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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 http://www.npr.org/.

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!":

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Ohio Senate Race Gets Nasty Amid Flood Of Ads And Cash

Sep 20, 2012
Originally published on September 20, 2012 1:37 pm

The U.S. Senate race in Ohio is already the most expensive in state history. And now it's on course to be the nastiest — and in the current political environment, that's a high bar to reach.

Incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown was expecting a tough challenge as he sought a second term, after a bitter battle against Republican Mike DeWine in 2006.

And he's getting it from Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, who proved himself a rising star to the GOP in 2010 because of his ability to deliver money and votes. But Mandel's victorious campaign for treasurer two years ago was so unpleasant that a major newspaper endorsed a third-party candidate rather than Mandel or the incumbent.

The 34-year-old Mandel began his campaign against Brown this spring with positive ads highlighting his roots, his youth and his service as a Marine and in government. But the campaign quickly turned ugly as outside money poured into the race — on both sides, but tipping heavily toward Mandel and against Brown. Ads slammed Brown for his support of the Affordable Care Act, for President Obama's environmental policies and for spending nearly four decades as a "career politician."

Brown, 59, blasted back at Mandel for not attending meetings, for his hiring practices and for fundraising around the U.S. and even outside it.

When the fact-checkers started weighing in, Mandel ended up with some very poor scores. Brown got a few "false" ratings from PolitiFact, and one "pants on fire" — its worst rating.

Mandel has collected the "pants on fire" rating six times. One of Mandel's ads got three separate "pants on fire" or "false" rulings alone, and the Brown campaign has launched a website labeling Mandel a liar.

The allegations don't seem to bother Mandel. In an interview with me in April, Mandel said he has "facts, and if a biased media organization wants to disagree with those facts, that's their prerogative. But the facts are on our side, and we're going to continue to tell those facts."

But ratings from fact-checkers have now become an ad on their own. Brown's newest ad is simply called "Pants on Fire."

Mandel's campaign says Brown "is trying to scare Ohio's seniors and distract the middle class from his record of failure." Mandel also has a new ad, called "A Different Set of Rules," which claims Brown has been missing votes in the Senate.

Brown's campaign calls that the "most ridiculous and misleading attack yet."

The candidates have raised at least $25 million so far, and Mandel has been significantly outpacing Brown in spending. And the candidates' own ads aren't the only ones.

Almost $18 million in outside money has been spent so far against Brown and supporting Mandel, from nine groups including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS, as well as the largely unknown Government Integrity Fund.

More than $3 million has been spent by four organizations against Mandel and for Brown, such as the Service Employees International Union and Majority PAC.

And while it's already hard to avoid campaign ads on TV and online, soon Ohioans' mailboxes will be filled with campaign material as well. With polls showing a close race, there's no reason to think this war of words is close to over.

Karen Kasler is chief of the Statehouse News Bureau for Ohio Public Radio and Television.

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