Scott Horsley

Scott Horsley is a White House correspondent for NPR News. He reports on the policy and politics of the Obama Administration, with a special emphasis on economic issues.

The 2012 campaign is the third presidential contest Horsley has covered for NPR. He previously reported on Senator John McCain's White House bid in 2008 and Senator John Kerry's campaign in 2004. Thanks to this experience, Horsley has become an expert in the motel shampoo offerings of various battleground states.

Horsley took up the White House beat after serving as a San Diego-based business correspondent for NPR where he covered fast food, gasoline prices, and the California electricity crunch of 2000. He reported from the Pentagon during the early phases of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Before joining NPR in 2001, Horsley was a reporter for member station KPBS-FM, where he received numerous honors, including a Public Radio News Directors' award for coverage of the California energy crisis.

Earlier in his career, Horsley worked as a reporter for WUSF-FM in Tampa, Florida, and as a news writer and reporter for commercial radio stations in Boston and Concord, New Hampshire. Horsley began his professional career as a production assistant for NPR's Morning Edition.

Horsley earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University and an MBA from San Diego State University.

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1:32am

Tue September 16, 2014
Goats and Soda

Obama To Announce Buildup In U.S. Efforts To Fight Ebola

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 9:43 am

Workers unload medical supplies to fight the Ebola epidemic from a USAID cargo flight in Harbel, Liberia, in August.
John Moore Getty Images

The Ebola epidemic in West Africa is already the deadliest on record, having killed more than 2,400 people. Health experts warn it could get much worse, if the spread of the disease isn't contained quickly.

That alarm has President Obama meeting today with experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. Obama is expected to announce a major buildup in U.S. efforts to address the threat of Ebola.

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6:45pm

Fri September 12, 2014
Governing

Do Americans Support President Obama's ISIS Plan?

Millions watched President Obama's prime-time address this week, like these patrons of a San Francisco nail salon. But whether Americans will support his plan remains unclear.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

More than 34 million people tuned in this week to hear President Obama outline plans to degrade, and ultimately destroy, the militant group known as the Islamic State.

Polls show widespread support for using American air power against the militants, even though many people remain wary about getting dragged into another open-ended conflict in the Middle East.

The fight represents both a challenge and an opportunity for the president, whose handling of foreign policy has been widely criticized in the past year.

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3:49am

Wed September 10, 2014
Middle East

Obama To Push Military Campaign Against Islamic State Militants

Originally published on Wed September 10, 2014 8:01 am

President Obama delivers a rare, primetime address Wednesday.

Taking over the TV networks during the crucial 9:00 p.m. ET programming slot is not something any White House does lightly.

This time, it's for Obama to spell out his plan to combat militants from the Islamic State, and spokesman Josh Earnest calls the timing a signal of the high national security priority at stake.

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4:54pm

Thu September 4, 2014
Politics

Wisconsin Voters Divided On Whether Job Growth Is Enough

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 6:51 pm

Gov. Scott Walker answers questions while celebrating the growth of local software company Forte Research Systems. He announced the company is adding 55 jobs with the help of a state loan.
Scott Bauer AP

In the hotly contested Wisconsin governor's race, incumbent Republican Scott Walker is touting an economic turnaround. But his Democratic challenger, Mary Burke, argues that the state's recovery is falling flat.

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5:02am

Thu August 28, 2014
Politics

Survey: Americans Are Grumpy About Economic Recovery

Originally published on Thu August 28, 2014 7:20 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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5:15pm

Fri August 22, 2014
NPR Story

For Obama, August Is The Cruelest Month

Originally published on Sat August 23, 2014 7:18 pm

President Obama plays golf on the island of Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts on Thursday.
Steven Senne AP

President Obama returns to Washington this weekend after a two-week family vacation.

It wasn't exactly restful. The break was interrupted several times by events in Iraq and in Ferguson, Mo.

On Wednesday, Obama raised eyebrows by hitting the golf course, minutes after delivering a tough statement on the murder of an American journalist by militants from the Islamic State.

You know it's bad is when even the French are criticizing you for taking too much time off.

