6:38pm

Fri December 16, 2011
The Two-Way

House Blocks Funding For New Light Bulb Standards

Originally published on Fri December 16, 2011 7:00 pm

A pair of incandescent light bulbs.
Dominique Faget AFP/Getty Images

Tucked inside the omnibus spending bill that the House of Representatives passed earlier, today, is a provision that prevents the Department of Energy from enforcing new, more energy efficient standards for light bulbs.

The new standards were signed into law in 2007 by then President Bush, but the standards have become a favorite cause for Rush Limbaugh and the Tea Party, who say the bill would ban incandescent light bulbs and give Americans less choice. They say it is a perfect example of government overreach.

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6:15pm

Fri December 16, 2011
It's All Politics

In Iowa And Beyond, Republicans In Final Push Before Contests Begin

Rep. Michele Bachmann waves to supporters Friday in Sioux City before starting a 99-county bus tour of Iowa.
Jeff Haynes Reuters /Landov

The Republican presidential contest remains fluid less than three weeks before the caucuses and primaries begin. Nationwide, nearly one in five GOP voters is still undecided. And in Iowa, candidates are making their final push before the Jan. 3 caucuses.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney on Friday told workers at a metal fabricating plant in Sioux City, Iowa: "I am running in this race because I understand how to get middle-class Americans prosperous again, working again, buying things, and putting more Americans back to work."

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5:44pm

Fri December 16, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

States Would Get More Flexibility On 'Essential Benefits' Under Proposal

Originally published on Fri December 16, 2011 5:46 pm

It may or may not be a punt, but the Obama administration wants to let states play a bigger role in deciding what constitutes an "essential health benefits" package when it comes to health insurance.

The Department of Health and Human Services issued what it called a "bulletin" outlining a policy it hopes to impose. In other words, it's not even yet a formal regulation.

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5:32pm

Fri December 16, 2011
The Two-Way

In Pictures: Egypt Erupts In Bloody Protest

An Egyptian protester rests after being wounded during clashes with soldiers and their supporters in Cairo on Friday.
Mohammed Abed AFP/Getty Images

Sometimes there are few words we can add to tell a story. Today, Egyptian protesters once again clashed with the country's ruling military and throughout the day the conflict grew larger and bloodier.

We've collected a few pictures that tell the story of Cairo today:

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

5:20pm

Fri December 16, 2011
Politics

Romney Receives Endorsement From Nikki Haley

The day after the final debate before the primaries, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney campaigned in Iowa. He also picked up the endorsement of South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

5:20pm

Fri December 16, 2011
The Salt

With Alternative Giving, A Nudge Out Of Poverty For The Poor

A man with a cow in Dong Thap Province in southern Vietnam. The man received his cow from Heifer - as well as training and resources to care for it.
Courtesy of Juleen Lapporte

Jim Eckhardt says there was a time he'd fill his holiday shopping cart with toys for his 6 grandchildren. But 7 years ago, he had an epiphany: The kids had too much stuff.

"You look at all the things we throw away and that money could be put to better use," Eckhardt says.

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5:07pm

Fri December 16, 2011
Middle East

Arab League Wavers On Sanctions Against Syria

Originally published on Sat December 17, 2011 11:54 am

Arab League Secretary General Nabil Al Arabi (far left) meets with foreign ministers of the Arab League in Cairo on Nov. 27. The group imposed tough sanctions against Syria at that meeting, but is now wavering when it comes to implementing them.
Khaled Elfiqi EPA/Landov

The Arab League has a reputation for being long on rhetoric and short on action. That's why it was so surprising when Arab ministers approved an unprecedented package of sanctions against Syria at the end of November.

But the unity that produced that vote is falling apart, and a meeting in Cairo to set the terms of the sanctions was suspended indefinitely.

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5:06pm

Fri December 16, 2011
Your Money

Amid A Blizzard Of Discounts, 'The Thrill Of The Hunt'

Originally published on Fri December 16, 2011 5:47 pm

Customers crowd into a Best Buy store in Burbank, Calif., on Nov. 25.
Jae C. Hong AP

Anybody with an e-mail box this time of year is in the middle of a storm — a 20 percent-off coupon lands, only to be topped by another for 30 percent off, then 40 percent, half-price. That's not to mention the free shipping offers piling up like snowdrifts as we head into the last full weekend of Christmas shopping.

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4:50pm

Fri December 16, 2011
The Two-Way

Zynga Has Disappointing Initial Public Offering

Originally published on Fri December 16, 2011 5:01 pm

The corporate logo for Zynga, center, is shown on an electronic billboard at the Nasdaq MarketSite on Friday.
Mark Lennihan AP

The tech and business press called it the most hyped initial public offering since Google, but very quickly today Zynga's public debut went sour with its stock price falling below its initial price of $10.

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4:15pm

Fri December 16, 2011
The Two-Way

U.S. Transfers Enemy Combatant To Iraqi Government

U.S. authorities decided to transfer Ali Mussa Daqduq — shown here on a poster at a 2007 U.S. military news conference in Baghdad — to Iraqi authorities.
Chris Hondros AFP/Getty Images

As part of its withdrawal from Iraq, the United States has turned over its final prisoner to Iraqi authorities.

The man is Ali Musa Daqduq, whom the United States held in Iraq as an Enemy combatant for his ties to Hezbollah, a militant group from Lebanon.

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