Liz Halloran

Liz Halloran joined NPR in December 2008 as Washington correspondent for Digital News, taking her print journalism career into the online news world.

Halloran came to NPR from US News & World Report, where she followed politics and the 2008 presidential election. Before the political follies, Halloran covered the Supreme Court during its historic transition — from Chief Justice William Rehnquist's death, to the John Roberts and Samuel Alito confirmation battles. She also tracked the media and wrote special reports on topics ranging from the death penalty and illegal immigration, to abortion rights and the aftermath of the Amish schoolgirl murders.

Before joining the magazine, Halloran was a senior reporter in the Hartford Courant's Washington bureau. She followed Sen. Joe Lieberman on his ground-breaking vice presidential run in 2000, as the first Jewish American on a national ticket, wrote about the media and the environment and covered post-9/11 Washington. Previously, Halloran, a Minnesota native, worked for The Courant in Hartford. There, she was a member of Pulitzer Prize-winning team for spot news in 1999, and was honored by the New England Associated Press for her stories on the Kosovo refugee crisis.

She also worked for the Republican-American newspaper in Waterbury, Conn., and as a cub reporter and paper delivery girl for her hometown weekly, the Jackson County Pilot.

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2:30pm

Wed May 30, 2012
It's All Politics

New Wisconsin Poll Shows Walker Maintaining Lead; Obama Gaining Strength

Originally published on Wed May 30, 2012 2:44 pm

A new survey of Wisconsin voters shows GOP Gov. Scott Walker maintaining his lead over Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, the Democrat who is trying to oust the governor in a recall election Tuesday.

And the survey had good news for President Obama: during the last half of the month, he improved his standing against GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Wisconsin.

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11:18am

Wed May 30, 2012
It's All Politics

GOP Chairman Says Recall Outcome Could Help Turn Wisconsin Red In November

Originally published on Wed May 30, 2012 12:45 pm

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus says the national party is putting its full weight behind Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in Tuesday's recall election.
Danny Johnston AP

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said Wednesday he is "very confident" that Wisconsin GOP Gov. Scott Walker will survive next week's recall election.

And Priebus, a Wisconsin native, said that a Walker win Tuesday over Democratic challenger Tom Barrett would mean "a much tougher road in Wisconsin" for President Obama in November's general election.

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3:01pm

Tue May 29, 2012
It's All Politics

Maine Independent Aims To Be Senate King, Acknowledges Potted Plant Potential

Originally published on Tue May 29, 2012 3:57 pm

Former Maine Gov. Angus King speaks March 5 at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine.
Joel Page AP

The most potentially influential politician you've probably never heard of, former two-term Maine Gov. Angus King, on Tuesday officially entered the race to replace retiring moderate GOP Sen. Olympia Snowe.

King, 68, an alternative-energy entrepreneur and supporter of President Obama, filed more than 6,000 signatures with Maine's secretary of state to ensure his place on November's ballot.

He'll run as an independent, as he did for his successful gubernatorial runs in the 1990s.

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11:35am

Fri May 25, 2012
It's All Politics

Friday Night Fight In Wisconsin: First Debate Before Looming Recall

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 3:11 pm

Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker campaigns Thursday with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal in Waukesha, Wis.
Darren Hauck Getty Images

The divisive battle to recall Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker moves into its final phase in coming days with debates, a continuing flood of out-of-state ad money, and polls that suggest the incumbent is poised to fend off Democratic challenger Tom Barrett.

Here's a look at where things stand between the Republican Walker and Barrett, the mayor of Milwaukee, heading into Friday night's televised debate, the first of two before the June 5 rematch. (Walker defeated Barrett in the 2010 governor's race, 52.2 percent to 46.5 percent.)

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2:38pm

Tue May 22, 2012
It's All Politics

Mitt Romney Vs. Rand Paul In 2016?

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 3:07 pm

Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, and his son, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., talk at a campaign event for the elder Paul in Des Moines, Iowa, last August.
Charles Dharapak AP

As sort-of-still-a-presidential-candidate Ron Paul continues to collect delegates at state Republican Party conventions, the question of what the libertarian Texas congressman wants has become more urgent in GOP circles.

A speaking role at the Republican convention, where Mitt Romney is expected to accept the nomination?

A seat at the party's rule-making table to advocate making it easier for non-mainstream candidates to compete in future GOP nominating contests?

Well, yes, as a start.

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11:56am

Fri May 18, 2012
It's All Politics

Romney Phones His Campaign Message Into Swing States

Following the release of what his campaign called his first ad of the general election, Romney participated in a "tele-town hall" with supporters in the swing states where the ad is running: Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, and Iowa.

