Politics and Government

News
3:12 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

On Senate Floor, Rift Opens Between Lawmakers And CIA

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:51 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

I'm Robert Siegel.

In Washington today, a remarkable dispute between the CIA and the lawmakers who oversee its operations. California Democrat Dianne Feinstein accused the agency of thwarting a Senate investigation into the torture of detainees by snooping on her staff's computers.

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Health Care
3:12 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

March Marks A Crucible For Obamacare As Deadline Nears

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:51 pm

Facing a deadline, the Obama administration is desperate to boost enrollment in health care exchanges. Still millions from their goal, they're stepping up outreach and forgetting politics — for now.

Politics
3:12 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

To Sell Health Care To Young People, Obama Steps 'Between Two Ferns'

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:51 pm

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Long-time fans of the comedy website, "Funny or Die," know this already. But for the rest of you, this is the theme song of "Between Two Ferns." The Web series mimics a low-budget, cable-access interview program.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

It's the brainchild of actor and comedian Zach Galifinakis. He plays an unprepared host who fumbles through awkward conversations with celebrities. But the guest of his latest episode, released today, was a little different.

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Politics
3:00 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Outside Groups Lay Millions On Florida Special Election

Republican David Jolly thanks supporters during a campaign rally in Indian Rocks Beach, Fla.
Steve Nesius AP

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:51 pm

The campaign for a congressional seat in St. Petersburg, Fla., will have seen some $10 million in spending by candidates and outside groups. Where did all of this money go?

Workers' Compensation
12:57 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Oklahoma Court Upholds CompSource Mutualization

Credit Oklahoma Supreme Court

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has upheld a plan to convert the state workers' compensation insurance agency into a mutual company.

The state's highest court handed down a decision Tuesday that affirms legislation adopted last year to convert CompSource Oklahoma into the CompSource Mutual Insurance Co. The new company would be organized under state law, but independent of the state. The change goes into effect on Jan. 1.

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The Two-Way
12:52 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

CIA Tampered With Senate Panel's Work, Feinstein Says

Sen. Dianne Feinstein speaks to reporters after speaking about her oversight committee's problematic relationship with the CIA Tuesday. CIA Director John Brennan says his agency isn't trying to delay the panel's report on the U.S. interrogation program.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:32 pm

The Senate's intelligence oversight panel had its computers searched by CIA workers, who also improperly removed some documents that had been provided to the panel, Sen. Dianne Feinstein said in a lengthy and scathing speech on the Senate floor Tuesday. She said some of the actions could be illegal or unconstitutional.

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State Capitol
11:42 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Senate Approves Lower Age Limit For Oklahoma State Troopers

Oklahoma Highway Patrol cadets lining up during academy training.
Credit Oklahoma Highway Patrol

A state senator from Coalgate hopes to make it easier to become an Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper.

At the request of the agency, Republican state Sen. Josh Brecheen wrote a bill that would lower the age limit from 23 to 21 and reduce the educational requirements needed to become a trooper.

The bill passed the Senate on Tuesday on a 43-2 vote and now heads to the House for consideration.

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The Two-Way
8:30 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Obama Goes Between The Ferns To Talk With Zach Galifianakis

In an interview with comedian Zach Galifianakis on the Web series Between Two Ferns, President Obama pitched health insurance to a younger audience.
Funny or Die

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:01 pm

"My mouse pad broke, and I had to get my great-aunt some diabetes shoes."

That's how comedian Zach Galifianakis begins his segment with President Obama in an episode of the online interview show Between Two Ferns that was posted Tuesday. It was an interview unlike any other for a sitting U.S. president, as Galifianakis probed the commander in chief's views with a range of oddball questions.

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It's All Politics
6:37 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Florida Election Tests Midterm Messaging

Florida Democratic congressional candidate Alex Sink, shown working the phone in Clearwater on Nov. 23, supports the Affordable Care Act but has said she would like to see it improved.
Steve Nesius AP

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 11:50 am

There's a congressional election in Florida on Tuesday that's worth watching — even if you don't live in the Tampa Bay-area district where it's taking place.

It's not because the winner of the neck-and-neck special election between Democrat Alex Sink and Republican David Jolly will affect the GOP's stranglehold on the U.S. House this cycle. It won't.

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Around the Nation
5:38 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Maryland Transportation Bill Held Up Over War Reparations

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 9:28 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Now to a story of how a long ago association with the crimes of Nazi Germany could stop a French company from doing business today in Maryland. A Maryland House committee heard testimony yesterday on a bill that would bar companies that played a role in the Holocaust from bidding on state contracts unless the companies pay reparations to victims.

State officials told the hearing that if that bill passes, it could jeopardize federal funding for a major light rail project. NPR's Allison Keyes explains.

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