NPR News

Politics
4:25 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

House Passes No-Strings-Attached Bill To Fund Homeland Security

An effort by some congressional Republicans to block President Obama's executive actions on immigration by tying it to a Homeland Security spending bill officially failed on Tuesday. House Speaker John Boehner yet again bucked the most conservative wing of his party and brought a "clean" funding bill to the floor. It passed easily, thanks to unanimous backing by Democrats.

Law
3:59 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Round 2: Health Care Law Faces The Supreme Court Again

Supporters of the Affordable Care Act celebrate outside the Supreme Court in 2012, after a divided court upheld the law as constitutional by a 5-to-4 vote. The latest battle, which the Supreme Court hears Wednesday, is over whether people who buy insurance through federally run exchanges are eligible for subsidies.
David Goldman AP

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:54 pm

Round 2 in the legal battle over Obamacare hits the Supreme Court's intellectual boxing ring Wednesday.

In one corner is the Obama administration, backed by the nation's hospitals, insurance companies, physician associations and other groups like Catholic Charities and the American Cancer Society.

In the other corner are conservative groups, backed by politicians who fought in Congress to prevent the bill from being adopted.

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The Two-Way
3:26 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Should Hotel Owners Be Forced To Hand Over Guest Records To Police?

When lawyer Thomas Goldstein contended that innkeepers keep guest information anyway to stay in touch with their customers, Justice Scalia cut in: "Motel 6 does this? Jeez, I've never received anything from them!"
iStockPhoto

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 5:06 pm

Hypotheticals about hunting lodges and Motel 6 saved the oral argument at the U.S. Supreme Court today from being strangled by legal weeds.

At issue was a Los Angeles ordinance that requires hotel and motel owners to record various pieces of information about their guests — drivers license, credit card and automobile tags, for instance. The hotel owners don't dispute they have to do that; what they do dispute is the part of the law that requires proprietors to make this information available to any member of the Los Angeles Police Department upon demand.

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Parallels
3:24 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

In France, Young Muslims Often Straddle Two Worlds

Ismael Medjdoub grew up in one of Paris' banlieues. He spends up to two hours a day commuting from his home in Tremblay en France to work and to school at the prestigious Sorbonne in Paris.
Bilal Qureshi NPR

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:25 pm

The French, with their national motto of "Liberty, equality, fraternity," are so against religious and ethnic divisions that the government doesn't even collect this kind of data.

But it's believed that nearly 40 percent of France's 7 million Muslims live in and around Paris, many in poor suburban communities known as banlieues.

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Law
3:23 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Ferguson Political Leader: DOJ Report Validates Protesters

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:08 pm

The Justice Department is set to release a report that condemns the Ferguson, Mo., Police Department for its discriminatory practices. NPR's Melissa Block speaks with local political leader Patricia Bynes about the report and its implications.

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

It's All Politics
3:20 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

4 Reasons Both Parties Should Be Sweating Bullets Over King V. Burwell

Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner pauses at a news conference announcing the House's latest vote to repeal Obamacare in February.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

The Supreme Court will hear arguments on Wednesday in another case that threatens the survival of Obamacare. This one doesn't challenge the constitutionality of the law itself, it merely challenges the legality of one of the most important parts of the system — subsidies so that everyone can afford health care. If the court strikes down the subsidies for people who live in states that chose not to set up their own exchanges, and who get their health coverage from the federal marketplace — healthcare.gov — it would begin to unravel the entire Obamacare project.

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Shots - Health News
3:03 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

FDA Mandates Tougher Warnings On Testosterone

AndroGel, a testosterone replacement made by AbbVie, is seen at a pharmacy in Princeton, Ill.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:57 pm

The Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday that it is requiring drugmakers to warn patients that testosterone products may increase the risk for heart attacks and strokes.

Testosterone replacements are approved to treat men with low testosterone related to medical problems, such as genetic deficiencies, chemotherapy or damaged testicles.

