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It's All Politics
10:03 am
Sun November 4, 2012

Two Days Out: It's All About Election Day Turnout

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney poses with children during a campaign rally in Des Moines, Iowa, on Sunday.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Sun November 4, 2012 4:28 pm

With Election Day just two days away, the presidential campaigns of Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Gov. Mitt Romney are spending the final hours criss-crossing the swing states trying to get their supporters to the polls.

Update 6:15 p.m. EDT:

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The Two-Way
7:58 am
Sun November 4, 2012

NYC Marathoners Run For Storm Relief

A crowd of runners stands near the barricaded Central Park finish line for the now-canceled New York Marathon on Saturday.
John Minchillo AP

New York City's canceled marathon left thousands of runners who had traveled to the storm-damaged city with nothing but free time and a good pair of shoes.

The result: Sunday morning's hastily arranged mercy run in which hundreds of would-be marathoners are expected to jog through Staten Island with backpacks full of food and other supplies.

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House & Senate Races
3:36 am
Sun November 4, 2012

Rape Comment Hangs Over Senate Race In Indiana

Republican Richard Mourdock, candidate for Indiana's U.S. Senate seat (right) meets Mike Nestor and LoRita Stofleth at Blueberry Hill Pancake House Saturday in Indianapolis.
Darron Cummings AP

Originally published on Sun November 4, 2012 12:08 pm

Republicans are hoping to gain control of the U.S. Senate. The path toward victory had Indiana solidly on their side. That was, until Indiana's treasurer Richard Mourdock beat longtime Sen. Richard Lugar in the primary.

Then, during a debate on Oct. 23, Mourdock and his Democratic opponent, Congressman Joe Donnelly, were asked about abortion and contraception. Like Donnelly, Mourdock said he was against abortion.

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It's All Politics
3:11 am
Sun November 4, 2012

Stuck In The Middle (Class) With You

The debate between President Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney is seen on a TV in a Korean restaurant Oct. 22 in Los Angeles, Calif.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

In a country of dreamers and achievers, we seem surprisingly content in the middle.

The term "middle class" is at once useful for political purposes and practically useless as an economic descriptor. Without a consensus on an economic definition, nearly half of the country self-identifies as being in the middle class.

That gives politicians an opportunity to make far-reaching appeals to voters, speaking to Americans with incomes of $30,000 and $100,000 in the same breath.

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The Two-Way
3:10 am
Sun November 4, 2012

Can China's Legal System Change?

Chen Guangcheng, a blind Chinese lawyer, made international headlines when he escaped house arrest in April. Now at New York University, he believes changes to China's legal system are inevitable.
Frank Langfitt NPR

China's Communist Party will introduce a new slate of leaders this month to run the world's most populous country for at least the next five years. Their to-do list will include dealing with the nation's opaque and politicized court system.

"China's judicial system urgently needs to be reformed, improved and developed," a government planning paper acknowledged last month.

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It's All Politics
3:10 am
Sun November 4, 2012

Time's Running Out For Missouri's Todd Akin

Missouri Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin addresses supporters during a campaign event Saturday in Kansas City, Mo.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Mon November 5, 2012 8:44 am

It may be too little, too late for Rep. Todd Akin.

The Republican candidate for Senate from Missouri is seeing an influx of money in the closing days of his campaign. Still, it would come as a surprise to seasoned observers in the state if Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill went down to defeat.

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World
3:06 am
Sun November 4, 2012

U.S. Handoff In Afghanistan Includes Radio Training

Unidentified Afghan civilians broadcast a radio program from the radio studio at Forward Operating Base Shank in Logar province, south of Kabul. The U.S. military is training Afghans to disseminate anti-insurgent messages via local radio.
Spc. Tia Sokimson DVIDS

Originally published on Sun November 4, 2012 2:54 pm

From the outside, this white metal container looks like all the other mobile structures at Forward Operating Base Shank, the main NATO base in Afghanistan's Logar province. But rather than housing soldiers, offices or latrines, the building contains a fully functioning — if spartan — radio studio.

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Superstorm Sandy: Before, During And Beyond
3:06 am
Sun November 4, 2012

Levee Rebuilding Questioned After Sandy Breach

A man crosses a flooded street in the wake of Superstorm Sandy on Thursday in Little Ferry, N.J. Surprise coastal surge floods caused by the storm battered Little Ferry, Moonachie and some other towns along the Hackensack River in Bergen County, all areas unaccustomed to flooding.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Mon November 5, 2012 1:19 pm

Every time a storm brings flooding to a large metropolitan area, there are calls to improve the levee systems that are designed to prevent flooding.

But there's a major problem with doing that. "We don't know where all of our levees are," says Samantha Medlock with the Association of State Floodplain Managers.

