Danielle Kurtzleben

Danielle Kurtzleben is a political reporter assigned to NPR's Washington Desk. She appears on NPR shows, writes for the web, and is a regular on the NPR Politics Podcast. She is covering the 2020 presidential election, with particular focuses on on economic policy and gender politics.

Before joining NPR in 2015, Kurtzleben spent a year as a correspondent for Vox.com. As part of the site's original reporting team, she covered economics and business news.

Prior to Vox.com, Kurtzleben was with U.S. News & World Report for nearly four years, where she covered the economy, campaign finance and demographic issues. As associate editor, she launched Data Mine, a data visualization blog on usnews.com.

A native of Titonka, Iowa, Kurtzleben has a bachelor's degree in English from Carleton College. She also holds a master's degree in global communication from George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs.

President Obama came into office pledging to end the U.S. military role in Afghanistan's war. But on Wednesday, the president announced there will still be around 8,400 American troops there when he leaves office in January, more than 15 years after America launched what's become the longest war in its history.

Every presidential election manages to feel new somehow. Even amid the wall-to-wall cable coverage and poll frenzies and day-before-the-election, man-on-the-street interviews with still-undecided voters and shock (shock!) when a candidate flip-flops, every four years, there's a sense that this time — this time — is different. (Remember that whole recount thing?)

And then there's 2016.

Earlier this year, we noticed a pattern in which states were voting for Hillary Clinton and which were voting for Bernie Sanders in the Democratic nominating contests. Sanders tended to win the states that had the highest income equality (as measured by the Gini index, a widely used measure of inequality), and Clinton tended to win states that were the most unequal.

The amendment guaranteeing women voting rights is nearly 100 years old, but women have only recently become regulars in major parties' presidential nomination fights. All those decades of slow progress culminated this year in Hillary Clinton becoming the first woman who is the presumptive nominee of a major party.

Hillary Clinton declared victory on Tuesday night, but Bernie Sanders fights on.

"The struggle continues. We are going to fight for every vote in Tuesday's primary in Washington, DC, and then we will bring our political revolution to the Democratic convention in Philadelphia," he wrote in a fundraising email sent Wednesday morning, adding, "we will continue to fight for every vote and every delegate we can get."

Sanders pledged to keep campaigning through the District of Columbia primary on June 14.

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past week (and no one could blame you, given the length of U.S. election campaigns), you know that Donald Trump has objected to the judge assigned to handle a lawsuit filed against him in federal court.

Trump has said that U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel is "a Mexican" and biased against him because of Trump's plan to build a wall between the U.S. and that country.

The latest jobs report was downright ugly. Lots of people seem to agree on that. The economy only added 38,000 jobs in May, well below the 219,000 average over the prior 12 months.

It's the latest in what has been a mixed bag of economic reports, and if past voting trends are any guide, more bad news could be a drag on Hillary Clinton in November.

If D.C.'s builders put parlors into overpriced luxury apartments and condos — and, we guess, if people played games in them — the city's current favorite parlor game would be figuring out who likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump would pick for their running mates.

De facto Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump celebrated Cinco de Mayo on Thursday. And being a Twitter aficionado, he couldn't resist telling the world.

"Happy #CincoDeMayo! The best taco bowls are made in Trump Tower Grill," he declared in celebration of the holiday that commemorates the Battle of Puebla in 1862.

"I love Hispanics!" he added.

His message immediately caused a Twitter frenzy. Some were frustrated at what they felt was Trump pandering to Hispanics:

The dust has settled. The mists have parted. The GOP has an apparent nominee, at long last, and it is Donald Trump.

Trump will most likely face off against Hillary Clinton, who leads Bernie Sanders on the Democratic side by several hundred delegates. And a new poll suggests that a Trump-Clinton contest would be an overwhelmingly negative fight. The November election may be decided not by which candidate is more popular but by which one is less unpopular.

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