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Rob Dillard, Iowa Public Radio

Congressman Young Answers Tough Questions Before a Loud Crowd

An overflow crowd crammed the Visitors' Center at Living History Farms in Urbandale for a lively town hall meeting with 3rd District Congressman David Young. The exchanges between the Republican and audience occasionally turned heated. Questions came on a range of topics during the 75-minute session, which was organized just a day earlier. Audience members asked about Young’s stances on positions held by the Trump administration regarding immigration, money for Planned Parenthood and funding...

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The 2017 Iowa legislative session is underway, and Iowa Public Radio is covering what's happening. Listen to our weekly podcast "Under the Golden Dome" and stay current on issues that impact you.

Photo by John Pemble

Iowa's U.S. senators are back in the state this week, drawing large, sometimes raucous crowds at town hall meetings. Attendance at Sen. Charles Grassley's gathering in Hancock county was reportedly more than 100. Sen. Joni Ernst drew a similar crowd at her event in Macquoketa.

Some Iowa attendees held signs supporting the Affordable Care Act and chanted "Do your job," and "Work for us." But do such protests make a difference to elected officials?

Joyce Russell/IPR

African-Americans turned out for a hearing at the statehouse today on a wide-ranging gun rights bill they say will threaten their safety if it becomes law.   

The bill includes so-called stand-your-ground language, along with broad new rights for carrying weapons.  

Under stand-your-ground, a gunowner can fire if he believes himself to be in danger.  

Laurel Clinton from Des Moines says her three sons may look dangerous to some because they’re black.

Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords has a message for members of Congress who are citing the possibility of protests as a reason not to hold town meetings: "Have some courage."

Giffords, wounded in a 2011 shooting outside a Tucson supermarket where she was meeting with constituents, was responding to a statement by Republican Congressman Louis Gohmert of Texas. Asked why he wasn't holding public meetings, Gohmert said:

President Trump has promised to build a wall along the 2,000 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border.

A third of the border already has a barrier, thanks to the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which was signed by then-president George W. Bush. That initiative ran into issues with landowners near the Rio Grande. If the wall goes forward as Trump promises, more lawsuits may be coming.

In baseball, if a pitcher wants to intentionally walk a batter, he has to actually lob the four pitches outside the strike zone. It's a technique often used to bypass a particularly strong batter, or to set up a double play.

But that rule now appears poised to change.

The Major League Baseball commissioner's office has proposed a rule change to have the pitcher forgo actually throwing four balls — instead, the bench would simply signal to the umpire that the batter will be intentionally walked.

The French presidential campaign has been marked by scandal, surprises and upsets as the April election appr

At a joint news conference in Mexico City on Thursday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson acknowledged the tension between the U.S. and Mexico. After talks with his Mexican counterpart, Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray, Tillerson said that "in a relationship filled with vibrant colors, two strong sovereign countries, from time to time, will have differences."

In America, there is a rare echelon of pop stars so big they only need one name: Madonna, Cher, Prince. In Italy, that name is Zucchero.

This week United Nations officials declared that a famine in South Sudan is growing — fueled by a deadly combination of drought and conflict. They estimate that nearly 4 million people are already struggling to get enough food. And officials expect the famine will spread to more areas in the coming months affecting an additional 1 million people.

Meanwhile the threat of famine is looming over three other countries: Nigeria, Somalia and Yemen, putting a total of 1.4 million children at risk of death this year.

Mobilus In Mobili / Flickr

Just weeks after leaving the White House, President Barack Obama ranks as the 12th best president overall, according to a new poll of historians conducted by C-SPAN. It's the first time Obama is eligible for the Presidential Historians Survey, which asked 91 historians to rank all 43 former presidents across 10 categories. 

On this edition of River to River, Ben Kieffer talks with presidential historian Tim Walch and political scientist Cary Covington to explore how we measure past presidents and how our view of presidents can change once they’ve left office.

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More Iowa Entries in 2017 NPR Tiny Desk Contest

This is the third year in a row that NPR has invited unsigned musicians to enter the Tiny Desk Contest. Currently, the judges are watching the submitted videos in search of the next great undiscovered artist to play at the Tiny Desk Concert in Washington, D.C., and tour the U.S. with NPR and sponsor Lagunitas. This year, Iowa is represented by 40 artists and bands that submitted YouTube videos of original songs. As you would expect, the impressive entries from Iowa represent a wide variety of...

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Studio One Featured Release

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Featured Release This Week: Woods Live At Third Man Records

Woods formed in Brooklyn in 2005, and have been steadily releasing their music on Woodsist Records, the Brooklyn-based label founded by band frontman Jeremy Earl. Their latest record, however, is on Jack White's Third Man Records. Woods Live At Third Man Records is part of an on-going series of full-length albums recorded in front of an audience in The Blue Room venue of Third Man Records in Nashville. The albums are released on vinyl only. In the words of Third Man: "Woods'...wheelhouse is a...

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The Latest from IPR Classical

Celeste Bembry

PI Presents: Black History Month Broadcast Sneak Peek

Performance Iowa presents UNI musicians and artists performing from IPR’s Studio One in honor of Black History Month! Black History Month is an annual observance in remembrance of important people and events in the history of people of color. It was first proposed by the leaders of the Black United Students at Kent State University in February 1969, and first celebrated at Kent State one year later, in February 1970. In 1976 as part of the United States Bicentennial, Black History Month was...

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