Yesterday the case of Trayvon Martin took a number of significant turns — among them, a report that Martin knocked George Zimmerman to the ground and beat him before Zimmerman fired. Today, we review the new developments and speak with Michael Bender, a reporter for Bloomberg News.
In this conversation with Kathleen Hall Jamieson, professor of communications and director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, we hear how Democrats plan to rehabilitate the word "ObamaCare" through coordinated public relations campaigns online and off.
The day after Mitt Romney took 54 delegates in Illinois, Rick Santorum has set his sights on Pennsylvania, where he served two terms as Senator. His speech last night from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, sought to define himself as the anti-businessman and the anti-Romney. But even if Santorum wins Pennsylvania on April 24th, would it be enough to win the delegate war?
Albert Einstein's entire archive of manuscripts, letters, theoretical musings, and personal correspondences are going online. More than 80,000 pages of material, owned by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, will now be digitized and shared on the web. To date, only 900 pages of the brilliant scientist's legacy have ever been available to the public. The digital archive will offer the world an entirely new look at one of the 20th century's most important figures, scientific or otherwise.
In some states, parents frustrated with the public school system may have a new tool to fix their child’s education. Parent trigger laws, passed in some form in four states already, give dissatisfied parents the power to fire teachers, convert a public school to a charter, or even shut down the school altogether. As one can imagine, such a dramatic solution to the problem of public education has created quite a controversy. Parents and educators alike are asking: should parents have their fingers on the trigger of public education?
As the webcam-spying trial of Rutgers student Dharun Ravi comes to an end, some people have questioned whether hate crime laws are necessary at all. On the one hand, they dole out harsher punishments for crimes motivated by discrimination and bigotry. On the other, is the same crime worse depending on the identity of the victim? In the Rutgers case, the jury must decide if Ravi's actions constituted a hate crime or just a tasteless prank.
According to the National Home Education Research Institute (NHEI), about two million American children (about 4 percent of all American students) receive their education at home. The NHEI claims that those families are usually white Christians in rural areas who disagree with the public school system on religious grounds.
Every Friday, The Takeaway convenes a panel to look back at the week's big stories. This week Rick Santorum wins Alabama and Mississippi, March Madness sweeps the country, and liquid detergent becomes a black market commodity.
Comments by the lawyer for the U.S. soldier who allegedly killed 16 Afghan civilians on Sunday has shed new light on the psychological state of the soldier in question. The lawyer, John Henry Browne, says the soldier was reluctant about going on another tour of duty, and was having tensions with his wife about the deployments on the night of the shooting. In addition, a senior U.S. official tells our partner The New York Times that the soldier had been drinking alcohol, a violation of military rules in combat zones. "When it all comes out, it will be a combination of stress, alcohol and domestic issues — he just snapped," the unnamed senior official said.
When Goldman Sachs employee Greg Smith handed in his letter of resignation, he did so in the most public manner possible — by posting it in the pages of The New York Times. In his letter, the former derivatives trader described the firm's working environment as "toxic and destructive" and accused their culture of placing company profits over client interest whenever possible.
According to new reports from Human Rights Watch, Syria is laying landmines across its borders with Lebanon and Turkey. Steve Goose, arms division director for Human Rights Watch, called the use of these weapons "unconscionable," going on to say that "there is absolutely no justification for the use of these indiscriminate weapons by any country, anywhere, for any purpose." What implications will these weapons have on the estimated 200,000 refugees still within Syrian borders?
More than halfway through the Republican primaries, there is still no clear frontrunner. It's a three-way race with four men running, and the guy that no one paid any attention to last year keeps walking away with primary victories. Our expert political panel examines last night’s Republican primary election results and discuss what Mississippi and Alabama's wins may mean for the GOP race ahead.
For Republican presidential candidates, capturing the Deep South means capturing the base of American conservatism. But southern voters have yet to decide on any one candidate, and southern sensibilities are broadening. Our partner, the New York Times, reported that the southern conservative electorate may be far more diverse than it once was. Are the Southern Republican voters going to gravitate towards Rick Santorum’s conservative social agenda, or are voters more about Newt Gingrich, the only one on the ballots with actual ties to the south? And what about Mitt Romney — are Southern evangelicals ready for a Mormon president?
Information continues to trickle out about the American Army Staff Sergeant who allegedly killed 16 Afghan civilians over the weekend. Who is he? What were his motives? For some, the killings have prompted very different questions about the longest war in American history. Perhaps most importantly, how much longer should America be engaged in the region at all?
The South has played a crucial role to the Republican Party for decades. Since 1996 every Republican presidential nominee has had some personal connection to the South. Furthermore, each of those nominees achieved their position by aggressively courting the Southern vote by reflecting their ethics and policy positions. Not so with Mitt Romney. Does that reflect more on the former Massachusetts governor's strategy, or a realization that the south may be experiencing a waning influence over the GOP?
It was a case of crime and punishment in the digital age when Cincinnati-based mechanical engineer Mark Miller took to Twitter with a series of politically heated missives about a local municipal project. Upset that the city of Cincinnati, Ohio would be spending money on a new streetcar, Miller sent tweet after tweet about how those efforts were browning out large percentages of fire departments in the city limits. Miller's tweets didn't just incite local debate, they got Miller slapped with a lawsuit, because under an Ohio law, it's illegal to make false statements in political campaigns. There are 17 states with similar laws -- but do those laws still reflect the reality we are living in?
Here's a question you may not have asked yourself: why does the Republican party hold primaries and caucuses at all? Is there a better system than the long, drawn out process of staggered elections which push and pull the political momentum towards different candidates at different points in the cycle? Wouldn't it be easier to have all of the states elect their nominee at once? Or is there another way entirely to choose our political leaders?
Super Tuesday results aren't just about state-by-state winners and losers -- or about securing delegates. They're also a crucial barometer of what matters to voters and why. Detailed exit polls results from contests around the country paint a complex picture about what issues voters of different demographics are most passionate about and who they believe will be represent their interests.