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The Two-Way
2:51 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

FAA Is Trying To Keep Hackers Out Of Air Traffic Control, Official Says

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:54 pm

FAA Administrator Michael Huerta told Congress Tuesday his agency is implementing changes to ensure the nation's air traffic control system is protected against computer hackers. Huerta told a House panel "the system is safe," despite a Government Accountability Office report that found "significant security control weaknesses."

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The Salt
2:40 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Tea Tuesdays: Kenyan Farmers See Green In The Color Purple

Three varieties of Kenyan purple tea from What-Cha: silver needle purple varietal white tea (from left), hand-rolled purple varietal oolong, steamed purple varietal green tea-style tea.
Jeff Koehler for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 3:52 pm

Across the picturesque highlands of Kenya's Great Rift Valley, fields of tea shimmer in shades of emerald, lime and moss under the equatorial sky.

Some of these fields, though, are now darkened with patches of purple. The purple comes from leaves with high levels of anthocyanins, natural pigments that also give cranberries, beets and grapes their color.

These purple leaves are Africa's newest — and most intriguing — tea.

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All Tech Considered
2:32 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Internet Memes And 'The Right To Be Forgotten'

Laina Morris became the "Overly Attached Girlfriend" meme. She has embraced her online fame.
Courtesy of Complex

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:44 pm

"Scumbag Steve," "Overly Attached Girlfriend," "Bad Luck Brian." All these Internet celebrities have one thing in common: They didn't intend to become famous. Their pictures just happened to go viral.

Is nothing off-limits? That's something Kyra Pringle has been asking herself in the past couple of days. The South Carolina resident recently found out her 2-year-old daughter Mariah's birthday pictures were being shared online by thousands.

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U.S.
2:24 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Not Clearing The Snow Off Your Car Before Driving Could Cost You

A driver clears his car windshield in Boston on Jan. 27, after a heavy storm hit the city. Pennsylvania could be the next state to pass legislation that would cite drivers that take to the road before removing the hazardous ice and snow.
Robert Nickelsberg Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:25 pm

After weeks of winter storms, snow fatigue has set in across much of the country.

You may be tired of clearing ice and snow off your car, but that can be a safety hazard. And now you could face a fine in some states.

Mike Taylor of Elkins Park, Pa., says just this week he was behind a car on the Pennsylvania Turnpike when, "Snow on the roof blew off, hit my windshield, forced me to jiggle, and it was only because of the stability of the car and I slowed down that I didn't have an accident," Taylor says.

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Law
2:18 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Attica Prison Guards Plead Guilty To Misconduct After Beating Inmate

In 2011, the three guards in New York state beat inmate George Williams so badly that he suffered two broken legs, broken ribs, a broken shoulder and a severe fracture of his eye socket, among other injuries. NPR's Melissa Block talks to Tom Robbins of The Marshall Project about his reporting in collaboration with the New York Times.

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Shots - Health News
2:10 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

10 Questions Some Doctors Are Afraid To Ask

Vidhya Nagarajan for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:49 pm

Imagine that the next time you go in for a physical, you're told there's a new tool that can estimate your risk for many of the major health problems that affect Americans: heart disease, diabetes, depression, addiction, just to name a few.

It's not a crystal ball, but might hint at your vulnerability to disease and mental illness — long before you start smoking or drinking, gain a lot of weight, develop high blood pressure or actually get sick.

And all you have to do is answer 10 yes-or-no questions about your childhood:

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Music Reviews
2:10 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Music Review: 'Soyo' By Dom La Nena

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:21 pm

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

The Two-Way
1:14 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Indian State Bans The Slaughter, Sale And Consumption Of Beef

A streetside vendor stands on the pavement next to her cow as it rains in Mumbai, India.
Danish Siddiqui Reuters /Landov

Eating a steak dinner in Mumbai nowadays could land you in prison for up to five years and cost you more than $150 in fines.

