When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

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.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

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 Montgomery-ed.org

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.


Indiana's GOP Leaders Cautious Amid Supermajorities

Nov 29, 2012
Originally published on November 29, 2012 9:18 am



In so many ways our country seems politically divided. Nevertheless, last month's election left 11 states controlled by supermajorities, meaning one party occupies the governor's mansion and owns the overwhelming majority in the legislature. Let's get a sense for the dynamic in one of these states - Indiana. Republicans seem in command. And yet despite their new leverage, Indiana's Republican lawmakers are preaching caution and a need for increased bipartisanship. Indiana Public Broadcasting's Brandon Smith reports.

BRANDON SMITH, BYLINE: During the last two legislative sessions, Democrats here employed walkouts to block or delay passage of controversial legislation in the Republican-controlled Indiana House. But now that tactic will no longer work. With Republicans controlling 69 seats in the chamber, they have more than the two-thirds necessary to prevent any such effort.

STATE REPRESENTATIVE BRIAN BOSMA: I want to meet with her very soon. So...

SMITH: Speaking with legislators and their families at a gathering following the first official day of the new session, House Speaker Brian Bosma stands out. At six-foot-four, he's physically imposing and he's been his party's leader in the House for a dozen years and says he won't run roughshod over the Democrats.

BOSMA: Someone might step into the role and say, yeah, now's my chance. But I've been here long enough and been in the minority most of that tenure to understand that everyone is elected independently to participate in the process here, so we will work with those who are willing.

SMITH: But Bosma's caucus is bigger than any the Republicans have had in 40 years. Longtime Hoosier political analyst Ed Feigenbaum says when Republicans gained a supermajority back in 1972, they lost it only two years later because of outside political forces.

ED FEIGENBAUM: 1972 was the Nixon landslide and 1974 was the reaction to Watergate.

SMITH: Feigenbaum says the new supermajority is built largely on the state's shifting demographics and redrawn districts. But he's not sure that will make holding onto the supermajority any easier.

FEIGENBAUM: When you're dealing with more than 60 races, you know, of which maybe 45 may be truly potentially competitive, that's a lot of money to have to raise in order to defend all of those seats.

SMITH: Still, until those elections come around again in two years, you could argue that Democrats in the legislature might be functionally irrelevant. But House Minority Leader Scott Pelath argues just the opposite. He says because of the numbers, Republicans may need to reach out to Democrats even more than in the past.

STATE REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT PELATH: I think Speaker Bosma, if he doesn't already know it, realizes he's going to have some of his own divisions within his own caucus. Just because there's a lot of members from one particular party doesn't mean they don't have some intense disagreements.

SMITH: There's one legislator here in the House who remembers what it was like to be in a superminority. South Bend Democrat Pat Bauer says despite the appearance of having no power, the minority can still effect change.

STATE REPRESENTATIVE PAT BAUER: You offer your ideas on the floor, you offer them at committee, you repeat it in the Senate if you can, and just get the people to know.

SMITH: So even with supermajorities in both houses, it isn't expected that there will be a lot of controversial legislative proposals. That's in part because over the past two years, Republicans have already passed a Right to Work bill, massive education reform measures, and legislation halting funding to Planned Parenthood. They might fear that pushing the same kind of extreme proposals would just make their supermajority short-lived.

For NPR News, I'm Brandon Smith in Indianapolis. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.