Today's Junkie Segment: 'Til Debt Do We Part

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From Ken Rudin's button collection
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From Ken Rudin's button collection

The clock is ticking and yet we — that is, the two parties in Washington — seem to be no closer to bridging differences on resolving the impasse over the nation's budget problems. Democrats complain that President Obama is willing to bargain away the store when it comes to entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare. But Republicans appear to be in full revolt against their leaders, reminding them that their opposition to increasing taxes is non-negotiable.

Today's Political Junkie segment on NPR's Talk of the Nation explores the options, both economically and politically, as the debt limit deadline draws near.

Plus: Democrats hold onto Jane Harman's congressional seat in southern California, while the recall process gets underway in Wisconsin. Ron Paul, running for president for the third time, announces he won't seek re-election to his House seat in Texas, while Alan Grayson, the combative liberal from Florida who was defeated in 2010, says he wants his old House seat back. In the battle for the White House, Tim Pawlenty — criticized for going "easy" on Mitt Romney in their recent debate — has gone after some of his fellow GOP rivals, especially Michele Bachmann, in advance of next month's straw poll in Iowa.

And we say goodbye to Betty Ford, the former First Lady who spoke out on her own weaknesses and won over a nation, who died last Friday night.

Join host Neal Conan and me every Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET for the Junkie segment on TOTN, where you can often, but not always, find interesting conversation, useless trivia questions and sparkling jokes. And you can win a Political Junkie T-shirt!

If your local NPR station doesn't carry TOTN, you can always hear the program on the Web or on HD Radio. And if you are a subscriber to XM/Sirius radio, you can find the show there as well (siriusly).

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