Todd Zwillich has been reporting from Washington, DC for close to 15 years. Todd's first byline was as a science and medicine reporter in the trade press, but it didn't take long for him to find his way to Capitol Hill. Todd worked for several years for Reuters, wrote about new research for Science and covered the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina for the British Lancet. He found his way to radio in 2006, becoming a public radio reporter on Capitol Hill. He covered the 2008 Republican and Democratic National Conventions for WAMU in Washington and several other public radio stations. Todd first appeared on the The Takeaway when it was in pilot and joined the show as Washington Correspondent in 2009.
Is the Ukraine crisis a reassertion of Russian pride and is Crimea becoming the symbol of Russia's reemergence as an empire in Eastern Europe? Many on Capitol Hill and in academia have long argued that the moment would come when Russia would try to get back some of what it lost after the fall of the Soviet Union—is this new crisis an "I told you so" moment from the voices in D.C. who never believed the Cold War is over? Todd Zwillich, Takeaway Washington Correspondent, and Michael Hirsh, Chief Correspondent for the National Journal, join The Takeaway to explain.
Russian forces in Crimea, violent protests in Kiev, escalating tensions between West and East. Here's a breakdown of the proposals Congressional leaders are crafting in response to the Ukraine-Russia crisis.
After four decades representing the 33rd district in the state of California, Democratic Congressman Henry Waxman has decided that this term will be his final one. Some like Big Tobacco and the fossil fuel industry will no doubt be glad to see Waxman say goodbye—he fought and won big battles to sanction or regulate those industries during his time in Congress. He sat down recently with Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich to discuss his pioneering battles and the legacy he hopes to leave behind in Washington.
Also on Today's Show: What role should international institutions play in helping Ukraine's troubled economy amid the political upheaval? ... A look at how congress might respond to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's proposal to reduce troop numbers to pre-World War II levels ... Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni signed into law a bill that would further criminalize homosexuality. Will this harsh legislation jeopardize U.S.-Uganda relations?
In Tennessee, a vote was held over the weekend that many believe could be a nail in the coffin for organized labor. Workers at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant voted against joining the United Auto Workers union—the move was opposed every step of the way by the state's governor and other members of the GOP. Kristin Dziczek, director of the Industry & Labor Group at the Center for Automotive Research, joins The Takeaway to describe why this vote caused such a fight. Andy Berke, the Mayor of Chattanooga, also weighs in.
Also on Today's Show: Over the weekend, Olympians broke records and broke down. Mary Pilon, sports reporter for our partner The New York Times, is on site at the Sochi Games and fills us in on the highs and lows. The Takeaway's Olympic series, "How Do They Do That?," continues. Resident Olympic Physicist Eric Goff, and Curt Schreiner, a three-time Olympian and director of the Saratoga Biathlon Club, gives us the ins and outs of the grueling sport.
In honor of President's Day, we take two historical looks at the American presidency. First Mark Forsyth looks back at the word's humble origins and traces just how it came to have the heft it has today. The second recounts how a small angry mammal changed the course of history. WNYC reporter Jim O'Grady says that President Jimmy Carter's bizarre encounter with a crazed swimming rabbit on a Georgia lake crystallized an emerging sense that Carter was a man in over his head.
Early Friday morning, Netflix released the entire second season of its show "House of Cards." Though Netflix refuses to release the viewership numbers, when looking at the hype online, and the estimates by one internet provider that 15 percent of their Netflix subscribers watched the show over the weekend, it's safe to say that the show is a hit. But just how realistic is the show about a corrupt majority whip? A real former whip—Congressman David Bonior—joins us today to share his insights.
Over the last few years, technology has transformed how we understand and consume the news. A few decades ago, most of us read the morning paper or tuned in to the evening news, but those habits have changed with the growth of the internet and cable. As the news audience splinters, author Alain de Botton worries that the public isn't getting the whole picture. In his new book, "The News: A User's Manual," he argues that we need better training on how to consume and decode the news.
