Amita Kelly

Amita Kelly manages national news coverage across NPR.org and other digital platforms.

Previously, she was a digital editor on NPR's Washington Desk, where she managed election, politics, and policy coverage for NPR.org as well as social media and audience engagement.

She was also an editor and producer for NPR's mid-day newsmagazine program Tell Me More, where she covered health, politics, parenting, and, once, how Korea celebrates St. Patrick's Day. Kelly has also worked at Kaiser Health News and NBC News.

Kelly was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Fellow at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism, where she earned her M.A., and earned a B.A. in English from Wellesley College. She is a native of Southern California, where even Santa surfs.

Speaker John Boehner gave farewell remarks on the House floor Thursday, picking up a box of tissues as he prepared to speak, a nod to his tendency to cry in emotional moments.

Officially announcing his intent to resign as speaker and the representative from Ohio, Boehner said he leaves "with no regrets, no burdens. If anything, I leave the way I started, just a regular guy, humbled by the chance to do a big job."

He spoke for 10 minutes about his life and rise in government, accomplishments in Congress and the role of the body.

Hillary Clinton appeared before the House Select Committee on Benghazi on Thursday to defend her actions around the 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Libya that claimed the lives of four Americans.

We broke down the substance of the hearing and followed it in our live blog. But the hearing also repeatedly brought politics front and center.

Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan has officially entered the House speaker race, saying in a letter to colleagues, "After talking with so many of you, and hearing your words of encouragement, I believe we are ready to move forward as a one, united team." His announcement came after securing the support of three disparate House Republican groups.

Five Democratic candidates for president debated for the first time Tuesday night.

NPR's Jessica Taylor is live blogged the debate here, and NPR's politics chatted on Twitter during the debate using #nprdebate and in the chat box below. The chat is now closed, but you can see it archived below.

Donald Trump found love Thursday night. He's been trying to get the word out that he loves Latinos and "Latinos love Trump," after widespread criticism of his stance on immigration.

At a campaign event Thursday in Las Vegas, Trump pulled onstage an immigrant from Colombia who was holding a copy of the People magazine as he was talking about it.

The woman jumped up onstage screaming with come-on-down-you-just-won-a-car excitement, "Mr. Trump!"

There was chaos on Capitol Hill on Thursday after front-runner Rep. Kevin McCarthy withdrew his name from the House speakership election. The closed-door House Republican meeting that was supposed to emerge with a speaker nominee spilled out into the hallway outside of the House Ways and Means Room in the Longworth Office Building. That's where reporters rushed lawmakers to find out exactly what had happened and where the conference might go from here.

Here's a peek into that hallway, in 60 seconds:

As chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has pushed investigations into the Secret Service following security lapses at the White House, and he aggressively challenged Planned Parenthood. He's now shaking up Capitol Hill even more as a challenger to Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., the current House majority leader, in the race for speaker.

President Obama is losing his patience when it comes to the country's gun laws. Speaking Thursday following a deadly shooting in Oregon, he sounded aggravated as he excoriated Congress for not doing more to pass stricter gun legislation.

In an interview with the BBC earlier this summer, he called gun policy "one area where I feel that I've been most frustrated and most stymied."

President Obama gave impassioned remarks Thursday calling for stricter gun laws following a deadly shooting in Oregon. He spoke for just over 10 minutes, excoriating Congress for refusing to pass gun reform legislation. He also called on state legislatures and governors to act and on regular Americans to "think about how they can get our government to change these laws," which, he said, "will require a change of politics on this issue."

Republican candidates need to get on board with addressing climate change, and voters will follow. That's the message Republican businessman Jay Faison of North Carolina is pushing — and he's putting his money behind it.

Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who went to jail after refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, was honored Friday at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C. She was presented, to a standing ovation, the "Cost of Discipleship" Award by the conservative Family Research Council, which sponsored the summit.

"I am only one, but we are many," she said tearfully as she accepted the award. We spoke to some of Davis' supporters (along with one attendee who doesn't agree with her actions). Hear their voices below:

Speaker of the House John Boehner and Vice President Joe Biden cried as Pope Francis addressed Congress Thursday. Many other political leaders were visibly moved by the mere first-ever presence of a pope in the chamber.

