Ongoing Coverage:

River to River

Weekdays at 12 p.m. on IPR News and News/Studio One and 10 p.m. on IPR News

River to River is Iowa Public Radio's talk program that focuses on the news, issues and events in our state. This national award-winning program goes beyond the headlines, frames community problems, and fosters conversation. Wednesdays, Ben Kieffer is joined by political analysts from around the state to dissect the week in politics. Clay Masters hosts Mondays during the legislative session looking at statehouse issues.

During the show, contact us at 1-866-780-9100, IPRTalk on Twitter, our Facebook page, or via email Our theme music is by The River Monks.

Want to share an idea for a future show? Contact one of our producers:
Ben Kieffer:
Charity Nebbe: Twitter: @CharityNebbe
Clare Roth: Twitter: @ClareAliceRoth
Dennis Reese:
Emily Woodbury: Twitter: @EmilyWoodbury
Katherine Perkins:
Lindsey Moon: Twitter: @lindseysmoon

Composer ID: 


3:20 pm
Mon November 10, 2014

Iowa is in Two "American Nations," Which One Do You Live In?

Colin Woodard's 11 "American Nations"
Courtesy of Colin Woodard

Why do we classify states or regions as “red” or “blue”? How did certain areas of the country gain particular political reputations? 

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1:54 pm
Fri November 7, 2014

ISU Honors Students, Veterans Lost

ISU's Gold Star Hall
Iowa State University

Diane Rasmussen, who lives in Omaha, can't make impromptu trips to Arlington, Virginia, where her son Deric is buried. Now, if she wants to feel close to him, she can visit Gold Star Hall in ISU's Memorial Union.

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1:10 pm
Fri November 7, 2014

NPR Correspondent Mara Liasson Weighs in on Iowa Politics

Why do female candidates often go by their first names? Liasson weighs in on gender issues in politics.
Gage Skidmore Flickr

Senator-Elect Joni Ernst's 'Squeal' ad made waves this election cycle. NPR political correspondent Mara Liassion believes Ernst's gender was crucial to that appeal.

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9:46 am
Fri November 7, 2014

How Is Iowa Doing In the Fight Against Cancer?

17,630 people in Iowa will be diagnosed with cancer in 2014
Faculty of Medicine NTNU

Cancer-related deaths continue to decline in the U.S., and scientific breakthroughs are occurring at a breathtaking pace. But is this trend in jeopardy?

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Politics Day
3:58 pm
Wed November 5, 2014

Politics Day: Mid-Term Election Analysis

nshepard / flickr

Republicans hand a major defeat to President Obama and Senate Democrats, seizing control of the U.S. Senate; and Iowa makes history, electing its first female senator, Joni Ernst.

One lone Democrat remains in Iowa’s six-member congressional delegation to Washington. This politics day, host Ben Kieffer and several political analysts examine the results of Iowa’s races and fit them into the national picture, to ask, what may be in store for the final two years of the Obama presidency?

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Business and Economy
10:22 am
Wed November 5, 2014

When the Government Charges Your Property With a Crime, Not You

Carole Hinders, owner of Mrs. Lady's Mexican Food, in her restaurant's kitchen
Photo Courtesy of the Institue for Justice

Carole Hinders of Arnold’s Park, IA, wasn’t charged with a crime, but that didn’t stop the I.R.S. from seizing the entire balance of her checking account, more than $30,000.

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4:35 pm
Mon November 3, 2014

Is Your Office Affecting Your Sleep Patterns?

A recent study found that the amount of natural light office workers are exposed to may impact the duration and quality of their sleep.
Mark Norman Francis Flickr

A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that those who worked close to windows slept better and longer than those who didn’t. Dr. Eric Dyken, a sleep expert, says this has to do with our bodies' circadian rhythms.

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3:52 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Ukraine Strained by Gas Deal, Multiple Elections

Kiev, Ukraine
Dieter Zirnig Flickr

Yesterday in a deal brokered by the European Union, Russia agreed to supply gas to Ukraine through March. 

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River to River
3:31 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Author Justin Cronin Describes Post-Apocalyptic World in "The Passage" Trilogy

stpaulgirl / flickr

New York Times bestselling author and Iowa Writers’ Workshop graduate, Justin Cronin, takes us into the post-apocalyptic world he’s created in the newly released second book of his highly-acclaimed vampire trilogy.

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2:51 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

UI Course Takes Superheroes Seriously

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's...a college course?
JD Hancock Flickr

While Iowans will see superheroes and villains out trick-or-treating tonight, University of Iowa students will be seeing them in their textbooks this spring.

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Politics Day
6:41 pm
Thu October 30, 2014

Politics Day: One Week To Go

Ernst/Braley Campaign Facebook Pages

With the midterm elections less than a week away, the Iowa Senate race looks closer than ever.

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River to River
4:23 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Jack Hatch on legislative priorities, fund raising and gaining the support of Iowa Democrats

State Senator Jack Hatch in Iowa Public Radio's Des Moines studio
John Pemble Iowa Public Radio

Just a week away from election day, polls show Governor Terry Branstad has a double-digit lead over Democratic State Senator Jack Hatch.

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River to River
5:39 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

Doug Smith of the Yellowstone Gray Wolf Restoration Project: "They're just like us"

Yellowstone wolf in the woods
Jeremy Weber

"Our problems with wolves stem from jealousy and competition...they're just like us," says Doug Smith, Yellowstone National Park wildlife biologist.

