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12:58 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Hickenlooper And List On Pre-Election Atmosphere

The push for civil unions recently failed in Colorado, and Governor John Hickenlooper has some ideas about why. Also, former Nevada Governor Bob List talks about the influence of Ron Paul on the Republican Party. And NPR's Political Junkie columnist Ken Rudin rounds up the news.

Election 2012
12:57 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Latino Voters: Seen, But Will They Be Heard, In 2012?

Latinos protest Mitt Romney's opposition to the Dream Act, outside his campaign headquarters in Las Vegas on Feb 2.
Michael Thurston AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 3:03 pm

If young voters were the breakout stars of the 2008 presidential election, then Latino voters may take center stage this year.

Every other week or so, it seems, a new poll gauges Latinos' opinions about the candidates, the issues and their level of engagement. Both parties are pouring millions into their Latino outreach. Latino politicians have assumed prominent roles in the conventions of the Republican and Democratic parties. And a Latino senator is on the short list of potential running mates for presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney.

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The Two-Way
12:40 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

EU Human Rights Court Could Be Last Stop For German Claiming CIA Kidnapping

Khaled El-Masri.
ACLU

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 12:43 pm

A German man, who says he was mistakenly shipped to a secret prison in Afghanistan as part of the CIA's "extraordinary rendition" program, took the stand at the European Union's human rights court today.

After unsuccessfully seeking redress in the U.S. and Germany, Khaled El-Masri is suing Macedonia, where he was allegedly kidnapped. El-Masri argued that the country was callous and calculating when it turned him over to the U.S. This hearing could also mark the end of the legal road for a case that spans eight years.

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Around the Nation
12:07 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Testimony Winds Down In Edwards Corruption Trial

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In North Carolina, now this could be the last day of testimony in the John Edwards trial. At a federal courthouse, the former presidential candidate is being tried on six counts of campaign finance violations. Prosecutors say Edwards used nearly a million dollars to conceal an affair and hide the child he fathered with a mistress. The defense says Edwards wasn't fully aware of the cover-up and that any money connected with it did not come from campaign contributions.

Jeff Tiberii of North Carolina Public Radio has more.

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The Two-Way
11:51 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Four Decades After Dying In Cambodia, Soldier To Receive Medal Of Honor

Army Specialist Leslie H. Sabo Jr. will posthumously receive the Medal of Honor at a White House ceremony.
army.mil

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 3:04 pm

President Barack Obama awarded a posthumous Medal of Honor today to Spec. Leslie H. Sabo Jr., a Pennsylvania rifleman killed after sacrificing his body to grenade fire in Vietnam during 1970's "Mother's Day Ambush".

A Defense Department description of Sabo's heroic actions says the 22-year old saved the lives of several other soldiers. He charged enemy positions and killed several North Vietnamese fighters while drawing fire away from his unit.

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The Two-Way
11:49 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Report: Syrian Opposition Sees Greater Support From Gulf States, U.S.

There's quite a bit of news coming of out of Syria today. The big one is a report from The Washington Post, quoting "U.S. and foreign officials" saying that the Persian Gulf states and the United States have stepped up their efforts to assist and arm the opposition.

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It's All Politics
11:46 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Minority Rules: Who Gets To Claim Status As A Person Of Color?

Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren is shown here attending a 2010 Capitol Hill hearing on the Troubled Asset Relief Program.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 3:13 pm

Massachusetts Democratic Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren isn't backing down from her claim of Native American ancestry, despite the apparent lack of primary documents proving that she's 1/32nd Cherokee.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:39 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Buyers Of Hyped Skechers 'Toning Shoes' Can Get Refunds

An ad that featured Brooke Burke touting Shape-ups as the latest way to burn off calories and make muscles stronger was cited by the Federal Trade Commission.
FTC

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 1:49 pm

No more ifs, ands or butts about the claims that Skechers USA made for its goofy-looking toning shoes.

The company has agreed to pay $40 million to settle claims that it deceived customers by saying its Shape-ups shoes would help people who wore them shed pounds and tone their abs, buttocks and legs, the Federal Trade Commission said.

The FTC alleged there's no evidence the Skechers shoes would do a better job by those measures than regular old gym shoes.

