Scott Horsley

Scott Horsley is a White House correspondent for NPR News. He reports on the policy and politics of the Obama Administration, with a special emphasis on economic issues.

The 2012 campaign is the third presidential contest Horsley has covered for NPR. He previously reported on Senator John McCain's White House bid in 2008 and Senator John Kerry's campaign in 2004. Thanks to this experience, Horsley has become an expert in the motel shampoo offerings of various battleground states.

Horsley took up the White House beat after serving as a San Diego-based business correspondent for NPR where he covered fast food, gasoline prices, and the California electricity crunch of 2000. He reported from the Pentagon during the early phases of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Before joining NPR in 2001, Horsley was a reporter for member station KPBS-FM, where he received numerous honors, including a Public Radio News Directors' award for coverage of the California energy crisis.

Earlier in his career, Horsley worked as a reporter for WUSF-FM in Tampa, Florida, and as a news writer and reporter for commercial radio stations in Boston and Concord, New Hampshire. Horsley began his professional career as a production assistant for NPR's Morning Edition.

Horsley earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University and an MBA from San Diego State University.

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National Security
5:54 am
Sat July 4, 2015

The White House Invites Tourists To Use Their Cameras

Originally published on Sat July 4, 2015 9:04 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Politics
3:00 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Obama Touts New Federal Overtime Pay Rule In Wisconsin

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 4:35 pm

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Politics
2:58 am
Tue June 30, 2015

Obama Expected To Release Rule Governing Overtime

Originally published on Tue June 30, 2015 4:35 pm

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It's All Politics
8:22 pm
Mon June 29, 2015

President Pitches Overtime Rule That Could Raise Wages For 5 Million

President Obama signs a presidential memorandum in March of 2014 that directed the Department of Labor construct a new set of overtime rules, with the goal of making more employees eligible for overtime pay.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 30, 2015 7:17 am

President Obama is expected to release this week a long-awaited rule governing overtime that could affect 5 million people as soon as next year, a source familiar with the plans confirmed to NPR.

The proposed rule would more than double the salary cap under which most workers would qualify for overtime pay whenever they work more than 40 hours a week, the source said. The cap would be raised from $23,660 to $50,440, and indexed to wage growth or inflation, ensuring the cap would move with the overall economy.

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Law
9:36 am
Fri June 26, 2015

Supreme Court Rules That All States Must Allow Same-Sex Marriages

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

It's All Politics
11:26 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Obama Administration To Shift Ransom-For-Hostages Rules

American Journalist James Foley, pictured in 2011. Foley's beheading at the hands of the Islamic State militant group has forced a debate over how the U.S. balances its policy of not paying ransoms.
Steven Senne AP

Originally published on Wed June 24, 2015 3:28 am

This post was updated at 1:25 p.m. ET to include comment from the White House press secretary.

The Obama administration is preparing to announce changes in the way it deals with families whose loved ones have been taken hostage by terrorist groups such as the self-declared Islamic State militant group. Families were invited to a private meeting with administration officials Tuesday in advance of a public announcement at the White House on Wednesday.

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It's All Politics
3:08 am
Thu June 18, 2015

Raised Around Cry For Smaller Government, Rand Paul Carries The Torch

Sen. Rand Paul, then a candidate, arrives to address a luncheon meeting of the Lions Club in Bowling Green, Ky., in 2010. "He said when he was a very young man, 'I'm going to be a medical doctor,'" his nephew Matthew Pyeatt said. "He knew exactly what he wanted to be and exactly what he needed to do to get there and be successful."
Ed Reinke AP

Originally published on Thu June 18, 2015 7:04 am

This story is part of NPR's series Journey Home. We're going to the places presidential candidates call home and finding out what those places tell us about how they see the world.

Sen. Rand Paul made headlines recently with his one-man effort to roll back government surveillance. And that's the just beginning of Paul's plan to dismantle big chunks of the federal government.