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River to River
4:32 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

The Significance of a 45,000 Year-Old Leg Bone

Neandertal skeleton (The man whose bone was found in Siberia was a human, not a Neanderthal, but had Neanderthal genes)
Paolo C. / flickr

A bone found on the banks of a Siberian river has yielded the oldest modern human genome yet recovered.

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2014 Elections
12:43 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

Iowa Nice Guy Announces Run for Governor of Iowa

The Iowa Nice Guy says he’s running to represent the “Nice Party” of Iowa.

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Planet Money
5:00 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

T-shirts, Candy, and Candlelight: How Planet Money Makes Sense of the Economy

David Kestenbaum and Jacob Goldstein will speak at ISU tonight at 8 PM.
John Pemble Iowa Public Radio

Economics teachers across the country use blackboards and chalk to teach people about supply and demand. The Planet Money team hands out candy to seventh graders.

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Politics Day
4:02 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

America's Love-Hate Relationship with Political Polling

DonkeyHotey / flickr

Two weeks to go until Election Day. Polls continue to show the Braley-Ernst Senate race is one of the closest in the nation – a contest that could decide party control in the Senate.

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Agriculture and Hunger
5:10 pm
Tue October 21, 2014

One Reporter's Journey to Understand How China Is Fed

Hicks says one surprising thing is the large amount of women in Chinese agriculture. Often they run the small family farms while their husbands work in industry in the city.
International Food Policy Research Institute Flickr

From buying Iowa feed to learning from farming practices to possibly buying into our hog market, China's ag ties to Iowa are strong.

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International News
4:44 pm
Tue October 21, 2014

UI Professor Encounters Hong Kong Protests First-Hand

The so-called "Umbrella Revolution" is made up in large part of students who want unrestricted choice of candidates in the 2017 elections.
Pasu Au Yeung Flickr

Art Durnev is a finance professor at the University of Iowa, but he got a crash course on political science when he encountered protests daily during a two-week stint at the UI's MBA program in Hong Kong.

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River to River
3:35 pm
Mon October 20, 2014

Age of the Microbrewery

More than half of all U.S. brewing facilities are microbreweries
John Bollwitt

Traditional, big American breweries are in the midst of a global identity crisis. Meanwhile, craft beer microbreweries in the U.S. are flourishing like never before.

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6:30 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Iowa Hospitals Prepare for Ebola

The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics is undergoing
Jon Favrel Flickr

Though there’s only been two cases in the United States, hospitals across the nation and across Iowa are preparing for the possibility of caring for Ebola patients.

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Crime, Justice and Public Safety
10:15 am
Fri October 17, 2014

U.S. Supreme Court: "There's far more agreement than is commonly understood"

U.S. Supreme Court building
Jeff Kubina / flickr

Has the U.S. Supreme Court become a partisan institution? According to polls, many Americans think so.

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2014 Elections
11:41 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Iowa's Non-Major Party Candidates in the 2014 Elections

Ulises Jorge / flickr

The Republican and Democratic parties dominate politics in our state and our country.

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Science and Technology
12:35 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Young People Inheriting a Situation That's 'Out of Their Control'

Cracks in the ice cover of the arctic ocean. As Earth's climate warms thes cracks are allowing methane to escape into the atmosphere, where it can add to global warming.
Eric Kort, Creative Commons 2.0 NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

One of the nation's best-known climate scientists is joining a lawsuit against the government to pressure for policies to address global warming.

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News Buzz
4:06 pm
Fri October 10, 2014

Pilotless Airplanes? Rockwell Collins and the UI Push Forward

Early tests by Rockwell Collins and a UI group suggest remote-controlled airplanes may feasible in US airspace in the future.
a.koto Flickr

Would you fly in a plane without a pilot? How comfortable would you be with a plane remote-controlled from the ground?

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Climate Change
3:46 pm
Fri October 10, 2014

Iowa Scientists: Climate Change a Public Health Concern

Thorne says drought and agricultural effects are not the only concerns in terms of climate change in Iowa.
anothertom Flickr

180 scientists from  38 Iowa colleges and universities signed this year’s Iowa Climate Statement 2014. Co-author Peter Thorne says this year’s report focuses on climate change’s effect on Iowans’ health.

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World Food Prize
2:26 pm
Fri October 10, 2014

Iranian Wheat Scientist to Attend World Food Prize Symposium in Des Moines

Wikimedia Commons

Government officials in Iran are sending one of their top food scientists to the World Food Prize Symposium in Des Moines next week. 

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3:46 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Encore: Memories of Flight 232

Flight 232, before its deadly crash
C Zellmer Wikimedia Commons

Chief Flight Attendant Jan Brown remembers the approximately 40 minutes between engine failure and crash-landing with crystal clarity.

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Politics Day
5:07 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

Decisions by Default: U.S. Supreme Court Stays Quiet on Same-Sex Marriage

U.S. Supreme Court Building
Wikimedia Commons

Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to take up any of the cases before them involving same-sex marriage.

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River to River
1:54 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

What Does Don Gonyea Know About Ioway, Anyway?

Don Gonyea and Ben Kieffer at "Politics and a Pint" in downtown Des Moines
John Pemble

NPR political correspondent Don Gonyea has spent many years in Iowa, covering political races and the Iowa caucuses; but can he reach the status of "honorary Iowan?"

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