River to River on IPR News and Studio One

Weekdays from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.

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. Joyce Russell 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 rivertoriver@iowapublicradio.org. Our theme music is by The River Monks.

Want to share an idea for a future show? Contact one of our producers:
Ben Stanton: bstanton@iowapublicradio.org
Dennis Reese: dreese@iowapublicradio.org
Emily Woodbury: ewoodbury@iowapublicradio.org
Katherine Perkins: kperkins@iowapublicradio.org
Sarah Boden: sboden@iowapublicradio.org

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River to River
1:00 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

"Herding Donkeys" and statehouse races

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Ari Berman, contributing writer for The Nation magazine, an Investigative Journalism Fellow at The Nation Institute and a native Iowan about his book, "Herding Donkeys." Then, we hear about some of the more contentious Iowa legislative races. Guests include Douglas Burns with the Daily Times Herald, James Lynch with The Gazette and the Des Moines Register's Jason Clayworth.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Thu October 28, 2010

Brain Science Research & New Grinnell College President Raynard Kington

It's Brain Awareness Week at The University of Iowa. Host Ben Kieffer speaks with visiting brain scientist Dr. Donald Stuss of the Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest in Toronto. He'll tell us about brain health as we age and the latest research on brain trauma whether it's on the football field or the battlefield. Then, we'll have a conversation with the new President of Grinnell College, Dr. Raynard Kington. We'll talk about his vision for Grinnell College, one of the top liberal arts schools in the country.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Wed October 27, 2010

Politics Day

With the midterm election less than a week away, host Ben Kieffer talks with Iowa State University political science professor Steffen Schmidt and Coe College's Joan and Abbott Lipsky Professor and Chair of political science, Bruce Nesmith. They'll talk about the interest groups pouring money into Iowa races, about the national figures visiting the state and what that may tell us about 2012.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Tue October 26, 2010

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture candidates

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Republican incumbent Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey and his Democratic challenger Francis Thicke. The two candidates will discuss their visions for restructuring wind and biofuels industries and their differing views on control over citing for hog confinement operations.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Mon October 25, 2010

3rd Party Gubernatorial Candidates

Voters will soon cast their ballots for a number of statewide races. het Culver and Terry Branstad are capturing most of the headlines in the race for governor but there are four other candidates. Guest host Jeneane Beck talks to the so-called third party candidates, Jonathan Narcisse of the Iowa Party, Libertarian Eric Cooper, David Rosenfeld of the Socialist Workers Party, and Gregory James Hughes who was nominated by petition.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Fri October 22, 2010

Michele Norris

How well do you know the people who raised you? That’s a central question in a new book by Michele Norris, co-host of NPR’s All Things Considered. Norris talks to host Ben Kieffer about her book "The Grace of Silence" and how she found herself unexpectedly confronting hard truths about her own family’s racial history that had been left unsaid by her parents. From her grandmother’s work as an itinerant Aunt Jemima peddling pancake mix, to her father’s shooting by the Birmingham police within weeks of his discharge from service in World War II.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Thu October 21, 2010

Balancing Life

Polls say Americans want it all: rewarding, well-paying jobs, healthy, stable and secure lives, modest material comforts, and adequate time for friends, family and community. But for many, the reality is quite different. A seminar this week at the University of Iowa brings together experts from government, academia, business, and the community to explore ways to make our lives more rewarding in a sustainable way. Among Ben Kieffer's guests- author and filmmaker John de Graaf who examines overwork and overconsumption in America.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Wed October 20, 2010

Politics Day

Host Ben Kieffer talks about the prospects for republicans and democrats nationally with the election less than two weeks away. Then, we preveiw the last Iowa gubernatorial debate. Guests include Bruce Gronbeck, Professor Emeritus at U of I, Wayne Moyer, Professor of Political Science at Grinnell College, and Kathie Obradovich, Political Columnist for the Des Moines Register.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Tue October 19, 2010

Iowa's 3rd Congressional District

Host Dean Borg questions Iowa's incumbent third district Congressman Leonard Boswell and his republican challenger Brad Zaun. Boswell, a democrat, has spent 14 years in the House of Representatives and is seeking an 8th term. State Senator Zaun, the former mayor of Urbandale, hopes to replace him. It's a bruising campaign that's getting national attention. Join in with your own questions.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Mon October 18, 2010

Judge Retention on November Ballot

Host Jeneane Beck examines the political movement to unseat Iowa Supreme Court justices with the retention election in November. Her guests are Chuck Laudner from Iowa For Freedom, whose group is campaigning for a "no" vote on retention, and Chief Justice Marsha Ternus and Justice David Baker, who are standing for retention.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Fri October 15, 2010

