The cliche "every vote counts" is sure to get a workout this election season. A new report from the National Urban League says the African-American vote could play a critical role in November. Host Michel Martin talks with Chanelle Hardy of the National Urban League and David Bositis of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, one of the country's largest unions, is facing a difficult climate. Local governments are slashing employee pensions and state governments are considering measures to curb collective bargaining rights. Host Michel Martin talks with Lee Saunders, AFSCME's new president.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we'll check in with one of the millions of people who've been laid off in recent years. Former newspaper writer, T.M. Shine, long - and I mean long - months of unemployment could have made him bitter, but he decided he'd want to make his life about something else. He wrote about this for the Washington Post magazine and he'll be with us in just a few minutes.
After he was laid off in 2008, writer T.M. Shine adopted a unique approach to finding a job. He says his new goal is being nice to people, and he put that right at the top of his resume. Host Michel Martin speaks with Shine about his journey from unemployment back to work, which he wrote about for this week's Washington Post Magazine.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. For nearly 25 years, Grammy award-winning singer/songwriter Regina Belle has been wowing audiences with her powerful voice. Much of that recognition has been for her work in R&B, but in 2008, after an award-winning career in secular music, Regina Belle went back to her roots and released her first gospel album, "Love Forever Shines."
And now it's time for BackTalk. That's where we lift up the curtain on what's happening in the TELL ME MORE blogosphere. Editor Ammad Omar is here again, so Ammad, what do you have for us today?
AMMAD OMAR, BYLINE: Well, Maria, I want to start with an interview we did last week with Academy Award-winning actor, Morgan Freeman, and he said something about President Barack Obama that set off quite the controversy.
The Barbershop guys weigh in on Joe Biden and Mitt Romney's appearances at the NAACP convention. They also discuss the latest revelations about the Penn State sexual abuse scandal, and the fury over some U.S. Olympic gear being made in China. Guest host Maria Hinojosa talks with Jimi Izrael, Arsalan Iftikhar, Lester Spence and Michael Steele.
The bipartisan National Governors Association is meeting in Virginia, where they aim to tackle big issues, like how to grow state economies amid national uncertainty. Guest host Maria Hinojosa speaks with Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman, a Republican and outgoing chair of the National Governors Association.
Washington D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray is under a criminal investigation into possible corruption during his 2010 bid for office. Three city council members recently called for his resignation. Guest host Maria Hinojosa gets the latest developments from Washington Post Reporter Nikita Stewart, who is covering the story.
In Rumor, Repression and Racial Politics, author George Derek Musgrove looks at the history of black elected officials being investigated for alleged wrongdoing. He examines the role of race in U.S. politics between 1965 and 1995. Musgrove shares his research with guest host Maria Hinojosa.