President Obama's health care law has so far survived challenges in Congress and the courts. But its biggest test could begin next week. That's when the online marketplaces offering health care coverage to the uninsured are set to start signing people up. The question is, will they come?
Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:17 pm
Update at noon ET. It's Over:
Saying that "it's fitting that this debate concludes with a prayer" because he believes Americans are pleading with Congress to defund President Obama's health care law, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas just wrapped up his marathon protest on the Senate floor.
Cruz began speaking just after 2:40 p.m. ET Tuesday and abided by Senate rules when he finished at noon today.
"The pleas from the American people," he said of what he sees as the public's opposition to Obamacare, "are deafening."
Premiums in the health insurance exchanges set to open next week will be lower than anticipated, the Obama administration announced Wednesday.
According to a report released by the Department of Health and Human Services, "premiums nationwide will ... be around 16 percent lower than originally expected," and 95 percent of uninsured people live in a state with average premiums that are lower than expected.
One of the strongest new sitcoms on TV this season has the worst name, but its title, Trophy Wife, was intended to be ironic. The show's creators, Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern, are self-professed feminists who wanted to take on a type generally scorned in popular culture.
The show's eponymous character, Kate, is a reformed party girl trying to find her place in a family that includes a much older husband, Pete, his two ex-wives and three kids. When Kate inadvertently breaks Pete's nose, the situation is expertly handled by ex No. 1, an intimidating surgeon.
It's the middle of the afternoon when we arrive at the tiny family apartment in a working-class neighborhood of Tunis. Um Ahmed cracks open the door when we arrive, ushers us in and quickly slams the door shut. She then closes a second steel gate, which she had installed after her son, Ahmed, was arrested.
Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 7:23 pm
With just six days to go before the federal government is due to run out of money, it's becoming increasingly clear that Republican Sen. Ted Cruz's fellow GOP colleagues aren't following his lead in the anti-Obamacare fight.
That fact alone raises the odds of avoiding a government shutdown next week. It doesn't mean a shutdown won't happen, but it largely removes one of the major stumbling blocks — at least in the Senate.
In a break with his often times caustic predecessor, Iranian President Hasan Rouhani delivered a kind of ode to moderation during his first address at the United Nations General Assembly.
"Prudent moderation will ensure a bright future for the world," Rouhani said, adding that the "recent election in Iran represents a clear living example of the wise choice of hope, rationality and moderation."
Kenya's interior minister said those who attacked the Nairobi mall were an international group of men, some of whom dressed as women. Kenya's foreign minister said the group included at least three Americans and one woman. Four days after the attack started, we update what is known about the group of terrorists who have held siege at the popular Westgate Mall.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
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And I'm Robert Siegel.
The bloody siege of an upscale mall in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, is over. Islamists had seized the shopping center on Saturday with guns blazing, killing shoppers indiscriminately. Kenya's president, Uhuru Kenyatta, made the announcement in a televised address to the nation this evening. He said Kenyan security forces had ashamed and defeated the militants.
Tuesday was the opening day of the UN General Assembly in New York City. President Obama opened the session. His speech was followed by addresses from a number of foreign dignitaries, including Iranian president Hassan Rouhani.
Chicago police have charged four men — including two suspected gunmen — in the shooting injuries of 13 people. Police said the two suspects opened fire in retaliation for an earlier shooting, in which one of them was slightly wounded.
Attention, potential Army recruits: If you have tattoos on your feet, calves, hands, forearms or around your neck, Uncle Sam apparently does not want you. The secretary of the Army is expected to sign strict, new rules about body art. And for current soldiers, there's a kind of grandfather clause. Ink below the elbows and knees and above the neckline won't get them kicked out, but they will have to review their tattoos with unit leaders and they'll have to pay to have tattoos removed that are deemed to be racist, sexist or extremist.
Melissa Block talks to Jerry Micco, assistant managing editor for sports for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, about the Pittsburgh Pirates making the Major League Baseball playoffs for the first time since 1992.
Americans love bananas. Each year, we eat more bananas than any other fruit. But banana growers use a lot of pesticides — and those chemicals could be hurting wildlife. As a new study shows, the pesticides are ending up in the bodies of crocodiles living near banana farms in Costa Rica, where many of the bananas we eat are grown.
Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 6:58 pm
Boeing says it completed a successful test flight of an F-16 fighter retrofitted as a drone last week, the first-ever such pilotless mission.
The original F-16 was built by Lockheed. Boeing modified the aircraft, dubbed the QF-16, so that a pair of ground-based pilots could control it. The test flight took off from Florida and went over the Gulf of Mexico.
Boeing thinks such aircraft could be used to spar with fighter jocks during training maneuvers, a la Top Gun.