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2:20pm

Thu May 17, 2012
It's All Politics

N.C. Politicos Pan Proposed Rev. Wright, Anti-Obama Ad Idea

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 5:42 pm

The Rev. Jeremiah Wright addresses the National Press Club in Washington in 2008.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Battleground states like North Carolina are where the action is when it comes to presidential contests. Thus, they are where political tactics like, say, the anti-Obama ad campaign featuring the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, first reported by The New York Times Thursday (and now disowned by virtually everyone the Times linked to it), are most likely to be rolled out.

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10:06am

Thu May 17, 2012
House & Senate Races

Tale Of The Tape: Ex-Governors Duke It Out In Va.

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 12:38 pm

Former Virginia Govs. Tim Kaine (left) and George Allen after a Senate debate in Richmond, Va., on Dec.. 7, 2011.
Steve Helber AP

One of the highest-profile political matchups of the season is playing out in Virginia, where two former governors with powerful friends and big-money backing are battling to succeed retiring Democratic Sen. Jim Webb.

The dead-heat matchup pits Democrat Tim Kaine, 54, a favorite of President Obama and a former Democratic National Committee chairman, against George Allen, 60, namesake of his legendary Washington Redskins football coach father and a U.S. senator until undone in a re-election bid by what has become known as his "macaca moment."

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11:02am

Tue May 15, 2012
It's All Politics

Ron Paul Spokesman: Candidate Unlikely To Ever Endorse Romney

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 11:31 am

Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas (right), talks with chief strategist Jesse Benton in Ames, Iowa, on Aug. 13.
Charles Dharapak AP

Presidential candidate Ron Paul is not expected to ultimately endorse presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney, Paul's chief strategist said Tuesday.

"Never say never, but I don't believe that's likely," said Jesse Benton, during a half-hour-plus give-and-take with reporters.

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8:51am

Tue May 15, 2012
The Two-Way

Ron Paul Isn't Dropping Out, Spokesman Says

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:20 am

Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul at a campaign event in Las Vegas on Feb. 3.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Republican Ron Paul is not shuttering his presidential campaign, his chief strategist says in a memo sent this morning to supporters and the news media.

"Let me be very clear," said Jesse Benton, "Dr. Paul is NOT dropping out or suspending his campaign."

"As Dr. Paul has previously stated, he is in this race all the way to the Republican National Convention in Tampa this August," Benton said. The campaign will, though, be "maximizing our resources" by not investing in remaining primary states, he said.

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1:35pm

Thu May 10, 2012
Election 2012

Mourdock's Demeanor Masks Conservative Fervor

Originally published on Thu May 10, 2012 3:08 pm

Richard Mourdock is the first to admit he's lacking in the political flash-and-dash department.

"I never got hit with the charisma stick when I was lying there in the nursery," the newly crowned Indiana Republican Senate candidate told NPR in a recent interview.

But Mourdock, 60, who on Tuesday toppled six-term Republican Sen. Richard Lugar in a GOP primary, is a determined if not dynamic campaigner, those who know him say, and no newcomer to the trail.

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7:05am

Tue May 8, 2012
It's All Politics

Voters Tuesday To Decide Lugar's Fate, Walker's Wisconsin Recall Opponent

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 9:00 am

Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., meets with voters Tuesday outside of a polling place in Greenwood, Ind. Lugar is being challenged in the Republican primary by Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock.
Darron Cummings AP

Voters in Indiana, Wisconsin and North Carolina on Tuesday will decide the outcome of battles many see as proxy wars going into the fall elections.

-- In Indiana, voters will determine the fate of six-term Republican Sen. Richard Lugar, 80, a respected legislator who has run afoul of Tea Party activists.

-- In Wisconsin, they'll pick a Democrat from a field of four whose aim it will be to oust anti-union Republican Gov. Scott Walker in a June recall election prompted by his slashing of collective bargaining rights.

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11:51am

Sun May 6, 2012
It's All Politics

Big Money, Free-Marketers, And The Fight Of Sen. Lugar's Career

Originally published on Mon May 7, 2012 10:27 am

Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., attends a state dinner at the White House on Oct. 13, 2011.
Yuri Gripas Reuters /Landov

The end of Republican Sen. Richard Lugar's 35-year career representing Indiana in the U.S. Senate could be imminent.

A new Howey/DePauw Indiana Battleground Poll shows the octogenarian trailing State Treasurer Richard Mourdock by 10 percentage points ahead of Tuesday's GOP Senate primary. The survey also finds that the venerable Lugar is increasingly viewed by home-state voters in a negative light.

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3:04pm

Wed May 2, 2012
Election 2012

Before Recall, Wis. Dems Must Choose Walker's Rival

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 3:33 pm

A new poll shows Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett leading among Democrats vying to challenge Republican Gov. Scott Walker in a recall election in June. The Democratic primary is Tuesday.
Dinesh Ramde AP

The political civil war that has gripped Wisconsin since Republican Gov. Scott Walker's 2010 election will intensify next week when Democrats pick a candidate to post up against the governor in a historic recall election in June.

