Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Fans of William Shatner out there with a yen to write poetry, there's an app for you. The Shatoetry app allows users to compose poems from 400 words recorded by the former Star Trek captain in his signature staccato voice, like this example on YouTube.
WILLIAM SHATNER: She who lives with caffeine joyously fears not the dark.
MONTAGNE: Shatoetry on MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep, with congratulations to Lance Gilman. He's a newly elected member of the county commission in Storey County, Nevada. Mr. Gilman is a business owner, who won 62 percent of the vote. But as he takes office, Gilman is unlikely to be one of those people who disparages politics by, say, comparing it to a brothel, because Gilman runs a legal brothel, one of the most famous in the country: Nevada's Mustang Ranch. You're listening to MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Still struggling to recover from Superstorm Sandy, parts of New Jersey, New York City and surrounding regions are today digging out from a Nor'easter that dropped several inches of snow (more in some places) and caused more power outages.
We're following the news about the impact of the latest storm.
Update at noon, ET. Getting The Power Back On In New Jersey:
Most of New York City's one million public school students went back to class on Monday, a week after Sandy hit. Still dozens of school buildings were flooded, damaged, without power so their students had to relocate. Beth Fertig of member station WNYC visited one of those schools in its new location on Staten Island.
BETH FERTIG, BYLINE: Intermediate School 2 is almost a mile away from the beach. But when the surge of water came during Hurricane Sandy, Principal Adrian Stallone(ph) says it flooded the basement.
Mike Reynolds authored California's three-strikes law after his daughter, Kimber, was killed in a 1992 purse snatching. On Tuesday, Californians approved a ballot initiative that weakens the law — a measure Reynolds opposed.
Several thousand prisoners in California may be eligible to apply for sentence reductions, after voters overwhelmingly approved a ballot initiative Tuesday that alters the state's controversial three-strikes law.
But voters also rejected a proposition that would abolish the death penalty in the state. Proposition 34 would have replaced capital punishment with life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
On Oct. 24, women backing President Obama protest outside a convention center in Reno, Nev., where Republican Mitt Romney was giving a campaign speech. Exit polls show significant support from women was a key factor in Obama's victory over Romney in Nevada.
In an election that highlighted the political divide over abortion, female voters turned out to be a key to victory for President Obama.
Public outcry over Republican Todd Akin's comments on "legitimate rape" ultimately gave Democrat Claire McCaskill a U.S. Senate victory in Missouri. And in Indiana, Republican Senate hopeful Richard Mourdock lost his race at least in part because of his comments about pregnancy resulting from rape.
The Republicans' comments pushed the abortion issue to the forefront — and also united and motivated abortion rights activists.
The 2012 election was very close in the popular vote, but it was a real blowout in the electoral college. And that has Republicans sifting through the results, for lessons for the future. NPR's Mara Liasson reports.
Opposition groups working to bring down the regime in Syria are meeting in Doha, Qatar in a furious bid to reorganize and reinvigorate themselves. The aim is to form a legitimate government in exile that would be recognized by the international community. This new effort to bring together the Syrian opposition is strongly backed by the U.S. NPR's Kelly McEvers is in Doha and joins us to talk about it.
And let's start by you telling us exactly who is there.
When Stephen Wheeler realized he had an aching, swollen finger, he called his primary care doctor, who works for MedStar Health. The doctor referred him to PromptCare, an urgent care clinic in a strip mall in the Baltimore suburbs.
Wheeler says he probably would have ended up waiting a long time if he'd gone to the doctor. And even longer at the emergency room.
A growing number of U.S. consumers are finding much to enjoy in this fruity alcoholic beverage, driving an increase in cider sales. The Vermont Hard Cider Company now produces 70,000 cases of Woodchuck Hard Cider each week.
A couple hundred years ago. hard apple cider used to be the drink of choice for thirsty Americans. It was easy to make and easy to find. But as people moved into cities, and beer became more popular, cider fell out of fashion.
Now it's come roaring back. U.S. hard cider sales are up 65 percent over last year, and just about all the big beer companies sell it, as well as many artisan brewers. Finding cider at your local bar is often no longer a problem.
Although voting problems in Tuesday's election were fewer than some people had expected, there were extremely long lines at many polling sites; so many that President Obama noted them in his victory speech.
"I want to thank every American who participated in this election, whether you voted for the very first time, or waited in line for a very long time," he said, adding, "by the way we have to fix that."
With the election over, attention in Washington has turned to the nation's debt and deficit challenges — most immediately the looming fiscal cliff. That's the $600 billion worth of expiring tax breaks and automatic spending cuts set to start taking effect Jan. 1.
The president and Congress agreed to those automatic measures to force themselves to find a more palatable compromise to rein in deficits. On Wednesday, there was an attempt to jump-start that process.