Election 2012
4:54 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Once 'The Obama Of Alabama,' Now A GOP Headliner

Artur Davis, with his wife, Tara, concedes the Democratic gubernatorial race in Birmingham, Ala., in 2010. Since losing that race, he has become a Republican and moved to Virginia.
Mark Almond AP

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 9:57 pm

Four years ago in Denver, Artur Davis took the podium at the Democratic National Convention to speak up for Barack Obama.

"I am honored to second the nomination of the man whose victory tonight takes us closer to becoming what we know America can be," he said.

But now, as President Obama seeks re-election, Davis is on the list of scheduled speakers for the Republican National Convention.

The former Democratic congressman from Alabama, who tried and failed to become the state's first black governor, is now a Republican resident of Virginia.

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U.S.
4:54 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Budgets Tight, States Ask Voters To Raise Taxes

California Gov. Jerry Brown, speaking in Sacramento on Wednesday, advocates a ballot initiative that would increase sales and income taxes. Several states have measures on the November ballot that seek to plug deficits by raising taxes.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 6:03 pm

Tax increases will join political candidates on the November ballot in several states struggling to plug some big holes in their budgets.

One of the most closely watched measures is in California, where Gov. Jerry Brown has staked his reputation on closing his state's multibillion-dollar budget gap.

On Wednesday in Sacramento, Brown officially kicked off his campaign to get voter approval to raise taxes via the Schools Public Safety Protection Act, also known as Proposition 30.

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Participation Nation
4:33 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Outreach With A Wrench In Homer, Alaska

The generous Brant Torsen at Boog's Automotive shop.
Nathan Rott for NPR

Brant "Boog" Torsen can't fix everyone's cars for cookies. Wouldn't have much of a business if he did. But he knows that when you've got a repair garage in a place like Homer, sometimes folks need a little help to make sure the town's nickname — "The End of the Road" — doesn't apply to them.

That's why Boog's done everything from "fixing engines to replacing turn signal bulbs," for nothing more than handshakes and once, a plate of double chocolate chip cookies.

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Statewide News
4:14 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Ohio Unemployment Virtually Unchanged from June to July

Numbers released Friday by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services show the seasonally adjusted rate of joblessness at 7.2 percent for the second consecutive month, although there were modest gains in hiring. It's still the lowest level since September 2008.


The unchanged percentage rate in July stalled 11 consecutive months of decreases in Ohio's jobless rate. Compared with June's figures, the state's non-farm payrolls grew by 11,000.

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Shots - Health Blog
4:14 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

WHO Calls For Emergency Stockpile Of Cholera Vaccine

Thousands of doses of cholera vaccine sit in a refrigerated trailer in a United Nations compound in Saint-Marc, Haiti, in March. After some delays, a vaccination project proved successful.
John Poole NPR

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 5:11 pm

A month ago the results of a successful cholera vaccine project in Haiti became available. Now the World Health Organization is calling for the establishment of a global stockpile of the vaccine to respond to outbreaks like Haiti's.

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Around the Nation
4:12 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Killing Off West Nile Virus: Bad For More Than Bugs?

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 6:03 pm

As communities, such as Dallas, Texas, contemplate doing aerial spraying to control mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus, many people are expressing concerns about how the pesticides will affect their health, and the health of their environments. Melissa Blocks speaks to Dr. Robert Peterson, professor of Entomology at Montana State University.

Around the Nation
4:12 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Dallas Turns To Aerial Spraying To Control West Nile

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 6:03 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block. Texas can't catch a break. First, a bitter drought, now officials in Dallas are fighting a nasty outbreak of West Nile virus. A quarter of the nation's current confirmed West Nile cases are in Dallas County. There, 10 people have died, and hundreds more have been sickened from mosquitoes carrying the virus.

For the first time in nearly half a century, much of the county has begun aerial spraying to control the pests. NPR's Wade Goodwyn has our story.

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Economy
4:12 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

New Terms Set For Frannie And Freddie

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 6:03 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

The Treasury Department today changed the terms of its bailout agreement with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. As NPR's Chris Arnold reports, those terms were proving hopeless for the companies to keep up with.

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Presidential Race
4:12 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Week In Politics: Taxes And What Ryan Will Do

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 6:03 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

We're going to talk about this question of taxes and more with our Friday political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and subbing for David Brooks this week, Reihan Salam of National Review. Welcome to you both.

E.J. DIONNE: Good to be with you.

REIHAN SALAM: Thanks for having us.

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Afghanistan
4:12 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Afghan Attacks On Western Partners Rising Sharply

Afghan soldiers (right) patrol with U.S. troops in the Panjwai district of southern Afghanistan in May. The two armies have been working together for years, but Afghan attacks against U.S. and NATO forces have been rising recently.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Fri August 17, 2012 6:03 pm

In the past two weeks, seven Afghans in uniform have opened fire on Western forces. The most recent incidents occurred Friday. First, a newly recruited policeman in western Afghanistan turned his gun on U.S. military trainers, killing two and wounding a third. A short time later in southern Kandahar province, an Afghan soldier shot and wounded two foreign troops.

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