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3:36am

Wed August 20, 2014
Politics

With Ferguson, Obama Forced To Confront Race Yet Again

Originally published on Wed August 20, 2014 11:52 am

President Obama meets with Attorney General Eric Holder in the Oval Office of the White House on Monday. Holder is traveling to Ferguson, Mo., where a federal investigation is under way in the police shooting of Michael Brown, a black teenager who was unarmed.
Charles Dharapak AP

The tense situation in Ferguson, Mo., following the shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown is another test for President Obama. He has struggled at times over how to navigate long-simmering tensions between police and the African-American community.

Obama says he understands the passions and the anger that have engulfed Ferguson over the past week and a half, but he has carefully avoided taking sides. His warnings against violent confrontation have been directed equally at the protesters and the police.

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4:16pm

Mon August 18, 2014
Politics

Obama Suspends Summer Vacation To Debrief On Issues At Home And Abroad

Originally published on Mon August 18, 2014 6:18 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

4:48pm

Fri August 15, 2014
Politics

Left And Right Unite In Criticizing Ferguson Police Response

Originally published on Fri August 15, 2014 9:50 pm

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon speaks during a news conference in St. Louis. Nixon ordered the Missouri State Highway Patrol to take over the supervision of security in Ferguson.
Jeff Roberson AP

The police response to this week's protests in Ferguson, Mo., has been criticized on both sides of the aisle as heavy-handed.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon — a two-term Democrat — ordered an overnight change in police tactics. He brought in state troopers, who walked side-by-side with demonstrators.

"This is a place where people work, go to school, raise their families and go to church. A diverse community. A Missouri community. But lately it's looked more like a war zone, and that's unacceptable," he said at a press conference Thursday.

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4:15pm

Thu July 31, 2014
U.S.

In Obama's Foreign Policy, Some See Patience; Some See Passivity

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 8:07 pm

President Obama announced new economic sanctions against Russia at the White House on Tuesday.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

A new Washington Post-ABC poll shows fewer than half of Americans approve of the way President Obama is handling international affairs.

But the president's grade on foreign policy has actually improved slightly since the beginning of summer, even as crises around the globe have multiplied. And Obama says he's confident in his strategic approach, even as he cautions that there are no quick fixes.

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5:24pm

Thu July 17, 2014
News

White House Urges Lawmakers To Address Popular Tax Dodge

Originally published on Thu July 17, 2014 8:40 pm

Ireland (shown here in this Dingle Peninsula photo) has been among the greenest pastures for countries seeking to reduce their tax liabilities through a process called "corporate inversion."
iStockphoto

When is it OK for an American company to avoid paying American taxes?

That's the question the Senate Finance Committee will wrestle with next week as the Obama administration urges lawmakers to make it harder for companies to duck corporate taxes by setting up shop overseas.

The latest tax-cutting strategy to go under the microscope, these so-called corporate inversions are a buttoned-down variation of an older, sexier tax dodge called the "naked inversion."

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5:45pm

Fri July 11, 2014
Politics

House GOP Plows Forward With Plans To Sue Obama

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 8:21 pm

House Speaker John Boehner at a Capitol Hill news conference last month. He said Wednesday that the Republican-controlled House will file a lawsuit accusing President Obama of failing to carry out laws passed by Congress.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

House Republicans are pushing ahead with a plan to sue President Obama, accusing him of trying to sidestep Congress and make his own laws.

But the president is also using the suit, which is considered a long shot in legal terms, to score political points.

House Speaker John Boehner says the lawsuit will focus on the administration's decision to postpone the requirement in the Affordable Care Act that large employers provide health insurance for their workers.

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5:19pm

Wed July 9, 2014
Politics

Obama Stumps In Colorado, With Women's Vote As Backdrop

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 10:39 pm

President Obama greets a woman at Wazee Supper Club in Denver on Tuesday. He was in Colorado this week speaking about the economy and raising money for congressional candidates.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

In Colorado, where President Obama's approval rating is low and the Senate race is tight, Democratic incumbent Mark Udall largely bowed out of the spotlight of the president's visit Wednesday.

