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Week In Politics: Jobs Bill; Spending Bill; GOP Presidential Race

Michele Norris speaks with our regular political commentators E.J. Dionne, of the Washington Post and Brookings Institution, and David Brooks, of the New York Times.
NPR

GOP Presidential Hopefuls Visit CPAC

For a few days, Florida is at the center of the race for the Republican presidential nomination. After Thursday night's debate, the Republican presidential candidates stopped by the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Fla.
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Solyndra's Execs Take The Fifth

Top executives of Solyndra, a bankrupt solar-energy company, have declined to testify in a congressional hearing Friday, invoking their Fifth Amendment rights. The company is under investigation for a half-billion dollar government loan guarantee it received.
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Democrats, Republicans At Odds Over Stopgap Bill

A federal loan program to build more fuel-efficient cars became the latest budget flash point, with House Republicans wanting to raid the fund to help pay for FEMA disaster aid. Senate Democrats refused to go along. The standoff comes in a bill that would fund the entire government beyond next week.
NPR

What Happens If FEMA Runs Out Of Money?

Unless Congress acts, it will happen early next week, putting a halt to projects in communities around the country still struggling to recover from this year's spate of hurricanes, tornadoes and wildfires. And it would leave FEMA unable to respond to new disasters.
NPR

Death Penalty Retains Support, Even With Pro-Life Catholics, Despite Flaws

Death penalty opponents seized on the execution of Davis, whose conviction of killing a police officer was based on questionable eyewitness accounts, as an event that could turn the tide against state-sponsored executions. History, however, suggests that despite outrage in some quarters over the killing of Davis and other executions, public opinion will remain firmly supportive.
NPR

House, Senate Stalemate Over Spending Bill Days Before Potential Shutdown

So long as Republicans control the House and Democrats the Senate and White House, a basic dynamic appears to be set. On any must-pass legislation, the House GOP will attach spending cuts Democrats find objectionable and reject in turn. A stalemate happens with both sides staring each other down.Only when a grand mal failure of government is at the threshold, a government shutdown or debt default, will a compromise be reached.

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