Indian President Pranab Mukherjee today approved a bill that strictly bans the slaughter of cows, along with the sale, consumption or even possession of beef in the state of Maharashtra, where Mumbai is located. The bill will also include a ban on the slaughter of bulls and bullocks, but not water buffaloes.

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Parallels
1:12 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

After Netanyahu's Speech, A Reality Check

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks before a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday. Netanyahu said the world must unite to "stop Iran's march of conquest, subjugation and terror." House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio (left) and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, listen.
Andrew Harnik AP

Since first becoming prime minister in 1996, Benjamin Netanyahu has hammered away at Iran's nuclear program, calling it the greatest threat to Israel. Yet Tuesday's speech to Congress, like many before it, sharply criticized the international response to Iran while offering relatively little as an alternative.

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NPR Story
12:43 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Speeding Up The Game Of Baseball

Juan Perez #2, Gregor Blanco #7 and Hunter Pence #8 of the San Francisco Giants celebrate after defeating the Washington Nationals on October 4, 2014. The game was the longest of the 2014 season, ending in the 18 innings. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Major League Baseball’s spring training games are underway in Florida and Arizona – and clocks are ticking. After last season’s average game lasted a record 3 hours and 2 minutes, the push is on to speed things up.

Doug Tribou of NPR’s Only A Game joins Here & Now’s Robin Young to explain how the league plans to do that, and how the players are reacting.

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NPR Story
12:43 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Supreme Court To Hear Challenge To Health Care Subsidies

Oral arguments begin tomorrow in a closely watched Supreme Court case that could dismantle the Affordable Care Act and eliminate health insurance for more than eight million Americans. (Susan Walsh/AP)

Oral arguments begin tomorrow in a closely watched Supreme Court case that could dismantle the Affordable Care Act and eliminate health insurance for more than eight million Americans.

The case centers on one phrase in the law – “established by the State.”

The four plaintiffs in King V. Burwell, funded by conservative groups including Competitive Enterprise Institute, argue that “the State” refers solely to the 16 states that have set up their own exchanges, not the federal government, which established exchanges in 34 states.

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NPR Story
12:43 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

What Makes Or Breaks A TV Remake?

David Tenant (right) and Olivia Colman (left) star in the popular drama 'Broadchurch.' (Broadchurch/Facebook)

British television’s crime drama “Broadchurch,” about a young boy’s murder in a seaside town, has been an absolute success, and returns tomorrow for a second season.

Meanwhile, the American remake of the same show, “Gracepoint” was a flop and Fox canceled it after just one season.

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Remembrances
12:19 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Fresh Air Remembers 'Jazz Master' Orrin Keepnews

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

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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The Two-Way
12:17 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

House Votes To Fund DHS Until Sept. 30 — Without Immigration Curbs

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:22 pm

Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted Tuesday to fund the Department of Homeland Security through the end of the budget year — without any restrictions on immigration. The vote is a victory for President Obama as Republicans had wanted to strip funding for the president's executive actions on immigration from the bill.

The measure, which passed 257-167, now heads to President Obama, who is expected to sign it.

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NPR Ed
12:03 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Where Have All The Teachers Gone?

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 4:11 pm

This is the canary in the coal mine.

Several big states have seen alarming drops in enrollment at teacher training programs. The numbers are grim among some of the nation's largest producers of new teachers: In California, enrollment is down 53 percent over the past five years. It's down sharply in New York and Texas as well.

In North Carolina, enrollment is down nearly 20 percent in three years.

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The Two-Way
11:11 am
Tue March 3, 2015

'Nothing New' In Netanyahu's Speech, Obama Says

President Obama said Tuesday that there was "nothing new" in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to Congress about Iran's nuclear program.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 2:43 pm

Updated at 4:15 p.m. ET

President Obama said "there was nothing new" in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech on Iran to a joint meeting of Congress.

