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It's All Politics
2:29 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Immigration Overhaul Inches Forward, But Big Hurdles Remain

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., says talk of a bipartisan agreement among eight key senators working on immigration law is "premature."
Susan Walsh AP

It's still far too early to know whether Congress will actually be able to achieve a comprehensive overhaul to the nation's immigration laws. All that's certain at this stage is that lawmakers on both sides of the partisan divide, and in both chambers, continue to act as though they think they can.

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The Two-Way
1:52 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Judge's Ruling Makes Stockton, Calif., Most Populous City To Enter Bankruptcy

A judge accepted the California city of Stockton's bankruptcy application on Monday, making it the most populous city in the nation to enter bankruptcy.
Ben Margot AP

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 2:11 pm

Stockton, Calif., is now the most populous city in the U.S. to enter bankruptcy, after a decision by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Klein on Monday.

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It's All Politics
1:42 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Opposition Research Boot Camp: Learning To Dig For Political Dirt

Opposition research is becoming a given in politics, sometimes even at the local level.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 6:29 pm

Opposition research exists mostly in the political shadows. So perhaps it's fitting that this boot camp is in an generic conference room in a generic airport hotel outside of Washington, D.C.

It's run by private investigator Larry Zilliox, who specializes in opposition research. He allowed me to attend a session, but not to take pictures.

Zilliox is cagey about his clients: "As a general rule, it suits me best not to comment on who I've worked for. Everybody is better off that way."

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Shots - Health News
1:41 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Mining Books To Map Emotions Through A Century

When anthropologists tallied the use of emotional words through a century of literature, they included many books without clear emotional content — technical manuals, for example, and automotive repair guides.
Steve Debenport iStockphotography

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 8:18 am

Were people happier in the 1950s than they are today? Or were they more frustrated, repressed and sad?

To find out, you'd have to compare the emotions of one generation to another. British anthropologists think they may have found the answer — embedded in literature.

Several years ago, more or less on a lark, a group of researchers from England used a computer program to analyze the emotional content of books from every year of the 20th century — close to a billion words in millions of books.

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The Two-Way
1:00 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Expert: Recent Attacks On Justice Community 'Really Unprecedented'

The home of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland is surrounded by police tape in Forney, Texas, on Monday. Authorities launched a massive investigation into the weekend killings of McLelland and his wife.
Tim Sharp Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 1:32 pm

Two county prosecutors fatally shot in Texas. Colorado's top prison official gunned down. And a dozen more members of the U.S. justice community — ranging from police to judges — victims of targeted killings since the beginning of the decade.

What's going on?

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The Two-Way
12:55 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Arizona Rep: Gay Son Hasn't Changed View On Same-Sex Marriage

Rep. Matt Salmon, R-Ariz., being interviewed on Phoenix news station 3TV. Salmon, whose son is openly gay, says he remains opposed to same-sex marriage.
Screengrab via 3TV

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 12:17 pm

In a weekend interview, Rep. Matt Salmon, a Republican of Arizona, told a local news station that his openly gay son has not changed his position on same-sex marriage.

As you might recall, it was big news when another Republican, Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, said his son's homosexuality inspired him to change his position on same-sex marriage.

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It's All Politics
12:38 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

A State Apart And, Politically, A World Away

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 1:13 pm

There's a reason President Obama chose Colorado to hold a rally this Wednesday in favor of gun control.

Among the states this year, Democratic-controlled Colorado has passed the toughest new restrictions on gun rights, requiring universal background checks and banning magazines that hold more than 15 rounds of ammunition.

But if certain liberal wishes have come true in Colorado — recall that it was one of two states last fall that voted to legalize marijuana — things look very different next door in Kansas.

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The Two-Way
12:13 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Once Again, Polls Show Attitudes Toward Guns Returning To Pre-shooting Levels

Guns on display at a show in Chantilly, Va., in July 2012.
Jim Lo Scalzo EPA /Landov

The day after last December's mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School we wrote that:

"The tragedy in Newtown, Conn., will surely spur pollsters to ask Americans again about guns, gun ownership, gun laws and the Second Amendment.

"If recent experience is a good guide, public opinion may not shift too much."

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Remembrances
12:03 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Listening Back To An Interview With Phil Ramone

Phil Ramone in New York in 1997.
Ken Weingart Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 8:15 am

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. We're going to remember the record producer and engineer Phil Ramone who died Saturday at the age of 79. He won 14 Grammys. He started his career as an engineer, recording singers like Lesley Gore, Dusty Springfield and Dionne Warwick. He went on to produce recordings by Paul Simon, Billy Joel, Barbara Streisand, Ray Charles and Tony Bennett as well as the original cast recording of Stephen Sondheim's "Passion."

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Author Interviews
11:54 am
Mon April 1, 2013

In Digestion: Mary Roach Explains What Happens To The Food We Eat

iStockphoto.com

For all our talk about food, we don't like to think much about it after we put it in our mouths. But Mary Roach — whose latest book is Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal — did just that. Gulp takes a close look at the human digestive system, from the mouth on down, and Roach writes that she wants readers to say not, "This is gross," but instead, "I thought this would be gross, but it's really interesting. OK, and maybe a little gross."

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