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Yesterday was hatchet day at the New Orleans Times-Picayune and three Alabama newspapers all owned by the same company. About 600 people found out they were being laid off.

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You are listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

What do women want, electorally speaking?

We know that women, like men, are "not some monolithic bloc," to quote the current occupant of the White House.

But as a group they are reliably influential voters, more risk-averse than men, and — pollsters tell us — generally more likely than the opposite sex to vote for Democrats, oppose the use of military force and support government programs.

In 2008, unmarried women, one of the nation's fastest-growing demographic groups, were a key to Barack Obama's presidential win.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is defending his effort to prevent non-U.S. citizens from voting in his state after the Justice Department filed a lawsuit to stop him on Tuesday.

Scott told NPR's Michel Martin on Tell Me More Wednesday that after learning his state didn't verify the citizenship status of registered voters, he's trying to ensure that the ballots of U.S. citizens aren't diminished:

The nearly 40 percent drop in median household net worth between 2007 and 2010 the Federal Reserve reported earlier this week was unarguably an arresting statistic. It confirmed for millions what they already knew, that the Great Recession and its aftermath have been a financial setback with few parallels.

James Hetfield, lead singer and guitarist for the heavy metal band Metallica, makes a straight-forward appeal for help in finding a fan's killer in a new public service ad produced for the FBI, Virginia and local law enforcement agencies.

Along with saying, again, that his bank "let a lot of people down" when it lost more than $2 billion, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon added this prediction during his testimony before the Senate Banking Committee this morning:

"It's likely that there will be clawbacks."

There are now at least 19 large wildfires burning in nine Western states U.S. Forest Service officials say.

How bad are U.S. relations with Pakistan?

Even as ties grew strained over the past few years, U.S. government and military officials generally used diplomatic language when talking about differences with Pakistan. But nowadays the Americans aren't even bothering to disguise their displeasure with their longtime ally.

Several recent events have shown just how blunt the Americans have become.

Florida's controversial voter eligibility program is intended to purge non-citizens from its rosters. State election officials say it's necessary to protect the integrity of elections. But the U.S. Justice Department has filed a lawsuit, saying eligible voters could get caught up. Host Michel Martin talks to Florida Governor Rick Scott.

Southern Farmers Sour To Senate Farm Bill

Jun 13, 2012

Transcript

JOSEPHINE BENNETT, BYLINE: I'm Josephine Bennett in Macon, Georgia, and this is peanut country.

(SOUNDBITE OF RAIN)

BENNETT: Georgia produces almost half of the nation's peanut crop, so a little rain like this is a big deal to people like Rodney Dawson, who farms thousands of acres in Hawkinsville.

RODNEY DAWSON: In this county alone, we've been hit five years in a row with drought. So yes, this is music to our ears.

Testimony continues in the trial of Jerry Sandusky, a former Penn State football coach accused of abusing boys. Tuesday saw emotional and graphic testimony from a victim and a witness.

Voters in Southern Arizona decided Tuesday who will replace former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords for the remainder of her term: her former district director, Ron Barber. Giffords resigned from Congress in January to focus on recovery from injuries she suffered in a shooting in early 2011. Barber was also injured. His Republican opponent, Tucson businessman Jesse Kelly, narrowly lost to Giffords two years ago.

Spc. Bryan Maximo dreamed of being a soldier when he was a young boy in the Philippines and heard stories of his grandfather, who served in the U.S. Army during World War II. Maximo came to the U.S. and worked hard studying English. He wanted to become an infantryman. Last month, he suffered a concussion in an explosion in Afghanistan.

When they travel to London to compete in this summer's Olympics, many elite athletes will be joined by family members. But for Alexander Massialas and his father, Greg, it's different. Both of them will represent the United States — one as a coach, and the other as an athlete.

The federal government promised almost 30 years ago to find a place to bury nuclear waste from power plants. It hasn't. So the waste is piling up at power plants around the country.

Now a federal court says the government must prove that this temporary solution is truly safe. The decision could help break the nuclear-waste logjam.

The latest proposal for the farm bill — the law governing everything from food stamps to rural development grants — is being considered by the U.S. Senate this week. It's designed to save more than $23 billion over the next 10 years, in part by getting rid of direct payments to farmers. The direct payment program alone costs taxpayers $5 billion per year.

If you think only farmers care about the farm bill currently being considered by Congress, you're very, very mistaken.

The measure will not only set policy and spending for the nation's farms for years to come, but it will also affect dozens of other seemingly unrelated programs — all at a cost of nearly $1 trillion over the next decade. Following are a few questions and answers about the massive legislation:

Why is it called the farm bill, and where did it come from?

Democrats knew that they would be disadvantaged under the new campaign finance rules created by the Supreme Court. But the disparity between the amount of money Republicans can raise in unlimited anonymous donations and what the Democrats have been able to raise is huge.

In the middle of California's driest desert is the Salton Sea, the state's largest lake. Once a popular tourist destination, the storied salty and toxic lake nestled in the Imperial Valley has been slowly shrinking over the years.

A water transfer deal passed in 2003 could speed up that process, and some are now worried it could be an environmental and health disaster for the region.

Standing near the Salton Sea's receding shoreline on a recent day, 75-year-old Ed Angel points to a ragged patch of desert with dying palm trees.

The Roger Clemens perjury case is in the hands of the jury now. The panel of eight women and four men began deliberations late Tuesday, after prosecution and defense lawyers made their final arguments.

While the star pitcher's defense called the case "outrageous," prosecutors charged that Clemens chose to lie, mislead and impede a congressional investigation when he testified about performance-enhancing drugs.

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And I'm Audie Cornish. Attorney General Eric Holder was called to testify on Capitol Hill today where Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee skewered Holder. They challenged his ability to oversee a rigorous investigation of national security leaks. They demanded more information about the botched gun operation known as Fast and Furious, and they even called for Holder's resignation. NPR's Carrie Johnson reports.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker beat back Democrats' efforts to kick him out of office last week in an election widely seen as a national referendum on labor policies.

To Rehabilitate Young Vets, Go Hunting

Jun 12, 2012

Recreational rehabilitation programs have long been a favorite for helping disabled veterans acclimate after war, and the number of young and disabled vets returning who need those services is on the rise.

Two brothers — with nearly 60 years of military service between them — are trying to help with a unique retreat that's free for young vets. The program gets them out of their hospital beds for a few days to hunt in rural Pennsylvania.

Mitt Romney seemed pretty adamant last week when he said taxpayers didn't want any more teachers, firefighters and police officers, suggesting that they wanted to see government at all levels shrink.

But given the chance during a Fox News appearance Tuesday to repeat the bold statement of just a few days ago, the all-but-official presidential nominee essentially took a pass.

It's a given that Latino voters are viewed by both political parties as critical to the the 2012 general election and that polling shows President Obama, and Democrats generally, enjoying a significant advantage with that such voters.

That reality prompted Mitt Romney to tell donors at a closed-door Palm Beach, Fla. fundraiser in April, in remarks overheard by reporters:

"We have to get Hispanic voters to vote for our party." He suggested that if the GOP failed to draw significant numbers of Latino voters away from the Democratic Party "that spells doom for us."

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