Frank James, NPR

Frank James joined NPR News in April 2009 to launch the blog, "The Two-Way," with co-blogger Mark Memmott.

"The Two-Way" is the place where NPR.org gives readers breaking news and analysis — and engages users in conversations ("two-ways") about the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

James came to NPR from the Chicago Tribune, where he worked for 20 years. In 2006, James created "The Swamp," the paper's successful politics and policy news blog whose readership climbed to a peak of 3 million page-views a month.

Before that, James covered homeland security, technology and privacy and economics in the Tribune's Washington Bureau. He also reported for the Tribune from South Africa and covered politics and higher education.

James also reported for The Wall Street Journal for nearly 10 years.

James received a bachelor of arts degree in English from Dickinson College and now serves on its board of trustees.

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It's All Politics
12:30 pm
Thu December 15, 2011

Sioux City Debate: GOP Candidates' Last Joint Meeting Before Voting Starts

Originally published on Thu December 15, 2011 11:10 am

The Republican presidential debates have mattered more this year than anything else in determining which candidate had the momentum and the lead in the race for the White House nomination.

Thus, Thursday evening's Sioux City, Iowa debate (Fox News, 9 pm ET) could be decisive in narrowing the gap between Newt Gingrich and the rest of the field or cementing his frontrunner status.

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2012 Presidential Election
4:04 pm
Mon December 12, 2011

Gingrich Hits Romney For Laying Off Workers As CEO

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 1:09 pm

Newt Gingrich demonstrated Monday why it will be such a challenge for Mitt Romney to go negative on the former speaker — Gingrich is like a judo black belt of that political technique. Going negative on him means having your force used against you.

Go no further than how he countered a Romney attack. The former Massachusetts governor said Monday that Gingrich ought to return the money he received from mortgage giant Freddie Mac.

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2012 Presidential Election
4:25 pm
Wed December 7, 2011

Mitt Romney Signals He'll Doff Gloves To Stop Newt Gingrich

Originally published on Wed December 7, 2011 11:11 am

If Mitt Romney is still to become the Republican presidential nominee, he obviously must figure out how to get past Newt Gingrich's soaring support, that is, unless the former Massachusetts governor is hoping the one-time House speaker will self-destruct.

Gingrich being Gingrich, such an implosion could always happen.

But as we've been reminded many times, hope is not a plan. If Gingrich somehow doesn't derail himself, for Romney to get the nomination, it's obvious he'll need a stop-Gingrich strategy.

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2012 Presidential Election
10:41 am
Tue December 6, 2011

Newt Gingrich, GOP Frontrunner, Plays Campaign Cash Catch Up

Speaker Newt Gingrich speaks with a supporter in New York City, Monday, Dec. 5, 2011.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Tue December 6, 2011 10:54 am

When it comes to polls, Newt Gingrich is a strong frontrunner. New surveys in Iowa and South Carolina show him lapping the rest of the Republican presidential field and holding strong double digit leads.

But when it comes to money, the essential for running an effective modern campaign, Gingrich is still not a top-tier candidate.

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2012 Presidential Election
4:38 pm
Mon December 5, 2011

Ron Paul Campaign Continues Newt Gingrich Smackdown

Originally published on Mon December 5, 2011 4:11 pm

There was more evidence Monday that Newt Gingrich really rubs Rep. Ron Paul and his campaign aides the wrong way.

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It's All Politics
10:06 am
Mon December 5, 2011

Karl Rove: RNC Should Ban GOP Candidates From Trump Debate

Originally published on Mon December 5, 2011 8:29 am

Appearing on Meet The Press Sunday, Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus said it was up to the GOP presidential candidates themselves to decide whether they should participate at a Dec. 27 debate to be moderated by Donald Trump, the real estate developer, reality show star and world-class egotist.

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2012 Presidential Election
1:09 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

Poll: Iowa's GOP Voters Fleeing Herman Cain; Others Still In His Corner

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 10:32 am

Whether Herman Cain is leaning towards staying in or leaving the contest for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, Iowa voters are trying to help him reach a decision by abandoning him.

