Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 7:34 am
Good morning, fellow political junkies.
It's one month since the Affordable Care Act's health-exchange website went live and many Democrats would clearly love a do-over.
While that won't be forthcoming, they did get some handholding from Obama administration officials Thursday. But it will take more than that to quell the jitters as Democrats see what they had hoped would be a political asset in 2014, their signature healthcare legislation, threaten to become a liability.
There's more fallout over disclosures that the U.S. spied on many of its allies — this time in Indonesia.
The Foreign Ministry on Friday summoned Greg Moriarty, the Australian ambassador to Indonesia, over allegations that Australian diplomatic posts, including the one in Jakarta, were used as part of the U.S. surveillance network.
Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 12:10 pm
Some of the electronic surveillance programs of the National Security Agency have been on "automatic pilot" in recent years and have inappropriately "reached too far," Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday.
Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 10:52 am
"President Obama's top aides secretly considered replacing Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. with Hillary Rodham Clinton on the 2012 ticket, undertaking extensive focus-group sessions and polling in late 2011 when Mr. Obama's re-election outlook appeared uncertain," The New York Times reports.
A Hallmark Christmas ornament has drawn criticism from people who accuse the greeting card company of political correctness and anti-gay bias. The ornament — a tiny sweater — is decorated with the words "Don we now our FUN apparel!" "Fun" replaces the word "gay" from the line in the Christmas song "Deck the Halls." Hallmark says it was trying to avoid misinterpretation and should never have made the change.
We've gotten used to seeing rallies in Iran where protestors chant death to America. But even before the new president's charm offensive, that slogan had waned, so much so that some hard-liners are planning a Grand Day of Death to America: Monday, the anniversary of the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in 1979. And Revolutionary Guards promise the slogan will once again echo across the nation.
It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Senate Republicans have once again blocked President Obama's nominees. Despite a deal in July to let several of the president's picks go through, the rancor has returned with a fresh batch of appointments. Two nominations failed within less than an hour on Thursday, and Democrats may once again threaten to change Senate rules so Republicans can't easily derail another nomination.
Steve Inskeep talks to freelance writer Johnnie Roberts and NPR's Gene Demby about the branding of high-end products — and the implications when companies specifically court, or exclude, consumers based on race.