From Malala Yousafzai winning a Nobel Peace Prize and the return of Kim Jong Un to Ebola diagnoses in Dallas and Angelina Jolie becoming a Dame, TIME presents the best pictures of the week.
“I’m still waiting for the focus on how we get people to vote," said Sherrilyn Ifill of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund
What would it take to find common ground between the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, which is fighting restrictive voting laws in many states, and the Heritage Foundation, which supports the same laws?
At the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, representatives of the two groups discussed the battles over voting rights that they and others are fighting in courts and legislatures nationwide ahead of this fall’s midterm elections. But any hope of agreement on the issue faded quickly.
“I would be willing to partner if there were some ideas about how we open up the process, not how we restrict the process,” said LDF head, Sherrilyn Ifill, “I’m still waiting for the focus on how we get people to vote.”
Hans von Spakovsky, who heads the election law reform initiative at Heritage, said he is very concerned about what keeps people away from the polls, but argues they stay away for different reasons than voting rights advocates would have people believe. “What keeps people away is not procedural issues,” Spakovsky said. “If we want to increase turnout that is a cultural issue.”
The debate so far has produced mixed results. In North Carolina, Wisconsin, Ohio, and Texas courts have both upheld and blocked voting laws ahead of the midterm election.
Nine other major candidates have lost the general election and then run again
Despite Ann Romney’s protestations that her family is “done, done, done” with presidential politics, those around the two-time presidential candidate are apparently jonesing for a third campaign. “There is a feeling that the country missed out on an exceptional president,” former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty recently told the Washington Post. “If he runs, I believe he could win the nomination and the general election. It’d be the right person at the right time, and I would encourage him to do it.”
So what are the chances Romney could move into the White House? It helps to profile Romney’s trajectory against presidents with similar political paths. Romney would be the tenth candidate to enter the race after losing his first general election, not counting quadrennial candidates who never received a single electoral vote. The graphs below show how the previous nine fared.
A 2016 campaign would be Romney’s third time at bat, after losing the Republican nomination for president in 2008, then winning his party’s nomination in 2012 but losing to President Barack Obama in the general election.
Of the nine candidates who have tread this path before, four went on to win a subsequent general election. That includes Grover Cleveland, the only person to have won, lost and then won a general election again.
The remaining five candidates who ran again after losing a general election never saw the White House.
Many more candidates lost their first attempt at the nomination and then eventually went on to win the general election in a subsequent cycle. President Ronald Reagan didn’t win the nomination until his third attempt, and then won the presidency twice.
Data compiled from the CQ Voting and Elections Collection.
Suggest travel restrictions as a potential solution
Updated at 8:36 p.m. ET
Republican lawmakers pushed for stricter travel restrictions Thursday, firing questions at Obama Administration officials after revelations that a health care worker infected with the disease flew on a plane shortly after treating a patient who had died of the virus.
Amber Joy Vinson worked to help treat Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian man who died on Oct. 8, at Texas Presbyterian Hospital but rode on an airplane on Oct. 13, just a day before she developed a fever. It was revealed late Wednesday night that the CDC had actually cleared Vinson to fly; she was diagnosed with Ebola on Tuesday.
Shortly after the hearing, President Barack Obama signed an executive order allowing the Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security to call up any military and Coast Guard reservists needed for the Ebola response effort in West Africa, where up to 4,000 American troops are preparing to deploy. He also thanked the CDC for dispatching an additional team of 16 people with experience in Ebola to Dallas where they will train and assist in hospital infection control procedures.
“None of us can understand how a nurse who treated an Ebola-infected patient, and who herself had developed a fever, was permitted to board a commercial airline and fly across the country,” said Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), the House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman. “It’s no wonder the public’s confidence is shaken.”
Upton joined other lawmakers, including Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Pa.) and House Speaker John Boehner, who want the Administration to consider travel restrictions between the U.S. and West African countries, where the outbreak has killed more than 4,500 people. “It needs to be solved in Africa but until it is, we should not be allowing these folks in, period,” Upton said at the hearing.
Embattled Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Thomas Frieden countered that the Administration can better track people from the most vulnerable countries in West Africa without restrictions on travel.
“Right now we know who’s coming in,” said Frieden. “If we try to eliminate travel… we won’t be able to check them for fever when they leave, we won’t be able to check them for fever when they arrive, we won’t be able—as we do currently—to see a detailed history to see if they’ve been exposed.”
When pressed by Murphy if the Administration would ever consider changing its mind, Frieden said it would “consider any option to better protect Americans.”
