Don Gonyea | WYPR

Don Gonyea

You're most likely to find NPR's Don Gonyea on the road, in some battleground state looking for voters to sit with him at the local lunch spot, the VFW or union hall, at a campaign rally, or at their kitchen tables to tell him what's on their minds. Through countless such conversations over the course of the year, he gets a ground-level view of American elections. Gonyea is NPR's National Political Correspondent, a position he has held since 2010. His reports can be heard on all NPR News programs and at NPR.org. To hear his sound-rich stories is akin to riding in the passenger seat of his rental car, traveling through Iowa or South Carolina or Michigan or wherever, right along with him.

Gonyea has been covering politics full-time for NPR since the 2000 presidential campaign. That's the year he chronicled a controversial election and the ensuing legal recount battle in Florida that awarded the White House to George W. Bush. Gonyea was named NPR White House Correspondent that year and subsequently covered the entirety of the Bush presidency, from 2001-2008. He was at the White House on the morning of Sept. 11, providing live reports following the evacuation of the building.

As White House correspondent, Gonyea covered the Bush administration's prosecution of wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. During the 2004 campaign, he traveled with both Bush and Democratic nominee John Kerry. He has served as co-anchor of NPR's election night coverage, and in 2008 Gonyea was the lead reporter covering Barack Obama's presidential campaign for NPR, from the Iowa caucuses to victory night in Chicago.

Gonyea has filed stories from around the globe, including Moscow, Beijing, London, Islamabad, Doha, Budapest, Seoul, San Salvador, and Hanoi. He attended President Bush's first-ever meeting with Russia's Vladimir Putin in Slovenia in 2001, as well as subsequent — and at times testy — meetings between the two leaders in St. Petersburg, Shanghai, and Bratislava. He also covered Obama's first trip overseas as president. During the 2016 election, he traveled extensively with both GOP nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. His coverage of union members and white working class voters in the Midwest also gave early insight into how candidate Trump would tap into economic anxiety to win the presidency.

In 1986, Gonyea got his start at NPR reporting from Michigan on labor unions and the automobile industry. His first public radio job was at station WDET in Detroit. He has spent countless hours on picket lines and in union halls covering strikes at the major US auto companies, along with other labor disputes. Gonyea also reported on the development of alternative fuel and hybrid vehicles, Dr. Jack Kevorkian's assisted-suicide crusade, and the 1999 closing of Detroit's classic Tiger Stadium.

He serves as a fill-in host on NPR news magazines Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, and Weekend All Things Considered.

Over the years, Gonyea has contributed to PBS's NewsHour, the BBC, CBC, AP Radio, and the Columbia Journalism Review. He periodically teaches college journalism courses.

Gonyea has won numerous national and state awards for his reporting. He was part of the team that earned NPR a 2000 George Foster Peabody Award for the All Things Considered series "Lost & Found Sound."

A native of Monroe, Michigan, Gonyea is an honors graduate of Michigan State University.

Republicans are using tough language in the current immigration debate. They speak of the threats and dangers posed by those in the U.S. illegally. Their words largely echo those of President Trump in warning that immigrants steal jobs from Americans and drag down the standard of living.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

A majority of whites say discrimination against them exists in America today, according to a poll released Tuesday from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

"If you apply for a job, they seem to give the blacks the first crack at it," said 68-year-old Tim Hershman of Akron, Ohio, "and, basically, you know, if you want any help from the government, if you're white, you don't get it. If you're black, you get it."

Updated on Oct. 18 a 4:25 p.m. ET

The pushback — and the outrage — began immediately.

Trump was asked on Monday why he had not yet commented on the deaths of four U.S. soldiers who were ambushed during a mission in Niger on Oct. 4. In his answer, Trump turned attention to the policies of past presidents and their contact with families of service members who have died.

On Tuesday, he followed his initial comments with more assertions, offering a specific example. That prompted further rebuttal from staff of previous administrations.

There was a time when the National Rifle Association was known primarily for promoting gun safety and advocating for gun ownership for hunting and home protection.

But that seems a long time ago.

It still does those things, to be sure, but these days the NRA is far more recognizable as an uncompromising political force, aggressively defending its interpretation of the 2nd Amendment, while working to defeat any and all politicians it views as its enemy.

Updated at 3:42 p.m. ET

You might call it "The Schumer Test." It goes something like this: If you're a Republican and Chuck Schumer is happy, then it's likely not a good day.

Ask AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka about the climate for unions on this Labor Day weekend, and he starts with something positive: a new Gallup poll showing public support for unions at its highest point since 2003.

"There's much more excitement about unions," Trumka says during an interview in his Washington, D.C., office just across Lafayette Square Park and with a view of the White House. He adds that, "over 61 percent of the people in the country support unions."

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka has a tough assessment of what it's been like trying to work with the White House on manufacturing, trade and other issues that helped lure many union members to vote for President Trump in November.

Speaking at a breakfast event in Washington, D.C., Wednesday hosted by the Christian Science Monitor, Trumka said any hopes for progress ran up against another ugly reality at the White House: warring factions within the West Wing, battling for influence with the president.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Talk to voters across the country about President Trump's first 100 days in office and a few things become abundantly clear:

His supporters — those who turned out in force and voted for him — still overwhelmingly love him.

