Politics

6:16am

Sun December 9, 2012
Politics

A Senator's Last Challenge

Originally published on Sun December 9, 2012 2:36 pm

Sen. Kent Conrad has chaired the Senate Budget Committee since 2006. The Democratic senator from North Dakota is retiring in January 2013, but before leaving the Senate, he is a key player in the negotiations to avoid the so-called "fiscal cliff." Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin speaks with Sen. Conrad about the challenges to achieving a budget compromise.

6:16am

Sun December 9, 2012
Politics

Call It Want You Want, But It's Not A Debt Crisis

Originally published on Sun December 9, 2012 2:36 pm

It's widely known as the fiscal cliff, but some prominent Republicans have been calling it a "debt crisis." Economists agree such a crisis may be coming, but it's not here yet. Demographic changes are forcing a reckoning of how to pay for what people want from their government.

6:16am

Sun December 9, 2012
Politics

Former Senator Appeals To Youth On Deficit Reduction

Originally published on Sun December 9, 2012 2:36 pm

Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin explains Alan Simpson's musical contribution to the debt and deficit crisis.

5:09am

Sun December 9, 2012
Your Money

Fiscal Cliff Leaves Accountants Hanging, Too

Originally published on Sun December 9, 2012 2:53 pm

With major tax changes still undecided, accountants and other financial professionals must advise their clients on various possible scenarios.
iStockphoto.com

The expiration of Bush-era tax cuts. A patch to the alternative minimum tax. An increase in capital gains taxes.

As the "fiscal cliff" approaches, all of these are possible, but none certain. That uncertainty solicits many questions from anxious taxpayers. But, for accountants and financial planners, there are a few definitive answers.

Financial professionals who spoke with NPR say they are not strangers to uncertainty. When the Bush tax cuts were up for expiration two years ago, for instance, the feeling was similar.

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3:53am

Sun December 9, 2012
It's All Politics

Add This Group To Obama's Winning Coalition: 'Religiously Unaffiliated'

President Obama walks with his daughters Sasha, foreground, and Malia as they leave St. John's Episcopal Church in Washington, on Oct. 28. An analysis of exit polls shows that those who claim no specific religious affiliation were a key Obama voting bloc in the presidential race.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

The big demographic story out of the 2012 presidential election may have been President Obama's domination of the Hispanic vote, and rightfully so.

But as we close the book on the election, it bears noting that another less obvious bloc of key swing state voters helped the president win a second term.

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3:36pm

Sat December 8, 2012
The Two-Way

Why This Video Makes This Editor Think Clinton Will Run In 2016

Originally published on Mon December 10, 2012 6:45 am

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton watches a video about her public life that was played before she addressed the Saban Forum in Washington last week.
Mary Calvert Reuters /Landov

There's an event held every year in Washington known as the Saban Forum — named for Haim Saban, the Israeli-American media mogul who funds it. It's a night of elbow-rubbing between D.C. and Middle East political leadership, though foreign dignitaries are mostly Israeli.

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6:47am

Sat December 8, 2012
Politics

Fiscal Cliff About More Than Just Tax Rates, Spending

Originally published on Sat December 8, 2012 7:38 am

With all the attention on tax rates and spending cuts, three big issues are getting little attention in fiscal cliff talks. NPR's Tamara Keith explains how expiring provisions on the payroll tax cut, the alternative minimum tax and unemployment benefits could have major effects on the economy.

5:27am

Sat December 8, 2012
It's All Politics

Once Boxed-In, Boehner May Finally Be Master Of The House

Originally published on Mon December 10, 2012 12:42 pm

Not long ago, it seemed to many observers that the House of Representatives was a case of the tail wagging the dog, with Speaker John Boehner unable to keep in line many of his fellow Republicans, especially freshmen who came to Congress riding the 2010 Tea Party wave.

Now, however, the big dog seems back in control.

Some of the signs are subtle, some not. But as he faces off with President Obama during fiscal cliff negotiations, Boehner enjoys a stronger position with House Republicans than he had during earlier showdowns with the White House.

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6:56pm

Fri December 7, 2012
'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup

It's All Politics, Dec. 7, 2012

Alex Wong Getty Images

Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., announces he will leave Washington in the new year. While NPR's Ken Rudin and Ron Elving wonder if this will enhance DeMint's already-estimable influence in Republican circles, it also opens up the possibility of the appointment of an African-American GOP senator — only the second one since Reconstruction. Plus: Does Ashley Judd have a shot against Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky?

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5:53pm

Fri December 7, 2012
Law

Supreme Court Takes Up Same-Sex-Marriage Cases

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 11:50 pm

Edith Windsor, 83, is asking the Supreme Court to strike down the federal Defense of Marriage Act. When Windsor's female spouse died, the federal government, acting under DOMA, required Windsor to pay estate taxes that she would not have owed if her spouse had been a man.
Richard Drew AP

The U.S. Supreme Court announced Friday that for the first time it will tackle the issue of same-sex marriage. Defying most expectations, the justices said they will examine two cases, presenting the possibility that the court could decide all the basic issues surrounding same-sex marriage in one fell swoop.

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