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Politics

Annette Elizabeth Allen / NPR

President Trump is speaking about border security at the White House. Congress passed a compromise spending measure Thursday to avert a government that includes some funding for the border barrier. But the White House says Trump will also sign an emergency declaration that will allow him to divert additional funds to build a wall as he has long promised.

Updated at 3:15 p.m. ET

Calling it "a great thing to do," President Trump declared a national emergency on Friday in order to help finance a long-promised wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. It's a highly unusual move from an unconventional president.

Courtesy Marc Nozell via Flickr, Creative Commons

In about one year from today, if you can believe it, New Hampshire voters will participate in their 2020 Presidential Primary, famous for its long-time status as being first in the nation. The small state’s out-sized political role has made it a must stop for politicians of all levels of popularity. And the list of politicians who have visited the state so far is growing fast. 

PAUL BASS / NEW HAVEN INDEPENDENT

New Haven Police Chief Anthony Campbell's recently announced plans to leave the department has brought the city's budget woes into focus, as well as its contentious brand of politics.

The police department is down to 395 officers, Campbell told city alders earlier this week. That's 100 less than called for in the department's 2019 fiscal year budget, he maintained.

Updated at 1:39 a.m. ET Tuesday

Congressional negotiators have reached what they are calling "an agreement in principle" on a border-security spending agreement. Details of the agreement have not yet been released. Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., says the full details will be released when the drafting of the bill is complete — a process that could be finished on Tuesday, at the earliest.

It may be tough to believe it's been just a week and a half since a racist photograph in a decades-old medical school yearbook knocked Virginia's leadership into disarray.

At the first hearing on gun violence on Capitol Hill since 2011, politicians fell into well-worn party roles, but — as they have for much of the last year — young people brought new energy to the familiar debate.

Updated at 10 p.m. ET

The man who served in the U.S. Congress longer than anyone else in history has died.

John Dingell, a Democrat who represented Michigan in the U.S. House of Representatives starting in 1955 until January 2015, died Thursday at the age of 92, his wife, Rep. Debbie Dingell, confirmed. John Dingell served for 59 years in Congress and cast more than 21,000 roll call votes. He was undefeated in 30 elections.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut’s former attorney general has found a new job. And for some it’s a controversial choice, as he could end up advising some of the entities he sued while he worked for the state.

Chion Wolf / WNPR/Connecticut Public Radio

This month marks the 40th anniversary of the Iranian revolution -- that is, the revolution that gave rise to what is today known as the Islamic Republic of Iran.

This hour, we look back on this historic time in Iran and consider its significance in 2019. 

Massachusetts Democrats will hold their annual convention in Springfield this fall, but the city's Democratic mayor will apparently not be at the event.

Philip Dawe / John Carter Brown Library

Lin-Manuel Miranda's Hamilton has inspired millions to learn more about the founding of America. Some may be moved by a story of scrappy underdogs fighting for freedom against all odds. Others may wonder if America has ever lived up to the ideals assured in our Constitution. 

Getty Images / Pool

President Donald Trump's State of the Union address Tuesday night was full of contrasting tones. Like when he endorsed national paid family leave for new parents, and then just seconds later, called for legislation banning late-term abortions.

Today, we break down his speech, and how well it went over or didn't go over with Congressional Democrats.

Michelle Lee / Creative Commons

Senate Democrats rolled out a legislative agenda for what they’re calling “A Just Connecticut” in the 2019 legislative session. 

J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

Senator Richard Blumenthal says that he will oppose the confirmation of William Barr to be the next attorney general. Blumenthal, who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee, met with Barr Monday before announcing his decision. 

President Trump delivers his State of the Union address in 2018.
D. Myles Cullen / White House

President Trump is delivering his State of the Union address, which the White House says will outline a "policy agenda both parties can rally behind." Yet the speech follows the longest shutdown in U.S. history, and the deadline to avoid another one is in less than two weeks. 

nathanmac87 / Flickr

Cities and towns have laws to keep people from engaging in behavior that may disturb others, like sleeping on park benches, drinking in public, or just plain “loitering”.

What does it mean when just hanging out in a public space puts you in violation of these laws?

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The fate of a contested election in Stratford will be decided the state House of Representatives. But the House will have to consider two conflicting resolutions by the legislature's Committee on Contested Elections. 

Updated at 4:20 p.m. ET

Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax is a lot of things Virginia's current governor is not: young, charismatic and part of a multicultural wave sweeping through the commonwealth's Democratic Party.

He could soon be called upon to lead the state, should Gov. Ralph Northam, a fellow Democrat, reverse course and adhere to the avalanche of calls — from inside and outside Virginia — for him to resign.

Updated at 6:06 p.m. ET

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam faced mounting pressure to step down Sunday after a racist photo published on his 1984 medical school yearbook page sparked controversy on Friday that he has been unable to contain or control.

And one of Northam's biggest problems is that the loudest, most strident calls from his resignation are coming mostly from political allies, Democrats from across his state and across the country.

Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey is the latest Democrat to enter the increasingly crowded race for the White House, making the initial announcement with a message of unity.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The significance of being confirmed as Connecticut's first African-American state Supreme Court chief justice last May didn't fully sink in for Richard A. Robinson until a class of mostly minority students recently showed up to the Hartford court building for a tour.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Elections aren't for another nine or so months, but mayoral races are heating up across Connecticut. That includes those in the state's three largest cities where the top municipal leaders are Democrats, and challengers from within the party keep emerging.

There has been no shortage of reaction to former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz's declaration that he is seriously considering running — as an independent — for president.

Master Steve Rapport / Creative Commons

There's a healthy debate going on about whether to initiate impeachment proceedings against President Trump.

The Atlantic's Yoni Appelbaum and others say now is the time to begin the process. History tells us that the process of impeachment, not the outcome, is a vital protection against the dangers of a president who has not kept his promise to preserve and defend our Constitution. Others say Trump will need to be beaten at the polls in the absence of Mueller-stamped evidence.  

Updated at 9:45 p.m. ET

The longest government shutdown in history ended after President Trump signed a bipartisan three-week stopgap funding measure late Friday. Several agencies had been partially shuttered for 35 days.

"I am very proud to announce today that we have reached a deal to end the shutdown and reopen the federal government," Trump said earlier Friday in the White House Rose Garden, announcing the long-awaited bipartisan breakthrough.

Annette Elizabeth Allen / NPR

President Donald Trump is speaking about the partial government shutdown more than 34 days since it began. This comes as federal workers miss another paycheck and air travel is delayed because of a shortage of workers.

Does Working More Days Make State Legislatures More Effective?

Jan 25, 2019
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut purposely doesn't have a full-time legislature.

But state lawmakers' jobs aren't considered part-time either, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

They fall somewhere in between.

Updated at 9 p.m. ET

After an at-times heated debate, the Senate on Thursday, as expected, failed to approve either of the competing measures that would have ended the standoff over border wall funding.

If nothing else, the votes seemed to spur a flurry of efforts to find a way to end the standoff. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., announced on the Senate floor after the measures failed that he spoke with President Trump about a three-week stopgap bill to reopen the government.

In this game of who would blink first in this shutdown showdown, it was, perhaps surprisingly, President Trump.

Late Wednesday night, the president tweeted saying he would defer to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and not deliver a State of the Union address until the government is back open.

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