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.

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

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.

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 vegetables 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.


The Race To 270: A Swing State Scorecard

Oct 23, 2012
Originally published on November 5, 2012 10:11 am

From now until Election Day, the U.S. might as well consist of just eight or so states, not 50.

Those are the battleground states where President Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, their running mates and spouses will be spending much of their time in what remains of the 2012 race for the White House.

It's all about amassing the 270 electoral votes required to be elected president. NPR's analysis of the race at this point suggests the eight states that are most in play are Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Virginia and Wisconsin.

Both presidential campaigns are looking for the combination of those states that helps them reach the almighty 270.

You can search for that combination, too, using's new interactive "Swing State Scorecard" ( Summon up your inner political consultant by figuring out the available routes to 270.

Our interactive scorecard lays out in a table all the combinations that get each candidate over the top. Assuming, as we do, that Obama begins with 237 electoral votes from blue states that can be safely placed in his column, a quick glance at the table tells you Obama could win by adding a combination of just two additional states, such as Ohio and Florida, to his column. Those two would give him a total of 284 electoral votes.

On the other hand, if you start out as we do by assuming Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, begins with 206 electoral votes from safely or likely red states, then he needs to add a combination of at least four states to get to 270.

For instance, winning Florida, Ohio, Virginia and Wisconsin would give Romney a total of 276 electoral votes and make him the 45th president.

Play around with our scorecard yourself and share your results with us and your friends.

In electoral math, as in math class, it's important that you show your work. So here's how NPR Senior Washington Editor Ron Elving assigns the states:

8 Tossups

Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Virginia, Wisconsin

3 Lean Republican

Arizona, Montana, North Carolina

6 Likely Republican

Georgia, Indiana, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee

15 Strong Republican

Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wyoming

3 Lean Democratic

Michigan, Oregon, Pennsylvania

6 Likely Democratic

Connecticut, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Washington

10 Strong Democratic

California, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont

*** We plan to update this list by reassigning states as polls and other information warrant.

Go To The Scorecard »

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