Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. Key West, Florida has seen its share of hurricanes. But as Sandy passed well to the east, residents of the island completed their annual Fantasy Fest. The theme was A-Conch-Alypse, you know, the apocalypse but with conch shells. A parade included floats with alien invaders and a post-apocalyptic zombie ghost town. One float featured a zombie presidential election with advocates for zombie care and a candidate named Eaton D. Brains. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
In the closely contested battleground state of Florida, the Obama campaign is trying to drive up the number of votes from its base. A key mechanism is the network of black churches throughout the state.
Political commentators will be working overtime in the countdown to the presidential election. So will political comedians, including the candidates' impersonators.
Impersonators have been part of the political landscape for so long, it's hard to imagine a time without them: Rich Little, Dana Carvey, Will Ferrell, Dan Aykroyd, Darrell Hammond, Tina Fey and other comedians have all famously done their turns as candidates. Remember "I can see Russia from my house"?
Now, the effects of this powerful storm have forced President Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, to alter their campaign schedules. The president has cancelled a rally that was scheduled in Florida. We're also told of a rally that's been cancelled in Wisconsin.
Cokie Roberts spoke with us earlier on this program. She's been following the effects, the potential effects of this storm on the campaign.
A new study released by the World Economic Forum ranks northern European nations at the top when it comes to the size of their gender gap. But one area where the gap is huge is in the percentage of women on company boards; it's less than 15 percent EU-wide. Controversy over what should be done about that — and by whom — is more divisive than ever.
One issue that has received little attention in this year's presidential race is the war in Afghanistan. But according to Thomas E. Ricks, we should be paying attention — specifically to those in charge of the military there, because they can make the difference between long, expensive wars and decisive victories. That's the lesson Ricks explores in his latest book, The Generals.
One of the most common complaints from Afghan forces and officials is that they don't have the equipment they need to lead the fight in Afghanistan. They routinely call on NATO to provide more cutting-edge hardware for Afghan troops.
Certainly, when you see a U.S. soldier standing next to an Afghan one, the difference is striking. U.S. soldiers are often saddled with pounds and pounds of electronics and gadgets, ranging from GPS units to night-vision goggles and radio-jamming devices.