Speaking outside the White House Wednesday, Pope Francis praised President Obama's environmental initiatives, calling climate change "a problem which can no longer be left to a future generation." The pope said he found it "encouraging" that the president is "proposing an initiative for reducing air pollution."

President Obama is taking some heat over who's been invited to attend Pope Francis' large arrival ceremony at the White House this Wednesday. The list includes the first openly gay Episcopal bishop, an activist nun and a transgender activist — guests the Vatican reportedly objected to, according to the Wall Street Journal.

It has been difficult for Hillary Clinton to seem relaxed and at ease on the campaign trail, especially as questions about her use of a private email server as secretary of state have dominated.

Fifteen Republican presidential candidates debated Wednesday night in California — the second Republican debate this season.

NPR's live debate chat is now closed, but you can see the archived chat below and post in the comments at the bottom of the page.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Carly Fiorina wants you to look at her face. The superPAC supporting her campaign released a new video, "Faces," hitting back at Donald Trump's recent comments on her appearance in which he said "Look at that face!" and "Would anyone vote for that?"

The White House announced Thursday that the U.S. is preparing to take in at least 10,000 Syrian refugees starting Oct. 1 (the start of the fiscal year). This year, the U.S. is on track to take in about 1,500 Syrian refugees, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said. He reiterated that the U.S. has provided $4 billion in humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees.

Ahead of next week's Republican debate on CNN, Donald Trump is calling on the network to donate all of its profits to various veterans groups.

This post was updated at 5 p.m. ET Thursday

Congress is back with a daunting must-do list, but its first order of business was the Iran nuclear deal. Senate Democrats successfully filibustered a disapproval resolution on Thursday that was meant to kill the deal. The vote was 58-42 --Senate Republicans and other opponents needed 60 to pass.

Funeral services were held Friday for slain Harris County Deputy Darren Goforth. He was shot to death a week ago as he pumped gas into his police car. Police called it "an unprovoked execution-style killing."

Kim Davis, a clerk in Rowan County, Ky., is in jail for refusing to issue marriage licenses after same-sex marriage became legal. A same-sex couple received a marriage license in Davis' office Friday morning from a deputy clerk.

But the controversy isn't over. It has divided the crowded campaign trail into those who stand with Davis, and those who don't — plus one in the middle.

In an interview with conservative website Breitbart, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump dug into his opponent Jeb Bush, saying he should lead by speaking English while in the U.S.

"I like Jeb," Trump said, according to Breitbart. "He's a nice man. But he should really set the example by speaking English while in the United States."

Of the more than 7,000 pages of Hillary Clinton's emails released by the State Department this week, one was (literally) fishy:

Gefilte fish is a Jewish dish (some would say delicacy) made of chopped fish. The night of the email release, reaction and theories on the story behind that email came in quickly:

In reality, the email was sent during a 2010 U.S.-Israeli trade dispute. Israel had imposed a large tariff on imported carp (often used in the dish). That tariff was particularly harming one American fishery that exported a lot of carp to Israel.

The State Department released some 7,000 pages of Hillary Clinton's emails Monday from her time as secretary of state. This batch is the latest in a series of monthly, court-ordered releases that started in May. This is the largest batch so far.

An early scan reveals little new information — a lot of logistics planning, tech issues and news articles sent around. One email appears to suggest some confusion at the State Department help desk about Clinton's actual email address.

President Obama has slow-jammed the news on late-night TV and sat down with wacky YouTube celebrities. The show he's joining this week might just make those appearances look buttoned up and boring.

In a new report and letter sent to congressional leadership, Planned Parenthood contends that controversial videos alleging the organization sells fetal tissue have been "heavily edited in order to significantly change the meaning" of what its staff said.

Ben Carson alleged in an interview with Fox News Wednesday that Planned Parenthood puts most of its clinics in black neighborhoods to "control the population" and that its founder, Margaret Sanger, "was not particularly enamored with black people."

President Obama is facing deep skepticism in Congress, which votes next month on whether to disapprove the nuclear deal with Iran. The president contends that the public will better appreciate the deal in the years after it has taken effect.

This post was updated at 9:30 a.m. ET

The Republican presidential candidates are getting in their last-minute prep before Thursday night's debates. They will be separated into two events — the bottom seven in polls, as determined by a Fox News analysis, will debate at 5 p.m. And the top ten will take the primetime stage at 9 p.m.

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