Politics and Government

Washington
11:38 am
Thu January 9, 2014

Oklahoma Senator Coburn Testifies About Government Waste

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) testifies before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on Thursday.
Credit U.S. House of Representatives / Library of Congress

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) testified Thursday morning before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

He discussed his annual oversight report during the "Waste in Government: What's Being Done?" hearing chaired by California Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.)

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It's All Politics
10:41 am
Thu January 9, 2014

How Long Is Too Long? Congress Revisits Mandatory Sentences

Inmates walk around a recreation yard at the Deuel Vocational Institution in Tracy, Calif., in January 2012.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 12:14 pm

Mandatory minimum prison sentences for drug dealers were once viewed as powerful levers in the nation's war against drugs, a way to target traffickers, and punish kingpins and masterminds.

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The Two-Way
7:04 am
Thu January 9, 2014

An 'Embarrassed And Humiliated' Gov. Christie Apologizes

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks Thursday during a news conference Thursday at the Statehouse in Trenton, N.J.
Mel Evans AP

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 7:54 pm

  • On 'Morning Edition': WNYC's Matt Katz talks with Renee Montagne about the New Jersey bridge scandal
  • Gov. Christie: 'I had no knowledge'
This post was updated with the latest news at 8:45 p.m. ET.

Saying he is "embarrassed and humiliated by the conduct of some people on my team," New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Thursday apologized to the people of New Jersey for his aides' role in a scheme to punish the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee by closing lanes that lead to the George Washington Bridge.

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NPR Story
3:30 am
Thu January 9, 2014

N.J. Gov. Christie Faces Traffic Jam Scandal

Originally published on Fri January 10, 2014 9:21 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

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New Anti-Poverty Program
6:37 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Choctaw Nation To Be One Of Five "Promise Zones"

Choctaw Elder
Credit Choctaw Nation

The Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma has been selected as one of the first five organizations to test a new anti-poverty program to improve life in chronically poor areas.

The Oklahoman reports the tribe will create a Promise Zone in an economically challenged area in southeastern Oklahoma and use community groups, businesses and schools to focus on specific education and economic development goals.

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Truth In Settlements Act
6:17 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Coburn Working With Democrat Elizabeth Warren For Transparency

Credit Medill DC / Flickr Creative Commons

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn says he wants to increase the transparency of settlements reached with federal enforcement agencies, saying the real value of settled cases is often not known.

Coburn announced in a press release Wednesday his plans to join Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts on a bipartisan bill. Dubbed the "Truth in Settlements Act," the measure would require more detailed disclosures about settlement agreements that are often reached when federal agencies close investigations.

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Politics
5:42 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

McCain Lays Al-Qaida Surge In Iraq At Obama's Feet

Gunmen patrol during clashes with Iraqi security forces in Fallujah, on Jan. 5, 2014. Al-Qaida has been battling to take back both Ramadi and Fallujah in Anbar province in Iraq.
AP

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 9:29 pm

Forces allied with al-Qaida are battling to retake two major cities in Iraq's Sunni-dominated Anbar province: Ramadi, the capital of the province, and Fallujah, the city where U.S. troops prevailed after fighting two major battles.

There have been no American forces in Iraq since 2011, when President Obama ordered the last troops to leave. Now the man who lost the presidential race to Obama five years ago is pointing a finger at the president for al-Qaida's resurgence.

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Politics
5:12 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Rubio Questions LBJ's Legacy On Poverty

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 9:29 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

We've been marking the 50th anniversary of the war on poverty from a number of perspectives. Now, the Republican take. Republicans have long been critical of Lyndon Johnson's expansive approach to a federal safety net. Today, the Republican senator from Florida, Marco Rubio, proposed what he says is a better way forward. His way? Take power away from Washington and give it to the states. NPR's Don Gonyea is here to tell us more. And, Don, first, give us some context. What was the setting for Senator Rubio's speech?

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Politics
4:49 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Five Decades Later, Time To Change The Way We Define Poverty?

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 9:29 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Fifty years after Lyndon Johnson famously declared his War on Poverty more than 46 million Americans are still poor. The official poverty rate has dropped only a few points in the last half century. Critics say that's partly because the government is still using an outdated measure of poverty. It's based on what it cost to feed a family back in the 1950s.

Here's NPR's Scott Horsley.

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Politics
4:48 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

The (Email) Thread That Tied Up The George Washington Bridge

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 9:29 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

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