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The Two-Way
7:10 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Pope Arrives In Havana, Where He's Expected To Meet Raúl Castro

Pope Benedictus XVI arrives at Jose Marti airport in Havana on Tuesday.
Marcelino Vazquez AFP/Getty Images

Pope Benedict XVI landed in Havana today and he's expected meet Cuban President Raúl Castro.

The pontiff's visit has put Cuba's dictatorship in the spotlight, because during his speeches the Pope has been taking subtle shots at the regime. The Los Angeles Times reports:

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The Salt
6:09 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Activists Say Americans Support Labeling Genetically Modified Food

People march demanding labels for genetically modified food near the White House in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 16, 2011.
Ren Haijun Xinhua /Landov

Activists who want genetically modified food to be labeled in the U.S. say there's more support than ever for their cause. As evidence, a coalition calling itself Just Label It released the results today of a survey it commissioned from The Mellman Group, a national pollster. The survey found that 91 percent of voters favor the labeling of food with genetically modified ingredients.

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The Two-Way
6:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

British Student Jailed For Racist Tweets About Collapsed Soccer Player

Bolton Wanderers' Fabrice Muamba is obscured by medical staff trying to resuscitate him after collapsing. His teammate Ryo Miyaichi, right, and Tottenham Hotspur's Jermain Defoe, center top, watch.
Matt Dunham AP

Originally published on Wed March 28, 2012 9:09 am

A British student has been sentenced to 56 days in jail for posting racist tweets about a soccer player who collapsed on the pitch.

Liam Stacey pleaded guilty to "incitement to racial hatred," after he let loose a barrage of tweets that contained the n-word and crude sexual references. It all started earlier this month, when Fabrice Muamba, a soccer player, collapsed on the pitch and Stacey tweeted that he was dead, followed by "#Haha."

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It's All Politics
5:59 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Ex-Clinton Solicitor General, Colorado AG React To SCOTUS Arguments

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 7:12 pm

It was a question that seemed to be one of the most difficult for the current solicitor general, Donald Verrilli Jr., to answer persuasively, at least to the obvious satisfaction of the conservative justices: If the individual mandate for the purchase of health insurance was found constitutional, what would limit Congress from passing other laws requiring people to buy products from broccoli to cellphones?

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The Two-Way
5:30 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

After 'Hunger Games,' U.S. Archer Shoots For Olympic Games

Archer Khatuna Lorig, seen here during the London Archery Classic last October, helped actress Jennifer Lawrence prepare for her role as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games.
Dean Mouhtaropoulos Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 28, 2012 10:31 am

This summer, U.S. archer Khatuna Lorig hopes to return to the Olympic Games. But she's already helped put archery into The Hunger Games this spring — by training the film's star, Jennifer Lawrence, to shoot.

In the kill-or-be-killed competition in the film drawn from Suzanne Collins' book, Lawrence's character, Katniss Everdeen, relies on her ability with a bow. And Lorig worked with the actress to ensure she had proper form.

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It's All Politics
5:26 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Buddy Roemer: All Americans In November Could Have A Third Choice

Former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer, shown here last summer in Bedford, N.H., is now seeking the presidential nomination of two third parties.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 7:58 pm

Former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer, a onetime Republican candidate for president now seeking the nomination of both the Reform Party and Americans Elect, said he could be a problem in November for Barack Obama and the eventual GOP nominee.

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National Security
5:13 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Romney, GOP Pounce On Obama's Russia Comment

President Obama's remarks about missile defense to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev were meant for his ears only. But they were picked up by a microphone, and have drawn sharp criticism from Mitt Romeny and other Republicans. Obama and Medvedev are shown here on Monday at a nuclear summit in Seoul, South Korea.
Jewel Samad Getty Images

President Obama went to South Korea to talk about nuclear security, only to find that the presidential campaign followed him there.

