number of items they hope to trade Democrats for next month when Congress turns to a debt-ceiling increase. Among House requests: a one-year delay in implementing Obamacare. Asked if Democrats would accept that, Reid simply said, "No."

Adding to the gloom, Reid said he and Boehner haven't talked at all in recent days.

For his part, President Obama sounded as adamant as everyone else. He told an audience at a Largo, Md., event, about Republican efforts to halt Obamacare: "That's not going to happen as long as I'm president. The Affordable Care Act is here to stay."

What's next?

Friday
Reid says the Senate should vote on the spending legislation Friday.

First, the Senate will take a vote to end the current period of debate. Assuming that gets the needed 60 votes, which now seems likely, the Senate would proceed to debate the actual House continuing resolution. At least 60 senators also would have to agree to end debate on the spending bill.

Senate Democrats will substitute the House's continuing resolution with an amendment that removes the Obamacare defunding language. That would require only 51 votes, which Senate Democrats should have no trouble getting. The Senate could then get the spending bill back to the House late Friday.

Also on Friday, and in the other wing of the Capitol, the House will take up its debt-ceiling bill, which is expected to emerge from the Rules Committee late Thursday. The House is expected to pass that measure sometime Friday.

The one unmovable thing is the deadline to avoid a shutdown; that's midnight Monday, the end of the month.

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