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Africa
11:33 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Civilians Flee, Soldiers Dig In On Sudanese Frontier

Nyachieng Nguot Teng, 25, lost her left leg and her 7-month-old son suffered a fractured leg when a Sudanese bomb fell on her hut in Lalat, South Sudan, on May 5. The United Nations is trying to prevent the recent fighting between the two Sudans from escalating into full-scale war.
Ofeibea Quist-Arcton NPR

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 6:16 pm

There's a tense calm at South Sudan's front line, just 10 miles from the frontier with Sudan, its neighbor to the north. South Sudanese commander Maj. Gen. Mangar Buong says his troops remain on alert and on the defensive.

There is not a civilian in sight. They all fled the area, known as Panakuach, after Sudan's recent aerial bombardments and escalating concerns about a full-scale war.

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Presidential Race
11:27 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Candidates Gird For 'Scorched Earth' Campaign Season

President Obama, who has a technocratic image, has shown that he intends to give as good as he gets — or better — in the campaign.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 12:42 pm

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Movie Reviews
11:15 am
Wed May 16, 2012

'The Dictator' Rules With A Satirist's Fist

Sacha Baron Cohen plays Admiral General Aladeen, the authoritarian, anti-Semitic and unexpectedly sympathetic protagonist of The Dictator.
Melinda Sue Gordon Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 12:30 pm

Many fans will be disappointed that Sacha Baron Cohen's The Dictator is a more or less conventional comedy and not an ambush-interview mockumentary in the style of Borat and Bruno. But that guerrilla-clown shtick would be tough to sustain: Why not let him try something else? The good news is that The Dictator is loose and slap-happy and full of sharp political barbs and has funny actors moving in and out — and at a lickety-split 83 minutes, it doesn't wear out its welcome.

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Planet Money
11:14 am
Wed May 16, 2012

How Facebook Can Live Up To The Hype

Lam Thuy Vo / NPR

Facebook will be valued at about $100 billion when it goes public this week. What would it take for that valuation to be justified?

As we noted yesterday, the value of a typical big, public company is 15 times the company's annual profit. So a company valued at $30 billion would typically have annual profits of $2 billion.

Facebook will be valued at 100 times its current annual profits. That's because investors expect the company's profits to go through the roof in the coming years.

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It's All Politics
11:00 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Biden On Bain: Romney 'Thinks This Experience Will Help Our Economy'?

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 1:30 pm

The Obama campaign on Wednesday escalated its attack on Mitt Romney's business career, with Vice President Joe Biden scheduled to aggressively question how Romney's management of Bain Capital might translate into running the U.S. economy.

On Monday, Obama's re-election campaign unveiled a new swing state ad questioning Romney's assertion that he was a job creator while running the private equity firm. The Romney campaign countered later in the day with its own ad.

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The Salt
10:51 am
Wed May 16, 2012

From Science Fiction To Fact, Robots Are Coming To A Farm Near You

Brent Ware, a member of the robotics team at Kansas State, stands next to a planting robot that won a national competition.
Jeremy Bernfeld Harvest Public Media

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 1:59 pm

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Shots - Health Blog
10:35 am
Wed May 16, 2012

FDA Delays Sunscreen Label Redo

Alivia Parker, 21 months at the time, ran through circles of spraying water on a hot day in Montgomery, Ala., last June. She was wearing sunscreen with an SPF of 100, a rating that won't be allowed much longer.
Dave Martin AP

For a little while longer you'll still be able to buy suncreen labeled as waterproof or with a sun protection factor of 100.

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Law
10:30 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Is There Racial Bias In Clemency Decisions?

Nearly 20 years ago Clarence Aaron was sentenced to three life terms for his involvement in a drug deal. His request to have his sentence shortened was denied by the White House in 2008. Now a story by ProPublica's Dafna Linzer reports the Bush administration was not told key facts before deciding on it. Host Michel Martin speaks with Linzer.

Author Interviews
10:24 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Just What's Inside Those Breasts?

Breasts are getting bigger and arriving earlier. They're also attracting chemicals and environmental toxins, which are getting passed along in breast milk.
Photographer: B-D-S iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 12:31 pm

When writer Florence Williams was nursing her second child, she read a research study about toxins found in human breast milk. She decided to test her own breast milk and shipped a sample to a lab in Germany.

What came back surprised her.

Trace amounts of pesticides, dioxin and a jet fuel ingredient — as well as high to average levels of flame retardants — were all found in her breast milk. How could something like this happen?

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The Two-Way
10:23 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Neither John Edwards Nor His Mistress Will Testify At Corruption Trial

John Edwards as he entered the Federal Courthouse in Greensboro, N.C., this morning.
Sara D. Davis Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 11:31 am

The campaign corruption trial of former Democratic presidential contender John Edwards will not reach a dramatic climax with testimony from the former senator or the mistress he's accused of trying to hide with 2008 campaign funds.