Obama is now facing sharp criticism from Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and other GOP figures following comments he made Monday, in seeming confidence, to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

As reporters gathered for a news conference in Seoul, South Korea, Obama leaned over to his Russian counterpart. Without realizing a microphone was open, he said:

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It's All Politics
4:52 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

As Court Gets To Heart Of Health Arguments, Protests Grow

An activist dressed as the Statue of Liberty participates in a protest on the second day of oral arguments over President Obama's health care law on Tuesday.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 5:11 pm

The talent show outside the U.S. Supreme Court continued Tuesday as activists for and against President Obama's health care law sought to outdo each other with ever more artistic forms of protest.

At one point a middle-aged group of women started singing in harmony with a young drummer at their side. "Health care for everyone, I'm gonna let it shine," they sang soulfully to the tune of the hymn "This Little Light of Mine."

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The Two-Way
4:43 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

U.S. Soccer: Does The National Team Draw Against El Salvador Matter?

Terrence Boyd of the United States lies on the field after the United States tied 3-3 with El Salvador in a CONCACAF Olympic qualifying soccer match on Monday.
Mark Humphrey AP

Last night in what is being billed as a heartbreaking late draw against El Salvador, the United States Under-23 soccer team missed their opportunity to qualify for the Olympics.

"A nightmare loss," says USA Today.

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It's All Politics
4:15 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Mitt Romney Rival Digs Up Details On GOP Front-Runner's New Man Cave

Mitt Romney at his beach house in La Jolla, Calif., in 2008.
Denis Poroy AP

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 6:21 pm

Presumably, most people who've been paying attention know by now that Mitt Romney is very, very rich.

But to say that he possesses a fortune estimated at up to $250 million can be too abstract for most people. From an opposing campaign's point of view, better to provide voters with a concrete example of how Romney differs from most people.

And it's hard to find a more concrete example, literally and figuratively, than a supersized basement.

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Shots - Health Blog
4:10 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Supreme Court Cheat Sheet: A Quick Guide To The Day 2 Arguments

Opponents and supporters of President Obama's health care overhaul rallied outside the Supreme Court on Tuesday. Bob Mason shows support for the Tea Party by dressing in costume as one of the Founding Fathers.
John Rose NPR

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 8:11 pm

A clearly divided U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday took up the centerpiece of President Obama's health care law: its requirement that by 2014 individuals have insurance coverage or face a penalty.

In contrast to Monday's dense and technical arguments, Tuesday's session was filled with sharp rhetorical volleys and clever analogies. Here are some of the more telling exchanges between the lawyers and the high court justices.

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Asia
3:36 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Abuse Claims Follow Mafia Crackdown In Chinese City

Lawyer Li Zhuang spent more than a year in prison on charges of fabricating evidence and inciting witnesses, after trying to defend an alleged gangster. Li's case became a national cause celebre.
Louisa Lim NPR

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 8:23 pm

The swift downfall of ambitious Chinese politician Bo Xilai exposed a bitter power struggle in the highest echelons of government. Now his victims are telling their stories, exposing a darker side to Bo's signature clampdown on organized crime.

Charismatic and outspoken, Bo seemed headed for the country's top leadership body, the Politburo Standing Committee, before he was removed abruptly from his post — as party secretary of the major southern city of Chongqing — earlier this month.

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Fresh Air Weekend
3:33 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Fresh Air Weekend: Matthew Weiner, Rachel Maddow

Rachel Maddow hosts the nightly news talk show The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC.
Bill Phelps Courtesy of the author

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:


'Mad Men' Creator On What's Next For Don Draper: Matthew Weiner offers his thoughts on Sunday night's Season 5 premiere, the character development of Don Draper, and what may be in store for the staff of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce.

