Liz Halloran

Liz Halloran joined NPR in December 2008 as Washington correspondent for Digital News, taking her print journalism career into the online news world.

Halloran came to NPR from US News & World Report, where she followed politics and the 2008 presidential election. Before the political follies, Halloran covered the Supreme Court during its historic transition — from Chief Justice William Rehnquist's death, to the John Roberts and Samuel Alito confirmation battles. She also tracked the media and wrote special reports on topics ranging from the death penalty and illegal immigration, to abortion rights and the aftermath of the Amish schoolgirl murders.

Before joining the magazine, Halloran was a senior reporter in the Hartford Courant's Washington bureau. She followed Sen. Joe Lieberman on his ground-breaking vice presidential run in 2000, as the first Jewish American on a national ticket, wrote about the media and the environment and covered post-9/11 Washington. Previously, Halloran, a Minnesota native, worked for The Courant in Hartford. There, she was a member of Pulitzer Prize-winning team for spot news in 1999, and was honored by the New England Associated Press for her stories on the Kosovo refugee crisis.

She also worked for the Republican-American newspaper in Waterbury, Conn., and as a cub reporter and paper delivery girl for her hometown weekly, the Jackson County Pilot.

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3:06pm

Tue April 1, 2014
It's All Politics

Conservative Media Watchdog: Univision, Telemundo Favor Liberals

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:28 pm

President Obama participates in a 2012 town hall hosted by Univision with news anchors Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas. A conservative media watchdog group says the Spanish-speaking network is biased in favor of Obama and liberals.
Carolyn Kaster AP

The nation's increasingly powerful Spanish-language television networks show a distinct liberal bias in covering domestic news, a conservative media watchdog group asserted Tuesday.

The Media Research Center says that its four-month analysis of weekday evening newscasts aired on Univision and Telemundo showed that the networks' domestic coverage was "dominated by partisans" from the left.

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6:07pm

Mon March 31, 2014
It's All Politics

No Break From Politics On Obamacare Deadline Day

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 7:42 pm

Florida Gov. Rick Scott, who led state opposition to the federal Affordable Care Act, met with reporters in Tallahassee after the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the bulk of the law. Scott, a Republican, has made his opposition central to his re-election campaign.
Steve Cannon AP

The sign-up period for 2014 individual insurance coverage required under President Obama's Affordable Care Act expires Monday, much as it began.

There were HealthCare.gov website snafus, White House pleas for enrollees, and the need for "navigators" to help those enrollees work their way through the often-balky federal insurance exchange site. (Which was temporarily out of service twice by midafternoon Monday.)

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4:27pm

Tue March 25, 2014
It's All Politics

Senate Slugfest Highlights Hawaii's Changing Political Landscape

Originally published on Tue March 25, 2014 6:28 pm

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa of Hawaii says the way her competitor's allies have made age an issue in her run for U.S. Senate is insulting to voters.
Oskar Garcia AP

It says something about the changing politics of Hawaii that Democratic powerhouse Daniel Inouye's deathbed pick of a successor was ignored by his own party.

The question is what.

The December 2012 death of the long-serving senator — and one of the state's founding fathers — has exposed cracks in Hawaii's solidly Democratic façade, leading to a contentious Senate primary that has placed age, gender and ethnicity at center stage.

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1:43pm

Tue March 18, 2014
It's All Politics

Top Democrat Insists Party Will Hold Senate — But Turnout Is Key

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 3:00 pm

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz speaks to party members during their meeting last summer in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Ross D. Franklin AP

As increasingly confident Republican leaders predict big midterm election gains, the head of Democratic National Committee put on her game face Tuesday and insisted the party will hold control of the Senate.

The Democrats' grass-roots organization, said Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and what she characterized as the GOP's continuing alienation of women, minority, LGBT and middle-class voters, bodes well for her party this fall.

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5:29pm

Mon March 17, 2014
It's All Politics

One Year After Party 'Autopsy,' GOP Touts Progress

Originally published on Mon March 17, 2014 5:57 pm

Immigration supporters gather during a rally for citizenship on Capitol Hill last year.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

One year ago, a frank Republican Party assessment of why it came up short in the 2012 presidential election included a stark recommendation.

Embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform, the post-mortem authors urged, or get used to a party whose appeal "will continue to shrink to its core constituents only."

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7:27pm

Fri March 14, 2014
It's All Politics

Hispanic Activists Vow To Keep Pressing White House Over Deportations

Originally published on Sat March 15, 2014 4:52 pm

Demonstrators protest the Obama administration's deportation policies in Phoenix last year.
Ross D. Franklin AP

Five months before his 2012 re-election, President Obama announced that his administration would stop deportations of more than a half-million young adults, often referred to as "Dreamers," brought illegally to the U.S. as children.

Latinos subsequently turned out to vote in record numbers that fall. More than 70 percent marked their ballots for Obama — helping him win the popular vote and triumph in key battleground states.

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3:32pm

Thu March 13, 2014
It's All Politics

New Climate For Drug Sentencing, Guidelines Expected To Change

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 4:27 pm

In remarks last year to the American Bar Association, Attorney General Eric Holder addressed what he characterized as harsh mandatory minimum prison sentences for drug crimes.
Eric Risberg AP

The nation's highest law enforcement official Thursday endorsed the "All Drugs Minus Two" proposal — as it's known by prison sentencing reformers — to change the way drug crime sentences are handed down.

