Colorado is approaching the mid-point of its legislative session. Republicans in control of the house are flexing their newfound majority and moving forward a few controversial bills through that chamber. This comes after weeks of signature bills being quietly killed by their own sponsors. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, statehouse reporter Bente […]

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Colorado is almost one month into the legislative session and despite some occasional flare-ups over minor measures, lawmakers have gotten off to a relatively slow start. For now, leadership in the split legislature seems to be taking a more cautious approach to the session. Bente Birkeland analyzes the dynamic as part of our capitol conversation […]

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Calls for bi-partisanship at the statehouse have started to break down in the early part of the legislative session. Some of the divisions have cropped up over budget issues and even minor resolutions. Bente Birkeland takes a look as part of our weekly Capitol Conversation series.

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Democratic Governor John Hickenlooper appeared to hit a home run on his first state of the state speech, receiving praise from lawmakers on opposite ends of the political spectrum. To kick off this session’s Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland analyzes the speech, and how the political mood may be working in his favor.

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Colorado is heading into a new legislative session that will bring fresh faces to state leadership, including Governor-elect John Hickenlooper. Bente Birkeland discusses the challenges he faces taking office, and the split in the state legislature as part of our weekly Capitol Conversation series that runs during the legislative session.

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New state lawmakers are going through freshman orientation, and Republicans are transitioning into their role as the majority party in a chamber for the first time in six years. Bente Birkeland analyzes the makeup of the state legislature and looks ahead to the next legislative session as part of our capitol conversation series.

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Several recent public opinion polls show a narrowing in the Governor’s race as American Constitution Party candidate Tom Tancredo draws more supporters from Republican Dan Maes. But Democrat John Hickenlooper is still leading in the polls. Bente Birkeland examines the race as part of our capitol conversation series that runs through election day.

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Colorado’s U.S. senate race will be closely watched race this November. Democratic Senator Michael Bennet is trying to win his first election campaign after being appointed to the position by Governor Ritter. Republican challenger and Weld county prosecutor Ken Buck won the primary with tea party and grass roots support. Bente Birkeland examines the race […]

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In an election year fueled with voter anger toward the federal government and calls for lower taxes, Colorado will be the first in the country to show just how far voters are willing to go. On the November ballot are three measures that together would cut billions of dollars from state and local governments. Mail […]

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The Tea Party movement is gaining momentum nationally, with polls showing that liberal voters are less enthusiastic this election season compared to conservative voters. Bente discusses the climate here in Colorado and the potential impact on local and statewide races. It’s part of our Capitol Conversation series, that will air each week through the November […]

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Lawmakers are on the verge of wrapping up the state’s annual legislative session. As part of our weekly Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland takes a look at some of the highs and lows of the last four months.

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State lawmakers could be scrambling in the final days of the legislative session, with several big-ticket items still on the table. As part of our weekly capitol conversation series, Bente Birkeland examines why lawmakers will be going out with a bang, not a whimper.

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Education reform is likely to dominate the final stretch of the legislative session. Several big proposals to shift education policy are just beginning their journeys through the state house. Bente Birkeland discusses what’s on the table as part of our weekly capitol conversation series.

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Lawmakers are heading into the final stretch of the state’s legislative session with just under a month to go. As part of our weekly Capitol Conversation series, statehouse correspondent Bente Birkeland talks with fellow reporters about what to expect in the final weeks.

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Lawmakers say tasteful advertising on the crumbling state capitol dome could become a reality to help pay for much needed repairs. Bente Birkeland discusses the needs and why some people may not like it, as part of our weekly capitol conversation series.

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The state senate is poised to debate Colorado’s annual budget bill that funds state government and services. Lawmakers are facing a 1.3 billion dollar revenue shortfall. The house has already passed the budget. Bente Birkeland talks about that debate and takes a look ahead as part of our weekly capitol conversation.

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Colorado recently joined a dozen other states to sue the federal government to block the healthcare overhaul. The lawsuit focuses on the constitutionality of the individual health care mandate and penalties for people who fail to purchase health insurance. Bente Birkeland discusses the local impact as part of our Capitol Conversation series.

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A bill to close aging coal fired power plants along the Front Range and retrofit and replace them with cleaner burning natural gas facilities is making its way through the legislature. The measure requires the state’s largest utility, Xcel Energy, to come up with a plan to do so by this summer. Bente Birkeland examines […]

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The legislature recently passed a bill requiring large electric utilities to get 30% of their energy from renewable sources by the year 2020, after hours of debate. It now awaits the Governor’s signature. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland examines why the issue has caused such partisan fighting this year.

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State lawmakers are about a third of the way through the legislative session. Bente Birkeland takes a look at some big-ticket items still left on the agenda as part of our weekly capitol conversation series.

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Apologies, which lawmakers apologize and which don’t? Who should and who shouldn’t, and what does the whole process say about the legislature and life under the gold dome? Bente Birkeland explores the issue as part of our weekly capitol conversation series.

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For the past several years, grocery and convenience stores in Colorado have been fighting for the right to sell more than 3-2 beer. Colorado is one of only a handful of states that still sells 3-2 beer, which came about after prohibition ended in 1933. Bente Birkeland examines how the issue is developing at the […]

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Bills to eliminate roughly 140 million dollars in business tax exemptions have dominated discussions at the state capitol. The debate over the nine measures has pitted Democrats against Republicans, with Democrats arguing the cuts are necessary to balance the budget and protect money for K through 12 education. Republicans say a recession is the wrong […]

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News

May 28, 2015 | NPR · After activist Pamela Geller attempted to show ads depicting Muhammad in Washington trains and subway stations, the transit agency decided not to accept any issue-based ad for the rest of the year.
 

David Gilkey/NPR
May 28, 2015 | NPR · Cholera has been spreading in Haiti for over four years. But this year looks especially bleak. In the first four months, there were nearly four times the number of cases as in the same period in 2014.
 

Ari Shapiro/NPR
May 28, 2015 | NPR · A decade ago, fishermen trying to catch North Sea cod were coming up empty. Now, thanks to strict fishing rules put in place to halt the decline, this fish tale looks headed for a happy ending.
 

Arts & Life

AP
May 28, 2015 | NPR · Chinese writers and publishers are being celebrated this week at BookExpo America — the industry’s largest trade event in North America. Free speech advocates are supporting silenced Chinese writers.
 

Music Box Films
May 28, 2015 | NPR · Based on a graphic novel, this updating of Madame Bovary almost manages to maintain its feather-light touch in spite of the heavy source material.
 

Magnolia Pictures
May 28, 2015 | NPR · The delightful romantic comedy Results, from mumblecore director Andrew Bujalski, has sympathy for the earnest aspirations of its gym-dwelling characters.
 

Music

May 28, 2015 | NPR · With their new album, Monterey, The Milk Carton Kids are hoping to be a part of your summer driving songs.
 

Getty Images
May 28, 2015 | NPR · Mapfumo’s powerful political messages led the superstar to seek asylum in the U.S. Critic Banning Eyre has written a new biography of the singer and bandleader.
 

Courtesy of the artists
May 28, 2015 | NPR · From a jazz-infused Spanish fandango to Afghan hip-hop and hot swing from London (by way of the Lower East Side), this month’s roundup is full of surprising juxtapositions.
 

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