National News

Betsy DeVos, nominee for education secretary.

Trump's Pick For Education: A Free Market Approach To School Choice

The unofficial motto of a public charter school co-founded by Betsy DeVos — President-elect Trump's choice to lead the Department of Education — could be "No Pilot Left Behind."

Nearby a small maintenance hangar that's part of the West Michigan Aviation Academy, one of the school's two Cessna 172 airplanes chugs down the tarmac of Gerald R. Ford International Airport. The school is based on the airport's grounds, just outside Grand Rapids.

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt arrives for meetings with President-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower in New York City.

Trump Reportedly Picks Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt To Lead EPA

President-elect Donald Trump intends to nominate Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency, according to multiple news reports. Trump's transition team has not confirmed the news to NPR.

As attorney general, Pruitt has made no secret of his disdain for the EPA.

Dorie Greenspan's coffee cardamom cookies have freshly ground espresso in the dough.

Not For You, Cindy Lou! These Tasty Holiday Treats Are For Grownups

The sweet aroma of cookies baking wafts through the kitchen as the kids trample in and plead, "When are they gonna be ready?" Smile and reply softly, "Soon. But these are for the company, dear hearts."

And these cookies will still be there when your guests arrive, because the kids will taste them and move onto the chocolate chips and frosted Santas.

With twinges of flavors like anise, cardamom, basil, liqueur and coffee, these treats definitely appeal to grown-up taste buds.

A crane is used to lift wreckage on Monday as part of search efforts in a fire-ravaged warehouse in Oakland, California. The death toll from the massive weekend fire at an artists' collective stands at 36, authorities say.

Recovery Efforts End At Oakland Warehouse; Death Toll Stands At 36

The death toll from a disastrous warehouse fire in Oakland, Calif., stands at 36 after authorities have ended recovery efforts, officials say.

Firefighters and investigators have been searching the site for days, since the artists' collective known as the "Ghost Ship" burned down late Friday night, during a dance party. They briefly halted efforts when a wall was discovered to be leaning, calling in structural engineers to ensure the safety of recovery workers.

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson (left) and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes are sworn Wednesday before testifying at a Senate committee hearing on the proposed merger of their companies.

Consumer Cost Emerges As Key Issue In Grilling Of AT&T-Time Warner Merger

When AT&T, a leading Internet provider, proposed a massive merger with Time Warner, a huge media conglomerate, the question many people asked was: Will I have to pay more for my TV?

On Wednesday, members of the Senate Judiciary Committee quizzed the CEOs of the two companies — over and over posing basically the same question: What will the $85.4 billion merger mean for the prices that consumers may have to pay?

Land and sea temperatures were above average in most parts of the world last year, as seen in this graphic from NOAA.

Weather Channel To Breitbart.com: Don't Use Our Content To Mislead On Climate Change

The Weather Channel has a message for the website Breitbart:

"Earth Is Not Cooling, Climate Change Is Real and Please Stop Using Our Video to Mislead Americans"

That's the title under which The Weather Channel published an article on Tuesday, after Breitbart used the cable news channel's coverage in a factually incorrect story about climate change.

"I believe that the media should be very clear, very transparent, and not fall prey — without offence, please — to the sickness of coprophilia," says Pope Francis. The pontiff is seen here at St. Peter's Basilica in November.

Pope Francis Warns Media Against Infatuation With Scandal, Citing 'Coprophilia'

Pope Francis is calling on those who use and control the media to avoid disinformation and "the sickness of coprophilia" — comparing a love of scandal to an abnormal interest in feces that can also include elements of sexual arousal.

An obsession with scandal can do great harm, Francis said Wednesday, in remarks that also cited people's tendency toward coprophagia (the eating of feces).

What Former Employees Say ITT Tech Did To Scam Its Students

When he first moved to Miami, Waltter Teruel says working as a recruiter for ITT Technical Institute was a welcome change from his life in New York where he was selling antiques and life insurance.

As a recruiter, Teruel says ITT Tech took care of the pitch to potential students for you. Recruiters used scripts set out in detailed Powerpoint presentations and got long lists of prospective students to call. But soon the welcome change faded. "Most of these students, they were looking for a job," not more school, says Teruel.

U.S. Marine Corps General John Kelly (r) has been taped by President-elect Donald Trump to lead the Department of Homeland Security. The two are shown here before their meeting at Trump International Golf Club, last month in Bedminster Township, New Jersey.

Reports: Trump Taps Retired Marine General To Head Homeland Security

President-elect Donald Trump plans to nominate retired Marine Gen. John Kelly to become his secretary of Homeland Security, various news outlets are reporting. Trump's transition team has not confirmed the news to NPR, but the official announcement is expected next week.

A large balloon in support of the Heartbeat Bill flies outside the Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio, in June 2012. More than four years later, the measure, which would ban abortions as soon as six weeks after conception, has passed the Legislature — after being folded into a widely supported child abuse bill.

Ohio Legislature Moves To Ban Abortion As Early As 6 Weeks After Conception

Ohio's Legislature has passed a bill that would ban abortion once a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which is typically around six weeks after conception — before many women even realize they're pregnant.

The bill is now sitting on the governor's desk. John Kasich has 10 days to veto the measure; otherwise, it becomes law, reports NPR's Jennifer Ludden.

Jennifer notes that the bill does not include exceptions for rape or incest — the only exception would be if the life of the woman were in danger.

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