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2:11pm

Wed March 12, 2014
It's All Politics

Obama's Overtime Move Designed To Excite Base, Swing Voters

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 10:42 am

President Obama speaks about raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour during an event last week in New Britain, Conn. The effort to raise wages is seen as part of his State of the Union promise of a "year of action."
Stephan Savoia AP

President Obama's planned move to expand the pool of the nation's employees covered by overtime pay laws was hailed Wednesday by Democrats as key to their midterm election strategy.

And it was just as predictably criticized by conservatives as an overreach by a president who recently characterized income inequality as the "defining challenge of our time."

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7:37am

Tue March 11, 2014
It's All Politics

Florida Election Tests Midterm Messaging

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 12:50 pm

Florida Democratic congressional candidate Alex Sink, shown working the phone in Clearwater on Nov. 23, supports the Affordable Care Act but has said she would like to see it improved.
Steve Nesius AP

There's a congressional election in Florida on Tuesday that's worth watching — even if you don't live in the Tampa Bay-area district where it's taking place.

It's not because the winner of the neck-and-neck special election between Democrat Alex Sink and Republican David Jolly will affect the GOP's stranglehold on the U.S. House this cycle. It won't.

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11:16am

Thu March 6, 2014
It's All Politics

Race To Stop 'Revenge Porn' Raises Free Speech Worries

Originally published on Thu March 6, 2014 1:42 pm

Annmarie Chiarini, whose ex-boyfriend posted private nude photos of her online, has emerged as a leading voice in the movement to pass legislation that criminalizes "revenge porn."
Patrick Semansky AP

It's called "revenge porn" — the posting of nude or sexually explicit photos or videos online to degrade or harass someone, usually a former spouse or lover.

And states from Arizona to New York are racing to make it a crime.

It's a development that has heartened privacy advocates but alarmed free speech watchdogs who see constitutional peril in many bills being considered.

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10:10am

Tue March 4, 2014
It's All Politics

The 'Blue-ing' Of Texas Is Unlikely To Start At The Top

Originally published on Tue March 4, 2014 12:06 pm

Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott is expected to easily win his primary Tuesday, and likely keep the office in GOP hands come November.
Ron Jenkins MCT /Landov

The process of electing a new governor in Texas begins in earnest Tuesday, when Republican Greg Abbott and Democrat Wendy Davis are expected to easily dispatch their primary opponents and move on to the Nov. 4 battle.

As if they hadn't already.

Both Abbott, 56, the state's attorney general and a former state Supreme Court judge, and Davis, 50, a state senator and former Fort Worth City Council member, have been amassing money and press since at least last fall.

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4:18pm

Fri February 28, 2014
It's All Politics

Another Bush Takes Aim At Texas Office And Family Dynasty

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 7:41 pm

George P. Bush passes a portrait of his grandfather George H.W. Bush at the Republican Party of Texas headquarters in Austin. Bush, the son of a governor and the nephew and grandson of two presidents, is running for Texas land commissioner.
Eric Gay AP

George Prescott Bush.

Ring a bell?

It should, and if it doesn't, it soon will. George P. Bush, 37, is a great-grandson of a late U.S. senator from Connecticut; a grandson and nephew of former U.S. presidents; and the eldest son of ex-Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who just may run for president himself in 2016.

On Tuesday, George P., referred to by some as the "Hispanic George Bush" because of his mother's Mexican heritage, will take his generation's first crack at the family business when he runs in a statewide Republican primary for Texas land commissioner.

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10:52am

Wed February 26, 2014
It's All Politics

Lobbyists Amp Up Efforts To Sell Washington On E-Cigarettes

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 5:57 pm

Blair Roberts, a 22-year-old sales associate at Colorado E-Smokes, "vapes" with an electronic cigarette in the Aurora, Colo., store. In the absence of federal rules, Colorado is among states that considered its own age requirements for the nicotine-delivery devices.
Ed Andrieski AP

In a scene from the new season of the popular Netflix political drama House of Cards, the elegant Claire Underwood catches her soon-to-be vice president husband puffing an e-cigarette.

"You're cheating," she says, referring to their efforts to quit smoking.

"No, I'm not," Congressman Francis Underwood replies. "It's vapor ... addiction without the consequences."

A Washington-based drama with an implicit endorsement of "vaping" — the practice of partaking in nicotine without burning tobacco?

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4:17pm

Tue February 18, 2014
It's All Politics

House Candidates Outpace Senate Contenders In Money Haul

Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 5:48 pm

Demonstrators gather outside the Supreme Court in Washington in October 2013, as the court heard arguments on campaign finance.
Susan Walsh AP

With 435 seats up for grabs every two years, House candidates typically raise more money overall than those running for the Senate, where only about one-third of the chamber's 100 seats are contested every two years.

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3:38pm

Mon February 10, 2014
It's All Politics

Interest Groups Gear Up For Next Supreme Court Vacancy

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 4:24 pm

President Obama hugs Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg prior to delivering his 2011 State of the Union address.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

It's been nearly four years since activists engaged in a battle over a Supreme Court nomination, and a tepid one it was.

Republicans barely pushed back on President Obama's 2010 nomination of Elena Kagan, his second appointment in as many years. She was confirmed by the Senate, 63-37.

At the time, influential Republican Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona acknowledged the problem inherent in pursuing a high court battle: The GOP had only 41 Senate votes, making it "pretty difficult" to sustain a filibuster against Kagan, or any Obama appointee.

That could change by year's end.

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