Amita Kelly | KERA News

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.

Updated at 1:45 p.m. ET

Republican Scott Walker dismissed any controversy over a law he signed in Wisconsin requiring women seeking abortions to get an ultrasound, referring to ultrasounds in an interview on a conservative radio show as "just a cool thing out there."

Presidential candidates are doing what they have to do at this point in the campaign season — they're raising money and strutting their biographies and electoral viability to voters. We haven't heard much yet about policy papers or what they would actually do if they win. But those policy issues will matter — as the campaign picks up steam and especially once the next president steps into the Oval Office on Day 1.

Until Tuesday, it had been almost a month since Hillary Clinton had answered a question from the press.

After taking questions from Iowans in Cedar Rapids, where she spoke about small business, the former secretary of state then answered six questions from reporters. She also took an awkwardly timed one about whether she'll answer questions from media in the middle of the event. The questions after the event ranged from the release of her emails when she was secretary of state and criticism over foreign donations to the Clinton foundation to the state of Iraq and more.

Emily Farris teaches a survey research class at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas.

She has no national profile. She's 31, which is too young to be president and besides, she told NPR, she has "no kind of political aspirations. I like my job a lot."

On the Republican side of the 2016 race, this was the week the courting of the Latino vote seemed to begin.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas spoke Wednesday at the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C., after the group criticized him for skipping their summit last month. Meanwhile, Jeb Bush went on a Spanish-language tour — first to Puerto Rico and then speaking to the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference in Houston.

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court heard arguments on the constitutionality of same-sex-marriage bans.

We know all the stereotypes about millennials and politics: They aren't engaged, don't vote and are distrustful of Washington. But we also see another side to the generation — they care about issues like criminal justice, the economy and same-sex marriage.

There's a growing battle in Washington, especially among Republicans, over the Export-Import Bank, an 80-year-old federal agency that helps to finance American companies in foreign trade. Congress must reauthorize the bank by June 30 or it will shut down.

This post was updated at 12:15 p.m. E.T. Tuesday

When former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee ran for president in 2008, he surprised many political watchers with a big a victory in the Iowa caucus. "What we have seen is a new day in American politics," he said after he was declared the winner. "This election will start a prairie fire of hope and zeal."

In Congress, just like at any storied American institution — McDonald's, New York Fashion Week, the Bush and Clinton families — trends come and go.

The 114th Congress is now 100 days old. And it can be difficult to keep up with the goings and comings of the body and its 535 members — the negotiations, visits from world leaders, the scandals and, oh yeah, the legislation.

So here's our look at what's in and what's out on Capitol Hill:

Have something to add to the list? Tweet @nprpolitics.

As President Obama touted a nuclear framework with Iran Thursday, he emphasized that he wants Congress to get on board.

"This is not simply a deal between my administration and Iran," Obama said. "This is a deal between Iran, the United States of America and the major powers in the world."

A controversial law in Indiana has made its way into the 2016 presidential race. Supporters praise the Religious Freedom Restoration Act's for protecting religious convictions, but the law has drawn wide criticism from those who say it allows businesses to discriminate against gay and lesbian patrons.

Longtime Nevada Sen. Harry Reid, 75, who announced Friday he would not run for re-election in 2016, isn't exactly known for his charisma on Capitol Hill. But he has become known as someone who will always put up a fight.

That toughness can be seen throughout his life and political career. It was an essential quality during his hardscrabble childhood and time in the boxing ring. And it's what he later brought to fighting organized crime in Nevada and, more recently, taking off his gloves against the Tea Party Republicans.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz announced his bid for president early Monday. The Republican has been making the rounds with other 2016 hopefuls, so it's hardly a surprise, but he's the first major one to make it official. And if the early campaign trail is any indication of how the race will play out, Cruz, 44, will be exactly who he's always been. He's relatively new to public office, having been elected to the Senate in 2012. But he has made his career — and attracted support from the right's base along the way — as a staunch defender of conservative values.

Here's what you need to know:

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