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!":


Pros And Cons: Ryan As Romney's VP

Aug 11, 2012
Originally published on August 11, 2012 4:25 pm

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney's choice of Rep. Paul Ryan as his running mate seems to be uniting both Republicans and Democrats. The GOP is embracing the young, wonky addition to the ticket, while the left seems happy to be taking him on.

Here's a quick look at the pluses and minuses of the decision, from the point of view of the man at the top of the ticket.


The Right Is Thrilled: Romney's decision follows open campaigning for Ryan from conservative institutions like The Wall Street Journal's editorial page.

The conservative National Review editors reacted Saturday: "Governor Romney has made an inspired choice. Paul Ryan will make an excellent running mate and, if elected, vice president."

Romney Gets A Chance To Rise Above Small-Ball: As The Wall Street Journal put it in its editorial: "Mr. Obama and the Democrats want to make this a small election over small things — Mitt's taxes, his wealth, Bain Capital. As the last two months have shown, Mr. Romney will lose that kind of election."

By picking Ryan, who is known for his fiscal conservatism and his commitment to overhauling big federal programs like Medicare and Social Security, "Romney will move more boldly than most observers expected to try to shift the debate off his personal financial past and on to America's economic future," writes James Rainey in the Los Angeles Times.

Romney May Score Points In Wisconsin: The swing state went solidly for President Obama four years ago and hasn't voted for a Republican presidential contender since the 1980s. But "Ryan's blue-collar Wisconsin background and personal popularity — he's won his last six races with no less than 63% of the vote — could give Romney a boost there," says USA Today's David Colton.


It's Red Meat For Democrats: The left is going to sink its teeth into Ryan's budget plan and never let go. Obama and other Democrats have already been campaigning against it. In April, Obama said it was "so far to the right that it makes the Contract With America look like the New Deal."

"There was no one on Romney's short list of contenders [Democrats] wanted to run against more than the chairman of the House Budget Committee," Dan Balz writes in The Washington Post. "Romney has now assumed ownership of Ryan's budgetary plan and its provisions for reining in the cost of entitlement programs. Democrats will attack it and its author as vigorously as they have tried to savage Romney's business background and personal finances."

And the attacks on Ryan's plan — which, since it would eventually involve changes to Medicare, will be particularly targeted toward seniors — could breathe new life into Obama's campaign in the key swing state of Florida.

Experience Gap: Like Romney, Ryan lacks much foreign policy experience. And unlike Romney, he doesn't have a business or executive background.

"Besides summer jobs working at McDonald's or at his family's construction company, or waiting tables as a young Washington staffer, Ryan has none of the business-world experience Romney frequently touts as essential for governing," Ryan Lizza writes in The New Yorker.


It Could Take The Focus Off President Obama's Record: In many quarters, Romney's bold pick is being viewed as an acknowledgement that trying to keep the campaign solely focused on President Obama's handling of the economy wasn't working out.

But, as John Harris and Mike Allen write in Politico, "It is hard to overstate the risks Romney is taking in making a choice that virtually guarantees a far-reaching debate about the broader role of government and the entitlement state. Simply put, it is a debate Republicans have almost never won when they've put it directly before voters in the past."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit