Around the Nation
7:01 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Competitive Eater Creates Twinkie-Eating Record

Competitive eater Takeru Kobayashi is best known for eating hot dogs. He once ate 69 in 10 minutes. Now he's on to a different food. TV host Wendy Williams invited Kobayashi on her show to set the Guiness record for most Twinkies consumed in a minute. There was no previous record for Twinkie eating.

Politics
7:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Is The State Of The Union Address Obsolete?

President Obama delivers last year's State of the Union Address on Jan. 25, 2011.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 5:07 pm

Given the nonstop, stereo-rock news cycle, the warp speed tempo of geopolitics and the constant to-and-fro between the media and the president, has the State of the Union address become obsolete?

Traditionally, the speech — an annual where-we-stand lecture delivered by the president to a joint session of Congress — has for decades been an opportunity for the professor in chief to issue a national report card and put current events in calm, codifiable context.

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Politics
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

State Of The Union To Focus On The Economy

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 10:00 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

A string of debates and primaries has kept the Republican presidential candidates in the spotlight this election season. Tonight, it's the president's turn to take center stage. President Obama will deliver the annual State of the Union Address, and in many ways kick off his own campaign for re-election. It's a reminder that Mr. Obama is running for president.

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Election 2012
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Romney Campaign Finally Releases His Tax Returns

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 10:00 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

All right, so Romney has gone on the attack in Florida, and he'll also be answering a lot of questions today about those taxes that he is releasing. As we heard from Mara, it turns out over the last few years, the effective tax rate Romney has paid is just under 15 percent.

Now, Newt Gingrich has been pressing Romney to publicly disclose the documents. And the former House speaker released his own tax returns, to dramatic effect, during a debate last Thursday.

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Around the Nation
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Mass. Senate Race To Block Third-Party Political Ads

The two dominant candidates for U.S. Senate from Massachusetts say they want to keep superPAC ads out of the state. Sen. Scott Brown and his Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren have signed a pledge requiring that each candidate donate half the cost of any outside ad to charity, if that ad either supports their candidacy or attacks their opponent.

Election 2012
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Romney, Gingrich Clash During GOP Debate In Tampa

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 10:00 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

GREENE: The latest Republican debate - last night in Florida - was more subdued than when the candidates last took the stage, in South Carolina. But still, it contained plenty of sharp jabs. After it was over, another dramatic turn in the race, with new revelations about Mitt Romney's taxes. We'll explore those numbers in depth, in a few minutes.

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Business
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 12:45 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And our last word in business today is a pat-down throwdown. The Transportation Safety Administration says it did not detain Kentucky Senator Rand Paul. But officials at the agency did stop one of their most outspoken critics while he was going through the airport security line in Nashville yesterday.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The Republican senator was going through a body scanner when the alarm went off. Apparently, it was an anomaly. Then, he refused to submit to a pat-down, so he was escorted out of the screening area.

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Business
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 10:00 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with another powerful woman in Brazil.

The Brazilian state oil company has a new chief executive. Her name is Maria das Gracas Foster. Petrobras is the world's fifth-largest oil producer, and Foster becomes the first woman to run a top-five oil company. This comes as the firm looks to double its production by 2020.

The company's stocks surged on news of the appointment. Foster will be the second-most powerful woman in Brazil, after the president. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

World
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

U.S. Ambassador Accused Of Supporting Anti-Putin Forces

David Greene interviews Michael McFaul, the new U.S. Ambassador to Russia, about the future of U.S. Russia relations and the rocky reception he's been given by the pro-Putin media.

Sports
4:00 am
Tue January 24, 2012

U.S. Women's Soccer Looks To Qualify For Olympics

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

You might remember, last summer, the U.S. women's soccer team caught the attention of the nation with its dramatic run to the final of the women's world cup in Germany. Well, this week, the team is playing in an all-important, Olympic-qualifying tournament in Vancouver. And Christine Brennan is there covering the event for USA Today.

Christine, good morning.

CHRISTINE BRENNAN: Good morning, David.

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