The Democrats were no sooner out of Charlotte when the bad economic news came.
A more disappointing job report than had been forecast. Economic numbers weaker than expected. Just 96,000 jobs were created in August, far fewer than what economists were anticipating. And even a lower unemployment rate — down to 8.1 percent from 8.3 — was explained as that more people had simply stopped looking for work. The hope of four years ago is quickly becoming a fading memory, especially for those whose lives have not seen the change Barack Obama once promised.
On a Monday, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne.
Over the weekend, two very different approaches to campaigning by President Obama and Mitt Romney.
INSKEEP: The Republican challenger was mostly out of sight, preparing for next month's presidential debates. Romney did, however, appear on Sunday morning TV shows and we'll have more on that in a moment.
Now that the Democratic convention is over, polls show President Obama pulling ahead of Mitt Romney, not by so much, but the change did show up in several surveys. Let's talk about that and more with Cokie Roberts, who joins us most Mondays.
Cokie, good morning.
COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.
INSKEEP: Any surprise in the polls over the weekend?
A recurring debate in the American presidential contest is who is responsible when a business succeeds. Campaigning in Virginia this weekend, Mitt Romney repeated his assertion that it's individual entrepreneurs.
MITT ROMNEY: I've been impressed by the American spirit of people who are can-do and take-charge, want to start and build things. And by the way, they do build it themselves.
Paul Ryan has a reputation as a deficit hawk. Mitt Romney's running mate has proposed budgets that cut non-defense spending significantly, and advocated controlling Medicare costs by making it a voucher program. But critics argue there's a lot in the Wisconsin congressman's record that undermines his deficit-hawk reputation.
When Ryan gave the GOP response to President Obama's State of the Union address last year, he restated his commitment to debt and deficit reduction.
Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 8:34 am
If you grew up in a bilingual Hispanic household, listening to the Democratic and Republican conventions may have sounded a lot like home.
It's no coincidence that both parties highlighted politicians like Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro.
Rubio, whose parents are from Cuba, introduced Mitt Romney at the Republican convention; Castro, whose grandmother immigrated from Mexico, became the first Latino to give the Democrats' keynote address.
U.S. House candidate Richard Tisei is openly gay. He's also openly Republican.
"You know what, in Massachusetts, it's a lot easier to be gay than be a Republican," he says, "as far as trying to get elected to office."
But Tisei could make political history for the Massachusetts GOP. Not just because they could win their first U.S. House seat in 15 years, but also because Tisei would be the first openly gay Republican to be elected to a term in Congress.
Originally published on Sat September 8, 2012 11:11 am
Now that Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is in charge of raising really big dollars for a superPAC that supports President Obama, wealthy Democrats all over the country may be eyeing their phones nervously.
Emanuel, the former Obama White House chief of staff, is known for not taking no for an answer and for aggressively going after what he wants.
Indeed, he's a ferocious fundraiser who gets to the point, often throwing in an epithet or two for emphasis, just the sort of rainmaker needed by Priorities USA Action, the pro-Obama superPAC that desperately needs cash.
Robert Siegel speaks with Susan Glasser, editor-in-chief of Foreign Policy magazine, about Russia. Speakers at both the Republican and Democratic conventions brought up America's relations with the country.