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Music Reviews
3:21 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Baloji: Finding A Home In His Music

Baloji's new album, Kinshasa Succursale, was released in the U.S. on March 6.
Nicolas Karakatsanis

Rapper Baloji was born in the Democratic Republic of Congo but raised in Belgium. He's built a reputation for incorporating Congolese music into his mix, though he mostly raps in French, his deep voice full of cocky brashness. You can catch his vibe without translation, but it's worth reading the liner notes to get his messages, as well. Baloji raps with brazen ease about the indignities of life as an African in Belgium, but also the tragic, bloody history of his homeland on his second album, Kinshasa Succursale.

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The Two-Way
3:15 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

2 U.S. Servicemen Arrested In Drug Cartel Murder-For-Hire Plot

1st Lt. Kevin Corley.
Justice Department

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 3:20 pm

An Army officer and a soldier were arrested earlier this month for allegedly plotting a murder-for-hire scheme, the Justice Department said.

1st Lt. Kevin Corley, 29, and Sgt. Samuel Walker, 28, were arrested after police said they cut a deal with federal officials posing as members of a drug cartel to raid a Texas ranch were they believed 20 kilograms of stolen cocaine were being kept by members of a rival cartel. Police said Corley, who took the lead in striking the deal, also agreed to kill the rivals using a small team in exchange for $50,000 and five kilograms of cocaine.

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The Two-Way
3:10 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Scary Moments Aboard JetBlue Flight When Captain Has 'Medical Situation'

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 3:14 pm

A JetBlue flight from New York to Las Vegas made an unscheduled landing in Amarillo, Texas, this morning after a man identified by passengers as the captain left the cockpit and then started shouting and pounding on its door before he was restrained.

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Politics
3:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Buddy Roemer Eyes Presidency

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

He's been a congressman, a governor, the head of a bank, and now he wants to be president. Buddy Roemer of Louisiana was running as a Republican. He dropped out of that race and is now seeking the nomination of the Reform Party and of Americans Elect, a new online platform for third-party candidates. Buddy Roemer says he won't take contributions of more than $100 and he won't take PAC money.

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Music Interviews
2:56 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Dry The River: Songs Of Cardiac Anatomy

A veteran of punk bands, Dry the River's Peter Liddle (center) began playing acoustic guitar to keep quiet as a med student.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue October 23, 2012 3:43 pm

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The Two-Way
2:20 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Information Will Be Free: Media, Groups Get Around Supreme Court's Rules

While some reporters inside scrambled to get word out, there were plenty of protesters and spectators outside the Supreme Court this morning.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 5:47 pm

Cameras aren't allowed. There are no broadcasts. No one's supposed to leave the courtroom and then come back in.

As we've said, the U.S. Supreme Court isn't very interested in having its proceedings covered "live" in any way shape or form.

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The Two-Way
1:51 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

With Number Of Ticks On The Rise, This Season Could Be 'Horrific'

An adult deer tick, Ixodes scapularis, which is the kind that spreads Lyme disease in the Eastern U.S.
Scott Bauer USDA

The Wall Street Journal is warning us today that tick season is upon us and because of a series of ecological events, it could be a "horrific" season for the diseases they carry.

But the Journal reports that while some of the uptick (The Journal uses this pun: "This Season's Ticking Bomb") is directly related to this season, there's a bigger narrative here. They explain:

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Judging The Health Care Law
1:50 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

TRANSCRIPT: Supreme Court: The Health Care Law And The Individual Mandate

The Supreme Court on Tuesday heard the second of three days of oral arguments on the fate of President Obama's health care law. A transcript of Tuesday's arguments, as prepared by the court, follows.


CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS: We will continue argument this morning in Case 11-398, the Department of Health and Human Services v. Florida.

General Verrilli. ORAL ARGUMENT OF DONALD B. VERRILLI, JR., ON BEHALF OF THE PETITIONERS GENERAL VERRILLI: Mr. Chief Justice, and may it please the Court:

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It's All Politics
1:27 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Boehner Eschews (For Now) GOP's Pile On Of Obama For Open-Mic Comment

For Speaker John Boehner, politics still stops at the water's edge. He refused to criticize President Obama's open-mic comment on missile defense, at least while the president was out of the country.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Listen to any foreign-policy hand who's been in Washington long enough and you'll hear nostalgia for a time when politics stopped at the water's edge.

