It's hard to deny that the NRA has won the gun debate over the past 20 years.

Despite mass shootings — and despite some 80 to 90 percent of Americans saying they are in favor of background checks — no legislation expanding on the 1993 Brady Bill has passed Congress.

What's going on? Well, the debate over guns is hardly ever solely about background checks or other seemingly popular measures intended to curb gun violence.

Hillary Clinton was on NBC's Saturday Night Live during the 2008 campaign and appeared alongside Amy Poehler, her alter ego on the show.

They poked through the facade. Clinton went on as herself, wearing the same pantsuit as Poehler, who feigned awkwardness about sharing the screen with the woman she mocked weekly (though Poehler and Clinton say they are friends in real life).

Last night, Clinton again appeared on SNL — on the season premiere.

(This post was last updated at 1:31 p.m. ET.)

House Speaker John Boehner will give up his seat in Congress at the end of October.

Boehner became the 53rd speaker of the House in 2011. The Ohio Republican's tenure has been marked by fierce confrontations with Democrats and sometimes with his own party. One of those fights led to a 16-day partial government shutdown in 2013.

Amid renewed conflict with more conservative members of his party, Boehner is once again facing the prospect of a government shutdown.

Millennials do not like to be categorized.

The Pew Research Center finds they don't even like the label "millennial." But for our journalistic purposes, we'll use it like the Census Bureau — to refer to people born between 1982 and 2000. (And full disclosure: your author fits into this so-called millennial generation.)

Student loans have become an issue in the presidential campaign, especially on the Democratic side. And it's no wonder. There are more than 40 million Americans with some $1.3 trillion in outstanding student loan debt.

But people who study education finance say one widely popular proposal to help lessen the debt load may not be as good as it seems.

The first problem: the debt load

An increasing amount of research suggests the environment — an issue that has long been seen within the purview of progressive, white liberals — is now increasingly important to Latinos.

Former President Jimmy Carter in the KUOW studios in Seattle with producer Amina Al-Sadi on March 31, 2014.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Former President Jimmy Carter said Wednesday that recent liver surgery revealed that cancer has spread to other parts of his body.

This week Hillary Clinton released a big, complicated campaign proposal she calls the New College Compact. It's stuffed with ideas that have been brought up by other presidential candidates, both to the left and the right: free tuition (Bernie Sanders); debt-free college (Martin O'Malley); more affordable student loan repayment (Marco Rubio); and lowering costs overall (Jeb Bush).

This post was updated at 2:04 p.m. ET

Republican presidential hopefuls tossed around a lot of statistics during their debate last night. Some of those numbers are revealing. Others may be concealing or at least don't tell the whole story.

Here's a closer look now at some of the claims made by the candidates.

Claim 1 — Jeb Bush: "Our economy grew at double the rate of the nation. We created 1.3 million jobs. We led the nation seven out of those eight years."

City Councilmember Jean Godden at Bulldog News in the University District.
KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

After 12 years on the Seattle City Council, Jean Godden conceded defeat Thursday in her race for a fourth term.

The Confederate flag. The Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage. Policing minority communities. Nuclear weapons and Iran. Summer often brings a lull in the news, but not this year. And, come September, students are going to want to talk about these headlines.

But how should teachers navigate our nation's thorny politics?

The inaugural 2016 debate for the White House on Thursday will be the first time many voters will be tuning into the volatile GOP campaign, and candidates are praying they'll get a boost and not a bust from the face-off.

"The level of engagement has been very low," said Rick Wilson, a Florida-based national GOP strategist. "This will be a week where we will probably have record viewership on Fox News for a primary debate, and it's going to get a lot of attention and a lot of focus."

This post has been updated to note that Kasich officially announced he's running.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich officially became the 16th candidate to officially enter the crowded race for the Republican presidential nomination on Tuesday.

This post has been updated to reflect Christie officially getting in the race for president.

This story was updated at 12:45 p.m. ET

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal announced Wednesday he is running for president, becoming the 13th major Republican candidate to enter the race.