Reporting from Afghanistan, Morning Edition's Renee Montagne talks to Salahuddin Rabbani. President Hamid Karzai recently appointed him chairman of the High Peace Council, which is tasked with negotiating with the Taliban. Rabbani replaced his father who was assassinated last year by a suspected Taliban member.
Now, the presidential election is expected to turn on the economy, which means that every bit of economic news takes on political significance. Trouble is, we don't always know what to make of it when we hear that unemployment claims fell again. Sounds good. Or that the trade deficit jumped. Not so good. NPR's Tamara Keith and Scott Horsley will now help us sort that out.
TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: Whatever story you want to tell about the U.S. economy, you can find some data points to make your case.
U.S. homeownership rates have fallen to their lowest point since 1997, despite the homebuyer tax credit and enduring rock-bottom interest rates. Two years ago on Morning Edition, we profiled two couples who were renting with no regrets. Have they changed their tune?
This spring and summer, we're following two minor league baseball players. We're learning about the pressures on an athlete, the emotional highs and lows, and just what their lives are like. One of the players is a young man named Tyler Saladino. He's in the Chicago White Sox organization, and fans are excited about the future for this 22-year-old.
If you enjoy foie gras, you may want to hold on making dinner reservations in California, because it's about to become the first state to ban the luxury liver dish made from ducks or geese. The nation's first statewide foie gras ban kicks in on July 1. Almost eight years have passed since a bill enacting that ban was signed. You'd think that by now both sides of the debate would've digested the inevitable, but no. Rachel Myrow reports from KQED in San Francisco.
An American city, Chicago, is playing host to the 2012 NATO Summit. That international meeting gets underway in just over a week. At the top of the agenda for President Obama and his visiting counterparts will be determining the next steps in Afghanistan. Along with dignitaries, the summit is expected to draw thousands of anti-war protesters, raising safety fears among residents and businesses in Chicago. But as NPR's Cheryl Corley reports, the city says it's ready.
For years, Andrew Kohut, president of the Pew Research Center, has been polling people on the issue of gay marriage. He tells Steve Inskeep his research suggests President Obama's evolution is very much in line with national trends.
The Postal Service announced Thursday that it lost more than $3 billion during the first three months of the year. Post office officials are pushing Congress to give it more authority to cut some of its burgeoning costs.
Mitt Romney's presidential campaign is in damage control mode after an article in The Washington Post accused the candidate of bullying in high school. Romney says he does not remember the incidents. Several of his classmates independently recall him going after students who seemed different, vulnerable or effeminate.
NPR's business news starts with Sony hitting a three-decade low.
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INSKEEP: Sony shares fell to their lowest level since 1980 on Japan's Nikkei stock exchange today. That drop follows yesterday's report that the company suffered a net loss of $5.7 billion for the last fiscal year. The once dominant tech company has fallen behind other industry giants like Samsung and Apple, and has seen especially heavy losses in its TV division. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.