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 veggies 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.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

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 disparaged him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb political statements" about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":


Is GOP Excitement Waning For V.P. Nominee Ryan?

Sep 25, 2012
Originally published on September 25, 2012 12:00 pm



If you live in Ohio, you probably feel like this national presidential campaign is focused exclusively on one state - yours. Certainly may feel that way this week. President Obama has released a new TV ad in Ohio and he'll be campaigning in the key battleground state later in the week.

Today, Republican Mitt Romney joins up with his running mate, Paul Ryan, on a bus tour aimed at Ohio's working class voters. This bus trip comes as Republican insiders are asking some questions about Ryan's role in the campaign. Here's NPR's Debbie Elliott.

DEBBIE ELLIOTT, BYLINE: At least one Ohio voter appears ready for the Romney-Ryan campaign to step it up a notch.

DAN ERMELER: We need backbone in the Republican Party. We have not have backbone in the Republican Party for many a years.

ELLIOTT: Dan Ermeler stepped up to the mic during a town hall in Lima, Ohio yesterday, where Paul Ryan kicked off the bus tour. Ryan acknowledged Ermeler's frustration

REPRESENTATIVE PAUL RYAN: I couldn't agree with your more.


ELLIOTT: Many conservatives expected Ryan to be the backbone when Mitt Romney selected him as a running mate, certainly on social issues and fiscal policy. On the stump, he does spell out the numbers, even supplementing with charts and graphs at the Lima gathering. He told Ermeler he was talking about cutting the deficit long before it was cool.

RYAN: When Mitt Romney asked me to join the ticket, he said this to me. He said, number one, you share my values. Number two, you have shown you have the gumption and guts to reform this in Congress and to get this done. That's the kind of experience I need, 'cause we have to save America in 2013. Join me and let's do that. You know what I said to him? I said let's get this done. And so...


ELLIOTT: But as Election Day draws closer and polls show Obama with a slight edge in hard-fought Ohio, some Republicans question whether the ticket is getting it done. One of them is Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Ryan's home state. In a Milwaukee radio interview Friday, he talked about his high expectations for what Ryan would bring to the campaign - expectations that have not been met.

GOVERNOR SCOTT WALKER REPUBLICAN, WISCONSIN: I could sense the enthusiasm, the excitement, the adrenaline that Mitt Romney had - not just Paul Ryan had - about this ticket and about being bold and exciting. I haven't seen that as much lately and I think they need to get back there if they're going to win the election. People want bold leadership.

ELLIOTT: There's always this kind of Monday Morning quarterbacking when campaigns are so close, says political scientist John Green, director of the Bliss Institute at the University of Akron. He says Ryan has been a good team player.

JOHN GREEN: One of the most important things for a vice presidential nominee is to not cause any trouble for the ticket, as a whole; to not create a distraction or to overshadow the nominee.

ELLIOTT: Voters in Lima seemed to understand that role. Terrence Edgett says Congressman Ryan is hitting just the right tone.

TERRENCE EDGETT: A lot more so than the running mate of John McCain, you know? That was his big downfall.

ELLIOTT: Ryan has not sparked the attention that Sarah Palin did four years ago. And that makes him asset in the eyes of JoLynn Delgado, a church secretary who campaigns, door to door, for the Romney-Ryan campaign.

JOLYNN DELGADO: They don't want him to look better than the main dude. So yeah, they're going to tamp him down a little bit.


DELGADO: Yeah, don't want him to overshadow anybody. So, you know, hopefully his time will come in eight years.

ELLIOTT: Ryan has not shied away from one signature issue: changing Medicare, a position that drew boos from his AARP audience last week.

But for Robin Kantner of New Knoxville, Ohio, the most important thing he brings to the GOP ticket is his background.

ROBIN KANTNER: He's the one that's not super rich and he lives in a nice, normal American town. And he talks about issues that are important for the ordinary person.

ELLIOTT: Kantner says that makes for a nice balance to Mitt Romney. The two are expected to campaign together in Ohio today.

Debbie Elliott, NPR News, Cincinnati.


GREENE: You're listening to MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.