But as Obama made the rounds speaking about the economy and raising money for Democratic congressional candidates, he also spoke about the women's issues that could be key to Udall's electoral success.

At a morning outdoor rally in Denver's Cheesman Park, Obama emphasized just how much is on the line in the midterms.

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3:37am

Tue July 8, 2014
Around the Nation

Obama To Ask Congress For $2B To Ease Immigration Crisis

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 9:51 am

Detainees sleep and watch television in a holding cell where hundreds of mostly Central American immigrant children are being processed at a U.S. Customs facility in Nogales, Texas.
Getty Images

The Obama administration will ask Congress for more than $2 billion Tuesday to address the urgent humanitarian crisis along the U.S. border with Mexico.

In the past nine months, more than 50,000 children and teenagers have crossed that border illegally on their own, most from Central America. By law, the administration can't deport those young people until they have an immigration hearing — a process that can take years.

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4:10pm

Tue July 1, 2014
Politics

Lawmakers Pitch A Gas Tax Hike To Replenish Dwindling Highway Funds

Originally published on Tue July 1, 2014 7:37 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Let's take a closer look now at what's happening to the Highway Trust Fund. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx warned state officials in a letter today that unless the fund is patched quickly, the federal government will start limiting payouts to states on August 1. The average state will lose nearly 30 percent of its federal road money and that could mean a lot less asphalt. NPR's Scott Horsley reports on one idea for fixing the trust fund and the roadblocks in front of it.

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4:55pm

Fri June 13, 2014
Politics

Cantor's Defeat Brings An End To Prickly Relationship With Obama

Originally published on Fri June 13, 2014 6:23 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block. There is no love lost at the White House for Eric Cantor, the number two Republican in the House, who lost his primary this week. The Virginia congressman has long been a roadblock for the president's legislative agenda. House Republicans will vote next week on who should replace Cantor as majority leader. NPR's Scott Horsley reports that while the players are changing, the partisan dynamic is likely to say the same.

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7:54am

Sat June 7, 2014
Politics

Obama Reassures Allies As He Honors D-Day Sacrifices

Originally published on Sat June 7, 2014 12:41 pm

President Obama has had an eventful visit to Europe, which included attending the 70th D-Day commemoration in Normandy.

4:32pm

Thu June 5, 2014
News

On Eve Of D-Day Anniversary, World Leaders Cope With Fresher Scars

Originally published on Thu June 5, 2014 7:58 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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4:08pm

Wed June 4, 2014
Europe

In Keynote Speech, Obama Marks A Quarter-Century Of Polish Democracy

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 7:18 pm

President Obama is delivering the keynote address of his current trip to Europe in Poland. Earlier in the day, Obama is meeting with the president-elect of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko.

4:08pm

Tue June 3, 2014
Europe

In Warsaw, Obama Vows To Keep Rattled Allies Out Of Russian Orbit

Originally published on Tue June 3, 2014 8:03 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. President Obama is asking Congress for an extra billion dollars. It's for defense, to reassure nervous allies and let Eastern Europe that United States is committed to their security. The president spoke to an audience in Poland today. He said the U.S. commitment is especially important in the face of Russia's actions in neighboring Ukraine.

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4:21pm

Wed May 28, 2014
Politics

Obama Auditions Foreign Policy Speech Before Graduating Cadets

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 6:17 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. President Obama says he wants to ramp up support for opposition forces in Syria. That could include weapons and training provided by the U.S. military. We'll hear more about his reasoning ahead. Obama made the call today in a commencement speech at West Point. NPR's Scott Horsley reports the president also used the speech to defend his broader approach to foreign-policy.

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2:54pm

Mon May 26, 2014
It's All Politics

Brad Paisley Leaves 'Southern Comfort Zone' For Troops In Afghanistan

Country music singer Brad Paisley performs during a troop rally with President Obama during an unannounced visit at Bagram Air Field on Sunday.
Evan Vucci AP

Brad Paisley is well-known as a top-selling country music star. Turns out, he's a pretty good juggler, too.