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) said that he didn’t believe travel restrictions would be an effective protection measure, since people will find other avenues of travel. Waxman shifted blame from the CDC and the Obama Administration, instead focusing ire on Congress for “irrational budget cuts” that have dropped CDC’s funding by 12% when adjusted for inflation since 2006.
“We have our share of responsibility,” he said.
Obama said Thursday evening that he is considering appointing an Ebola czar. “It may be appropriate for me to appoint an additional person,” he said, quickly adding that it wouldn’t be because people like Frieden “haven’t been doing an outstanding job working hard on this issue.”
“They are also responsible for a whole bunch of other stuff,” he said. Like flu season.
Read next: Here’s Who’s Blaming Who for Ebola
By reading and talking to babies from birth, research has shown kids can enter school better prepared for success
At UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in Oakland, a new program is about to get underway that serves a purpose near to both the Obama White House and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton care a great deal about.
Benioff is one of two locations where Too Small to Fail, a joint venture between the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation and Next Generation, is launching a pilot program that will expand their efforts to close the so-called word gap. A little over a year ago, Too Small to Fail was started with the goal of getting more parents talking, singing, and reading to their kids starting from birth. Studies have shown children born to higher-income families are exposed to some 30 million more words than their counterparts on welfare before the reach kindergarten.
About 73% of the families served by Benioff Children’s Hospital utilize Medicaid, says the hospital’s President and CEO Dr. Bert Lubin, making it the ideal setting to test the benefits of providing tools and support to families and communities that encourage them to interact with their babies. “It’s such a simple thing,” Lubin says . “The parents who are not talking, singing and reading. They love their children, but they don’t know that not doing it is something that really permanently effects the child.”
On Thursday, representatives from the Oakland program will be at the White House sharing their stories with other community leaders, including the Mayor of Providence, Rhode Island where a Bloomberg Philanthropies funded program that records and tracks the words spoken to babies has been underway for a little over a year. Too Small is joining with the White House to use the nation’s most powerful bully pulpit to spread the message that learning is important and support local communities working to get their children and babies best prepared for school.
The White House will announce an investment to fund a research coalition to build more research around the word gap. The federal government will also be working with the tech community to get their input in the effort to close the word gap. Some apps, like the Text4Baby mobile application, are already in use, helping provide mothers with information on the development of their child throughout pregnancy and infancy.
Over the next year at Benioff and around Oakland, parents will receive books, clothing and reading materials from birth to remind them to get chatty with their bundles of joy. They’ll be reminded of the benefits of speaking to their kids on billboards and in advertisements, at community-based programs and in churches. The hospital also plans to track and record the development of babies who are being interacted with regularly to gauge the benefits and encourage other cities to do the same. “The reality is if we address this word gap, everyone is more likely to stay in school, get a job afterwards and contribute to society,” Lubin says. “The investment is small in terms of the impact it will have on our society.”
Almost half of infants and toddlers come from low-income families and about 25% live in poverty, according to the National Center for Infants and Toddlers. Though having enough food and shelter is extremely important to a child’s health, cognitive development is equally important. Families play a pivotal role in children’s early development, but only about 48% of parents read to their kids every day. That lack of interaction is detrimental to children who’s way out of poverty is through school. According to research from Rice University, children from low income families heard about 30 million fewer words by age 4 than their high income peers. Kids from working class families heard about 15 million fewer.
“This word gap turns into an achievement gap once children reach school,” says Ann O’Leary, the director of the children and families program at Next Generation.
Too Small to Fail’s first year was spent increasing public awareness on the importance of closing the word gap. A partnership with Univision ensured ads appeared in Spanish and English. The topic came up on television shows including The Fosters and Orange is the New Black—this year, the issue is expected to come up on more shows including Modern Family and Criminal Minds. The American Academy of Pediatrics adopted a policy message that speaks to the importance of early literacy. And last March, Tulsa became the first city to launch a partnership with Too Small to Fail, similar to what’s happening in Oakland.
O’Leary says reading and speaking to children should be as important as brushing their teeth.“When you imagine that this is not an optional activity, but that this is a must-do activity it becomes kind of shocking that only half of families are doing this,” O’Leary says. “What if half were only brushing their teeth? We think it’s just as urgent to get this information out. These are not optional activities.”
