Danielle Kurtzleben | KERA News

Danielle Kurtzleben

Danielle Kurtzleben is a political reporter assigned to NPR's Washington Desk. In her current role, she writes for npr.org's It's All Politics blog, focusing on data visualizations. In the run-up to the 2016 election, she used numbers to tell stories that went far beyond polling, putting policies into context and illustrating how they affected voters.

Before joining NPR in 2015, Kurtzleben spent a year as a correspondent for Vox.com. As part of the site's original reporting team, she covered economics and business news.

Prior to Vox.com, Kurtzleben was with U.S. News & World Report for nearly four years, where she covered the economy, campaign finance and demographic issues. As associate editor, she launched Data Mine, a data visualization blog on usnews.com.

A native of Titonka, Iowa, Kurtzleben has a bachelor's degree in English from Carleton College. She also holds a master's degree in Global Communication from George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs.

Bernie Sanders has some of the most ambitious and sweeping policy proposals of all the presidential candidates. His campaign has centered on a promise of "revolution."

Bernie Sanders is staying in the race until the last primary and the nation will be better off for it, he told NPR's Steve Inskeep in an interview that will air Thursday on Morning Edition.

Inskeep, passing on questions he had invited on Twitter, asked Sanders if he is "threatening [his] revolution" by continuing to run, potentially scaring some voters away from supporting Hillary Clinton — the likely Democratic nominee — in November.

The Democratic Party is looking the worse for wear these days. And that's putting it mildly. The party's net favorability rating has fallen off steeply in the past few years, and it's been negative or near-negative since 2010, according to multiple polls.

That would be cause for concern, except for one thing: The GOP looks much worse.

It's a well-worn (if not-entirely-agreed-upon) idea that college makes people more liberal. But a new report adds a twist to this: the most educated Americans have grown increasingly liberal over the last couple of decades.

Former House Speaker John Boehner is a retired politician, so he seems to have retired from being politic. He went with radical honesty at a recent event at Stanford, according to the Stanford Daily, when he was asked about his opinion of Republican presidential candidate and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

"Lucifer in the flesh," the former speaker said. "I have Democrat friends and Republican friends. I get along with almost everyone, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life."

Two hundred six thousand Virginians will newly have the right to vote this year. That's according to the office of Virginia Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who signed a bill on Friday that would allow felons who had completed their sentences to vote.

Public opinion on marijuana has risen dramatically over the last couple of decades. In the mid-1990s, only around 25 percent of Americans thought pot should be legal, according to Gallup.

Today, it's around 58 percent.

Update: This post was updated on April 20 at 7:58 a.m. to reflect the results of the New York primary.

Here's some irony: Bernie Sanders is winning the states where income inequality is lowest. Where it's highest? Those states are all Hillary Clinton, and her win in highly unequal New York only made the trend more pronounced.

It's a counterintuitive trend because Bernie Sanders' whole campaign is built on inequality. The phrase "millionaire and billionaire class" (or some variation on it) seems to feature in every single one of his speeches.

John Kasich says the nation has a choice between "two paths." On one path is "fear" and "darkness." On the other path is — guess who? — a President Kasich.

In a speech on Tuesday, Kasich presented a stark choice between pessimism and optimism. The "path to darkness," he said, is a "political strategy based on exploiting Americans instead of lifting them up [that] inevitably leads to divisions, paranoia, isolation, and promises that can never, ever be fulfilled."

Bill Clinton on Friday stopped short of saying he was sorry for a recent clash with Black Lives Matter protesters. Instead, the former president tried to make the squabble into a teachable moment.

"I did something yesterday in Philadelphia I almost want to apologize for, but I want to use it as an example of the danger threatening our country," he told the crowd at a Hillary Clinton campaign event in Erie, Pa.

Donald Trump has some big polling problems. Yes, the GOP front-runner has blown away his opponents in many primaries and caucuses. But he also suffers from ultrahigh unfavorable ratings, even among the groups that should like him.

On Thursday, he tweeted that he could bring the Republican Party together, on the same day that two different polls showed the difficulties he might still face as the campaign wears on.

On Wednesday, Donald Trump changed his position on abortion twice in the span of three hours.

In an interview with MSNBC's Chris Matthews, Trump advocated for a society in which women would have to seek abortions through illegal avenues.

"Well, you know, you will go back to a position like they had where people will perhaps go to illegal places [to get an abortion]," he said, adding. "But you have to ban it."

When pressed by Matthews about consequences for the women seeking abortion under those circumstances, Trump advocated punishment.

