NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
4:35 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Same-Sex Marriages No Longer Recognized, Utah Tells Agencies

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 5:25 pm

Utah is instructing state officials to put services and paperwork for same-sex couples on hold, reflecting a recent U.S. Supreme Court order that halted gay marriages in the state. Utah is appealing a district court's ruling last month that its ban on same-sex marriage is not constitutional. The state was granted a stay as it pursues the matter.

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The Two-Way
4:28 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Germany's Merkel To Visit U.S. Amid Anger Over NSA Spying

President Obama walks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in St. Petersburg, Russia, on Sept. 6, 2013. Relations between the two allies are strained after documents leaked by Edward Snowden, a former National Security Agency contractor, suggested the agency had spied on Merkel and other world leaders.
Ivan Sekretarev AP

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 10:09 pm

German Chancellor Angela Merkel accepted an invitation Wednesday from President Obama to visit the U.S., just months after relations between the two allies hit a low following revelations the U.S. was spying on Merkel and other world leaders.

Obama made the invitation during a conversation Wednesday with the German chancellor. Steffen Seibert, a German government spokesman, said the visit would occur in the next few months.

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The Two-Way
2:45 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

How Would You React In A Shooting? Have A Plan, Experts Say

Newtown, Conn., Dec. 20, 2012: Stuffed animals and a candle arrangement at a streetside memorial for the 20 children and six adults killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 10:28 am

The annual number of mass murders and attempted mass murders in the U.S. has tripled since 2008, to 15 last year, according to statistics that the FBI and Justice Department have been citing in recent weeks.

In a new study posted online by the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, experts make the case that "police have, generally, done an excellent job responding to active shooter events quickly."

But, they add:

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The Two-Way
1:49 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Sing Along, Now: Rodman's 'Happy Birthday' For Kim Jong Un

Dennis Rodman sings "Happy Birthday" to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, seated above in the stands, before an exhibition basketball game Wednesday at an indoor stadium in Pyongyang, North Korea.
Kim Kwang Hyon AP

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 2:10 pm

When it comes to controversy, there's no time out for Dennis Rodman in North Korea.

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The Two-Way
12:46 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

2 Dead, 1 Missing After Navy Helicopter Crashes Off Virginia Coast

U.S. Navy crew members board a MH-53E helicopter in 2011. The Sea Dragon helicopter is similar to the one that crashed off Virginia on Wednesday.
Lt. Cmdr. John L. Kline AP

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 8:41 pm

This post was updated at 7:45 p.m.

Two crew members who were rescued after the U.S. Navy helicopter they were in went down in the Atlantic Ocean near Virginia have died, The Virginian-Pilot reports. They were among the four crew members taken to a hospital today. One crew member died soon after being rescued; the second died later Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
11:53 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Emails Tie Gov. Christie's Aides To Lane Closings Controversy

Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J.
Kena Betancur Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 8:20 pm

Update at 8:15 p.m. ET: Gov. Christie Responds

In the late afternoon, Gov. Chris Christie released a statement expressing anger at the situation and denying involvement in what appeared to be an act of political payback:

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The Two-Way
11:42 am
Wed January 8, 2014

The Case For Clemency: Expert Says Snowden Deserves A Pass

A demonstrators shown during a march in October outside Capitol Hill demanding that Congress investigate the NSA.
Jose Luis Magana AP

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 3:49 pm

What's to be done about Edward Snowden?

As the courts consider whether the National Security Agency's surveillance practices are constitutional, NPR's Morning Edition is speaking to individuals making the case for and against granting clemency for the man whose leaks cast a spotlight on U.S. spying.

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The Two-Way
10:47 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Maddux, Glavine And Thomas Going To Baseball Hall Of Fame

At the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., a young fan reads about the game's greats.
Jim McIsaac Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 3:43 pm

Updated at 2:10 p.m. ET

Two great pitchers from the Atlanta Braves and one great slugger who spent many of his best years with the Chicago White Sox are the newest additions to baseball's Hall of Fame.

The new inductees were announced at 2 p.m. ET Wednesday and they are:

-- Greg Maddux of the Braves

-- Tom Glavine of the Braves and later the New York Mets

-- Frank Thomas, who played for Oakland and Toronto as well as the White Sox. He's the first player who spent most of his career as a designated hitter to be put in the Hall of Fame.

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The Two-Way
9:41 am
Wed January 8, 2014

NASA Reportedly Gets OK To Keep Space Station Going Until 2024

Astronauts Mike Hopkins and Rick Mastracchio replace a pump on the International Space Station during a spacewalk last month.
NASA Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 11:25 am

The White House has approved NASA's call for four more years for the International Space Station, ensuring that the orbiting science laboratory will keep going for another decade, according to documents obtained by The Orlando Sentinel.

The newspaper writes:

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The Two-Way
9:12 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Hell Has Frozen Over, Headline Writers Rejoice

Hell, Mich., is embracing its frozen fame. The town's Facebook page now features this photo from 2003.
Keasha LeClear-Morse Facebook.com/gotohellmichigan

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 12:13 pm

When it gets super-cold in Hell, Mich., guess what headline writers and radio hosts have to say about it:

Hell Has Frozen Over

A Google News search of that phrase at 8:45 a.m. ET Wednesday turned up 3,980 results.

The hardy souls in the tiny town near Ann Arbor don't seem to mind the attention.

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