Frank James

Frank James joined NPR News in April 2009 to launch the blog, "The Two-Way," with co-blogger Mark Memmott.

"The Two-Way" is the place where NPR.org gives readers breaking news and analysis — and engages users in conversations ("two-ways") about the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

James came to NPR from the Chicago Tribune, where he worked for 20 years. In 2006, James created "The Swamp," the paper's successful politics and policy news blog whose readership climbed to a peak of 3 million page-views a month.

Before that, James covered homeland security, technology and privacy and economics in the Tribune's Washington Bureau. He also reported for the Tribune from South Africa and covered politics and higher education.

James also reported for The Wall Street Journal for nearly 10 years.

James received a bachelor of arts degree in English from Dickinson College and now serves on its board of trustees.

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11:39am

Sat December 1, 2012
It's All Politics

Think Congressional Gridlock Is Bad? If Reid Changes Filibuster Rules, Look Out

Originally published on Mon December 3, 2012 11:44 am

Jimmy Stewart in a scene from the 1939 film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.
AP

Sen. Carl Levin, the Michigan Democrat who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee, was clearly frustrated with the tactics some of his colleagues were using to gum up the legislative process.

The mere threat of a filibuster of a procedural motion to allow the defense authorization bill to be considered on the floor caused the Senate's leadership to balk at scheduling the legislation at all.

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4:13pm

Wed November 28, 2012
It's All Politics

In Fiscal Cliff PR War, Obama Seeks Help From A Public Already Leaning His Way

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:18 pm

President Obama speaks Wednesday while meeting with citizens at the White House. Obama called on Republicans to halt an automatic tax hike for middle-class Americans.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

In Washington's latest game of chicken, President Obama is counting on voters who see things his way to give him the edge in his quest to get congressional Republicans to accept tax increases on the nation's wealthiest as part of any fiscal cliff deal.

To energize those voters, the president is ramping up a series of campaign-style events meant to educate the public about the stakes, as he sees them, of letting the Bush-era tax cuts for middle-class Americans expire if no agreement is reached by year's end.

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3:56pm

Mon November 26, 2012
It's All Politics

New 'War On Christmas' Takes A Fiscal-Cliff Twist

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:19 pm

The Christmas shopping season could be harmed if the fiscal cliff fight depresses consumer confidence, according to a new report from Obama administration economists.
Andrew Kelly Getty Images

In past years, conservatives have used the phrase "war on Christmas" to liberally accuse liberals of trying to ruin the holiday through political correctness and anti-religiousness.

This year, it's the Obama White House warning that Republicans are a threat to Christmas or, more precisely, the part of the economy that relies on the holiday shopping season — retail sales.

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5:36pm

Wed November 21, 2012
It's All Politics

Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.'s Bad End Is Just The Latest For A Snake-Bit District

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:20 pm

Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. of Illinois, seen here in October 2011, resigned from Congress on Wednesday.
Charles Dharapak AP

Talk about your snake-bitten congressional districts.

The Thanksgiving-eve news that Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. was resigning from Congress after reports that he has bipolar disorder and is the subject of a criminal probe of his spending of campaign funds, is just the latest in a series of bad endings for those who have represented Illinois' 2nd Congressional District in Washington.

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5:19pm

Tue November 20, 2012
It's All Politics

Obama Campaign Machine May Be Turned Loose On Fiscal Cliff Climbing Congress

Jim Messina, President Obama's 2012 campaign manager
Charles Rex Arbogast AP

The 2012 general election may be slipping into the past, but elements of President Obama's successful campaign aren't likely to go away anytime soon.

Just as it did after the president's 2008 election, the Obama campaign appears very likely to keep alive parts of the grass-roots effort that contributed to victory. And, just like four years ago, the idea would be to use the corps of Obama organizers and volunteers to push for the president's second-term agenda.

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