The Texas health care worker who tested positive for Ebola traveled on a plane just a day before she reported a fever, officials said, as the third diagnosis of the deadly disease in the U.S. stoked fear in travelers and sent officials scrambling to contain it
The tech giant is getting ready to make some major announcements Thursday, and there’s a lot of speculation about what consumers can expect to see
Kansas City, which heads to its first World Series since 1985, represents the changing game of baseball, writes TIME’s Sean Gregory
The actor, best known for his work on How I Met Your Mother, has become in recent years a semiprofessional host of sorts, tackling the Emmys twice and the Tonys four times, and exerting a great deal of energy in the process
The Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria has suffered setbacks and begun retreating from parts of the Syrian border town of Kobani, according to a local official, who said Kurdish forces were advancing against the militant group
A national Republican group devoted to helping elect GOP governors has outraised its Democratic counterpart, but reports filed Wednesday with the Internal Revenue Service show that the gap is narrowing, fueled by labor unions and the former New York City mayor
Stocks in the company fell more than 25% in after-hours trading Wednesday, after the company said it had missed its quarterly subscriber growth forecast, and on the back of news that HBO would begin offering a stand-alone streaming service in 2015
A significant drop by the Dow, as well as big losses in the European and Asian markets, shows they are reacting to what should have been obvious to investors for some time, “and we can blame some pretty gutless policymaking for it,” writes TIME’s Michael Schuman
The State Department asked for a “swift, transparent and complete” investigation into the beating by Hong Kong police of a local activist during one of the most violent demonstrations in nearly three weeks of pro-democracy protests
The legal-thrillers author spoke at-length about issues he believes are facing the American criminal justice system today, and shared the story of a friend from law school who served time in prison for downloading child pornography
Democrats and Republicans quietly agree that the hundreds of millions of dollars spent on the campaign for control of the Senate might not be worth the prize, with political gridlock expected to prevail no matter which party takes the midterm elections
Emmy Award winner Archie Panjabi, who plays private investigator Kalinda Sharma on the CBS drama, will leave the show after Season 6, when her contract expires, in order to star in a pilot for a 20th Century Fox Television drama
We will hold an #AskTIME subscriber Q&A this Friday, October 17, at 1 p.m., with TIME Washington bureau chief, Michael Scherer, who wrote this week’s cover story on the most interesting man in politics, Rand Paul.
His other stories can be found here.
You can submit your questions beforehand on Twitter using the #AskTIME hashtag or in the comments of this post. We depend on smart, interesting questions from readers.
You will need to be a TIME subscriber to read the Q & A. ($30 a year or 8 cents a day for the magazine and all digital content.) Once you’re signed up, you can log in to the site with a username and password.
Can he fix what ails the GOP?
New U.S. cases have health experts rethinking the response and turning to doctors and hospitals that were truly prepared
Indonesia is a democracy with rich natural resources and more Muslims than any other country on the planet. And it just elected a new president
Staring down his sunset years, a 24-year-old goes in search of a happier, healthier ending for us all
The late-night star has successfully bet on his audience’s intelligence and against its antipathy
His policies are fine. But the President is often a prisoner of his instincts
In which I am tricked into enjoying a holiday that has never felt like a treat
The Nobel Peace Prize
From Apple to Facebook, more companies are covering the cost of elective egg freezing for women who want to delay child-bearing. Is this the key to real gender equality?
Who is the abortion debate really about?
Pat Roberts faces an elusive challenger in Kansas’ wild Senate race
An ex–press secretary tells … some
Lawyer and founder of the Equal Justice Initiative Bryan Stevenson on crime, death row and kids in prison
The reporter who tracked down Ethel Greenberg’s brother remembers his legacy
Vatican Strikes New Tone–and Only a Tone–on Homosexuality
Scientists make major moves in tackling five challenging diseases
No other artist put himself into his own dark pictures so much
Isabella, Victoria and Hatshepsut get the book treatment
The story of an actor in extremis
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Pat Roberts faces an elusive challenger in Kansas' wild Senate race
It is probably impolite to say that the U.S. Senate campaign in Kansas pits a geezer against a ghost. But that’s the quickest way to the heart of a race that matters more with each passing day.
With the nation in a sour mood and a bunch of vulnerable Democrats up for re-election, Republicans are increasingly confident that they can win control of the Senate. …
His policies are fine. But the President is often a prisoner of his instincts
On the first Monday in October, Kasie Hunt of NBC asked U.S. Senator Mark Pryor, an Arkansas Democrat, what his feelings were about President Obama’s response to the Ebola threat. He said, and I quote, “Ahhh-uhhhhhhhhhm,” followed by two minutes of gobbledygook. Two days later, Alison Lundergan Grimes, the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senator from Kentucky, was asked who she voted for in 2008 and 2012. Her answer was similarly excruciating, and foolish. She cited the privacy of the ballot box. And about the same time, former-nearly-everything Leon Panetta landed a hammer blow on his old boss: “He [Obama] approaches things like a law professor in presenting a logic of his position … My experience in Washington is that logic alone doesn’t work. Once you lay out a position, you are going to roll up your sleeves and you have to fight to get it done … In order for Presidents to succeed, they cannot just–when they run into problems–step back and give up.”