Also on Today's Show: At least half a dozen states are looking to change their laws around alcohol this year, including allowing grocery stores in some states to sell either liquor and/or wine, reducing taxes, and eliminating mandatory “Sunday closing,” among other things...Our Movie Date team reviews this weekend’s releases, which include: “Winter’s Tale,” “Robocop,” “Endless Love,” and “About Last Night.”
How do we make love last? Helen Fisher, biological anthropologist and professor at the Center for Human Evolution Studies at Rutgers, explains her recent research on the scientific underpinnings of long-lasting romance. The Takeaway also gets relationship advice from one couple, Jack Connelly and Bob Gaither, who began dating 37 years ago, in the late 1970s. At that time, they truly defied the odds as a gay couple and an interracial couple. They share their story, along with the relationship lessons they've learned over the past few decades together.
Kansas state lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow individuals and businesses to cite their religious beliefs and deny services or goods to a gay couple getting married or entering a civil union. Joining The Takeaway to weigh in is Kansas State Representative Barbara Bollier, one of 19 Republican House members to vote against the bill. And Allen Rostron, a professor of constitutional law at University of Missouri-Kansas City.
Red-headed women are often perceived as fiery and dangerous. But their male counterparts are associated with different stereotypes - they're clownish, weak and maybe a bit hefty. Scott Harris, director of "Being Ginger," and Anne Margaret Daniel, a professor and blogger for the Huffington Post who specializes in the social history of red-heads, discuss why people across the world judge those with red hair.
This week, just nine months after the Boy Scouts of America lifted their longtime ban on openly gay scouts, 17-year old Pascal Tessier became the first openly gay member to be officially recognized as an Eagle Scout. But in six months, Pascal will no longer be allowed to be a part of the Boy Scouts of America. That’s because he’ll be turning 18, and according to the BSA guidelines, openly gay adults are not welcome.
Also on Today's Show: The winter storm system that shut down much of South and mid-Atlantic yesterday is now taking its toll on the Northeast. The challenge from this storm has come in form of ice...After three years of brinkmanship, confrontation and threatened defaults, both the House and the Senate have agreed to raise the debt ceiling without conditions until March of 2015.
From the unusual origins of Craigslist's "Missed Connections" to the science behind eHarmony, we take a look at the tech powering online dating sites.
Chicago's Sarah E. Goode STEM Academy is working to prove that the old way maybe isn't always best. At Sarah E. Goode, students attend high school for six years, graduating with a high school diploma and an associate's degree. Rana Foroohar, assistant managing editor at Time Magazine reported on this story in a cover story for the latest edition of the magazine. Stan Litow, IBM vice president of corporate citizenship and one of the innovators behind the Sarah E. Goode school explains what his dreams for this model look like.
Also On Today's Show: Alaska has been experiencing abnormally warm weather this winter, which is presenting all sorts of challenges and even dangers...A federal lawsuit reveals that the corn refinery and sugar industries secretly funded Washington-based non profits and experts to grab market share and promote health risks of the opposing party's products.
Thanks to a fragile but extended truce, the United Nations has been helping move hundreds out of the old city of Homs, but thousands of Syrians—including children, the sick and the injured—remain. Dina Elkassaby is in the Syrian capital of Damascus. She works for the U.N.'s World Food Program and describes how her aid agency is working to assist evacuees amid the cease-fire.
Ice and a nasty wintry mix is causing major problems in states from Louisiana to North Carolina, effectively shutting down roads, closing schools, and cancelling flights nationwide. According to reports, the sleet, snow and freezing rain has left more than 100,000 homes and businesses without power. To get a sense of how people are coping, The Takeaway turns to Joshua Stewart, Morning Edition Host for Georgia Public Broadcasting; Pat Duggins, News Director for Alabama Public Radio; and Kearns Little the co-owner of Little Hardware in Charlotte, North Carolina.