A remarkable transformation is underway in western North Dakota, where an oil boom is changing the state's fortunes and leaving once-sleepy towns bursting at the seams. In a series of stories, NPR is exploring the economic, social and environmental demands of this modern-day gold rush.
On a Sunday at dusk, Amtrak's eastbound Empire Builder train is jampacked, filled with people heading to their jobs in North Dakota towns like Minot, Williston and Watford City.
After a long spell of partisan trench warfare and gridlock, President Obama called for "a year of action" Tuesday as he focused on themes that are central to his second-term agenda. The changes he proposed in his annual State of the Union speech were relatively modest, but flashes of ambition showed in his promise to move forward, with or without Congress, to address issues of income inequality.
Here's what President Obama proposed on the policy front:
Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 7:23 am
Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the highest-ranking female Republican in the U.S. House, occupied a coveted spot Tuesday night: She delivered the televised rebuttal to the president's State of the Union.
Yet the Washington congresswoman and mother of three young children didn't have the spotlight to herself. She faced competition from within the ranks of her own party, a stark reflection of the divisions that have riven the GOP.
Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 1:37 pm
It would have been hard to find a happier man than Erick Munoz on that Tuesday morning before Thanksgiving.
With a healthy and delightful son toddling around the house, and his beautiful and successful wife pregnant with their second child, the fire department paramedic had everything in life that's really important. So it must have been with a feeling of disbelief and horror that Munoz knelt across the nearly lifeless body of his wife, Marlise, on the kitchen floor at 2 a.m., his fingers linking across her heart, arms pumping away in vain.
Two cantaloupe farmers who pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a 2011 outbreak of listeria that killed 33 people, were sentenced on Tuesday to five years probation and six months of home detention.
The AP reports:
"A federal magistrate also ordered brothers Eric and Ryan Jensen to each pay $150,000 in restitution and perform 100 hours of community service. Each read a statement in which they apologized but didn't show any emotion during the hearing.
It came as a surprise to many people when Vermont's governor recently devoted his entire 2014 State of the State address to what he called a "full-blown heroin crisis."
While it may not fit Vermont's bucolic image, the state's addiction problem has long been acknowledged. And as the state has expanded treatment, it's also been coming to grips with one of the most difficult and emotional aspects of the issue: addicted mothers.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
And I'm Audie Cornish.
In Cairo today, former President Mohammed Morsi appeared in court for the second time since he was ousted in a military coup last July. The Islamist leader wore a white prison uniform and stood in a glass-enclosed cage. As NPR's Leila Fadel reports, Morsi faces charges that could lead to the death penalty.