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Politics
2:43 pm
Fri June 12, 2015

House Rejects Legislation To Give Obama Fast-Track Trade Authority

Originally published on Fri June 12, 2015 6:55 pm

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Health Care
3:32 pm
Tue June 9, 2015

Obama Defends Health Care Law As Supreme Court Ruling Nears

Originally published on Tue June 9, 2015 6:10 pm

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Politics
3:01 am
Thu May 28, 2015

The Future President Will Need To Wrestle With Debt From The Past

While annual deficits have shrunk dramatically since the depths of the Great Recession, the federal government is still adding to its overall debt.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 28, 2015 3:11 pm

Our next president is likely to have some big plans for the future of the country. But he or she will also have to wrestle with some leftover bills from the past. The federal government has issued trillions of dollars in IOUs. Just the interest on that massive debt could be a serious constraint for the next president.

That's why Danette Kenne has some questions for the presidential candidates about what kind of budget they plan to present to Congress.

"Being in Iowa, one of the things we can do is ask questions," Kenne said.

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It's All Politics
2:23 pm
Tue May 26, 2015

Despite An Economy On The Rise, American Paychecks Remain Stuck

Seattle Space Needle elevator operator Michael Hall says despite the success of the attraction, his pay hasn't budged in four years.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 5:21 pm

As candidates hit the campaign trail, NPR looks at four major issues the next president will face from Day 1 in office.

For seven years, Michael Hall has been guiding tourists to the top of Seattle's Space Needle and back. It's a unique vantage point from which to watch the ups and downs of Americans' paychecks.

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It's All Politics
4:56 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

How Do You Say 'Snafu' In Japanese?

When Democratic opposition delayed a major Asia-Pacific trade deal, White House press secretary Josh Earnest was asked if the administration had to do some hand-holding with the 11 countries involved in the talks. "I don't know how 'snafu' translates into a variety of Asian languages," he said.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 5:02 pm

The Senate looks ready to move ahead with trade legislation, after a daylong delay that the Obama administration repeatedly described as a "snafu."

"These kinds of procedural snafus are not uncommon," said White House spokesman Josh Earnest after Democrats held up the bill, which would give President Obama authority to expedite passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

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It's All Politics
5:35 pm
Tue May 12, 2015

Obama: We Must 'Guard Against Cynicism' When It Comes To Poverty

President Obama spoke at the Catholic-Evangelical Leadership Summit on Overcoming Poverty at Georgetown University Tuesday.
Andrew Harnik AP

Originally published on Tue May 12, 2015 6:31 pm

President Obama says overcoming poverty requires both strong families and a strong economy.

Speaking at Georgetown University Tuesday, Obama said that political debates over poverty often get hung up over the role of government, families and religious institutions.

"I think it's important when it comes to dealing with issues of poverty for us to guard against cynicism and not buy the idea that the poor will always be with us, and there's nothing we can do," Obama said. "Because there's a lot we can do."

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It's All Politics
12:52 pm
Fri May 8, 2015

Would Lower Shoe Tariffs Actually Encourage American Jobs?

President Obama spoke at Nike headquarters in Beaverton, Ore., on Friday.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Fri May 8, 2015 1:31 pm

The Nike Corp. says the lower tariffs promised by a proposed Asia-Pacific trade deal would allow it to speed up development of advanced manufacturing, supporting up to 10,000 domestic jobs over the next decade.

The announcement comes as President Obama visits Nike headquarters to promote the trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP. Critics have questioned the Beaverton, Ore., backdrop, noting that Nike currently manufactures virtually all of its shoes and apparel in low-wage countries such as Vietnam.

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It's All Politics
2:17 pm
Tue May 5, 2015

Obama Laces Up To Tout Asian Trade Deal At Nike

President Obama walks away from Marine One in his Nikes on Sunday. He heads to Nike Headquarters later this week.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Thu May 7, 2015 11:47 am

President Obama says he wants consumers around the world buying more products stamped, "Made in the U.S.A."

That's one reason he's pushing a controversial Asian trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Obama has chosen a curious setting to make his pitch for the trade agreement this week. He'll be speaking Friday at the Beaverton, Ore., headquarters of the Nike Corporation.

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It's All Politics
4:29 pm
Thu April 30, 2015

Just Do It: Obama Tries To Sway Skeptical Democrats On Trade

It's proving difficult for President Obama to win over Democrats on trade so far.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 1, 2015 6:59 am

President Obama met Thursday with moderate Democrats in hopes of rallying support for a controversial Asia-Pacific trade deal.