If you knew nothing about American politics and were seeing the 2016 campaign for the first time, you might reasonably assume that American voters really dislike trade deals.

When it comes to turnout, the tables have...uh, turned.

In 2008, Democrats had the historic turnout numbers. GOP voters, meanwhile, came out in modest numbers in 2008 and 2012. But this year, Democrats are seeing their turnout figures fall off since 2008. Republicans, meanwhile, are coming out in droves.

Donald Trump says he has good evidence he'd beat Hillary Clinton in a general election.

"I beat Hillary — and I will give you the list — I beat Hillary in many of the polls that have been taken," he said at last Thursday's Republican debate. "And each week, I get better and better."

And Bernie Sanders says he'd beat Trump.

"Not all, but almost every poll has shown that Sanders versus Trump does a lot better than Clinton versus Trump," Sanders said at the Democratic debate in Flint, Mich., last week.

The results from Tuesday's four primary and caucus states are in: three wins for Trump, one each for Clinton and Cruz, and one surprising, narrow victory for Sanders.

Bernie Sanders' tight win over Hillary Clinton in Michigan is the biggest news out of Tuesday night's presidential nomination races. Though Clinton had led consistently in recent polls, Sanders won by less than 2 percentage points with 99 percent of precincts reporting.

Donald Trump picked up his first congressional endorsements this week, and today he scored another major backer: one of his former rivals, Chris Christie.

"I've gotten to know all the people on that stage. And there is no one who is better prepared to provide America with the strong leadership that it needs, both at home and around the world, than Donald Trump," the New Jersey governor said at a news conference in Fort Worth, Texas.

Ahead of Thursday's Republican debate, pundits agreed that someone — and Marco Rubio in particular — needed to attack Trump.

What exactly did we learn about the Latino vote this weekend? Take your pick of headlines.

  • "The entrance polls said Nevada's Latinos voted for Bernie Sanders. That's unlikely." (Vox)
  • "Did Bernie Sanders really just win the Hispanic vote in Nevada? There's good reason to think that, yes, he might have." (Washington Post)

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

In the battle for primary votes, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are locked in a tight battle.

Recent claims about Bernie Sanders' economic proposals are hurting the Democratic Party, say four former White House economists.

This post was updated at 4:50 p.m. ET to reflect revised delegate counts

Bernie Sanders delivered the second-biggest rout in New Hampshire Democratic primary history last night, besting Hillary Clinton by 22 percentage points.

Saturday's GOP debate was the final one before Tuesday's New Hampshire primary. Here were five key moments:


1. That awkward start

One key thing has to happen before the debate starts: the candidates have to take the stage.

That proved more complicated than usual on Saturday night, as the ABC News Republican debate began with Ben Carson refusing to walk out to his podium, even after the moderators called his name.

At the start of the Democratic caucus in Earlham, Iowa, there were 40 Hillary Clinton supporters, 40 Bernie Sanders supporters and 11 Martin O'Malley supporters, all massed around their respective tables in the concrete-floored town community center.

O'Malley was — in the language of caucus rules — not viable: He needed at least 14 supporters to get a delegate in this Madison County gathering. It was time to see if O'Malley's 11 would move to someone else.

Stephanie Hundley is an enthusiastic Bernie Sanders supporter. The 28-year-old from Waterloo is also enthusiastic about the fact that she's not going to vote for Hillary Clinton just because she's a woman.

Ted Cruz has one of the most overtly religious stump speeches on the Iowa campaign trail.

In Emmetsburg, Iowa, Friday the Texas senator quoted the Bible and exhorted his supporters to pray "each and every day" until Election Day.

"He's real," said Bobbie Clark, a Cruz supporter from Algona. "There's something there. There's substance behind it. It's not just talk."

Every four years, Iowans are deluged with the talking points, the stump speeches, the polls and, of course, the ads.

They also hear that they shouldn't be first. Iowans are too white, too old and too few to merit first-in-the-nation status, say the critics.

But if Iowa shouldn't be first, who should be? For more than a century, reformers have been proposing ideas for how to change the primary system. And they've been failing. And they'll probably continue to fail.

Hillary Clinton wants you to know she has a new tax proposal. She also wants you to know that Bernie Sanders does not.

Here are a few safe bets for Tuesday's State of the Union: There will be dozens of applause breaks, endless GIF-worthy moments and a laundry list of proposals (not to mention lots of reporters using the phrase "laundry list" for the first — and maybe only — time this year).

One more bet: Most of those proposals won't be successful.

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