2:16pm

Fri December 21, 2012
NPR News Investigations

Dismissed Case Raises Questions On Shaken Baby Diagnosis

Originally published on Tue January 29, 2013 2:27 pm

Jennie and Kristian Aspelin pose in a pumpkin patch with their children two weeks before three-month-old Johan died.
Courtesy of the Aspelin family

When San Francisco prosecutors dismissed charges against Kristian Aspelin in early December, it became just the latest case to raise questions about how shaken baby syndrome is diagnosed. Aspelin, who was accused of causing the death of his infant son, had one thing in his favor: He had enough money to pay for medical experts who cast doubt on the prosecution's theory.

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12:50pm

Fri December 21, 2012
National Security

John Kerry Already A Familiar Face To World Leaders

Originally published on Fri December 21, 2012 8:21 pm

U.S. Sen. John Kerry (left), who was nominated Friday to be secretary of state, is shown shaking hands with Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani during a trip to Pakistan last year.
Aamir Qureshi AFP/Getty Images

Long before President Obama nominated John Kerry as the country's top diplomat, the Massachusetts senator was seen as a secretary of state in waiting.

He has been chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and has frequently jetted off to Afghanistan and Pakistan whenever the Obama administration needed him.

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12:27pm

Fri December 21, 2012
It's All Politics

Boehner's Power Outage Dimming Obama's Options As Well

Originally published on Fri December 21, 2012 12:53 pm

House Speaker John Boehner speaks at a press conference Friday on Capitol Hill.
Win McNamee Getty Images

The most important measure of power on Capitol Hill can be summed up with a question: "Do you have the votes?"

For House Speaker John Boehner, the answer once again appears to be "no." In a move that's hard to view as anything short of humiliating for the speaker, Boehner had to shelve his own "Plan B" fiscal-cliff-avoidance proposal Thursday evening after it became clear he couldn't get enough fellow Republicans to support it.

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12:03pm

Fri December 21, 2012
The Two-Way

Sen. Daniel Inouye Remembered As Quiet Inspiration

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 5:10 am

Sen. Daniel Inouye "embodied the spirit of aloha," President Obama said.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

At a service for the late Sen. Daniel K. Inouye at the Washington National Cathedral on Friday, President Obama said if it weren't for the example of the long-serving Hawaii Democrat, he might not have gone into public service.

Inouye "hinted to me what might be possible in my own life," Obama told the crowd, which included Vice President Joe Biden and other friends and former Senate colleagues.

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10:27am

Fri December 21, 2012
Governing

Gun Control: What Would Mayors Do?

In the wake of the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., mayors are a key part of the debate over the country's gun laws. Host Michel Martin speaks with two leaders who frequently encounter issues of gun violence and gun ownership; Kansas City, Mo. Mayor Sylvester James and former Cincinnati Mayor Kenneth Blackwell.

10:21am

Fri December 21, 2012
The Two-Way

Only 'A Good Guy With A Gun' Can Stop School Shootings, NRA Says

Originally published on Fri December 21, 2012 1:08 pm

National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre at this morning's news conference in Washington, D.C.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

(We retopped this post at 11:35 a.m. ET.)

Saying that last week's mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., could have been prevented or stopped if there had been armed, trained security personnel on site, officials of the National Rifle Association on Friday called for Congress to appropriate funds to put police officers in every American school.

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10:16am

Fri December 21, 2012
Politics

Sen. Kerry Gets Obama's Nod For Secretary Of State

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. This afternoon, President Obama is set to nominate Massachusetts Senator John Kerry as the nation's next secretary of state. Kerry would replace Hillary Clinton, who's planning to leave that post after four years as the president's globe-trotting emissary. Joining us to talk about the move is NPR White House correspondent Scott Horsley; and NPR's diplomatic correspondent Michele Kelemen, who's here in the studio with me.

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10:01am

Fri December 21, 2012
Top Stories

THP Saturation Patrols Through Christmas

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP/WMOT) — The Tennessee Highway Patrol will be stepping up enforcement over the Christmas holiday. 

Christmas is one of the most dangerous times of the year for motorists due to an increase in impaired driving. According to the Tennessee Department of Safety, the increased enforcement begins just after midnight tonight and runs through midnight Dec. 25.

THP Captain David McGill says it includes saturation patrols, bar and tavern checks, and driver license and sobriety checkpoints.

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9:56am

Fri December 21, 2012
Top Stories

Tenn. Jobless Rate Down Dramatically

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WMOT)  --  Tennessee’s unemployment rate fell dramatically last month.

The Tennessee Department of Labor says the jobless rate fell to 7.6 percent in November, down six-tenths in a single month, and the lowest rate since October, 2008.

The state’s unemployment rate has also fallen below the national jobless rate for the first time in six months. Department of Labor spokesman Jeff Hentschel says the report is good news all around.

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9:37am

Fri December 21, 2012
The Two-Way

Obama Taps Sen. Kerry For Secretary Of State

Originally published on Fri December 21, 2012 3:02 pm

President Obama and Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., at the White House this afternoon.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images
  • President Obama nominates Sen. Kerry

President Obama announced this afternoon that he will nominate Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., to be his next secretary of state.

Kerry's long experience in the Senate (he was first elected in 1984) and especially in foreign affairs (he chairs the Foreign Relations Committee) mean the senator's "not going to need a lot of on-the-job training," Obama said.

We followed the short appearance at the White House by the president and Kerry and posted some highlights.

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