Linton Weeks

Linton Weeks joined NPR in the summer of 2008, as its national correspondent for Digital News. He immediately hit the campaign trail, covering the Democratic and Republican National Conventions; fact-checking the debates; and exploring the candidates, the issues and the electorate.

Weeks is originally from Tennessee, and graduated from Rhodes College in 1976. He was the founding editor of Southern Magazine in 1986. The magazine was bought — and crushed — in 1989 by Time-Warner. In 1990, he was named managing editor of The Washington Post's Sunday magazine. Four years later, he became the first director of the newspaper's website, Washingtonpost.com. From 1995 until 2008, he was a staff writer in the Style section of The Washington Post.

He currently lives in a suburb of Washington with the artist Jan Taylor Weeks. In 2009, they created The Stone and Holt Weeks Foundation to honor their beloved sons.

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5:13am

Sun February 17, 2013
U.S.

Rethinking The U.S. Presidency: 3 Alternative Realities

President Woodrow Wilson meets with his first Cabinet, circa 1912. Should Cabinets have a more central role in a president's decision making?
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Did you pay attention to the State of the Union Address? Were you struck by the countless complexities President Obama has to deal with? The economy. The national budget and deficit. Health care. Tax reform. Education. Jobs. Energy. Climate change. The national infrastructure. Immigration. Gun violence and on and on and on.

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3:27pm

Mon February 11, 2013
Religion

How To Pick A Pope (With Latin Subtitles)

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 9:27 am

Black smoke rises from the chimney of the Sistine Chapel on April 18, 2005. Black smoke signaled that the cardinals sequestered inside had failed to elect a new pope, after the death of Pope John Paul II.
Alessandra Tarantino AP

For lovers of the lapsed language Latin, the selection of a new pope is an ecstasyfest.

The Roman Catholic Church is so steeped in centuries-old traditions, Pope Benedict XVI announced his surprise retirement on Monday the old-fashioned way — in Latin.

"Fratres carissimi," the Pope's retirement announcement began. Beloved brothers ...

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10:13am

Sun February 10, 2013
Politics

Eerie Echoes From The First State Of The Union

This print shows George Washington holding a proposed plan for the new capital city of Washington.
Edward Savage Library of Congress

Guns, immigration, support for diplomats abroad, and the nation's financial situation.

These are key issues facing President Obama as he delivers the first State of the Union address of his second term on Tuesday night, Feb. 12.

Surprisingly, these were also key issues facing President George Washington some 223 years ago, when he gave the very first state of the union speech.

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2:31pm

Thu January 31, 2013
Sports

Are Shooting Ranges The New Bowling Alleys?

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 10:33 am

Renee Blaine, a leader of the Leander, Texas, chapter of A Girl and A Gun during the "Girls Night Out" event.
Katie Hayes Luke for NPR

The traditional American shooting range is extending its range.

In Summerville, S.C., for example, the ATP Gunshop & Range stages community-minded blood drives and Toys for Tots collections. Twice a week there are ladies' nights, where women can learn to fire pistols and receive free T-shirts.

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11:40am

Fri January 25, 2013
Politics

Forget 2016. The Pivotal Year In Politics May Be 2020

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 1:26 pm

Latino voters, shown here on Election Day in Los Angeles, will grow in electoral power by the year 2020.
David McNew Getty Images

Now that President Obama is ensconced in his second term, speculation about the future of American politics is wildfire-ish.

In a post-inaugural story, the Associated Press reports that the name of Democratic Vice President Biden "has surfaced as a potential presidential candidate in 2016." Politico says Biden is intoxicated by the prospect.

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5:40am

Sat January 19, 2013
Around the Nation

12 Half-Truths We Live With

Originally published on Sat January 19, 2013 1:12 pm

Koalas aren't really bears, but we don't seem to mind.
Gabriella Garcia-Pardo NPR

Say it isn't so. Various news organizations have recently reported that on occasion the Subway sandwich chain's $5 footlong measures 11 inches instead of 12 — as advertised. Sure enough, the bacon, lettuce and tomato jewel we bought Friday fell a little short.

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10:45am

Wed January 16, 2013
Around the Nation

Saying No To The Inauguration

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 3:22 pm

A U.S. Capitol Police officer secures the area surrounding the west front of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 5 as preparations are under way for President Obama's second inauguration.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

As supporters of President Obama prepare for his toned-down but glammed-up second inauguration over the long weekend of Jan. 19-21, the president's detractors are making other plans.

Across the country, disenchanted Americans are engaging in forms of protest — some public, some private — to signal their displeasure with November's election outcome.

