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The Two-Way
1:09 am
Wed September 25, 2013

With A Call For Prayer, Cruz Wraps Up Protest Against Obamacare

Sen. Ted Cruz's anti-Obamacare strategy seemed to fall flat Tuesday with many of his fellow Senate Republicans. They urged him to back down out of concern over a possible government shutdown next week.
C-SPAN.org screen shot

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:17 pm

Update at noon ET. It's Over:

Saying that "it's fitting that this debate concludes with a prayer" because he believes Americans are pleading with Congress to defund President Obama's health care law, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas just wrapped up his marathon protest on the Senate floor.

Cruz began speaking just after 2:40 p.m. ET Tuesday and abided by Senate rules when he finished at noon today.

"The pleas from the American people," he said of what he sees as the public's opposition to Obamacare, "are deafening."

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Shots - Health News
12:03 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Administration Touts Lower-Than-Expected Obamacare Premiums

Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, the state agency running the state's new health exchange, announced the plans and prices that will be offered by private insurers on May 23.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 11:42 am

Premiums in the health insurance exchanges set to open next week will be lower than anticipated, the Obama administration announced Wednesday.

According to a report released by the Department of Health and Human Services, "premiums nationwide will ... be around 16 percent lower than originally expected," and 95 percent of uninsured people live in a state with average premiums that are lower than expected.

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The Two-Way
7:28 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Army Bars New Recruits With Conspicuous Tattoos

A U.S. Army soldier at Outpost Monti in Afghanistan's Kunar province, in Sept. 2011.
Tauseef Mustafa AFP/Getty Images

No visible ink. That's the gist of a new regulation approved by the secretary of the Army that prohibits fresh recruits from showing tattoos while in uniform.

Josh Smith, a reporter with Stars and Stripes, says the rules on tattoos were loosened in 2006 when the Army was looking to increase recruitment.

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It's All Politics
7:23 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Countdown To Shutdown: 6 Days

Sen. Ted Cruz's anti-Obamacare strategy seemed to fall flat Tuesday with many of his fellow Senate Republicans.
C-SPAN.org screen shot

With just six days to go before the federal government is due to run out of money, it's becoming increasingly clear that Republican Sen. Ted Cruz's fellow GOP colleagues aren't following his lead in the anti-Obamacare fight.

That fact alone raises the odds of avoiding a government shutdown next week. It doesn't mean a shutdown won't happen, but it largely removes one of the major stumbling blocks — at least in the Senate.

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Monkey See
7:05 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

'Trophy Wife' Is More Than Just A Pretty Face On ABC

Kate (Malin Akerman) pitches in alongside husband Pete (Bradley Whitford) on her stepson's soccer practice in ABC's Trophy Wife.
Danny Feld ABC

One of the strongest new sitcoms on TV this season has the worst name, but its title, Trophy Wife, was intended to be ironic. The show's creators, Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern, are self-professed feminists who wanted to take on a type generally scorned in popular culture.

The show's eponymous character, Kate, is a reformed party girl trying to find her place in a family that includes a much older husband, Pete, his two ex-wives and three kids. When Kate inadvertently breaks Pete's nose, the situation is expertly handled by ex No. 1, an intimidating surgeon.

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The Two-Way
6:26 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Iranian President: 'Prudent Moderation' Ensures Bright Future

Hasan Rouhani, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, addresses the 68th United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters, on Tuesday.
Brendan McDermid AP

In a break with his often times caustic predecessor, Iranian President Hasan Rouhani delivered a kind of ode to moderation during his first address at the United Nations General Assembly.

"Prudent moderation will ensure a bright future for the world," Rouhani said, adding that the "recent election in Iran represents a clear living example of the wise choice of hope, rationality and moderation."

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Africa
5:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

As Kenyan Mall Attack Ends, The Search For Answers Begins

Kenya's interior minister said those who attacked the Nairobi mall were an international group of men, some of whom dressed as women. Kenya's foreign minister said the group included at least three Americans and one woman. Four days after the attack started, we update what is known about the group of terrorists who have held siege at the popular Westgate Mall.

Africa
5:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Kenyan President: Mall Attackers 'Defeated' After Four-Day Fight

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

The bloody siege of an upscale mall in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, is over. Islamists had seized the shopping center on Saturday with guns blazing, killing shoppers indiscriminately. Kenya's president, Uhuru Kenyatta, made the announcement in a televised address to the nation this evening. He said Kenyan security forces had ashamed and defeated the militants.

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Politics
5:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Rouhani Addresses U.N. Amid Iranian Charm Offensive

Tuesday was the opening day of the UN General Assembly in New York City. President Obama opened the session. His speech was followed by addresses from a number of foreign dignitaries, including Iranian president Hassan Rouhani.

Science
5:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

E-Readers Make Reading Easier For People Who Are Dyslexic

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Here's another example of tech helping people. In this case, people who struggle with dyslexia. For some, the act of reading a book can be dispiriting. Just ask Matthew Schneps, he directs the Laboratory for Visual Learning at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

MATTHEW SCHNEPS: I'll open the book and I'll start reading it. And then I'll very quickly realize, you know, I'm never going to get through this thing, and I just give up.

SIEGEL: But when Schneps reads on a small handheld device, like a smartphone...

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