The president will need approval from at least some members of his own party to win passage of a "fast-track" bill, authorizing him to complete trade negotiations and present the agreement for an up-or-down vote in Congress.

So far, most Democratic lawmakers have been skeptical.

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It's All Politics
1:52 am
Wed April 29, 2015

Obama Confident In Asia Trade Pact, But Track Record For Deals Is Spotty

President Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe approach the podiums for a joint press conference Tuesday at the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington. President Obama is hoping to finalize a new trade agreement with Japan and other Asian nations soon.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 6:51 am

Speaking in the White House Rose Garden Tuesday after meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan, President Obama said he was confident he would get a green light from Congress to move forward with a big Asia Pacific trade deal.

"The politics around trade can be hard in both our countries," Obama said. "But I know that Prime Minister Abe, like me, is deeply committed to getting this done. And I'm confident we will."

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It's All Politics
5:06 pm
Wed April 22, 2015

Visiting The Everglades, Obama Takes Swipe At Climate Change Deniers

"Part of the reason we're here is because climate change is threatening this treasure and the communities that depend on it," Obama said Wednesday of his visit to Everglades National Park in Florida. "If we don't act, there may not be an Everglades as we know it."
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

President Obama used the backdrop of the Florida Everglades this Earth Day to highlight the dangers posed by a changing climate. He also took a swipe at Florida's Republican governor, who's been accused of discouraging state workers from discussing global warming.

"Climate change can no longer be denied," Obama said. "It can't be edited out. It can't be omitted from the conversation. And action can no longer be delayed."

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Politics
3:16 pm
Tue April 21, 2015

Business, Labor Debate Pacific Trade Deal Before Senate

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 5:00 pm

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Politics
4:27 am
Tue April 21, 2015

White House Pushes For Fast-Track Trade Authority

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 3:08 pm

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It's All Politics
3:03 am
Mon April 13, 2015

With A Handshake And More, Obama Shifts U.S.-Latin America Policy

President Obama, seen shaking hands with Raul Castro at the Summit of the Americas in Panama, engaged in the first substantive face-to-face U.S.-Cuba talks in more than 50 years.
Scott Horsley NPR

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 12:40 pm

The hemispheric summit meeting that just wrapped up in Panama was the first to include the president of Cuba.

But even if Raul Castro and his brother Fidel were kept out of sight at past Summits of the Americas, they were never out of mind.

Six years ago, President Obama stood on a rooftop in Trinidad, talking with reporters about his first summit. Scott Wilson, a Washington Post correspondent with lots of Latin-America experience, asked the president what he'd learned from listening to his fellow leaders.

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Politics
5:19 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Obama, Castro Meet In 'Spirit Of Openness'

President Barack Obama smiles as he looks over towards Cuban President Raul Castro during their meeting at the Summit of the Americas in Panama City, Panama on Saturday.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Sun April 12, 2015 9:01 am

President Obama says when it comes to Cuba, "the United States will not be imprisoned by the past."

Obama met for about an hour on Saturday with Cuban President Raul Castro. It was the first face-to-face meeting between the two countries' leaders in more than half a century.

When the sit-down finally happened — after months of behind-the-scenes negotiation — even the leaders seemed surprised.

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Politics
6:17 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Obama, Castro Shake Hands Ahead Of Historic Meeting Saturday

President Obama talks with Cuban counterpart Raul Castro before Friday's inauguration of the VII Summit of the Americas in Panama City.
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 8:54 am

It's the handshake some have waited more than 50 years for. And the handshake some hoped would never happen.

President Obama greeted Cuban President Raul Castro at a summit meeting in Panama Friday night. Their handshake helped crystalize the diplomatic thaw that began in December, when Obama declared an end to decades of official hostility.