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Superstorm Sandy: Before, During And Beyond
10:15 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

Insurance Companies Rethink Business After Sandy

This aerial photo shows destruction in the wake of Superstorm Sandy on Wednesday in Seaside Heights, N.J.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Sun November 4, 2012 2:56 pm

Superstorm Sandy capped what's been a pretty impressive couple of years for U.S. natural disasters. There have been wildfires, tornadoes, floods and derechos. And insurance companies are on the hook to pay billions in related claims.

"We're seeing more of everything, and what we're doing is trying to factor that in going forward as we work with others to have a better sense of what the future holds," says State Farm spokesman David Beigie.

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Shots - Health News
3:50 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

Despite Antifungal Treatment, More Woes For Some Meningitis Patients

Originally published on Mon November 5, 2012 6:21 am

The news for patients who had injections of fungus-tainted steroids just keeps getting worse.

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It's All Politics
3:31 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

In Iowa, The Physics Of Politics

More than half a million Iowans had already voted as of Thursday — a new record.
Charlie Neibergall AP

Both campaigns want to claim momentum heading into the final days of the campaign. This is especially true in battleground states like Iowa, where enthusiasm and voter turnout can make all the difference.

It's a common political metaphor — momentum — but is it a good one?

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It's All Politics
3:21 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

With Buses And Billboards, Small-Money Groups Try To Make A Mark

The Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama, a small-donor PAC, has launched a bus tour to reach conservative voters in hotly contested states, while trying to raise money to launch an anti-Obama TV ad.
Yfat Yossifor Courtesy of Mlive.com

Originally published on Mon November 5, 2012 5:23 pm

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It's All Politics
3:12 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

Nonvoters: The Other Abstinence Movement

iStockphoto.com

To many Americans, the right to vote in a presidential election is a sacred and precious opportunity. To others, the right to not vote is just as meaningful. And they exercise it.

In just-released data, the Pew Research Center reports that about 43 percent of Americans of voting age in 2008 didn't participate in the presidential election.

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Movies I've Seen A Million Times
3:03 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

The Movie RZA Has 'Seen A Million Times'

Clint Eastwood in a scene from Sergio Leone's film The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 3:36 pm

The weekends on All Things Considered series Movies I've Seen A Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.

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Superstorm Sandy: Before, During And Beyond
3:00 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

Crews Work To Restore Power, And Explain The Delay

Utility crews work on power lines as dusk falls in Ship Bottom, a community on Long Beach Island, N.J.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 4:45 pm

More than 8 million people lost power after Superstorm Sandy. Five days later, 2.5 million are still waiting as power companies across the region continue to say that restoring power is more complicated than it seems.

The storm packed a one-two punch. First, it flooded several switching stations including one hidden under the New Jersey Turnpike in Newark, says Art Torticelli, who was out with his crew from Public Service Electric and Gas at a switching station in Essex, N.J.

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It's All Politics
2:53 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

Campaigns Strive To Project Confidence, But Not Hubris, In Final Days

Republican Ted Cruz (center), a candidate for U.S. Senate, greets voters in Mesquite, Texas, last month. Cruz has an 18-point lead over his challenger.
Ron Baselice, The Dallas Morning News AP

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 5:04 pm

There are political races all over the country that aren't even close, but you wouldn't know it from listening to the candidates.

It seems that every behind-the-curve challenger is scrapping his or her way to victory and every ensconced incumbent is fighting an unexpectedly tight contest.

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Election 2012
2:40 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

'For Whom Will You Vote?' May Be Wrong Question

If you want to predict a candidate's fate, there may be a better question to ask than whom voters cast a ballot for.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 4:53 pm

In the vast majority of pre-election polls, likely voters are usually asked, "If the election were held today, for whom would you vote?"

That's the wrong question to ask, says Justin Wolfers, a political economist with the University of Michigan. He's spent years researching polls, and in a new paper he offers what he says is the right question:

Who do you think will win?

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The Two-Way
12:49 pm
Sat November 3, 2012

They're Furry And Furious: Puppets Protest At The U.S. Capitol

A marcher with a puppet of Bert, the Muppet character from Sesame Street, shouts during The Million Muppet March in Washington, D.C., on Saturday. The bipartisan rally was organized to show support for public broadcasting following Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's pledge to cut funding to PBS.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 1:44 pm

There's presidential politics and then there's puppet politics. You may recall that in the first presidential debate GOP contender Mitt Romney made a statement that caused the two worlds to collide.

"I am going to stop the subsidy to PBS. I'm going to stop other things. I like PBS. I love Big Bird. I actually like you, too," Romney said, referring to moderator Jim Lehrer. "But I'm not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for it."

