Ari Shapiro

Ari Shapiro is an NPR international correspondent based in London. An award-winning journalist, his reporting covers a wide range of topics and can be heard on all of NPR's national news programs, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Prior to his current post, Shapiro reported from the NPR Washington Desk as White House Correspondent during President Barack Obama's first and second terms, as Justice Correspondent during the George W. Bush administration and as a regular guest host on NPR's newsmagazines. He is also a frequent analyst on CNN, PBS, NBC and other television news outlets.

Shapiro's reporting has consistently won national accolades. The Columbia Journalism Review recognized him with a laurel for his investigation into disability benefits for injured American veterans. The American Bar Association awarded him the Silver Gavel for exposing the failures of Louisiana's detention system after Hurricane Katrina. He was the first recipient of the American Judges' Association American gavel Award, recognizing a body of work on U.S. courts and the American justice system. And at age 25, Shapiro won the Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize for an investigation of methamphetamine use and HIV transmission.

An occasional singer, Shapiro makes guest appearances with the "little orchestra" Pink Martini, whose recent albums feature several of his contributions. Since his debut at the Hollywood Bowl in 2009, Shapiro has performed live at many of the world's most storied venues, including Carnegie Hall in New York, L'Olympia in Paris, and Mount Lycabettus in Athens.

Shapiro graduated from Yale University magna cum laude and began his journalism career in the office of NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg.

When President Obama's motorcade leaves the White House on Friday, it will be his first public event outside of Washington in three weeks. And even then, he's only going to the D.C. suburb of College Park, Md.

The town hall meeting is likely to focus on the same theme that has captured almost all of the president's attention this month — the debt ceiling. It's just one more tool the White House is trying to use to get a deal.

All The World's A Stage

One person with outsize influence in the debate over raising the debt ceiling is not at the negotiating table. Instead, he sits in downtown Washington at the offices of Americans for Tax Reform, a group that he has run for a quarter century. From there, Grover Norquist fields phone calls and emails from some of the people who are at the negotiating table, and he holds them to their pledge.

As the deadline for Congress to raise the debt ceiling creeps steadily closer, a deal to cut the size of government in exchange for raising that debt limit seems as far away as ever. If a White House meeting Sunday night resulted in progress, neither side said so publicly.

After a terrible unemployment report in May, people hoped for a change of direction in the latest numbers. But the jobs report that came out Friday morning shows that the situation is even worse today. The economy created only 18,000 jobs in June. Unemployment rose for the second month in a row, hitting 9.2 percent. The Obama White House tried to put the best face on a dismal situation as the stalling recovery provided an opportunity for Republicans to continue hammering the president's economic policies.

Six months after Jared Loughner allegedly fired a fusillade of shots into a crowd of people in Tucson, Ariz., gun control advocates are asking why there has been no change to the policies that let him buy and carry a semi-automatic weapon without a permit.

Even the staunchest gun control activists suppressed their disappointment when President Obama skirted the issue during his speech in Tucson four days after the shooting, which left six people dead and more than a dozen wounded, including Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

President Obama's self-described evolution on same-sex marriage is not happening fast enough for some gay and lesbian activists. His belief that marriage should be between a man and a woman, and that the legalization of gay marriage should be left up to the states, puts him in an awkward position this week as he heads to New York for a re-election fundraiser with the gay and lesbian community.

If it's a sunny weekend in Washington, chances are a motorcade will be leaving the White House for the golf course. President Obama typically golfs with the same small circle of friends and aides. One of his rules for a day on the course: No talking politics.

That changes Saturday. House Speaker John Boehner is joining the president for 18 holes. Vice President Biden and Republican Gov. John Kasich of Ohio are also coming along, turning this particular game into a much anticipated "golf summit."

The field of GOP presidential contenders appeared onstage for their first major debate in New Hampshire, taking aim at President Obama, criticizing his handling of the economy and vowing to repeal his health care overhaul.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the presumed front-runner, set the tone for Monday night's debate by explaining that any of the Republican contenders present "would be a better president than President Obama."

President Obama flies to North Carolina on Monday for the latest meeting of his jobs and competitiveness council. His administration is betting that green technologies — from wind and solar power to advanced batteries and biofuels — will create jobs of the future.

With job growth slowing and President Obama's poll numbers dropping, the White House is trying to stage an intervention.

All week long, the administration took pains to show that the economy remains the president's top concern and that he is doing everything possible to bring it back.

On Thursday, the White House gave the press corps about ten minutes' warning that members of the Cabinet would be coming out to speak on the White House driveway. Only three reporters made it in time.