Residents of Coastal New York and New Jersey are still feeling the aftereffects of Sandy more than two months after the powerful storm. President Obama signed a $9.7 billion Sandy aid package last Sunday, and Congress will decide the fate of another $51 billion aid package next Tuesday. Bob Hennelly, contributing editor for politics and investigations for Takeaway co-producer WNYC, discusses the politics behind Sandy aid, and how victims are coping.
As President Obama moves into his second term, his policy priorities, and the policies themselves, will likely shift. Coral Davenport, energy and environment correspondent for the National Journal, explores the Obama Administration's priorities on climate change, and Elisabeth Bumiller, Pentagon correspondent for Takeaway partner The New York Times, discusses the Administration's policy shifts in Afghanistan.
In her reporting for The New Yorker, journalist Rachel Aviv follows subjects with complicated legal or medical problems, such as homeless LGBT runaways living with HIV, or whether teenagers who commit heinous crimes should be given life sentences. Aviv's latest piece, "The Science of Sex Abuse," explores the difficult medical, legal and moral questions in civil commitment in cases of possessing child pornography.
As of January 1st, Texas began its own, state-funded Women's Health Program, forgoing federal Medicaid funds to avoid using Planned Parenthood health providers. Ben Philpott, senior reporter for KUT in Austin, discusses the new program and how it serves low-income women in Texas.
Journalist and author Amy Wilentz first traveled to Haiti in 1986, as the regime of Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier began to crumble and fall. Today, more than 25 years later, Wilentz reflects on the unique nation that has made her career in her new book, "Farewell, Fred Voodoo."
As President Obama prepares for his second term, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner plans to leave as soon as Congress confirms his replacement. Geithner has certainly faced an uphill battle since assuming the position in 2009, in the midst of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Michael Barr, professor of law at the University of Michigan Law School who previously served in the U.S. Treasury Department, examines his legacy.
One week into 2013, and many pundits have already released their predictions for the top stories of the new year. Some are predictable, such as the likely political fight over the debt ceiling in March, but others are unexpected, just as few anticipated that 2011 would have seen such rapid change across the Middle East and North Africa. Ian Bremmer, president of the Eurasia Group, is an expert at predicting the unexpected. Today, the Eurasia Group releases its report on the top risks to watch in 2013, with a number of surprising results.
In the midst of the fiscal cliff negotiations, Congress allowed the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) to expire. In its eighteen years of existence, VAWA has provided $4.7 billion for training police, prosecutors, health care professionals and many others on how to handle cases involving violence against women. Chris Mallios is an attorney advisor for AEquitas, an organization that provides these trainings. He explains how VAWA-funded education has changed the way many Americans understand violence against women.
Within civilizations made out of hunter-gatherers, the practices for raising children and caring for the elderly are far different than in the developed world in the West. But, there may be lessons to be learned from these traditional societies. Jared Diamond has spent nearly 50 years studying culture and civilizations in Papua New Guinea. His latest book is called, "The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies?"
On Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security announced a rule change that will help undocumented immigrants who are immediate relatives of American citizens. Julia Preston, national immigration correspondent for Takeaway partner The New York Times, explains the intricacies of this new policy, which may affect up to one million people.
In February 1989, after nine long years, the last Soviet troops left Afghanistan. Today, as the United States transitions out of the country, Nikolas Gvosdev, professor of national security studies at the U.S. Naval War College, says that Americans have plenty of lessons to learn from the Soviet withdrawal.
Robert Caro is the author of the multi-volume Pulitzer Prize-winning biography, “The Years of Lyndon Johnson.” The most recent installment is entitled "The Passage of Power." He sat down with John Hockenberry to reflect on how the obstacles and successes of President Johnson's presidency compare to those of President Obama's.
In January 2012, as she imagined the year ahead, Sandra Fluke, then a third year law student at Georgetown, assumed her role in the 2012 campaign would be similar to that of most Americans. "At the beginning of the year, I imagined my influence was going to be my one vote and potentially volunteering for some candidates," she explains. "But it turned out to be somewhat larger than that." Fluke reflects on 2012, and discusses her goals for the year ahead.
In the 15 years since Seinfeld signed off, actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus has found a niche of comedic gold in Elaine-style roles, portraying intelligent American women who want – or want to maintain – some measure of power, and control over their own lives. The role of Vice President Selena Meyer in the HBO comedy “VEEP” epitomizes the Louis-Dreyfus niche. Louis-Dreyfus discusses her Emmy-winning year, and looks ahead for Selena Meyer in 2013.
While the Olympics may have been the highlight of this year in sports, Lance Armstrong's doping scandal threatens to overshadow the athletic world as we reflect on 2012. Most Americans will likely remember Armstrong as a fraud, but Ellis Cashmore, professor of culture, media and sport at Staffordshire University, says that Armstrong’s case demonstrates that it’s time to allow doping in sports.
President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner have just eleven days to strike a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff. Yesterday, House Republicans failed to reach a vote on Speaker Boehner's "Plan B," while Senate Democrats promised to reject the proposal. Christina Bellantoni, political editor for PBS NewsHour, explains how the two sides might come together, and whether the President and Speaker Boehner have another plan in the works.
President Obama will likely take on immigration reform in his second term, but, for now, it's nearly impossible for undocumented students to attend college in Georgia. That's why University of Georgia professor Betina Kaplan founded Freedom University, a free school that provides classes for undocumented immigrants. Maricela Delgado is one of Kaplan’s students at Freedom University.
For NATO, 2012 has been a key year in Afghanistan, as troops there prepare to hand over power to Afghan security forces next year. As far as the challenges that lie ahead, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen says he recognizes that countries in the alliance are economically strapped, a condition that could impact their defense budgets.
The firearm manufacturer Freedom Group produced some of the weapons used by the Washington, D.C. sniper in 2002, by James Holmes in Aurora Colorado, and by Adam Lanza in Newtown Connecticut last Friday. Who is behind this company? New York Times reporter Peter Lattman profiles the organization, and explains what the company's future might hold.