Valley Public Radio - Live Audio

NPR News

Remember the planned redesign of the $20 bill that was going to include the first African American woman to appear on U.S. currency?

Well, don't expect to see Harriett Tubman on your $20 any time soon.

Surprise medical bills — those unexpected and often pricey bills patients face when they get care from a doctor or hospital that isn't in their insurance network — are the health care problem du jour in Washington, with President Trump and congressional lawmakers from both sides of the aisle calling for action.

May 23 is Red Nose Day in the United States.

March 15 was Red Nose Day in the United Kingdom.

Both are charity events involving red foam noses sold as part of fundraising campaigns to fight child poverty around the world.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. Tonight, ABC plans to mount a very unusual experiment - a TV special called "Live In Front Of A Studio Audience," in which well-known actors will recreate individual episodes of two vintage sitcoms, using the original scripts, broadcast live. The shows will be drawn from two of the most familiar and successful sitcoms from producer Norman Lear - "All In The Family" and "The Jeffersons." These new versions star Jamie Foxx as George Jefferson and Woody Harrelson as Archie Bunker. Our TV critic David Bianculli has these advanced thoughts.

Copyright 2019 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Japan's foreign minister is making headlines — by pushing back on the headlines themselves.

At issue: the order in which foreign media write and say Japanese names.

In a news conference Tuesday, Foreign Minister Taro Kono said he plans to ask overseas news outlets to write Japanese names with the family name first and given name second — as is the convention in Japan.

Binyavanga Wainaina, the deeply influential Kenyan writer credited with founding the literary magazine and collective Kwani? and advancing the fight for LGBTQ rights in Africa, has died at the age of 48. The Caine Prize for African Writing, which Wainaina won in 2002, confirmed his death in a statement Wednesday.

Updated at 1:55 p.m. ET

Negotiations over a potential infrastructure program fizzled on Wednesday as a White House meeting between President Trump and Democrats escalated into blame-trading and political threats — including impeachment.

The president was the first to appear after the session in a Rose Garden availability that he used to renew his call for Democrats to abandon investigations into him if they want to negotiate over improving the nation's roads and bridges or other legislation.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he has "not yet" reviewed a confidential draft Internal Revenue Service memo, which reportedly says the agency must turn over a president's tax returns to Congress unless the president asserts executive privilege.

Appearing before the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday, Mnuchin said he looked at the memo for the first time "literally on the way up here."

President Trump came into office criticizing the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and promised he would try to avoid foreign military engagements. Yet this month the White House has been talking as if conflict with Iran is suddenly on the table. Trump tweeted over the weekend, "If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran."

Updated at 2:50 p.m. ET

Opponents of abortion rights have a long history of supporting abortion bans with three major exceptions: when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest, or when a woman's life is at risk.

But, fueled by momentum from the passage of a restrictive abortion law in Alabama, a coalition of anti-abortion-rights groups released a letter Wednesday asking Republican officials to "reconsider decades-old talking points" on exceptions to such laws.

Updated 4:45pm E.T.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection temporarily suspended intake at the McAllen Central Processing Center on Tuesday, the largest migrant processing center in South Texas, after the outbreak of what the agency calls "a flu-related illness."

It is the same facility where a 16-year-old Guatemalan boy became ill last week, and died after he was transferred to another Border Patrol station.

Confirmation of Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's reelection win has set off violence in Jakarta, where officials say at least six people died after protests morphed into riots in the capital. Widodo's challenger, retired military general Prabowo Subianto, is refusing to concede the race.

Widodo, who has called for unity in the wake of the hotly contested election, said he will not tolerate rioting.

There are some trials that naturally lend themselves to dramatic recounting in books or movies. They're usually the same ones that get called "trials of the century." Cases, for example, involving John T. Scopes, Bruno Richard Hauptmann, Adolf Eichmann and O.J. Simpson all captured the public imagination and inspired writers and filmmakers to take a shot at depicting the courtroom drama that ensued.

Anita Hill has never really been one for compromise.

The lawyer's decision not to do so first propelled her into public life nearly three decades ago, when she came forward with sexual harassment allegations against Clarence Thomas in his 1991 Supreme Court confirmation hearings. And she doesn't intend to begin compromising now.

Jeremy Dutcher came to the Tiny Desk with sparkling, purple streams of glitter draped around his shoulders. Then he set his iPad on our Yamaha upright piano, not to read his score as pianists do these days, but to play a centuries-old wax cylinder recording of a song sung in the incredibly rare language of Wolastoq. Jeremy Dutcher, along with cellist Blanche Israel and percussionist and electronics wizard Greg Harrison, wove that old recording into a remarkably passionate performance that was very 21st-century, with a deep nod to a century past.

Ahead of elections this week for a new European Parliament, 11 populist leaders rallied last Saturday in Milan's Piazza Duomo. They vowed to reassert their national sovereignty by wresting control from European Union bureaucrats headquartered in Brussels. Their host: Italy's Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, the leader of Italy's far-right League party and Europe's rising populist star.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

President Hillary Clinton?

That would have been the result of the 2016 presidential election — if the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact were in effect.

With a state Senate vote Tuesday, Nevada is close to becoming the latest state to sidestep the Electoral College when it comes to electing presidents.

Pages