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It's All Politics
2:07 am
Thu April 9, 2015

Obama To Address Caribbean's 'Economic Achilles' Heel' — Energy

Night in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Analysts warn a sudden energy shortage in the Caribbean could create security problems not far from U.S. shores and even trigger mass migration. But thanks to its domestic energy boom, the U.S. has a rare opportunity to get out in front of the crisis and possibly build some goodwill of its own.
Hector Retamal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 9, 2015 3:16 pm

President Obama is in Jamaica on Thursday, meeting with Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller and more than a dozen other leaders from throughout the Caribbean. It's the first stop on a three-day tour that also includes a hemispheric summit meeting in Panama. Topping Thursday's agenda is a looming energy crunch in the Caribbean, and a chance for the U.S. to seize the initiative there from leftist leaders in Venezuela.

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Politics
4:19 pm
Tue March 31, 2015

Obama's Diplomatic Gamble On Iran Adding Instability In Middle East

"We must try as best we can to balance isolation and engagement, pressure and incentives, so that human rights and dignity are advanced over time," Obama said five years ago, accepting the Nobel Peace Prize.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 8:03 am

Even before he became president, Barack Obama was imagining the possibilities of a diplomatic breakthrough with Iran. His willingness to reverse decades of official U.S. hostility was one of the things that set Obama apart on the campaign trail.

"We have to have a clear break with the Bush-Cheney style of diplomacy that has caused so many problems," Obama told NBC's Meet the Press in November 2007.

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Politics
3:43 pm
Sun March 29, 2015

Proposed Payday Industry Regulations Must Strike Delicate Balance

Originally published on Sun March 29, 2015 3:54 pm

The federal government is moving to reign in the payday loan industry, which critics say traps consumers in a damaging cycle of debt. A look at the possible effects of proposed regulations and what push back they might face.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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It's All Politics
11:20 am
Thu March 26, 2015

Skinny Jeans, Expanded Waistlines, And A Washington 'Fix'

Congress tries every year to plug a loophole that would otherwise result in a 21 percent cut in Medicare doctors' pay. But it doesn't exactly always tighten its belt in the process.
Key Wilde Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 27, 2015 1:24 pm

Every year about this time, after a Washington winter of inactivity, I notice my pants have grown a little tighter. Years ago, I resolved to address this by cutting back on burritos and beer.

But the (ever more abundant) flesh is weak. And burritos are soooo tasty. So instead, every spring I simply let out my waistband a bit, while promising to redouble my dieting efforts next year. I call this, "The belt fix."

Sound familiar?

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Politics
5:59 am
Thu March 26, 2015

Payday Loans — And Endless Cycles Of Debt — Targeted By Federal Watchdog

Maranda Brooks stands in January outside a payday loans business that she used to frequent. Troubled by consumer complaints and loopholes in state laws, federal regulators are proposing expansive, first-ever rules on payday lenders, aimed at helping cash-strapped borrowers from falling into a cycle of debt.
Tony Dejak AP

Originally published on Thu March 26, 2015 6:01 pm

Updated at 4:50 p.m. E.T.

For millions of cash-strapped consumers, short-term loans offer the means to cover purchases or pressing needs. But these deals, typically called payday loans, also pack triple-digit interest rates — and critics say that borrowers often end up trapped in a cycle of high-cost debt as a result.

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It's All Politics
1:47 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Obama Says Critics Making 'The Same Argument' Despite Better Economy

President Obama takes questions from the audience Wednesday after speaking about the economy and the middle class to the City Club of Cleveland.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 4:05 pm

Barack Obama let down his graying presidential hair a little bit on Wednesday. He also joked about coloring it.

Speaking to the City Club of Cleveland, Obama seemed to be in a reflective mood. During the question-and-answer period, he was asked by a seventh-grader what advice he would give to himself now, if he could go back to his first day in office.

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It's All Politics
11:26 am
Tue March 17, 2015

House GOP Budget Sets Stage For Showdown With The President

Republican Rep. Tom Price, House Budget Committee chairman, said Tuesday that his budget "saves $5.5 trillion, gets to balance within 10 years, without raising taxes."
Cliff Owen AP

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 6:18 pm

House Republicans unveiled a draft budget Tuesday designed to bring government spending in line with revenues over the next decade, while making significant cuts to safety net programs such as Medicaid and food stamps.

The plan is non-binding, but sets the stage for a political showdown between the new, all-Republican Congress and President Obama.

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