This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.
Immigration reform took center stage this week in Washington, D.C. President Obama embraced it and a bipartisan group of eight senators offered a plan to strengthen border security and provide a path to citizenship with the nation's estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants. The last major effort to rewrite the nation's immigration laws was in 2007 under President George W. Bush.
NPR national political correspondent Don Gonyea looks back at what went wrong.
Memories of Mayor Koch bring us to this year's crowded race to succeed Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Before Ed Koch's death, we spoke with Errol Louis, a long-time New York political journalist and the host of the TV show "Road to City Hall" on NY1. Democrats have a 6 to 1 registration advantage in New York, but there hasn't been a Democratic mayor of New York in almost 20 years.
The Superdome in New Orleans has hosted heavyweight fights, papal visits, and — after this weekend — seven Super Bowls, an NFL record. But no event looms larger in the dome's history than Hurricane Katrina, the 2005 storm that turned the stadium into a teeming shelter of last resort.
During the storm, reporters spared no hyperbole when describing scenes of human suffering. The Superdome, in particular, was described as a "hellhole" and "apocalyptic," and it was sort of true.
There are an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States, and it's a number you might have heard a lot about this week from Washington lawmakers.
Since the 1970s, Jeff Passel, now senior demographer at the Pew Hispanic Center, has been keeping tabs on a group that actively tries to stay off the radar. He says many actually do participate in the census count and other surveys.
The seed library is a partnership between the Basalt Public Library and the Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute. Seed packets encourage gardeners to write their names and take credit for their harvested seeds.
Despite the cold and snow, some signs of spring are starting to break through in Colorado. The public library in the small town of Basalt is trying an experiment: In addition to borrowing books, residents can now check out seeds.
In a corner of the library, Stephanie Syson and her 4-year-old daughter, Gray, are just finishing a book with a white rabbit on the cover.
When Gray approaches the knee-high shelves filled with seed packets, she zeroes in on a pack labeled "rainbow carrots."
The Obama administration has issued a proposal detailing how coverage for contraception will be paid for under Obamacare. The health overhaul law requires insurance plans to provide birth control coverage, but those opposed to artificial contraception argue they should not be made to use their own funds to pay for it. Audie Cornish talks to Julie Rovner.
Originally published on Sat February 2, 2013 5:56 pm
The people on the front lines of tuberculosis control have their hands full, but their biggest challenge for the moment may be containing strains of the disease that are resistant to drugs.
Worldwide the number of TB cases is going down. The bad news is that the number of drug-resistant cases is going up. The World Health Organization estimates that the number of reported TB cases that were multi, extremely- or totally-drug resistant doubled between 2009 and 2011.
Eagle Scout Zach Wahls delivers cartons of petitions to the Boys Scouts of America national board meeting in Orlando, Fla., last May, calling for an end to anti-gay discriminatory practices. Helping to carry the cartons are Mark Anthony Dingbaum and Christine Irvine of Change.org.
Years of criticism and even a U.S. Supreme Court challenge couldn't force the Boy Scouts of America to admit openly gay members and leaders. But money talks, and after the defections of major donors, the 103-year-old organization is poised to lift its national ban.
Just last summer, the Boy Scouts reaffirmed the ban after a lengthy internal review. Several incidents since then have tarnished the organization's image and fueled an aggressive nationwide protest led by an Eagle Scout.
Gun rights advocates demonstrate at the capitol in Harrisburg, Pa., on Wednesday as vendors pulled out of the city's Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show. Vendors were upset that the organizers of the event banned the sale and display of certain types of guns.
A boycott by vendors starting this weekend at one of the nation's largest hunting and fishing shows has led to the event's indefinite postponement. Pennsylvania businesses stand to lose tens of millions of dollars in revenue.
Some 200 shops and groups pulled out of the Harrisburg, Pa., event after organizers banned the sale and display of certain types of guns.
The winter may not be over, but economists are looking to spring for good news when it comes to jobs. Host Michel Martin speaks with NPR Senior Business Editor Marilyn Geewax about whether a strengthening housing market could boost stalling jobs numbers.