According to The Associated Press, Edwards' attorneys said in court today that they will not be calling Edwards or Rielle Hunter to the stand and that they expect to rest their case later today.

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The Two-Way
9:36 am
Wed May 16, 2012

9-Year-Old To Westboro Baptist Protesters: 'God Hates No One'

Josef Miles, making his own statement.
Patty Akrouche Facebook.com/FeverDreams

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 9:42 am

Patty Akrouche says she's "never been prouder" of her 9-year-old son, Josef Miles, than she was this past weekend.

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The Two-Way
9:20 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Bush Says 'I'm For Mitt Romney,' But He Likely Won't Play Role In Campaign

Back in 2006: Then-President George W. Bush and then-Gov. Mitt Romney
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 9:47 am

"I'm for Mitt Romney."

With four words, said to an ABC News reporter as an elevator's doors closed, former President George W. Bush on Tuesday confirmed what was pretty obvious — he is supporting his fellow Republican's bid for the White House.

But as The Associated Press reports:

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Remembrances
8:04 am
Wed May 16, 2012

A Fleeting Memory Of Carlos Fuentes

Mexican write Carlos Fuentes at the Hay Festival Cartagena in January.
Claudio Rubio AP

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 3:43 pm

When I heard that the Mexican literary legend Carlos Fuentes died Tuesday at 83, I remembered a long, easygoing interview I did with him years ago. We talked about many things — including what epitaph he wanted carved on his tombstone.

It was the autumn of 1995 and I was a reporter at The Washington Post, assigned to write a profile of the elegant, eloquent Fuentes. I draw on that story now, for twice-told tales worth telling.

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The Two-Way
8:02 am
Wed May 16, 2012

At Trial, Serb Gen. Mladic Taunts Survivors With Throat-Cutting Gesture

Former Bosnian Serb Gen. Ratko Mladic at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague earlier today.
Toussaint Kluiters AFP/Getty Images

"Bosnian Serb Gen. Ratko Mladic taunted Srebrenica survivors on Wednesday at the start of his trial for genocide, running his hand across his throat in a gesture of defiance to relatives of the worst massacre in Europe since World War II," Reuters writes from The Hague.

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The Two-Way
7:47 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Is Housing Sector Getting Better? Increase In Starts May Signal It Is

A home construction site in Westport, Conn., last December.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

There was a 2.6 percent increase in housing starts in April from March, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development just reported.

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The Two-Way
7:22 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Greece Sets New Election For June 17; Fear Of Bank Runs Reported

With "the shockwaves from Greece's failure to form a coalition government" continuing to roil financial markets around the world, there's word from the BBC that Greece has now scheduled a new set of elections for June 17.

And there's also this:

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The Two-Way
6:43 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Folks Seem To Like It, So Facebook Boosts Size Of Stock Offering By 25 Percent

Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 7:20 am

The hoopla continues over Facebook's initial public offering of stock, with word that the social media giant has increased the size of Friday's IPO by 25 percent.

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The Two-Way
6:13 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Medical Report Details George Zimmerman's Injuries, ABC News Says

George Zimmerman during a court appearance on April 20.
Gary W. Green AP
  • Cheryl Corley, reporting for the NPR Newscast

George Zimmerman had a broken nose, black eyes, cuts on the back of his head and a minor back injury the day after he shot and killed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, according to medical records compiled by his doctor, ABC News reports.

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Around the Nation
5:59 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Fischer, Kerrey Win Senate Primary In Nebraska

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Some other news. Yesterday was primary day in Nebraska and voters delivered a surprise. Both parties were choosing candidates for a Senate race.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And the Republican primary started with a pattern that has become familiar. The leading candidate was backed by traditional Republican leaders but was challenged by another candidate with Tea Party support and a lot of outside money.

INSKEEP: It became a fierce campaign, but here's where the pattern was broken. Neither contender won.

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Law
5:54 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Juror Booted From Clemens Trial For Sleeping

At the perjury trial of pitching great Roger Clemens Tuesday, a judge sent a jury member home after saying she was "obviously sleeping." She's the second juror to fall asleep and be ordered to leave.

Around the Nation
5:47 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Restaurant Runs Out Of All-You-Can-Eat Fish

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Economy
5:47 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Debt Ceiling Debate Is Revived In Washington

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

If you thought the two political parties had moved past their differences over the debt ceiling, think again.

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