Flu season could be worst one in years The state health department and Minnesota health systems say this could be the worst flu season they've seen in years, with flu case numbers so far rivaling those seen during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic. Hospitalizations are up, and some Twin Cities area hospitals are at or near capacity due to a surge in flu cases.5:20 p.m.
As Final Hours Tick Away, Fiscal Deal Said To Be 'Very Close'
As the hours ticked away before the end of the year, Congress still did not have a final package to vote on or even debate to avert automatic tax hikes and spending cuts. NPR's David Welna, reporting from the Capitol, talks with All Things Considered host Audie Cornish to help us understand what the next day or two may hold.
What Stalled Congress On The Fiscal Cliff?
For perspective on why Democrats and Republicans in Washington have not been able to work together to avoid a countdown to the fiscal cliff, All Things Considered host Robert Siegel talks with Norm Ornstein, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Ornstein says a big part of the problem is how Republicans in Congress have behaved like a parliamentary minority.
New York's Times Square Preps For Marquee New Year's Event
The New Year's celebration in Times Square in New York is well known, but it actually takes a year of planning. As the event nears, preparations are intense, and it's not just the infamous ball; there are balloons to blow up, confetti to fluff and there's even a place for people to write their wishes on pieces of confetti that will be dropped from seven buildings in the area. With half a billion Chinese watching, and millions in Latin America, it's a worldwide celebration.
Areas Rebuilding After Sandy Seeking More Aid From Washington
Communities hit by Hurricane Sandy are waiting for more help from Washington. There's been no agreement on how much air they can expect, but people in the storm zone are concerned that repairs and rebuilding will be delayed, leaving them vulnerable to future storms.
Could Post-Superstorm Sandy Rebuilding Energize The Economy?
Some economists predict that the reconstruction from the damage caused by Superstorm Sandy will produce a stimulus effect for the U.S. economy in 2013 — especially in construction and related industries. Others say the losses associated with a storm will outweigh any positive effects from the rebuilding.
Arizona Democrat Kirkpatrick Making Capitol Hill Comeback
Rep.-elect Ann Kirkpatrick is returning to Washington this week after sitting out a term following her 2010 defeat. This time around, Kirkpatrick hopes to strengthen her foothold in a swing district, but she's dealing with a tricky electorate.
Social Sharing Site Reddit Had Big Year, But Not All Positive Attention
The bare-bones post and link sharing website Reddit may not look like much, but its reach is tremendous. Started by two recent graduates from the University of Virginia in 2005, it now receives billions of page views each month. This year, it even attracted the likes of President Obama to participate in the site's "Ask Me Anything" feature. It has some darker elements too, however, and with little oversight and few rules, the website took heat in 2012 for allowing users to share rape jokes and explicit photos of under-aged girls. All Things Considered host Audie Cornish talks with Anthony De Rosa, social media editor for Reuters, about Reddit's big year.
After Losing Seasons, NFL Teams Clean House Of Coaches
The NFL just wrapped up its regular season play. NPR's Mike Pesca talks to All Things Considered host Robert Siegel about key playoff matchups and possible coaching changes. He also has a sneak preview of college football's BCS championship game between Notre Dame and Alabama.
Obama Says A Deal Is 'Within Sight' But Not Done Yet
President Obama made a final public plea to Congress today to hurry up and pass an agreement to avert automatic tax hikes and spending cuts that would take effect at midnight. NPR's Scott Horsley joins host Audie Cornish from the White House with the latest news on what's happening on Capitol Hill.