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U.S. Appoints First-Ever Special Envoy For LGBT Rights

The State Department said Randy Berry's job will be to "reaffirm the universal human rights of all persons, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity."
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The Next Health Danger Targeted In Maryland: Sales Receipts?

A Montgomery County lawmaker is pushing a bill that would ban the use of sales receipts coated with the industrial chemical BPA, associated with negative health effects on unborn and infant children.


White House Moves To Protect Investors From Bad Retirement Advice

The White House says President Obama on Monday will direct the Department of Labor to craft new rules to require financial advisers to put their clients' interests ahead of their own.

For TSA Officers, Congress' Inaction On Funding Could Hit Home

If Congress doesn't fund the Department of Homeland Security this week, most DHS employees will likely be ordered to stay on the job — and make do without a paycheck until funding is restored.

Looming Presidential Race Divides National Governors Group

The National Governors Association is in Washington for its winter meeting, and there is no lack of talk about the 2016 White House. NPR's Scott Simon talks to Ron Elving about the week in politics.

Pussy Riot Releases Its First Song In English

The Russian band Pussy Riot is well known for protesting the Russian government. Now the group has released its first song in English. NPR's Scott Simon talks to band member Nadya Tolokonnikova.

To Libertarians, Rand Paul Is 'Libertarian-Ish'

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky said he's likely to announce whether he'll run in 2016 in the next two months. NPR's Scott Simon talks to Nick Gillespie of Reason.com about the libertarian landscape.
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Analyst: Maureen McDonnell Sentence Indicates Evolving Role Of First Lady

"The potential for corruption by a married partner of a politician has never been greater," says George Mason University professor Jeremy Meyer.

Governors Meeting Allows 2016 Hopefuls To Grab The Spotlight

This weekend's National Governors Association meeting in Washington, D.C., offers an opportunity for ambitious governors to grab the spotlight and preen for 2016.
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In Maryland, A Move To Change Who Approves Parole For Prisoners Serving Life Sentences

Maryland is one of just a few states where the governor must still approve parole for those who are serving life sentences. Supporters of changing that are pushing a bill during this year's General Assembly that would give that power to a commission.