Congressional Candidates in Iowa's 4th and 5th Districts

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Democratic candidate Bill Maske from Iowa's 4th district. Maske is challenging incumbent Republican Tom Latham in the November election. Later Ben talks with Matt Campbell, the Democratic candidate from the 5th district. Campbell faces incumbent Republican Steve King.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Thu October 14, 2010

Living Medal of Honor Recipient: Staff Sergeant Sal Giunta of Hiawatha

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Army Staff Sergeant Salvatore Giunta of Hiawatha. Later this year Sal Giunta will become the first living recipient of the Medal of Honor since Vietnam. There have only been eight recipients of the military's highest honor in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Giunta, who serves with the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, exposed himself to enemy fire in October 2007, when an insurgent force ambush split his squad into two groups. Later, Ben speaks with Rabbi Jay Holstein, the J.J.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Wed October 13, 2010

Iowa Gubernatorial Race

On this Wednesday, politics day, with the midterm elections less than three weeks away, we focus on the Iowa gubernatorial race. First, we'll speak with former GOP governor Terry Branstad. He's challenging first-term incumbent Democrat Chet Culver. A new poll paid for by the Culver campaign shows Culver has gained ground against Branstad and is now within eight points. We'll ask Terry Branstad about the new poll numbers and, of course, the top issues in the campaign.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Tue October 12, 2010

World Food Prize Laureates 2010

We talk with the 2010 World Food Prize Laureates David Beckmann of Bread for the World and Jo Luck of Heifer International. The two are in Iowa this week for the World Food Prize Borlaug Dialog and Symposium. We’ll talk about how they’ve built two of the world's foremost grassroots organizations aimed at ending hunger and poverty for millions of people around the globe. And as this year’s discussion centers around small producers, we’ll hear what challenges and successes they’ve witnessed firsthand.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Mon October 11, 2010

Iowa's Second Congressional Race

Host Ben Kieffer talks with the congressional candidates vying to represent Iowa's second district. First we'll speak with two-term Democratic incumbent Congressman Dave Loebsack, then with his Republican challenger Mariannette Miller-Meeks. Loebsack is accusing Miller-Meeks of flip-flopping her position on privatizing social security while Miller-Meeks says Loebsack changed his position on the Bush tax cuts.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Fri October 8, 2010

Until it Hurts: Sports Injuries and Youth Sports

Teen girls are 6 to 7 times more likely to injure an ACL than boys their same age and the number of knee surgeries performed to correct an anterior cruciate ligament tear has risen sharply over the past decade. This hour host Ben Kieffer speaks with Paul Pursley, a physical therapist with University of Iowa Sports Medicine about a new program that will be offered to female basketball players with hopes of teaching young girls how to avoid injuries. We also hear from a Western Iowa teen about her two ACL reconstructions before she turned 18.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Thu October 7, 2010

Congressman Bruce Braley and Ben Lange

Host Ben Kieffer talks with candidates vying to represent Iowa's first congressional district. For the first half of the program, we'll ask two-term Democrat, Congressman Bruce Braley, about the success or failure of Cash for Clunkers and what it's like to be the target of attack ads by out-of-state interest groups. Then we'll hear from Republican candidate Ben Lange and ask how his approach to representing the district would differ from his opponent's.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Wed October 6, 2010

Politics Day

Join host Ben Kieffer for Politics Day. Christine O'Donnell, the tea-party backed candidate from Delaware, declares she's not a witch. Rahm Emanuel leaves the White House to run for mayor of his hometown of Chicago. What does this mean for the Obama administration? Who's the new guy and what do we know about him? Who else has been Chief of Staff and changed jobs midstream? A Sioux City church is under investigation by the IRS for advocating that congregants vote against the retention of three Iowa Supreme Court justices.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Tue October 5, 2010

U.S. Ambassador Mary Kramer & U.S. Senate Candidate Roxanne Conlin

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Ambassador Mary Kramer. Kramer is speaking at the University of Northern Iowa this afternoon about the increasing polarization of American politics. Kramer served in the Iowa Senate representing West Des Moines from 1991-2003. She was nominated by President George W. Bush to become U.S. Ambassador to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean in 2003. Later in the hour, we talk with the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, Roxanne Conlin. Conlin is a Des Moines trial attorney and former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Mon October 4, 2010

Bill McKibben and 10-10-10

We talk with Bill McKibben, one of the nation's leading environmentalists about his new book "EAARTH: Making Life on a Tough New Planet," and his 350.org effort to plan a global work party on 10-10-10. Then, we'll talk with organizers of 10-10-10 events in Iowa. Guests include Jonathan Durst, an Iowa City student organizer, Stephen Lauer, Susan Temere and Hillary Williams who are organizing events in Des Moines and an Ames organizer.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Fri October 1, 2010

