Government & Politics

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The final NPR Electoral College map analysis shows Democrat Joe Biden going into Election Day with the clear edge, while President Trump has a narrow but not impossible path through the states key to winning the presidency.

Three civil rights groups filed a federal class-action lawsuit Thursday challenging the Trump administration's recent crackdown on diversity training.

As coronavirus cases rise swiftly around the country, surpassing both the spring and summer surges, health officials brace for a coming wave of hospitalizations and deaths. Knowing which hospitals in which communities are reaching capacity could be key to an effective response to the growing crisis. That information is gathered by the federal government — but not shared openly with the public.

Two images, side-by-side, one of a woman at a press conference, another a portrait of a woman in a field
Jacquelyn Martin, Associated Press / Tedra Cobb campaign, Courtesy

Across Lake Champlain in New York's North Country, Republican Congresswoman Elise Stefanik is defending her seat against Democratic challenger Tedra Cobb.

When then-presidential candidate Donald Trump spoke in Manchester, N.H., a week before the 2016 election, he said the opioid crisis was destroying lives and shattering families.

"We are going to stop the inflow of drugs into New Hampshire and into our country 100%," Trump promised.

It was a major campaign issue. Overdoses were surging in battleground states key to the election, like New Hampshire, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Members of a Quaker congregation in Maryland are so concerned that President Trump will prematurely declare victory when states are still counting ballots — a process that could take days — that they are ready to take to the streets in nonviolent resistance.

They say such a scenario would amount to a "coup" — even if it involves legal fights and not military action.

After the 2016 presidential election, photographer Katie Hayes Luke felt that media coverage of the 2016 election and the apparent surprise about the results indicated a disconnect between the public narrative and the voters' private views.

"What came clearly into focus was that our nation is sharply divided over issues," Hayes Luke said. "There was an underlying dialogue in our country not playing out on our television screens.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Brattleboro has been trying to come up with solutions to reduce panhandling for a few years now. Over the past few months, a new program that pays people for a day’s work has shown some promise.

Listen Saturday at 1pm as Scott Detrow and Juana Summers host an NPR Special "Voting in America."
U.S. Public Domain / Photo by Element5 Digital from Pexels

NPR explores an extraordinary electoral season that’s coincided with the global pandemic.

Listen Saturday at 1pm on VPR.

Foreign interference is a very old problem, but most Americans didn't used to worry much about it and the security of elections.

Now, lessons learned about the Russian attack on the 2016 presidential election have brought the most intense focus ever on the U.S. information environment, elections practices, voter databases and other parts of the infrastructure of democracy.

The Senate has voted 52-48 to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, just about a week before Election Day and 30 days after she was nominated by President Trump to fill the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

In a White House ceremony following the vote Monday evening, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas administered the constitutional oath to Coney Barrett.

The U.S. Senate voted Sunday afternoon to end debate on the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, setting the stage for a final confirmation vote Monday evening — just over a week before the general election.

In a floor vote mostly along party lines, 51 Republicans advanced Barrett, who's President Trump's nominee to fill the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Following the cloture vote, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., proclaimed that "by tomorrow night, we'll have a new member of the United States Supreme Court."

Dirty tricks and disinformation have been used to intimidate and mislead voters for as long as there have been elections. But they have been especially pervasive this year as millions of Americans cast ballots in a chaotic and contentious election.

This has led to stepped-up efforts by election officials and voter advocates to counter the disinformation so voters are not discouraged from turning out.

Four people stand together in a black and white photo
Library of Congress

Former Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas, also a trustee at the Calvin Coolidge Presidential Foundation, joined VPR to talk about how Coolidge got nominated as vice president from the 1920 National Republican Convention floor.

Rubber gloved hands hold a syringe
Kirsty Wigglesworth / Associated Press

The Scott administration has unveiled a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan that puts certain health care workers, as well as staff and residents of long-term care facilities, at the front of the line to receive immunizations.

A completed early, absentee or mail-in ballot held in the hand of a Vermonter in front of a background of autumnal trees.
Matthew Smith / VPR

Vermonters have already set an all-time record for voting by mail in the 2020 election. Data from the Secretary of State's office reports more than 171,000 people have returned their ballots so far.

Updated on Wed., Oct. 28 at 11:40 a.m. to reflect the most recent rules for processing and counting ballots, per information from each state elections office gathered by NPR.

A record number of voters are expected to cast their ballots by mail this year, and in most states, election officials can begin processing that deluge of ballots in the weeks before Election Day.

President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden met for their second and final debate as tens of millions of Americans have already voted. A deeply divided country begins its final sprint to Election Day amid the coronavirus pandemic, and it's unclear how many voters have yet to make up their minds.

Here are five takeaways from the debate in Nashville, Tenn., a much different — and far more civil — night than the last encounter.

Updated at 10:51 a.m. ET

Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee moved Thursday to advance the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett for the Supreme Court, bringing President Trump's nominee within striking distance of confirmation and the court a step closer to a 6-3 conservative majority.

President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden have very different views on how to tackle America's pressing issues.

That much is clear. But what specifically are they proposing?

NPR Politics has sifted through Trump's and Biden's plans, as released by their campaigns, and narrowed in on a few key issues to show what they're promising and how each man's priorities differ from his opponent's.

Read all of the plans here.

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