Tuesday's Democratic gubernatorial primary has developed into a two-person race between Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, who lost to Walker in the GOP landslide of 2010, and former County Executive Kathleen Falk, the favorite of the state's public employee unions.

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3:16pm

Tue April 17, 2012
Presidential Race

The Obama-Romney Poll-A-Palooza: What's It Mean?

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 5:25 am

Some voters may be choosing campaign buttons now, but most polling experts agree it's too early to predict November's winner.
Daniel Acker Landov

President Obama is leading presumed GOP nominee Mitt Romney big in recent national polls.

No, wait. Polls show he's trailing Romney by a couple of percentage points.

Oh — this just in: Obama is actually leading Romney, but the race is tightening.

It's a general election poll-a-palooza out there, people.

But what do all the numbers mean?

"I have friends who support Obama, and friends who support Mitt Romney," says Scott Keeter, survey research director at Pew Research Center. "I tell them not to get too excited or too depressed at this point."

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6:33am

Wed April 4, 2012
It's All Politics

Will Pennsylvania Dash Santorum's Political Dreams (Again)?

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 7:07 am

The action was in Wisconsin Tuesday night, but Rick Santorum and his wife, Karen, had already moved on to his home state of Pennsylvania. They greeted supporters at an election night rally in Mars.
Jason Cohn Reuters /Landov

After going 0-for-3 in Tuesday's presidential primaries, a defiant Rick Santorum dismissed calls to drop out and predicted he'll win the next contest in his home state of Pennsylvania on April 24.

He'll have to — and not because it would put the former Pennsylvania senator on a path to defeat front-runner Mitt Romney, who has been racking up delegates and is increasingly seen as the inevitable nominee.

A loss in Pennsylvania, where recent polls show Santorum is weakening, would "destroy the rationale for him continuing," says Pennsylvania pollster G. Terry Madonna.

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2:07pm

Mon April 2, 2012
It's All Politics

Mitt Who? State Issues, Governor Eclipse Presidential Politics In Wisconsin

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 12:25 pm

Mitt Romney has campaigned in the shadow of embattled Republican Gov. Scott Walker, who faces a recall vote in June. Here, Romney speaks with Walker supporters at a phone bank during a campaign stop in Fitchburg, Wis., on Saturday.
Steven Senne AP

Voters in Wisconsin's GOP primary Tuesday are poised to help former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney wrap up his dogged, well-financed quest for the Republican presidential nomination.

But the winner-take-all primary and Romney's drawn-out battle with former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum have been overshadowed by the campaign to recall GOP Gov. Scott Walker, whose anti-union efforts since his 2010 election have cleaved the Badger State.

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1:08pm

Wed March 28, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Supreme Court Cheat Sheet Day 3: Scalia Unplugged

Originally published on Wed March 28, 2012 2:43 pm

Activists gather in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday as the court hears a third day of arguments on President Obama's health care law.
Kevin Dietsch UPI /Landov

On the final morning of its three-day health care law extravaganza, the U.S. Supreme Court wrestled with the question of whether parts of the 2010 federal statute can survive if the justices strike down its central tenet: the individual insurance requirement.

In other words, if the nine justices find the insurance mandate unconstitutional when they rule by June, would that mean that the entire law also fails the constitutionality test?

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2:10pm

Tue March 27, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Supreme Court Cheat Sheet: A Quick Guide To The Day 2 Arguments

Originally published on Tue March 27, 2012 6:11 pm

Opponents and supporters of President Obama's health care overhaul rallied outside the Supreme Court on Tuesday. Bob Mason shows support for the Tea Party by dressing in costume as one of the Founding Fathers.
John Rose NPR

A clearly divided U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday took up the centerpiece of President Obama's health care law: its requirement that by 2014 individuals have insurance coverage or face a penalty.

In contrast to Monday's dense and technical arguments, Tuesday's session was filled with sharp rhetorical volleys and clever analogies. Here are some of the more telling exchanges between the lawyers and the high court justices.

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2:28pm

Mon March 26, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Reading Between The Lines Of Monday's Supreme Court Arguments

Demonstrators in support of President Obama's health care overhaul march outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday.
John Rose NPR

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday opened three days of oral arguments over the constitutionality of the insurance requirement embedded in President Obama's landmark health care law with a simple question and an obscure 1867 law.

The question: Does the court even have the right to hear the health care challenge, given that the Anti-Injunction Act prevents federal courts from taking cases where taxpayers are trying to prevent the government from "assessing or collecting" taxes?

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