Politics

Political news

Twitter and Facebook both flagged posts by President Trump on Saturday that encouraged Americans to vote by mail as early as possible and then follow up that vote by going to the polls on Election Day to check that it was counted — action that could cause unnecessarily long lines during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Updated at 6:15 p.m.

David Legates, a University of Delaware professor of climatology who has spent much of his career questioning basic tenets of climate science, has been hired for a top position at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Voting in the 2020 election will look a lot different from participating in previous elections.

More people than ever before are set to vote by mail because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and laws around mail voting are different in each state.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

For Camilo Villa, a sophomore at Providence College, and his peers, there's one issue that keeps coming up: getting ready to vote.

"It's an icebreaker. 'Are you registered? Are you voting? Who are you voting for?' " he describes. "We finally get to perform our first real adult civic duty. It's like — I'm a big boy now, I get to go out and vote for what I believe in."

There's a political adage when it comes to young voters: always promised, never delivered.

But Villa thinks this could be the year that trend is reversed.

President Trump is under fire for misleading Americans by publicly downplaying the risk of the coronavirus even while he privately acknowledged the magnitude of the threat, a central revelation in Rage, a new book by journalist Bob Woodward.

"I wanted to always play it down," Trump said on March 19 in an interview recorded by Woodward. "I still like playing it down because I don't want to create a panic."

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday ruled that Florida can now order people with past felony convictions to fully pay off their fines before they will be allowed to register to vote, effectively disenfranchising thousands of the state's low-income residents.

The federal appeals court sided with the state of Florida in its controversial decision, which critics have likened to a "poll tax."

Sgt. Maj. Thomas "Pat" Payne has been awarded the Medal of Honor, the highest military decoration, for his work on a rescue mission that led to the freedom of 75 ISIS-held hostages.

In presenting the award Friday at the White House, President Trump hailed the Army Ranger as representing the best qualities of the U.S. armed forces.

"Today he joins the immortal company of our most revered Americans heroes," Trump said, praising Payne's heroism over 17 deployments and his commitment to rescuing hostages during the Oct. 22, 2015, mission.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SACHA PFEIFFER, HOST:

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SACHA PFEIFFER, HOST:

When the now former British Ambassador to the United States Kim Darroch described Donald Trump's White House as "inept" and "deeply dysfunctional" — and added that the president "radiated insecurity" — an international scandal ensued.

And when his frank assessment became public in the summer of 2019, he became persona non grata in Trump's Washington, overnight.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Google says it is making changes to its autocomplete feature ahead of the November presidential election.

Autocomplete suggests possible search terms based on what a user starts typing. In a blog post, Google said it was removing suggestions that could be viewed as being for or against a particular candidate or party.

The search engine also is blocking suggestions that could be viewed as claims about "the integrity or legitimacy of electoral processes."

President Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani is playing down his contacts with a Ukrainian lawmaker who the Treasury Department says is a longtime Russian agent.

In yet another Trump-era break with longstanding tradition, it now seems all but certain that the Inter-American Development Bank will be led by a non-Latin American citizen. Mauricio Claver-Carone, a Cuban-American who is President Trump's top adviser on Latin America at the National Security Council and his nominee to head the bank, is the sole candidate for the job.

Updated at 2:04 p.m. ET

Friday marks the 19th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks against the United States — the single deadliest instance of a terrorist attack in world history and among the most consequential global policy markers in modern times.

The 2020 presidential campaign heads into the fall stretch with a dizzying pace of news developments threatening to upend the contest. But NPR interviews with voters across the country around Labor Day weekend found that most are locked into their support for either President Trump or Democratic nominee Joe Biden. The small contingent of undecided voters said they are unenthusiastic about their choices.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Moving to politics now, President Trump admitted that he downplayed the risk of the coronavirus for a very specific reason.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Copyright 2020 KJZZ. To see more, visit KJZZ.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This week, we have been hearing from voters in battleground states across the country ahead of the November election. And this morning, Jimmy Jenkins from member station KJZZ in Phoenix is taking us to Arizona.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

President Trump on Thursday defended his decision to mislead the public about the deadliness of the coronavirus as documented in Bob Woodward's new book, declining to call his misstatements about the virus and its spread a "lie" and saying he needed to show "strength" in the face of the crisis.

"I want to show a level of confidence, and I want to show strength as a leader, and I want to show our country is going to be fine one way or another," Trump said at a news conference.

Updated at 11:25 p.m. ET

A special three-judge court in New York on Thursday blocked the Trump administration's efforts to make an unprecedented change to who is included in the census numbers that determine each state's share of seats in Congress.

The president, the court concluded, cannot leave unauthorized immigrants out of that specific count.

Updated at 4:39 p.m. ET

Authorities in government and Big Tech unveiled a number of actions and announcements on Thursday in the ongoing effort to defend the 2020 election from foreign interference.

The Treasury Department announced it's sanctioning a member of the Ukrainian parliament who waged an influence campaign aimed at the 2020 election — one who specifically spread "false and unsubstantiated narratives" about former Vice President Joe Biden.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Twitter is putting new restrictions on election-related content, including labeling or removing posts that claim victory before results are official or attempt to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power.

"We will not permit our service to be abused around civic processes, most importantly elections," the company said in a blog post Thursday.

Senate Republicans rallied around a $300 billion coronavirus aid package, but it fell short of the necessary 60-vote majority to advance, effectively killing the measure. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky was the lone Republican joining Senate Democrats to oppose it — Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., missed the vote.

During a press conference at the White House on Labor Day, President Trump lashed out at Democratic rival Joe Biden, claiming the former vice president threw open the borders, shipped away jobs and sent America's youth to fight in "crazy endless wars."

Then the president veered into talk of the military, taking aim at the Pentagon brass and separating them from the rank-and-file troops.

Pages