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Waking up is hard to do, but it's easier with NPR's Morning Edition. Hosts Renée Montagne and Steve Inskeep bring the day's stories and news to radio listeners on the go. Morning Edition provides news in context, airs thoughtful ideas and commentary, and reviews important new music, books, and events in the arts. All with voices and sounds that invite listeners to experience the stories. The range of coverage includes reports on the Supreme Court from Nina Totenberg; education from Claudio Sanchez; health coverage from Joanne Silberner; and the latest on national security from Tom Gjelten. Steve and Renee interview newsmakers: from politicians, to academics, to filmmakers. In-depth stories explore topics like "digital generations" about the effect of technology on the way we live; special series delve into the intersection of science and art, and find untold stories of the country's Hidden Kitchens.

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This is the first in a two-part story about Wal-Mart. Listen to Part 1 above, and tune into Morning Edition Thursday to hear Part 2.

The corner of First and H streets in downtown Washington, D.C., is a reflection of the changing face of the nation's capital. From here, you can see the Capitol dome, while across the street are a concrete public housing complex and a hip new Peruvian chicken restaurant.

You can also see a new Wal-Mart.

The latest figures on the California drought are expected to be released on Wednesday. The state's snowpack, a major source of water for the rest of the year, is at the lowest level on record.

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Mark this next story as a sign of a changing nation. Comedy Central has announced the successor to Jon Stewart. Trevor Noah takes over "The Daily Show," the fake news program that's often as influential as real news shows.

Even a careful psychiatric examination of the co-pilot involved in last week's Germanwings jetliner crash probably would not have revealed whether he intended to kill himself, researchers say.

"As a field, we're not very good at accurately predicting who is at risk for suicidal behavior," says Matthew Nock, a psychology professor at Harvard. He says studies show that mental health professionals "perform no better than chance" when it comes to predicting which patients will attempt suicide.

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That Republican mayor of Indianapolis is Greg Ballard, and he's on the line now. Mayor Ballard, welcome to the program.

MAYOR GREG BALLARD: Good morning. Thank you for having me.

INSKEEP: So what's wrong with this law?

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Queens, N.Y., is one of the most diverse urban spaces in the world, and one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Queens is Astoria, across the East River from upper Manhattan.

Astoria has a reputation as New York City's Greektown, but it's more like an urban United Nations. People from nearly 100 countries live there, according to census data.

They coexist pretty peacefully, but that wasn't always the case. The explosion of diversity has helped foster a more tranquil community.

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Nigerian voters go to the polls Saturday to elect their next president and lawmakers in a vote delayed since February, partly due to the insecurity brought on by the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram.

In the past six weeks, Boko Haram has been pushed out of a huge zone in the northeast by Nigerian forces backed by troops from the neighboring countries of Chad, Niger and Cameroon. While the group has lost ground, it is still a dangerous force.

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As the snow starts to melt you might notice a stark contrast in the landscape.  Maybe you were driving down the highway and noticed one shoulder was covered with snow while the other side was bare with a faint tinge of spring green shoots.  The cause?  Slope and aspect.  

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