Racino bill gets first look, has uncertain future With the state facing a projected $5 billion budget deficit, a lot of people thought passing bills to expand gambling would be a slam dunk at the Capitol. But a proposal to allow slot machines at the state's two existing horse racing tracks -- the so-called racino bill -- appeared to be in trouble Thursday after a long-awaited committee hearing.5:15 p.m.
The Cube Critics talk 'Thor' Stephanie Curtis, AKA the "Movie Maven," and arts reporter Euan Kerr are cube mates at Minnesota Public Radio News, who can't resist bantering about movies. In today's installment, do Nordic gods rise to the level of Shakespeare?6:20 p.m.
National Public Radio Stories
U.S. Wants Libyan Rebels To Have Frozen Funds
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the administration is trying to free some of the $30 billion of Libyan state funds frozen in the United States to help the rebels in Libya. Clinton is attending a meeting in Rome of the so-called "Libya Contact Group," where the Italian government said a special fund is being set up to channel money to rebel leaders in Benghazi. Two Arab Gulf states said they would make contributions to the fund: Kuwait promised $180 million, while Qatar said it would contribute between $400 million and $500 million.
In Libya, An Eerie Quiet On The Eastern Front
Fighting between rebel forces and troops loyal to Moammar Gadhafi is at a standstill in eastern Libya. But a rebel fighter says they have gotten the go-ahead for a new offensive in the coming days. The remaining residents of Ajdabiya are bracing for a new round of fighting.
For U.S. Intelligence, A Trove Of Bin Laden Evidence
The Navy SEALs swept up computers, thumb drives, DVDs and paper files. Intelligence officials are now trolling for any hints of new plots that might be under way, the whereabouts of key al-Qaida operatives, and any other information that might provide fresh insight into the group.
In Alabama, Tornadoes Wiped Out Uninsured Homes
In parts of tornado-devastated Alabama, some people had no insurance. Folks have lost jobs because of the bad economy and couldn't keep up with insurance premiums. According to one expert, up to a quarter of Alabama homeowners don't have property insurance.
A Nephew's Quest: Who Was Brother Claude Ely?
Over the past decade, Macel Ely decided to find out who his great-uncle — the late gospel singer Brother Claude Ely — really was. In interviews with nearly 1,400 people, Macel discovered that Claude had a healing effect on those who came to his revivals — and his music influenced some of the pioneers of rock 'n' roll.
Decoding The Platypus Of The Plant Kingdom
Amborella is the first known flowering plant and, like the platypus, a genetic dead end. Selaginella's relatives are the fossils in fossil fuel. Now, scientists are studying the genes of these plants, looking for clues about evolution and compounds that might be applied to medicine or agriculture.
What Makes Something Funny?
Ever wonder what makes something funny? E.B. White once wrote that "humor can be dissected, as a frog can, but the thing dies in the process and the innards are discouraging to any but the pure scientific mind." A look at an explanation behind the punch line.
Obama Goes To Ground Zero
Following the death of Osama bin Laden, President Obama traveled to ground zero Thursday to pay tribute to 9/11 victims. Obama visited with their families, New York City emergency responders — and he laid a wreath where the World Trade Center twin towers once stood. Melissa Block talks with NPR's Ari Shapiro, who traveled with the president.
Developer: Plans For N.Y. Mosque Moving Forward
A year since the controversy over the so-called ground zero mosque erupted with harsh rhetoric, demonstrations and a threat to burn a Quran, Sharif El-Gamal is moving forward with his plans. Even though he says working on the project has been hard without Cliffs Notes, he is convinced it's going to happen.