His detractors — and they are many, given that Trump failed to win the popular vote — are still shocked by his election and appalled by his behavior.

He has lost support, particularly among moderates and independent voters. That's a big reason that polls give him the lowest approval rating of any modern president this soon after taking office.

Thursday will mark seven years since President Obama signed the now-threatened Affordable Care Act before a crowd in the jam-packed East Room of the White House. It was the signature legislative moment of his presidency, underscored by then-Vice President Biden, who whispered into the president's ear that it was a "big f****** deal." The mic picked up the remark, which created quite a stir.

United States Marine Band via / YouTube

Outside of show business, the presidency is one of the few jobs that comes with its own song.

It started out a simple, human interest story featuring a former president and his post-White House hobby — painting watercolors of world leaders, and now, portraits of American soldiers, wounded during military service.

President Trump's status with the Conservative Political Action Conference has gone from "it's complicated" to a full-on committed relationship.

That turnaround was to be expected, given that the former reality TV star and billionaire businessman pulled off an unlikely upset last November that finally gave attendees at CPAC what they had been salivating over for more than a decade — control of the White House, Congress and a new conservative justice nominated to the Supreme Court.

For decades, Donald Trump both toyed with and coyly denied any interest in pursuing the presidency — until his expectation-shattering campaign of the 2016 election.

But if you go back and watch old clips — and by old, we mean decades-old — you hear a young Donald Trump sounding very much like the current Trump. Common themes include his view that trade wasn't fair, that the world has long laughed at America and countries have taken advantage of U.S. generosity while refusing to pay their "fair share" for all the U.S. does globally.

One of the most fragile pieces of President Obama's legacy in the aftermath of the 2016 election is the Affordable Care Act.

Republicans ran on their long-standing pledge to repeal it, and we'll know soon whether — as promised — they make it their top priority in the new Congress, even without having released details on what would replace it.

The history of the Affordable Care Act also provides a window into the earliest years of the Obama presidency.

Updated at 9:10 a.m. ET

For more than 50 years, it's been a tradition at the White House — a concise daily intelligence briefing, presented to the president and a small group of top officials.

It is also tradition for the winner of the presidential election to start receiving the same briefing during his transition, as a way to start preparing for the world he will face once he moves into the Oval Office.

But Donald Trump, who defied all conventions of campaigning for the White House, is doing the same when it comes to the President's Daily Brief.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

In what may be the most unlikely meeting of the presidential transition process so far, former vice president, former Democratic presidential nominee, former senator and Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore met with President-elect Donald Trump on Monday.

Gore has spent decades warning about the dire consequences of unchecked, man-made climate change, while Trump has regularly called climate change "a hoax" during the campaign.

Updated at 3:18 p.m. ET with McConnell reaction

With an early morning tweet, President-elect Donald Trump revived an issue that hasn't been front and center in American politics for more than a quarter-century.

Flag burning.

Here's what Trump posted at 6:55 a.m. ET:

The Republican National Committee says its data-driven voter turnout operation — which used lessons learned by studying President Obama's winning campaigns of 2008 and 2012 — was a key to its success up and down the ballot last week.

Donald Trump shocked the pollsters and pundits not just by winning but by taking a surprisingly large Electoral College victory. And just as important to the RNC is the fact that the GOP was able to stave off a takeover of the Senate by Democrats, in a year when Republicans had many more incumbents and GOP-held seats to defend.

Every reporter has their habits and rituals while on the campaign trail chasing candidates and stories.

One of mine — and I've been doing it for years — is to build a short playlist of songs to listen to in my rental car that somehow relate to the place I'm in. I made one last year as I crisscrossed Iowa and earlier this year for New Hampshire's primary.

It's a headline you can write every election year:

FLORIDA THE BIG BATTLEGROUND IN THIS YEARS' RACE TO THE WHITE HOUSE

But that banner belies significant changes taking place in rapid fashion.

In fact, if your image of Florida politics is senior citizens peppering candidates with questions about Social Security and Medicare, it's time for an update. Or a new headline.

Perhaps something like this:

MILLENNIALS A RISING FORCE IN FLORIDA ELECTIONS

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Donald Trump's poll numbers have declined. And NPR national political correspondent Don Gonyea is traveling with the Trump campaign and reports the candidate and his supporters have an explanation if he loses the election.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Updated at 7:40 p.m. ET with Senate votes

To virtually no one's surprise, the Senate failed to advance any of the four gun control proposals — two offered by Democrats, and two by Republicans — that came in response to last week's mass shooting in Orlando, Fla.

Here are the results:

Editor's note: This post contains language and photos some readers may find inappropriate.

I've covered presidential campaigns for decades. I've never had to bleep — or drop an asterisk into — a candidate's speech.

Until this year.

Take this Donald Trump quote from a rally in Virginia:

"We're gonna win with the military. We're gonna knock the s*** out of ISIS. We're gonna knock the s*** out of them."

Everywhere you turn in the world of sports, in seemingly every league, in amateur, college and professional ranks, you find athletes carrying the banner of some sort of political protest. But it started with Muhammad Ali.

Today, there's LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and their teammates wearing gray hoodies in support of Trayvon Martin.

The Chicago Bulls' Derrick Rose donning a T-shirt that reads "I CAN'T BREATHE" before another game.

Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe taking a stand in favor of same-sex marriage.

Pages