Natural Resources and Recreation Trust Fund

In November voters will decide whether to amend the Iowa Constitution to create the Natural Resources and Recreation Trust Fund. The fund would be used to enhance and protect water and soil quality and natural areas. The ballot measure does not raise taxes, but would be funded through any future increase in the sales tax.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Thu September 30, 2010

Nuclear Arms Reduction & U.S.-China Relations

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Iowa native and Grinnell College graduate Greg Thielmann. Thielmann is a Senior Fellow at the Arms Control Association in Washington, DC. He has been instrumental in pushing for ratification of the New START treaty for Strategic Arms Reduction- the bilateral nuclear arms reduction treaty between the U.S. and Russia. Later, Ben talks with Henry Levine, Senior Director for Stonebridge, China, a consulting firm that advises clients on China-related strategies and plans. Levine will discuss U.S.-China relations during a stop at Drake University.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Wed September 29, 2010

Politics Day

President Obama drops in on a Beaverdale backyard today. New polls conducted by the Des Moines Register show Terry Branstad leads Chet Culver by nineteen points in the race for governor, and incumbent Senator Chuck Grassley has a commanding lead over challenger Roxanne Conlin. This hour we talk about the latest political news, inlcuding efforts to vote on retaining Iowa Supreme Court justices. Host Ben Kieffer discusses these issues with guests Dennis Goldford and Rachel Caufield of Drake University and Wayne Moyer of Grinnell College.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Tue September 28, 2010

Obesity in Iowa

According to the National Center for Disease the number of obese Iowans increased in 2009. Now 25-29% of Iowans report being significantly overweight or obese. This hour, we discuss the obesity epidemic as it pertains to Iowa and what is being done to combat it with programs such as Live Healthy Iowa, Iowans Fit for Life and the Iowa Sports Foundation's Go the Distance Program.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Mon September 27, 2010

Veterans' Oral History

A national project to record the stories of America's veterans is approaching its 10 year anniversary. Guest host Dean Borg is joined by guests who will talk about the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum's contributions to the project. We'll also talk with a veteran who's already shared his history and a veteran from one of the country's current wars.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Fri September 24, 2010

UNI Center for Holocaust & Genocide Education & modern-day human trafficking

A new center at the University of Northern Iowa seeks to inform Iowa school kids about the Holocaust and genocide. Host Ben Kieffer talks with the Center's director, Stephen Gaies. We'll also speak with an author who profiled concentration camp survivors who came to Des Moines. Finally, we'll get an update on the impacts that modern-day human trafficking have in Iowa and the efforts to stop it.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Thu September 23, 2010

Fall Weather, Unemployment, & Housing

Thursday is the first full day of fall. We'll take the opportunity to examine Iowa’s climate on several fronts. State Climatologist Harry Hillaker will reflect on this past summer and look ahead to what kind of weather and harvest the new season is likely to bring. Also, Joe Walsh, Deputy Director of Iowa Workforce Development gives us the latest picture of Iowa's climate for those seeking jobs. Finally, Carey Jensen from the Iowa Association of Realtors gives us an update on the housing industry in the state.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Wed September 22, 2010

Politics Day

Two former Iowa lawmakers are launching 50-50 in 2020, with the goal of recruiting and mentoring women to run for elected office in Iowa. We'll talk with Maggie Tinsman and Jean Lloyd-Jones about the effort and its chance for success. Then, we'll get analysis of the two Congressional races in Iowa with female candidates, and reflect on Sarah Palin's visit to the state. Guests include Kelly Thornburg, Iowa NEW Leadership Coordinator for the University of Iowa and Dianne Bystrom, Director of the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics at Iowa State University.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Tue September 21, 2010

Counter-terrorism & Comedy Overseas

Join us for a conversation with NPR counter-terrorism correspondent Dina Temple-Raston. She visits Grinnell College this week to discuss her unique role working with the FBI and CIA. She'll discuss the fundamental changes in the threat of terrorism. Also, Iowa comedian Nathan Timmel. He's just returned from another trip to Iraq to entertain the troops. He'll give us an update from his unique perspective.

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River to River
1:00 pm
Mon September 20, 2010

Child Pornography & Foster Care in Iowa

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Iowa is ramping up its prosecution of child pornography offenders. Guest host, Alex Heuer, will be joined by U.S. Attorney Stephanie Rose. We'll talk about the office's focus to stop the spread of images involving sexually explicit acts with children. We'll also get an update on foster care in Iowa and how the number of children in the system is decreasing.

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