How do they NOT love Obama? Let us count the ways.

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12:54pm

Mon January 14, 2013
Around the Nation

The Great American Signature Fades Away

Originally published on Mon January 14, 2013 3:04 pm

John Hancock's famously large signature is part of our visual heritage, but handwritten signatures are used less and less.
www.archives.gov

Much has been made recently of the loopy signature of Jack Lew, the Treasury secretary nominee whose name — if he is confirmed — will appear on new U.S. currency.

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12:11pm

Wed January 9, 2013
Around the Nation

The Second Amendment: 27 Words, Endless Interpretations

Originally published on Wed January 9, 2013 1:00 pm

The Second Amendment is short on words but long on dispute.
iStockphoto.com

The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is like:

  • an Etch A Sketch. You can make it into pretty much whatever you want.
  • an optical-illusory M.C. Escher staircase that climbs back into itself.
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11:17am

Wed December 26, 2012
Around the Nation

A Lull Until New Year's? Not So These Days

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 1:32 pm

The CambridgeSide Galleria was bustling with people exchanging gifts and taking advantage of sales the day after Christmas 2011.
Suzanne Kreiter The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Time was, the stretch following Christmas Day until New Year's Day was a quiet, sleepy spot on the American calendar. The six-day span hung like a lazy hammock between the holidays.

Not anymore.

Nowadays, the WAC — Week After Christmas — is busy and abuzzing. All around the country, Americans continue to celebrate — Kwanzaa, the Christmas afterglow and the coming New Year.

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4:06pm

Wed December 19, 2012
Commentary

When Someone You Know Loses A Child

Originally published on Fri December 21, 2012 9:21 pm

The grief a bereaved parent feels resides deep within and is individually expressed. Different people respond in different ways.
Brendan Smialkowski Getty Images

Amid the aftershocks of the senseless shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., our ever-more-complex society goes on to publicly discuss what happened and how to avoid such tragedy in the future.

But there are also private considerations and quieter questions of how to respond — on a personal level — to suffering parents.

What can you say to parents who have lost a child? What can you do?

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9:03am

Thu November 22, 2012
Around the Nation

Table For One, Please. A Solo Thanksgiving

Originally published on Thu November 22, 2012 8:19 pm

Some people just aren't into the big Thanksgiving Day extravaganza.
iStockphoto.com

This is America, where Thanksgiving is portrayed in popular culture as a time for gatherings of loving families and friends, holding hands while saying grace over a roast turkey, passing casseroles and footballs, reminiscing about the past and dreaming of the future.

But. This being America, we also know that traditions — just like every other aspect of contemporary life — become more complex the more we examine them.

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8:03am

Sat November 17, 2012
It's All Politics

Do We Really Need A Second Inauguration?

Originally published on Sat November 17, 2012 3:53 pm

President Obama dances with first lady Michelle Obama on the night of his inauguration, Jan. 20, 2009, in Washington.
Charles Dharapak AP

For the sake of argument, let's agree that when we use the word "inauguration" in this particular post, we are talking about the multiday, ball-bestrewn, soiree-soaked, tuxedo-dappled extravaganza that costs tens of millions of dollars and often leaves many Americans out in the cold — figuratively and literally.

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11:50am

Thu November 8, 2012
It's All Politics

5 Foul-Ups In The Romney Campaign

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 12:37 pm

Mitt Romney talks to reporters on his campaign plane on Election Day. "I'm very proud of the campaign we've run," he said. "No campaign is perfect."
Emmanuel Dunand AFP/Getty Images

File this under the Strange Case of the 2012 Presidential Campaign. It was a long, tortuous trip that ended up at a very familiar destination: the re-election of President Obama.

But along the way, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney did garner more electoral votes than a lot of losers, including John McCain in 2008, Bob Dole in 1996 or Jimmy Carter in 1980.

Romney must have done some things right. And he must have done some things wrong.

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1:48pm

Wed November 7, 2012
It's All Politics

5 Truisms About the 2012 Election...That Weren't True

Originally published on Wed November 7, 2012 2:16 pm

The taller candidate always wins? Think again.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

The balloons have fallen, the bunting's down, and President Obama has been re-elected.

That means Mitt Romney has been defeated — and with him, many election aspects that we presumed to be true. (You know what they say about presume — it makes a pres out of u and me.)

Maybe it's because we're sailing into a new and uncharted century. Maybe it's because of climate change or polar shift or Mayan calendrical mayhem. But the presidential election of 2012 provided a highly unusual, if not unique, set of circumstances.

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