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Health: The Problem of Drug-Resistant Bacteria

The Story: It has been nearly a century now since Alexander Fleming discovered the antibacterial properties of naturally occurring molecules produced by molds, known as...

Presidents tread tricky disaster politics

WASHINGTON (AP) — The politics of natural disasters can be tricky for a president. Long before President Donald Trump tossed paper towels to storm-stricken Puerto Ricans and denied Hurricane Maria's official death toll, his predecessors struggled to steer the nation through life-and-death emergencies. A look at how presidents have grappled with the challenges and opportunities of disaster politics: Trump is not known for shows of empathy and relishes fights he thinks will resonate with his core supporters. That includes a bitter and lasting brawl with Puerto Rico in the year since the U.S. territory was devastated by Hurricane Maria. Trump's first post-Harvey trip to Texas generated blowback for his failure to meet with victims of the storm. In June, Trump said on a conference call that the Coast Guard had saved thousands of people while Houston was under water, including what he suggested were hurricane gawkers. "People went out in their boats to watch the hurricane. Then there's Puerto Rico, flattened by Maria as a Category 4 storm nearly a year ago. The enduring image was of Trump at a San Juan church lobbing paper towels into the crowd as if shooting baskets. At one point, as the two shook hands, Obama put his left hand on Christie's right shoulder.

Don’t let politics infect selection of Iowa judges

We must safeguard Iowa’s courts by resisting efforts to inject politics into the judicial selection process. When politics drives the selection of judges, our courts lose their impartiality. In states that elect judges, like Illinois, political parties or interest groups choose and fund candidates. That is not a fair and impartial justice system. Iowa does judicial selection better. Iowa’s merit selection system ensures accountability and transparency. While judges are nominated by a commission and chosen by the governor, voters have the final say. In 2010, three Iowa Supreme Court justices were removed in a retention election. In other states, and at the federal level, the judicial selection process puts politics first. Not in Iowa.