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It's All Politics
5:21 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Virginia Gay Marriage Shift Generates Sharp Response

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring speaks at the Virginia Capitol in Richmond on Dec. 18. Herring's announcement Thursday generated strong partisan responses.
Steve Helber AP

Political reaction to Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring's announcement Thursday that he won't defend the state's ban on same-sex marriage was strong and swift — and fell squarely along party lines.

Herring told Morning Edition's Steve Inskeep that he had concluded the 2006 constitutional amendment is inconsistent with the U.S. Constitution.

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The Two-Way
5:00 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Snowden: Coming Home 'Not Possible' Under Whistle-Blower Laws

Edward Snowden.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 6:01 pm

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden says that it is "not possible" for him to come back home to face charges, unless changes are made to the Whistleblower Protection Act.

During a live question and answer session hosted by a website collecting money for his legal defense, Snowden said that as a national security contractor, he would not be protected by the law.

Indeed, a report on the Whistleblower Protection Act by the Congressional Research Service opens by detailing the federal employees covered by the law.

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The Salt
4:45 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Potential Carcinogen In Colas Has FDA Reviewing Data

4-MEI, a chemical created during the manufacturing of caramel color used to dye sodas brown, is under new scrutiny.
iStockphoto

A new study from Consumer Reports finds varying levels of a chemical compound classified as a possible human carcinogen in many popular brands of soda.

The findings have prompted the Food and Drug Administration to take a new look at the compound, 4-methylimidazole — or 4-MEI for short. It is found in the caramel color that soda makers use to dye the drinks brown.

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Shots - Health News
4:13 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Texas Issues Tough Rules For Insurance Navigators

Cedric Anthony and Alysia Greer are two of the navigators working in Houston neighborhoods for United Labor Unions Local 100.
Carrie Feibel

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 5:30 pm

Texas has imposed strict new regulations on the insurance helpers, or navigators, who work in the community to enroll people in health plans under the Affordable Care Act.

The navigators must register with the state, undergo a background check and fingerprinting, and complete 20 hours of additional training — beyond the 20 to 30 hours of federal training they've already received.

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The Two-Way
4:09 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

South Sudan Signs Cease-Fire With Rebels

South Sudan's government-delegation leader Nhial Deng Nhial (left) and the rebel-delegation leader Taban Deng Gai shake hands after signing a cease-fire agreement in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Thursday.
STR EPA /Landov

A cease-fire deal has been reached between the government of the nascent country of South Sudan and rebel forces to end five weeks of fighting that has claimed more than 10,000 lives.

The agreement for a countrywide cease-fire was signed Thursday in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa. NPR's Gregory Warner, reporting from Bukavu in the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo, says the deal marks a breakthrough in peace talks that stalled for weeks over the fate of 11 political prisoners under house arrest by the South Sudanese government.

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