The Senate is on the verge of passing a highway bill. It would spend more than $100 billion on the nation's roads in two years. The bill is expected to pass with bi-partisan support. But it's had an unusual and controversial path.
British Prime Minister David Cameron is in Washington for talks with President Obama. British Ambassador to the U.S. Peter Westmacott talks to Steve Inskeep about what's likely to dominate the agenda of the two leaders: Afghanistan.
Far right politician Marine Le Pen is officially in the French presidential race after getting the required 500 mayors' signatures to appear on the ballot. She launched her campaign in a small town in the north of France, a poor region where many see globalization and immigration as France's biggest problems.
Even as the job market is improving and other indicators are positive, the Federal Reserve wants to keep interest rates super low until 2014. The Fed reaffirmed that policy Tuesday. That's likely because the economy is still growing slowly — not nearly fast enough to sustain consistent, long-term job creation.
President Obama has received a high-profile endorsement for his re-election bid. Though it's no surprise the country's largest federation of unions, the AFL-CIO, has traditionally endorsed a Democrat for president.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
The strength of that support bears watching this year. Collective bargaining has been under attack in several states, draining union resources.
MONTAGNE: But labor leaders say it's also made them more determined than ever to keep Mr. Obama in the White House. NPR's Scott Horsley reports.
Law enforcement agents raid a home where the occupants are suspected of selling drugs last month in Middletown, N.Y. For three months, court papers say, authorities tracked them using wiretaps and cameras set up on telephone poles and trees.
Workers build cars on the assembly line at the Ford Motor Co.'s Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Mich., in December. As auto sales boom, parts suppliers are having a tough time finding the labor they need to catch up, having lost workers during the recession.
Detroit automakers are creating thousands of new jobs amid a sales boom. And as they expand, their suppliers are racing to keep up, adding tens of thousands of new jobs.
At Bridgewater Interiors in Warren, Mich., for example, the pace is intense. Hundreds of union employees scurry to fill a growing list of orders. The factory floor is packed with stacks of foam cushions, seat covers and headrests.