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2012 Presidential Election
4:49 pm
Thu December 1, 2011

Newt Gingrich To ABC News: 'I'm Going To Be The Nominee'

Originally published on Thu December 1, 2011 4:09 pm

Newt Gingrich is taking the traditional frontrunner's tactic of acting like his party's inevitable presidential nominee to a whole a new level.

In an interview with Jake Tapper of ABC News, Gingrich sounded like LeBron James vowing to bring Miami an NBA championship.

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2012 Presidential Election
11:07 am
Thu December 1, 2011

Romney, Blindsided By Gingrich, Plots Recovery Course

Originally published on Thu December 1, 2011 8:59 am

Many people noticed how prickly Mitt Romney seemed in his interview the other day with Fox News' Brett Baier. Maybe you would be brittle too if you were running for president and someone you hadn't figured would become a factor in the race for the Republican presidential nomination was all of a sudden a big deal.

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2012 Presidential Election
10:19 am
Wed November 23, 2011

At GOP Security Debate, Gingrich's Tolerance On Immigration Stands Out

Mitt Romney, Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich before a GOP presidential debate in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Wed November 23, 2011 12:00 pm

The big theme out of Tuesday night's Republican presidential debate in Washington was Newt Gingrich's compassionate stance toward illegal immigrants who have put down deep roots in the U.S.

That position by Gingrich, who has recently surged to join Mitt Romney at the head of the Republican field according to recent polls, conflicted with the more hardline views of many conservative voters.

Many of those GOP voters who will decide their party's nominee oppose allowing illegal immigrants to remain in the U.S., period.

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2012 Presidential Election
10:20 am
Fri November 18, 2011

Pelosi Deflects Perry Debate Challenge With "Oops" Zinger

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 12:22 pm

In one of the stranger turns in a Republican presidential race full of them, Texas Gov. Rick Perry challenged Rep. Nancy Pelosi to debate him next week over his proposal to make Congress a part-time body while slashing lawmakers' pay and their staffs.

Why Pelosi? Apparently because one of her fellow House minority leaders, Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, tore into the proposal after Perry introduced it earlier in the week.

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It's All Politics
10:43 am
Thu November 17, 2011

Obama's 'Lazy' Comment Is Energetically Attacked By GOP

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 9:43 am

In a classic case of taking a political opponent's comments out of context, some of the presidents Republican opponents are attacking President Obama for a remark in which he said U.S. policymakers have been "lazy" in recent decades for not creating the best environment to attract foreign direct investment to the U.S.

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It's All Politics
11:06 am
Fri November 11, 2011

Poll: Cain, Romney, Gingrich Tied; Most In GOP Unfazed By Harassment Charges

Originally published on Fri November 11, 2011 9:46 am

"Volatile" is one of the words that probably best describes the race for the Republican presidential nomination and a new CBS News poll captures that flux. The national poll indicates a three-way tie, showing Herman Cain at 18 percent and Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich at 15 percent each.

That's essentially a tie since the margin of error is plus or minus three percentage points.

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Keystone xl
8:52 pm
Thu November 10, 2011

Obama's Keystone Pipeline Delay Could Shore Up Green Support

Originally published on Thu November 10, 2011 3:08 pm

The 2012 presidential election could be close, with President Obama needing support from every segment of his political base to win re-election.

So the president's move (made through the State Department) to delay his controversial decision on the Keystone XL pipeline until beyond Election Day 2012 isn't really a shocker. The White House, for the record, denies that politics played a role in the decision.

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2012 Presidential Election
4:54 pm
Wed November 9, 2011

GOP Michigan Debate: Auto Industry, Herman Cain Likely Topics

Sue McQueen displays her support for GOP presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul outside the debate venue, Rochester, Mich., Nov. 9, 2011.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 9, 2011 4:15 pm

When the Republican presidential candidates meet Wednesday evening in Michigan for their ninth debate (it feels like there've been many more than that) the main topic up for discussion is supposed to be the economy.

But is there anyone who expects that the travails of Herman Cain won't be a subtopic?

The former Godfather Pizza CEO's flat-tax plan encountered severe turbulence at the last debate and it is likely to experience more during the encounter at Oakland University outside Detroit.

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