The Two-Way
5:30 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Obama Advisor Plouffe: Expect A State Of The Union Heavy On The Economy

White House advisor David Plouffe.
AP

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 6:03 am

Tonight, President Obama is set to deliver the final state of the union address of his first term. Morning Edition's Renee Montagne spoke to White House Senior Adviser David Plouffe for a preview of the president's speech.

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The Two-Way
4:12 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Mitt Romney's Tax Returns Show $43 Million Income In Past Two Years

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, seen at a weekend campaign event in Ormond Beach, Fla., released 2010 tax returns showing he is among the top 1 percent of taxpayers.
Charles Dharapak AP

In releasing details of his tax burden for the past two years, Mitt Romney offered a small window into a vast wealth. The tax records show that the former Massachusetts governor made $42.6 million over the past two years and because most of it came from capital gains, he paid $6.2 million in taxes.

That means that in 2010, his tax rate was 13.9 percent, and in 2011, it's expected to be 15.4 percent, lower than many Americans who pay taxes on wages.

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Around the Nation
4:10 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Disney Alters Facial Hair Policy At U.S. Theme Parks

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 7:00 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. At Disneyland and Disney World, everyone working there has a clean-cut image. It goes back to the 1950s, when Disneyland first opened and facial hair was banned. Even though Uncle Walt Disney had one, moustaches weren't even allowed until 2000. But starting next month, employees will finally be allowed to have beards, as long as they're kept short and trim, unless maybe you're one of the seven dwarves. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
4:01 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Competitive Eater Set Twinkie-Eating Record

Competitive eater Takeru Kobayashi is best known for eating hot dogs. He once ate 69 in 10 minutes. Now he's on to a different food. TV host Wendy Williams invited Kobayashi on her show to set the Guiness record for most Twinkies consumed in a minute. There was no previous record for Twinkie eating.

Politics
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Is The State Of The Union Address Obsolete?

President Obama delivers last year's State of the Union Address on Jan. 25, 2011.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 2:07 pm

Given the nonstop, stereo-rock news cycle, the warp speed tempo of geopolitics and the constant to-and-fro between the media and the president, has the State of the Union address become obsolete?

Traditionally, the speech — an annual where-we-stand lecture delivered by the president to a joint session of Congress — has for decades been an opportunity for the professor in chief to issue a national report card and put current events in calm, codifiable context.

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Cheryl Corley is an NPR correspondent who works for the National Desk and is based in Chicago. She travels throughout the Midwest covering issues and events throughout the region's 12 states.

In recent years, Corley has reported on the campaign and re-election of President Barack Obama, on the efforts by Illinois officials to rethink the state's Juvenile Justice System, on youth violence in Chicago, and on political turmoil in the Illinois state government. She's reported on the infamous Trayvon Martin shooting case in Florida and covered tornadoes that have destroyed homes and claimed lives in Harrisburg, Illinois; small towns in Oklahoma; and Joplin, Missouri.

Politics
1:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

State Of The Union To Focus On The Economy

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 7:00 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

A string of debates and primaries has kept the Republican presidential candidates in the spotlight this election season. Tonight, it's the president's turn to take center stage. President Obama will deliver the annual State of the Union Address, and in many ways kick off his own campaign for re-election. It's a reminder that Mr. Obama is running for president.

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Election 2012
1:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Romney, Gingrich Clash During GOP Debate In Tampa

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 7:00 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

GREENE: The latest Republican debate - last night in Florida - was more subdued than when the candidates last took the stage, in South Carolina. But still, it contained plenty of sharp jabs. After it was over, another dramatic turn in the race, with new revelations about Mitt Romney's taxes. We'll explore those numbers in depth, in a few minutes.

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Business
1:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 9:45 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And our last word in business today is a pat-down throwdown. The Transportation Safety Administration says it did not detain Kentucky Senator Rand Paul. But officials at the agency did stop one of their most outspoken critics while he was going through the airport security line in Nashville yesterday.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The Republican senator was going through a body scanner when the alarm went off. Apparently, it was an anomaly. Then, he refused to submit to a pat-down, so he was escorted out of the screening area.

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Business
1:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 7:00 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with another powerful woman in Brazil.

The Brazilian state oil company has a new chief executive. Her name is Maria das Gracas Foster. Petrobras is the world's fifth-largest oil producer, and Foster becomes the first woman to run a top-five oil company. This comes as the firm looks to double its production by 2020.

The company's stocks surged on news of the appointment. Foster will be the second-most powerful woman in Brazil, after the president. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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