NPR logo March 16th Show

March 16th Show

A woman reacts in the debris after her house was totally destroyed by the recent tsunami at Sendai in Miyagi prefecture on March 16, 2011. STR/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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The Political Junkie
Fourteen Democratic state senators are now back in Wisconsin after a three-week exile in Illinois. They hoped to postpone a vote that limited the many rights of union workers. The bill passed and was signed into law last week, but the political fight rages on: many senate Democrats and Republicans as well as the Republican Governor Scott Walker are facing recall campaigns. Host Neal Conan and political editor Ken Rudin will speak with state Sen. Tim Carpenter who just returned to the Badger State, and Majority Leader Sen. Scott Fitzgerald about the recalls. Ken and Neal will also recap the week in politics, from another recall campaign in the Miami mayor's race, to a near-announcement from Tim Kaine for Virginia Senate, and more names popping up in the race to replace Sen. John Ensign in Nevada.

Bahrain
The king of Bahrain has declared a state of emergency. Earlier this week, he stepped up his crackdown on anti-government protesters by requesting armed forces from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to intervene. And police forced protesters out of Pearl Square in Bahrain's capital, Manama, on Wednesday. Neal Conan talks with NPR's Frank Langfitt about the latest developments in Bahrain.

A New Reality In Japan
The scenes from the Japanese town Minami Sanriku are startling. More than half of the residents of the fishing town are missing and feared dead after the town was hammered by the 30-foot wave. And hundreds of thousands of displaced Japanese people are camping out at rescue centers, unsure what they'll return to when they go home. Host Neal Conan talks with Nobou Fukuda, a Japan scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center, about the people of northeast Japan before and after the earthquake, and about the aid efforts underway in the country now.