Domenico Montanaro

In politics, it's often said that demography is destiny.

But the Virginia governor's race on Nov. 2 — the first big electoral test of the Biden presidency — is the latest warning of the potential peril in assuming which way key demographic groups will vote, or if they will vote at all.

"I don't believe that demographics are destiny," said Luis Aguilar, Virginia director for CASA in Action, the political arm of immigrant advocacy group CASA. "It's about a culture of civic engagement."

Even as climate change increases the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, from fires to floods and hurricanes, two-thirds of Americans say if their home is hit they would rather rebuild than relocate, a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll finds.

Republicans were the most likely to say they would hunker down and rebuild (81%). But more than 6 in 10 Democrats and two-thirds of independents said so as well.

A clear majority of Americans, including most Republicans, opposes key provisions of the controversial new Texas abortion law, the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll finds.

Since the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan a month ago, President Biden's approval rating has recovered some in the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.

A rare event happens Tuesday in California. Californians will decide whether Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom should remain in office.

It's just the second recall election in the state to qualify for the ballot, but the second in the past 20 years. That previous recall, in 2003, resulted in actor Arnold Schwarzenegger becoming governor.

Amid the chaos of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, President Biden's approval rating slid to just 43% in the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.

President Biden issued a stern defense Tuesday of his decision to exit Afghanistan. He also hailed the final evacuation — which saw more than 120,000 Americans, Afghans and others airlifted from the country — as an "extraordinary success."

"My fellow Americans, the war in Afghanistan is now over," Biden said from the White House. He added, "I refuse to continue a war that was no longer in the service of the vital national interest of our people."

For Democrats, getting their historic domestic agenda done was already going to be a tough needle to thread, with a narrowly divided Congress and tensions within the party itself.

If there's one thing an American president doesn't want to see, it's the kind of pictures that have played out on cable news of the chaos in Kabul — crowded runways of people desperate to get out, with some hanging from the outsides of U.S. cargo planes and, for those lucky enough to get in, crammed on the floor.

The fall of the U.S.-backed government in Afghanistan to the Taliban happened faster than almost anyone in Washington — or Kabul — could have imagined.

As of Sunday afternoon, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani had fled his nation, the Taliban were on the verge of once again running the country, and President Biden authorized sending in thousands of additional troops to try and safely extract U.S. diplomatic personnel and others out of Kabul.

The Justice Department is launching an investigation of the Phoenix Police Department over allegations of excessive use of force and homeless abuse.

"When we conduct pattern or practice investigations to determine whether the Constitution or federal law has been violated, our aim is to promote transparency and accountability," Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement announcing the investigation Thursday afternoon. "This increases public trust, which in turn increases public safety. We know that law enforcement shares these goals."

Former President Donald Trump is trying to stop his tax returns from being released to Democrats in Congress.

In a motion filed in federal court Wednesday, Trump's lawyers claim the Democratic-led House Ways and Means Committee's requests are not "valid oversight requests."

Updated August 3, 2021 at 8:11 PM ET

President Biden called on New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign Tuesday after an explosive new report was released by the New York state attorney general's office on allegations of sexual harassment against the governor.

"I think he should resign," Biden said of his fellow Democrat.

Updated July 27, 2021 at 1:32 PM ET

As pro-Trump insurrectionists poured into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, a Black Capitol Police officer passionately testified Tuesday that he faced racist epithets, the likes of which he had never heard while serving in uniform.

"You hear that, guys, this n***** voted for Joe Biden!" a woman in a pink MAGA shirt yelled toward Capitol Police Pfc. Harry Dunn, he recounted, after Dunn said he voted for President Biden.

Violent crime is on the rise in urban areas across the country.

Many small cities that typically have relatively few murders are seeing significant increases over last year. Killings in Albuquerque, N.M., Austin, Texas, and Pittsburgh, for example, have about doubled so far in 2021, while Portland, Ore., has had five times as many murders compared to last year, according to data compiled by Jeff Asher, a crime data analyst and co-founder of AH Datalytics.

The U.S. Supreme Court decided a major case on voting rights that essentially gutted what's left of the Voting Rights Act.

The court upheld two Arizona laws — one of which banned the collection of absentee ballots by anyone other than a relative or caregiver, otherwise known as "ballot harvesting." the other threw out any ballots cast in the wrong precinct.

A majority of Americans believe ensuring access to voting is more important than rooting out fraud, the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist survey finds.

At the same time, there was broad agreement that people should have to show identification when they go to the polls.

Two-thirds of Americans also believe democracy is "under threat" but likely for very different reasons.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Normal is not easily defined.

The past 15 months, though, have certainly been anything but.

Americans are starting to believe a "sense of normal" is approaching fairly soon, however, according to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist survey. The poll also found that with the coronavirus receding in this country, mask-wearing is declining and Americans are going out more. But they remain cautious about being in large crowds.

Updated June 26, 2021 at 10:15 PM ET

As former President Donald Trump steadily ramps up public events, he held his first rally since leaving office on Saturday night in Ohio.

"We're gonna take back the House, we're gonna take back the Senate," Trump said, speaking before a crowd of thousands at a fairground in Wellington, a town southwest of Cleveland, in a county and state he won in 2020. "My fellow Americans, our movement is far from over. In fact, our fight has only just begun."

The country will narrowly miss President Biden's goal of having 70% of the U.S. adult population at least partially vaccinated by July 4, according to a White House official who did not want to get ahead of the public announcement.

But the official also noted that 70% of those 30 and older have already been vaccinated a week and a half ahead of Independence Day and that those 27 and older are expected to also reach the 70% mark by July 4.

Updated June 23, 2021 at 4:05 PM ET

An important election takes place Tuesday in New York City.

But beyond who wins the mayoral primaries there, what happens could have consequences for how millions of Americans vote in the future.

Updated June 9, 2021 at 4:22 PM ET

The U.S. Park Police did not clear protesters from a park outside the White House so then-President Donald Trump could take a photo-op at a nearby church, an Interior Department inspector general's report found.

Loading...

Less than a month remains until the Fourth of July, which was President Biden's goal for 70% of American adults to have gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Updated June 5, 2021 at 9:37 PM ET

A day after being suspended from Facebook for a total of two years, former President Donald Trump returned to the political arena Saturday night, furthering election lies and returning to a cynical and dark view of America.

Michael Flynn, a onetime national security adviser to former President Donald Trump, was videotaped in Texas over the weekend pushing talking points of the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory and also seeming to endorse a coup in the United States, though he later said he doesn't back one.

Census data out recently shows that Asian Americans increased their turnout rate by more than any other racial or ethnic group between the 2016 and 2020 U.S. presidential elections.

Their turnout jumped 10 percentage points, while Hispanic and white voters each increased by 6 percentage points, and Black voters ticked up 3 points.

With Twitter taken away from him, former President Donald Trump has been largely out of the spotlight and unable to drive news narratives the way he did when he was president and on social media.

But Trump continues to have great influence with Republican elected leaders because of his continued popularity with the GOP base.

White and Black Americans have very different views of race in America and have had very different experiences when it comes to dealing with discrimination and trusting police, a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll details.

President Biden continues to get good marks for his handling of the most pressing issue of the day — the coronavirus pandemic. He also remains on average above 50% for his handling of the economy, which is closely tied to COVID-19.

Pages