All of this, especially Panetta, added fuel to the eternal bonfire of venality from the right. That Obama’s presidency has “disintegrated” or “crumbled” is now an article of faith in the Fox holes. Drudge featured an Ebola poster with the O an Obama symbol. That’s about as funny as MoveOn.org’s infamous “General Betrayus” ad. So it’s over, right? Obama’s toast, or a spectacularly terrible President at the very least, right?
Uhhhhhm. This is the part where I’m supposed to defend the President. He really did pull us out of a probable depression with an effective stimulus package; the economy continues to wheeze, but it wheezes forward. He really did make history by producing a universal health care plan that will not be repealed but will be reformed over time. The nonstop Republican critique that these programs were “disasters” has been rendered ridiculous. (In Kentucky, Mitch McConnell had to pull a Mark Pryor on that state’s very successful version of Obama’s plan.) The President has been sane and relatively moderate in his selection of Supreme Court Justices. His proposed job-growth policies would probably work, if given a chance by the Republicans.
He has been sane, too, in his foreign policy, for the most part. Those who say he should have been tougher on ISIS by arming the Syrian rebels–talking to you, Madam Secretary and Mr. Panetta–are wildly wrong. We would have wound up arming ISIS. There is precedent for this: we offered a fabulous buffet of armaments to the Iraqis, who left them for ISIS as they turned tail and ran in Mosul. Obama did cleave to the dreadful Nouri al-Maliki too uncritically–and thereby allowed a corrupt Shi’ite fragment to call its sectarian tune. That was Obama’s fundamental Iraq mistake.
But who hasn’t made an Iraq mistake over the past decade? The proof of Obama’s moderation can be found in the blundering simplicity of his critics: the neo-imperialists who think we can actually determine, by force of arms, what happens in the Middle East; the left-libertarians who don’t think we have the right to protect ourselves from terrorism by launching drone strikes, conducting special operations and tracking terrorist phone calls. Obama has stood as a bulwark against the irrationalities of both parties.
That’s the case for Obama. I really believe it. But I also believe that Panetta has a point. It is about the ethereal nature of true leadership. I remember writing a similar defense of Jimmy Carter nearly 40 years ago: a great number of the policies that Ronald Reagan was later given credit for launching–Paul Volcker’s tough inflation cure; a bristling stand against the Soviets, including intermediate missiles in Europe–were Carter’s policies first. He slugged his way to a historic peace treaty in the Middle East, but he didn’t convey two essential American qualities: forcefulness and optimism. Indeed, if you look at his infamous “malaise” speech, it’s a riveting piece of work, containing more tough truth about the country than the pile of Democratic utterances in the ensuing decade. I remember thinking, Poor Jimmy: history has led America to a rut, and we’ll never be as powerful as we once were. Reagan proved me young and foolish. Some of his achievements are illusory or attributable to Carter policies (as in economics), but the man knew how to lead.
I can’t say that for Obama. I sense that Panetta is right about his unwillingness to fight. Lately, the President’s body language has too often conveyed disgust and cynicism. He seems defeated by the trivial pursuits of the media and his opponents. He does not have the sunny conviction necessary to carry the country through a period of near biblical plagues and wars. His policies and popularity have been crippled by his dour political sense. A basic law of politics: this cannot last. But I have no idea what comes next.
TO READ JOE’S BLOG POSTS, GO TO time.com/swampland
Read next: A Troubled American Moment
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Can he fix what ails the GOP?
The tattooed and pierced longhairs never showed up to see Senator Rand Paul speak with students at the University of South Carolina in Columbia last month. Those in attendance drew instead from the preppy set, with brushed bangs, blue blazers and proper hemlines, some wearing sunglasses on neck straps like jock jewelry. They mostly hailed from college Republican circles, and the room where they gathered, a wood-stained memorial to the state’s old power structure, was named for the politician who led the fight to protect school segregation in the 1960s.
You could call them activists, even rebels in their way. But this was not a gathering of losers and outcasts. Paul knew this. And that was the whole point he…