Politics

Political news from WNPR

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Governor Dannel Malloy announced that $5.75 million was approved Monday by the state Bond Commission to improve railroad stations on the Hartford Line and the New Haven Line. 

Noel Hendrickson/Digital Vision / Thinkstock

The price of gas was nearly $4.00 per gallon two years ago. Economists worried the rate would continue to rise, causing financial hardship on those with an already lean budget. What if it went to $5.00 a gallon? Well, those days are long gone.

Gas in Connecticut is around $2.50 a gallon and it's much cheaper elsewhere in the country.

But the higher rate also made people drive less and conserve more, and pushed higher fuel efficiency standards through Congress, nearly doubling the average fuel economy of new cars and trucks by 2025.

Connecticut House Democrats

Norwalk State Rep. Bruce Morris will be leading the General Assembly's Black and Latino Caucus in the new session. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

A Connecticut businessman who admitted conspiring to hide payments from his wife's congressional campaign to former Connecticut Governor John Rowland has been sentenced to three years' probation, including three months in a halfway house. 

Radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, who was convicted eight months ago of federal terrorism-related charges in New York, has been sentenced to life in prison.

Charlie Baker, the newly sworn-in 72nd governor of Massachusetts, is promising to challenge the status quo, while immediately tackling a state budget deficit.

And on his first day in office, the Republican managed to find some common ground with the Democrats who control the Legislature.

Tone Of Cooperation

Gerry Lauzon / Creative Commons

Even though riots broke out around the world after satirical images of the Prophet Muhammad were published in Denmark ten years ago, one expert says analysts were surprised that cartoons could still provoke a terrorist attack like the Paris massacre.

Lucy Nalpathanchil / WNPR

In a swift ruling on Thursday, the Connecticut Supreme Court decided that a teen recently diagnosed with cancer can't refuse life-saving chemotherapy.

According to the ruling, state officials are not violating the teen's rights by forcing her to undergo chemotherapy treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma. The teen, known as Cassandra C, will be free to make her own medical decisions when she turns 18 in September.

For the past month, Cassandra has been held at a local hospital, undergoing chemotherapy treatment against her wishes. Doctors said chemotherapy would give her an 85 percent chance of survival and without the treatment, she could die.

Four-term Sen. Barbara Boxer said she won't seek another term in the U.S. Senate in 2016, ending speculation about the California Democrat's political future.

"I will not be running for the Senate in 2016," she said in a taped interview with her grandson Zach Rodham.

Boxer, 74, said neither age nor partisanship in Congress were factors in her decision.

Updated at 4:40 p.m. ET

The bells of Notre Dame cathedral in Paris tolled, public transport was halted and many in France stood in the rain today for a minute of silence observed on behalf of the eight journalists and two others killed in a deadly attack at the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

French authorities are still on the hunt for two brothers suspected in an attack against the headquarters of a satirical magazine in Paris that left 12 people dead.

The two chief suspects, named as Said and Chérif Kouachi, 34 and 32, remain at large. Investigators believe Said Kouachi traveled to Yemen in 2011 to receive weapons training with Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, NPR's Dina Temple-Raston reports, citing U.S. officials who've been briefed on the case.

French police have taken an 18-year-old suspect identified as Mourad Hamyd into custody after he surrendered to authorities, according to multiple French news outlets. Hamyd had been sought in relation to a murderous attack on a satirical magazine's Paris office Wednesday, but it's not certain whether he was involved.

Jessica Hill / The Associated Press

Governor Dannel Malloy has confirmed that investment in transportation infrastructure will be the signature issue of his second term. 

This much is certain: Charlie Hebdo will live another day.

The magazine, which was the target of a deadly attack Wednesday, will be kept going through financial and editorial backing from some of France's largest media groups.

Jessica Hill / The Associated Press

Democrat Governor Dannel Malloy took the oath of office for a second term on Wednesday, which also marked the opening day of this year's General Assembly session. 

David Wilson / Creative Commons

Wednesday marked the opening day of the 2015 General Assembly session. The State Senate began its legislative session with State Sen. Andrew Maynard in attendance. 

Chion Wolf

It’s inauguration day in Connecticut! And it’s also Wednesday...and that means The Wheelhouse, our weekly news roundtable. How convenient is that?

Charlie Hebdo, the satirical French magazine that was the target of a deadly attack today, is part of a long tradition of French satire dating to the days before the French Revolution.

The left-wing magazine is known for its biting takedowns. Its past targets include the political right wing, capitalism, Christianity, Judaism and Islam.

Diane Orson / WNPR

The Connecticut Supreme Court will decide whether state officials were right to force a 17-year-old girl to undergo chemotherapy against her and her mother's wishes. 

Andrew Turner / Creative Commons

There's a mostly forgotten story by the mostly forgotten sci-fi writer, R.A. Lafferty. It's called, "What's The Name of That Town." We meet a team of scientists and an amusing sentiant computer examining clues that suggested something existed once upon a time and has now been erased.

It turns out to be the city of Chicago which has been obliterated in an accident so traumatic that the city's existence has been wiped from all records and from peoples actual memories. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has said he’s running for a second term in office.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The success of a society depends - at least in part - on the civility of its members. Mutual respect, openness to different viewpoints...civil conversation is what we try to promote here on our show. 

Updated at 8:40 p.m. ET

Former Massachusetts Sen. Edward Brooke, the first African-American to be popularly elected to the U.S. Senate, died Saturday at age 95, a family spokesman said.

Brooke, a Republican who had been Massachusetts attorney general, was first elected in 1966, defeating former Massachusetts Gov. Endicott Peabody. Brooke served until 1979. He died at his home in Coral Gables, Fla., surrounded by his family.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The city of Hartford is planning to change the way it finances its new minor league baseball stadium, a move that officials say will save taxpayers millions. 

Former New York Governor Mario Cuomo died on New Year’s Day, just hours after his son , Governor Andrew Cuomo, gave his inaugural address for his second term in office.

Fireworks by Grucci

The Wheelhouse is back with a special New Year’s Eve edition of our weekly news roundtable. We’ll look back at the year from the rough and tumble race for governor, to the conviction of a former governor. What do you think was the biggest story of 2014?

Cuban artist Tania Bruguera had a plan to test just how tolerant Cuba had become of dissident voices.

She planned a performance at Havana's Revolution Square for Tuesday afternoon. She would provide a microphone and Cubans were encouraged to speak about their vision for the island.

NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro spoke to Bruguera on Monday and asked her why she was planning the performance.

A year ago, Russia's economy was riding high. Today, the country is widely thought to be entering a recession, if it's not already there.

The plunge in oil prices has been the main culprit, but Russia's economy has had trouble regaining its footing because of sanctions imposed by the West after the annexation of Crimea. President Obama and other Western leaders were quick to condemn Russia when it annexed the Crimean Peninsula last March, and they struggled to find a way to show their outrage.

A snap general election in Greece next month has triggered uncertainty among investors and government across Europe.

The election came about when the Greek Parliament rejected the presidential candidate nominated by Prime Minister Antonis Samaras.

The radical left Syriza party is leading in opinion polls, and its leader opposes the deep budget cuts and austerity measures that have been instituted in Greece as a condition of financial bailouts.

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