Politics

11:23am

Wed October 30, 2013
Intelligence Squared U.S.

Debate: For A Better Future, Live In A Red State?

Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt (left) and Wall Street Journal editorial board member Stephen Moore argue in favor of the motion "For A Better Future, Live In A Red State" at an Intelligence Squared U.S. debate on Oct. 18.
Rob Andrew Intelligence Squared U.S.

When it comes to things like the economy, taxes, health care and education, is it better to live in a red state or a blue state?

Some argue that red-state tendencies toward lower taxes and less regulated, more free-market systems make them ideal places to work and raise a family. But others counter that residents of blue states are wealthier, have more educational opportunities and benefit from a commitment to a social safety net.

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11:08am

Wed October 30, 2013
It's All Politics

Tale Of The Tape: Comparing The Budget Committee Heads

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 2:17 pm

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., differ in style and ideology but show signs of having a good working relationship.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Two wily veterans of Congress' fiscal wars will lead the budget talks scheduled to start Wednesday: Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., the heads of the House and Senate budget committees.

As the 29 lawmakers on the budget conference committee — 22 from the Senate and seven from the House — sit down to begin negotiations, they'll have in Ryan and Murray two lawmakers who from most accounts get along well despite their many differences.

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8:45am

Wed October 30, 2013
Politics

Without Earmark 'Grease,' Some Say, Spending Bills Get Stuck

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 5:24 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

While Congress tries to get to the bottom of what went wrong with the Affordable Care Act website, it's got other problems on its mind. Leading the list is the inability of lawmakers to carry out their most fundamental constitutional responsibility: appropriating the money needed to run the government in a timely fashion.

This month's shutdown was only the most recent fallout of the breakdown in appropriations. Some lawmakers say the Republican ban on earmarks nearly three years ago has only made things worse.

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8:45am

Wed October 30, 2013
Politics

Lawmakers To Grill Sebelius On Affordable Care Act

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 5:24 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. More hearings come today on the messy rollout of the Affordable Care Act. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius will face questions from the House, Energy and Commerce Committee. Now, yesterday, the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid testified before a different committee. Marilyn Tavenner offered consumers an apology for the problems at the health care.gov website.

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8:45am

Wed October 30, 2013
Politics

Budget Negotiations Kick Off On Capitol Hill

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 5:24 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Today, something uncommon is happening on Capitol Hill. Not one, but two conference committees are meeting to work out the differences between House and Senate on the budget and the farm bill. This is the way Congress was designed to work. These days, those sorts of committees are quite rare.

To talk about what's at stake, we're joined by NPR congressional correspondent, Tamara Keith. Good morning.

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7:40am

Wed October 30, 2013
It's All Politics

Wednesday Political Mix: Obama's 'Read My Lips' ACA Problem

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 11:40 am

President Obama would like you to remember that Obamacare was based on Massachusetts legislation signed in 2006 by then governor and Republican Mitt Romney, pictured at the signing ceremony. And that rollout started slowly, too.
Elise Amendola AP

Good morning, fellow political junkies.

The Affordable Care Act should dominate Wednesday's news cycle thanks to scheduled high-profile appearances by President Obama and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to defend the law.

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6:43am

Wed October 30, 2013
The Two-Way

Sebelius: 'Hold Me Accountable For The Debacle'

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 4:28 pm

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as she was sworn in prior to the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing Wednesday.
Alex Wong Getty Images
  • Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., and Secretary Sebelius on who's responsible for 'this debacle'

(We last added to this post at 4:10 p.m. ET.)

"You deserve better. ... I apologize. ... I'm accountable to you."

That's what Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told Americans on Wednesday morning during a Congressional hearing into problems with the Obama administration's HealthCare.gov website and Republicans' concerns about the Affordable Care Act.

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6:17pm

Tue October 29, 2013
The Two-Way

Alabama Agrees To Permanently Gut Immigration Law

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 6:33 pm

Parents arrive to pick up their children from a school in Montgomery, Ala. After a tough immigration law was enacted in 2011, Hispanic students began to disappear from classrooms in the state's public schools.
Dave Martin AP

Opponents of Alabama's strict immigration law are declaring victory Tuesday, as the state agreed not to pursue key provisions of a measure critics had called an endorsement of racial profiling. Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the state's appeal of a federal court's ruling that gutted the law.

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6:12pm

Tue October 29, 2013
It's All Politics

For Somali Immigrants, All Politics Really Is Local

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 7:06 pm

Members of the Somali community visit near a park in Minneapolis. The city is home to the nation's largest concentration of Somali Americans.
Jim Mone AP

Politics in Minneapolis is about to change.

Not only is the city electing a new mayor on Nov. 5, it's also possible that a majority of the members of City Council will be freshmen.

Among their number could be Abdi Warsame, who would be the first Somali American elected to the City Council there — or anywhere else.

"The community has realized we can turn to each other to address issues of education, housing and health, which are mainly controlled by the politicians," says Mohamud Noor, a Warsame ally.

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5:30pm

Tue October 29, 2013
Politics

When You're The President, What Counts As Need To Know?

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 7:57 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

In recent weeks, the White House staff has pleaded in a couple of high-profile embarrassments that the president did not know. As we just heard from Ari, it's been reported that President Obama did not know until recently that German Chancellor Merkel's communications had been intercepted. It's also been said that he was unaware of problems with the rollout of healthcare.gov.

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