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The Two-Way
11:05 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Obama Balances 'Comforter-In-Chief' Role With Campaign Sprint

President Obama greets audience members Saturday after speaking at a campaign event at Mentor High School in Mentor, Ohio, before traveling to Milwaukee for another campaign event.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 5:44 pm

President Obama and challenger Mitt Romney are making the most of every moment this weekend, with only three days left before Americans choose who will lead the government for the next four years.

Update at 4 p.m. ET. Focus Is On Early Voting:

On his first stop today in the final campaign sprint, President Obama was in the super-battleground state of Ohio. The AP reports that the president reminded voters that Tuesday's election is "not just a choice between two candidates or two parties, it's a choice between two different visions for America."

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NPR Story
8:48 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Staten Island 'Wiped Out' As Storm Relief Trickles In

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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NPR Story
8:48 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Manhattan Celebrates The Return Of Power

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The lights are back on in Manhattan this morning, but the effects of Sandy are still being felt across many states. Hardest hit, of course, are New York and New Jersey and we have several reports this hour. First, NPR's Robert Smith was in Lower Manhattan last night, as much of the service was restored, and as he reports, it came not a moment too soon

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The Two-Way
8:45 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Obama's Weekly Address Receives Belated Romney Response

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The Two-Way
7:27 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Gas Rationing Ordered In New Jersey

Parts of New York were also suffering fuel shortages, including Staten Island, where there were long lines for gas Friday.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 5:50 pm

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said he is unsure how long restrictions on the sale of gasoline that began at noon on Saturday will last. The gas rationing in 12 New Jersey counties was enacted after Christie signed an executive order Friday night.

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Fresh Air Weekend
7:03 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Fresh Air Weekend: Katey Sagal, Sherry Turkle

Katey Sagal as Gemma Teller Morrow in Sons of Anarachy on FX.
Prashant Gupta FX

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 9:44 am

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

Katey Sagal, Holding Court On 'Sons Of Anarchy': The actress plays Gemma, the fierce matriarch of the biker gang in the FX series. She's best-known for playing the acerbic Peg Bundy on the long-running show Married With Children.

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Simon Says
5:55 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Emergency Workers Heroes Even Before Sandy

First responders rescue flood-stranded people from a sodden neighborhood in Little Ferry, N.J., on Tuesday.
Craig Ruttle AP

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 2:23 pm

On Halloween night this week, millions of children tumbled into their neighborhoods dressed as Captain America, Spiderman, Batman, Bat Girl and Wonder Woman. But that night, true superheroes were at work in uniforms, not costumes.

They were firefighters, police officers, emergency workers and ordinary citizens in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and elsewhere who gave brave and extraordinary efforts to protect and rescue their families and neighbors. They risked their lives for strangers.

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NPR Story
5:55 am
Sat November 3, 2012

The Political Middle: What Ohioans Have To Say

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 8:48 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

It's already starting to rain over northern Ohio this past weekend as the outer whirls of Hurricane Sandy approached. Just a few days before the election, people in Reminderville, the village of about 3,000, were concerned about turnout.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: Trick or treat.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Trick or treat.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: Hey, what's going on?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Hi.

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NPR Story
5:32 am
Sat November 3, 2012

China Prepares For New Leaders In Critical Transition

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 8:48 am

Just two days after the U.S. presidential election, China opens the most important event in a decade on its political calendar: a transition of power. Host Scott Simon talks to NPR's Louisa Lim and Frank Langfitt in China about the upcoming 18th Party Congress.

NPR Story
5:32 am
Sat November 3, 2012

In Storm-Drenched New Jersey, A Fight For Ice

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 8:48 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

In the aftermath of giant storms and during long power outages, common things can become precious commodities, things like gasoline, fresh milk and ice.

JOE ROMANO: Well, they need it for their perishable foods and also one thing that people don't keep in mind is medicine has to be refrigerated.

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NPR Story
5:32 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Obama Tries To Bank Early Votes In Ohio

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 8:48 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. And the multi-billion dollar presidential campaign has come down to its final weekend. All that money, all these months are campaigning come down to just a few more frantic days for the candidates. The polls now show a close contest between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney as they campaign in a handful of swing states. Mr. Obama begins campaigning today where he left off yesterday in - have we said this before? - Ohio. NPR's Scott Horsley reports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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House & Senate Races
3:17 am
Sat November 3, 2012

Race For Redrawn Calif. District Is Tight And Pricey

Democrat Ami Bera is challenging Lungren. Bera ran against Lungren in 2004 and lost, but since the district was redrawn, the race has become competitive.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Sat November 3, 2012 8:48 am

Dan Lungren has been in and out of public office since 1979. The Republican represented a Southern California district in the '80s, served as the state's attorney general for eight years, and then returned to Congress to represent the Sacramento area in 2004.

These days, he's still the same pro-business, limited-government conservative he's always been, Lungren told a friendly audience in the Sacramento suburb of Rancho Cordova.

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