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The Candidates: Joe Biden’s Plans

In the second of a two-part examination of the presidential candidates’ policies, we turn to Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s agenda and how he plans to govern a nation wracked by a public health and economic crisis. The themes of Mr. Biden’s Democratic primary campaign were broad as he eschewed the policy-intensive approach of opponents like…

The Candidates: Donald Trump’s Promises

In a two-part examination of the policies of the president and of the man seeking to replace him, Joe Biden, we first take a look at what Donald Trump said he would do four years ago — and what he’s actually accomplished. On some of the big issues, Mr. Trump has been the president he…

The Confirmation Hearing of Amy Coney Barrett

It was a 12-hour session. Twenty-two senators took turns questioning Judge Amy Coney Barrett on her record and beliefs. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, evoked personal experience of life before Roe v. Wade and asked Judge Barrett whether she would vote to overturn abortion rights. On that question, Judge Barrett demurred — an approach…

The Politics of Pandemic Relief

In March, Congress pushed through a relief package that preserved the U.S. economy during the pandemic. It felt like government functioning at its best. But now, that money is running out and bipartisanship has given way to an ideological stalemate. While Republicans balk at plans for further significant government spending — even those coming from…

Why the Left Is Losing on Abortion

Most Americans say that abortion should be legal with some restrictions, but President Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett, signed a statement in a 2006 newspaper advertisement opposing “abortion on demand.” Her accession would bolster a conservative majority among the justices. How did that happen? According to Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL…

The Sunday Read: ‘David’s Ankles’

There are cracks in the ankles of Michelangelo’s David. The weakness was first discovered in the 19th century, but it wasn’t until a paper by Italian geoscientists was published in 2014 that the extent of the statue’s precariousness was fully understood: If the David were to be tilted 15 degrees, his ankles would fail. “We…

The Field: The Battle for Pennsylvania’s Working Class

This episode contains strong language. Over the summer, Dave Mitchko started a makeshift pro-Trump sign operation from his garage. By his estimate he has handed out around 26,000 signs, put together with the help of his family. Mr. Mitchko might seem like the kind of voter Joseph R. Biden Jr. wants to peel away from…

Plexiglass and Civility: The Vice-Presidential Debate

During most campaigns, the job of the vice-presidential candidates focuses on boosting the person heading the ticket. Proving their suitability for the top job is secondary. But this year is different. The president is 74 and spent much of the past week in the hospital, and his Democratic rival is 77. So it was vital…

Where Is This Pandemic Headed?

The pandemic has killed more than one million people around the world, at least 210,000 in the United States alone. The illness has infiltrated the White House and infected the president. Today, we offer an update on measures to fight the coronavirus and try to predict the outbreak’s course. Guest: Donald G. McNeil Jr., a…

How a Small Bar Battled to Survive the Coronavirus

This episode contains strong language.  Jack Nicas, a technology reporter for The New York Times, moved to Oakland, Calif., five years ago. When he arrived, he set out to find a bar of choice. It quickly became the Hatch. Unpretentious, cheap and relaxed, the Hatch was a successful small business until the coronavirus hit. After…