Paisley joined President Obama in a surprise trip to Afghanistan this Memorial Day weekend, playing for some 3,000 troops at the Bagram Airfield. Just 24 hours earlier, Paisley was the headliner at the Tree Town Music Festival in Forest City, Iowa.

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4:19pm

Fri May 23, 2014
Politics

Obama Taps San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro For HUD Secretary

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 6:04 pm

San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro is a rising star in the Democratic Party. He spoke at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., in 2012.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

President Obama has been playing musical chairs with his Cabinet.

At the White House on Friday, Obama announced that he's chosen Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan to be his new budget director. Donovan would replace Sylvia Mathews Burwell, who's taking over the Department of Health and Human Services.

That leaves a vacancy atop the housing department, which the president plans to fill with an outsider: Julian Castro, the mayor of San Antonio and a rising star in the Democratic Party.

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4:03pm

Thu May 8, 2014
Health Care

Forecast Predicts A Shift Away From Employer-Sponsored Insurance

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 7:49 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. President Obama's pick to head the Department of Health and Human Services is winning some Republican support. The president chose Sylvia Matthews Burwell to take over from the embattled outgoing secretary, Kathleen Sebelius. And today, Burwell appeared before the Senate Health Committee. That's where Arizona Senator John McCain said she is well qualified to serve as health secretary.

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5:06am

Wed May 7, 2014
Politics

Obama Sounds Alarm Bell On Climate Change. Is Anyone Listening?

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 8:47 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Everybody makes conversation about the weather. And today that includes President Obama. He's appearing on three network TV shows to discuss a new government report on climate change. It's on a day when the president also visits Arkansas to survey the damage from last week's tornadoes.

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10:52am

Sat May 3, 2014
Media

Poised And Persistent, Reporter Broke White House Color Barrier

Originally published on Sat May 3, 2014 12:33 pm

Reporter Harry McAlpin leaves the White House in 1944. McAlpin was the first black reporter to cover a presidential press conference. He'll be honored Saturday at the Correspondents' Dinner.
George Skadding Time & Life Pictures/Getty Image

Hollywood starlets will mingle with politicians and even humble reporters in Washington on Saturday night. That can only mean one thing: the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner. The black-tie event has evolved into a glitzy celebrity roast, but it began as a simple chance for journalists to break bread with the presidents they cover.

This year, the White House Correspondents' Association is celebrating its 100th anniversary, and it plans to posthumously honor the first African-American reporter to cover a presidential news conference.

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4:21pm

Fri May 2, 2014
News

Out Of White House Meeting, Obama And Merkel Emerge United On Russia

Originally published on Sat May 3, 2014 11:17 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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4:44pm

Wed April 30, 2014
Politics

Minimum Wage Raise: Blocked For Now, May Live Again In Campaigns

Originally published on Wed April 30, 2014 11:20 pm

Senate Republicans blocked a vote Wednesday on a bill to raise the nation's minimum wage. But don't expect that to be the end of the story.

For more than a year now, Democrats, including President Obama, have been pushing to boost the minimum wage. Their latest target is $10.10 an hour.

GOP critics argue that would depress hiring in an already weak job market.

But raising the wage is popular with voters, and Democrats plan to make the issue a rallying cry between now and the November elections.

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4:17pm

Mon April 28, 2014
News

Washington Levels New Sanctions At Russia, Pulls Some Punches

Originally published on Mon April 28, 2014 6:18 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

The new economic sanctions ordered by the Treasury Department today targets 17 Russian companies, along with seven government officials, some with close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The individuals include the chairman and a board member of Russia's largest state-owned oil company. European governments are expected to add their own financial penalties, but so far, there's little sign the Russian leader is yielding to the pressure. NPR's Scott Horsley reports.

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4:23pm

Thu April 17, 2014
Health Care

Following Enrollment Deadline, Health Care Focus Turns To States

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 8:06 pm

President Obama met Thursday with insurance company executives and a separate group of insurance regulators from the states, discussing their mutual interest in administering the new health care law.

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