It was the idea that in the foreign-policy realm, it was best if Democrats and Republicans spoke as one.

At the very least, when an American president traveled abroad, the notion was his political opponents back home should desist from criticizing him was the thinking.

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Health Care
1:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

The Health Law's Individual Mandate Has Day In Court

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington.

CHIEF JUSTICE JOHN ROBERTS: We will continue argument this morning in Case 11398, the Department of Health and Human Services vs. Florida. General Verrilli...

DONALD VERRILLI: Mr. Chief Justice and may it please the court, the Affordable Care Act addresses a fundamental and enduring problem in our health care system and our economy.

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Sports
1:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Season Ends For Legendary Coach Pat Summitt

Pat Summitt, head coach of the Tennessee Lady Volunteers and the winningest coach in NCAA basketball history, was diagnosed with early onset dementia in 2011. As her 38th season concludes, Washington Post sports columnist Sally Jenkins talks about suspicions that Summit won't return next year.

From Our Listeners
1:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Letters: Mental Health And The Military, 'The Talk'

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

It's Tuesday and time to read from your comments. Last week, after a member of the U.S. military was accused of slaughtering civilians in Afghanistan, we talked about how the military assesses mental fitness. Eman(ph) wrote from Sunnyvale, California to say the entire discussion left him uneasy. I feel very uncomfortable with the shooter-as-victim narrative that seems to be running through the U.S. media's coverage of the Robert Bales case, he wrote.

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Race
1:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Trayvon Martin Story Sparks Difficult Conversations

The death of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed teen who was shot and killed by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, has sparked nationwide demonstrations and school walkouts. It has also prompted new conversations about race in America.

The Two-Way
12:37 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

With Campaign Struggling, Gingrich Will Charge $50 For Photos

In a sign that his campaign is in need of cash, Newt Gingrich began charging supporters $50 if they wanted him to pose for a picture.

The National Journal first reported the story, saying the campaign began the practice Monday.

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The Two-Way
12:32 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

At Supreme Court: Health Care Ruling Still Too Close To Call?

Here's some of the early word about today's Supreme Court hearing on the constitutionality of the nation's new health care overhaul law:

-- Five Justices Were Tough: Five members of the court "beat him up pretty hard," NPR's Nina Totenberg says of how the justices treated the counsel representing the government. But she also says, "I don't think you can call this," when asked about whether the court will or won't strike down the so-called individual mandate in the law. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Anthony Kennedy "seem to be in play," Nina reports.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:27 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Insurance Mandate A Tough Sell To Justices

Supporters and opponents of the health care law rallied in front of the Supreme Court Tuesday, as the court considered the constitutionality of the insurance mandate.
John Rose NPR

Today's arguments hit the core of the Affordable Care Act: the mandate that requires just about everyone to have health insurance starting in 2014.

And the U.S. Supreme Court's justices appeared split on whether the federal government can force people to buy health insurance. The court's conservatives appeared skeptical and unmoved by the government's arguments in favor of the mandate.

"The government had a hard time, and if they win, they win narrowly," NPR's Nina Totenberg reported from outside the court. "I don't think you can call this."

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World
12:00 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Visiting Cuba, Pope Hopes To Renew Vatican Ties

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 12:04 pm

Transcript

JACKI LYDEN, HOST:

I'm Jacki Lyden and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away this week. Coming up, after a successful presidential runoff in Senegal and a military overthrow in Mali, we'll talk about questions of leadership in West Africa. That's coming up.

But, first, we turn our attention to Cuba, where Pope Benedict is continuing his tour of Latin America. He's in the midst of a three day visit to the island. Tens of thousands of people greeted him in Santiago last night.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

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