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July 29, 2014 | NPR · House and Senate negotiators reached a compromise, $17 billion agreement to improve medical care for veterans. The deal comes in the final week before Congress leaves town for a monthlong recess.
 
July 29, 2014 | NPR · Washington Post reporter Liz Sly tells Renee Montagne that U.S. arms may be flowing to moderate Syrian rebels, but the aid seems to be too little too late to affect the course of the civil war.
 
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July 28, 2014 | NPR · The militant group threatens to kill parents who immunize their children. As a result, polio has come roaring back in Pakistan. Eradication now hinges on whether the country can control the virus.
 

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July 28, 2014 | NPR · A new salvo has been fired in the fight over teacher tenure. A group led by former TV anchor Campbell Brown filed a complaint in New York state court, arguing that tenure laws are preventing the state from providing every child with the "sound, basic education" its constitution guarantees.
 
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July 28, 2014 | NPR · Why are so many low-income and minority kids getting second-class educations in the U.S.? That question is at the center of the heated debate about tenure protections and who gets them.
 
July 28, 2014 | NPR · Only one movie in July, Transformers: Age of Extinction, has broken the 100 million mark during its opening weekend. Box office receipts all summer have proven anemic. Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst with RENTRAK, talks to Audie Cornish about the box office slump.
 

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July 26, 2014 | NPR · Hezbollah has been a longtime ally of Hamas, but during this most recent conflict between Israel and Gaza they've taken a sideline role. NPR's Scott Simon talks to the BBC's Kim Ghattas in Beirut.
 

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July 27, 2014 | NPR · Fighting in Ukraine near the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 has international investigators staying away. NPR's Arun Rath talks with OSCE's Michael Bociurkiw about the investigation.
 

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Elections

Aug 2, 2013 — At No. 4, J.K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy tracks the rapid deterioration of an idyllic community.
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Jul 15, 2013 — In softcover nonfiction, Chuck Thompson makes the case for Southern secession, and Adam Winkler explores the history of the American gun control battle. In fiction, Rowling tries her hand at a novel for grown-ups.
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Oct 5, 2012 — J.K. Rowling delves into small-town English politics in The Casual Vacancy. It debuts at No. 1.
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Sep 26, 2012The Casual Vacancy is worlds away from Hogwarts and Harry Potter. It's a dark comedy of manners, set in a small town in the aftermath of a local politician's death. Rowling says her experiences with poverty informed her gritty portrayal of English life.
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Mar 4, 2012 — When politicians need to know every damning detail about their opponent, they call people like Alan Huffman and Michael Rejebian. The two former investigative journalists say they aren't looking to fuel smear campaigns — just to uncover all the dirt they can.
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May 24, 2011 — Political spouses often play key roles in campaigns. They can push their candidates over the top, or undermine their candidacies. But the roles that political spouses play in America have evolved over the years, and the options now range from policy wonk to astronaut.
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Dec 20, 2010 — Even in boom times, family conversations about politics, money and race tend to be explosive, and arguments get even more heated when times are tough. Consuming this year's feast of great nonfiction books will deepen your knowledge of our struggling world — and maybe guarantee victory at the dinner table.
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Oct 27, 2010 — In fiction, Pete Dexter repays his real-life debt to his stepfather and Tracy Chevalier explores the life of an uneducated woman who became a pioneering 19th century fossil hunter. In nonfiction, there's dish on Google and the 2008 campaign, and Zadie Smith's essays show faith in inconsistency.
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Jan 29, 2010 — The 2008 presidential election was the longest and most expensive in U.S. history. The campaign is now the subject of a book, Game Change, by two political reporters, John Heilemann and Mark Halperin. The book has been making headlines with some of its revelations, but critic John Powers wonders whether that's a good thing.
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Jan 23, 2010 — Mark Halperin's new book Game Change — which he co-authored with John Heilemann — details all the backbiting, sex, lying and anger that was the 2008 presidential campaign. We'll see how the senior political analyst for Time magazine holds up against the NPR News Quiz.
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