Speaking at the White House, Obama said, "the prime minister didn't offer any viable alternatives" to the possible deal being worked out with Iran on its nuclear program.

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The Two-Way
10:18 am
Tue March 3, 2015

David Petraeus Enters Into Plea Deal With Justice Department

Former CIA Director and retired four-star Gen. David Petraeus speaks at the University of Southern California on March 26, 2013, his first public speech after resigning as CIA director.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 11:17 am

Former CIA Director and retired Gen. David Petraeus, whose military career has been overshadowed by charges that he provided classified data to his mistress, has made a deal with the Justice Department in which he will plead guilty to one count of unauthorized removal and retention of classified material.

The deal will allow Petraeus, who rose to the rank of a four-star general before becoming director of the CIA, to avoid a trial and plead guilty to a misdemeanor. He'll also avoid a prison sentence, if a federal court agrees with the plea deal's terms.

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NPR History Dept.
9:18 am
Tue March 3, 2015

The Secret History Of Knock-Knock Jokes

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 2:00 pm

Knock knock.

Who's there?

Joe King.

Joe King who?

Joking like this used to be considered a sickness by some people.

The knock-knock joke has been a staple of American humor since the early 20th century. With its repetitive set-up and wordplay punchline, the form has been invoked — and understood — by people of all ages and sensibilities.

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The Two-Way
9:02 am
Tue March 3, 2015

LOOK: Pictures Of The Villarrica Volcano's Eruption In Chile

A general view of the volcano, which is Villarrica erupting near Villarrica, some 466 miles south of Santiago de Chile.
Ariel Marinkovic EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 10:40 am

The eruption of the Villarrica volcano in southern Chile has prompted the evacuation of thousands of people, as it spewed heavy smoke into the air and lava down its slopes.

The 9,000 foot volcano hovers over the city of Pucon, home to about 22,000 people.

"It was the most amazing thing I've ever seen," Travis Armstrong, a 29-year-old Australian tourist, told The Associated Press. "I've never seen a volcano erupt and it was spewing lava and ash hundreds of meters into the air. Lightning was striking down at the volcano from the ash cloud that formed from the eruption."

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News
8:58 am
Tue March 3, 2015

After Weeks Of Controversy, Netanyahu Takes The Podium Before Congress

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 10:19 am

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

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This morning, members of Congress gathered on Capitol Hill for a major speech.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister of Israel...

(APPLAUSE)

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The Two-Way
8:20 am
Tue March 3, 2015

In Speech To Congress, Netanyahu Blasts 'A Very Bad Deal' With Iran

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks before a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday. He called the deal the U.S. and its allies are negotiating with Iran "very bad."
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 12:28 pm

Updated at 2:09 p.m. ET

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said a deal the U.S. and its allies are pursuing with Iran over its nuclear program is "very bad" because, according to him, it doesn't take away the Islamic republic's ability to ultimately obtain nuclear weapons.

"This is a bad deal — a very bad deal," Netanyahu told a joint meeting of Congress today. "We're better off without it."

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Shots - Health News
7:55 am
Tue March 3, 2015

GOP Faults Shift Of Funds To HealthCare.Gov From NIH And CDC

How much flexibility does the Department of Health and Human Services have to move funding around within its budget?
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

House Republicans are questioning why the Obama administration transferred money last year from the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to pay for the operation of the federal health insurance marketplace.

"Now it appears that we are robbing Peter to pay Paul in order to finance the disaster that is HealthCare.Gov," said Rep. Jody Hice, a Republican congressman from suburban Atlanta.

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Shots - Health News
6:27 am
Tue March 3, 2015

Alleged Patient Safety Kickbacks Lead To $1 Million Settlement

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 3:08 pm

Dr. Chuck Denham, once a leading voice for patient safety, will pay $1 million to settle civil allegations that he took kickbacks to promote a drug company's product in national health quality guidelines, the Justice Department announced Monday.

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