House Top 40: Flipping Control Still A Tough Task For Democrats

From the outset, Democrats needed a very big-wave election to get to the 30 seats they need to win back control of the House. Then, a video of Donald Trump surfaced showing the GOP nominee making lewd comments, and later multiple women accused him of groping them. That left some wondering if these scandals could trigger that wave.But that simply hasn't happened.Some races have shifted late in Democrats' favor, particularly in Republican-held suburban districts with high levels of voters with...
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Jalylah Burrell / Creative Commons

An archive recording of the WPSU Jazz Show as broadcast on Friday, October 21, 2016 and hosted by Greg Petersen. 

In the first hour hear tracks from Cassandra Wilson, Christian McBride. Ryan Kauffman, Benny Goodman, Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, Ellis Marsalis, Norah Jones, and Wes Montgomery.

In the second hour, hear Branford Marsalis, John Pizzarelli, The Kenny Barron Trio, Maria Muldaur, Oscar Peterson, Al Grey, Gretchen Parlato, and Coleman Hawkins.

Eleanor Klibanoff / WPSU


Democratic vice-presidential nominee Tim Kaine came to State College on Friday afternoon. Though he bashed Donald Trump and praised his running mate's debate performance, it was clear that Kaine knew what this crowd wanted to hear.

"I don't know if the college affordability issue is of concern to anyone at Penn State," Kaine joked as the crowd laughed — or groaned.

He laid out Hillary Clinton's plan to make post-secondary education accessible for everyone.


Eleanor Klibanoff / WPSU


Thursday night, a storm system swept across Centre County, dumping seven to eight inches of rain in under three hours. In the Bald Eagle Valley, basements, sheds and low-lying homes began to fill up with water.


County Commissioner Mike Pipe says by 3 a.m., Centre County decided to declare a disaster emergency.

“Evacuation of the Milesburg area occurred in the morning hours," said Pipe. "And it was not just residents in Milesburg, but also the personal care home Eagle Valley that was fully evacuated.”

Republican incumbent Glenn Thompson is seeking a 5th term in  Congress, representing Pennsylvania's 5th Congressional District.  The former health care administrator is a member of the House Agriculture Committee, where he currently serves as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Conservation & Forestry. He also serves on the House Natural Resources Commitee and the House Education & Workforce Commitee.  

His Democratic challenger is Brookville Attorney, Kerith Strano Taylor, who is running against Rep. Thompson for the second time.  

BookMark: "Hope You Guess My Name" By Heather Harlen

Oct 20, 2016

Heather Harlen’s debut novel, Hope You Guess My Name, is a thriller that will make readers wonder what’s behind the veneers of their own communities. Marina Konyeshna, the book’s main character, is threatened after she discovers a human trafficking ring in her hometown in Eastern Pennsylvania.

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton at second debate
John Locher / AP Photo

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton face off in the final presidential debate Wednesday night at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

NPR's politics team, with help from reporters and editors who cover national security, immigration, business, foreign policy and more, is live annotating the debate. Portions of the debate with added analysis are highlighted, followed by context and fact check from NPR reporters and editors. 

(Photo: WPSU)

Senator Pat Toomey made a campaign stop in State College Tuesday to meet with a group of local farmers gathered at Hess Farm, just off Route 45.

The senator came to the farm to make a point about what he sees as overreach by the EPA in a recent rule aimed at protecting waterways and wetlands. He says the “Waters of the United States” rule places undue burdens on farmers.  Toomey said he also objects to such rules being handed down by unelected bureaucrats.

Few issues in contemporary democracy are so important as the future of public education. Democracy, our founding fathers believed, can thrive only if the citizens who consent to be governed are educated and engaged, and are capable of understanding the challenges that we all face together. When education fails, so does democracy. 

Patrick Denoréaz / Creative Commons

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues Show as broadcast on October 15, 2016, and hosted by Max Spiegel. 

In the first hour, hear Cody ChesnuTT, Tedeschi-Trucks, The Black Keys, R.L. Burnside, The Golden Gate Jubilee Quartet, John Lee Hooker, Bela Fleck and The Flecktones, Roy Bookbinder, Big Joe Williams, The Felice Brothers, Brownie McGee, and more.

In hour two, hear Chris Smithers, Jesse Fuller, Odetta, Jerry Douglas, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Mose Allison, Peter Green, John Prine, Blind Willie McTell, Devil in A Woodpile, Hank Williams III, and more.   

Democratic challenger Kerith Strano-Taylor (left) and Republican Congressman Glenn Thompson appear in a debate on October 15, 2016.
Erin Cassidy Hendrick / WPSU

With Election Day fast approaching, the candidates for Pennsylvania's fifth congressional district squared off in a debate.

Speaking from WPSU’s studio on Penn State’s University Park campus, Democratic challenger Kerith Strano-Taylor spoke about how she’d handle the current student debt crisis. She said, “I’m a huge proponent that students that come from families that earn under $125,000 a year get to go to college tuition-free.”


NPR Stories

Run The Jewels has always been heavy as hell, a hip-hop duo that can hang with leather-clad metalheads as much as the club.

Drake has released three new songs. The Canadian rapper and singer debuted "Two Birds, One Stone," "Sneakin'" and "Fake Love" Sunday night on his Beats 1 radio program.

The tracks are being released as part of a new project that Drake's calling More Life. It's a compilation album that will feature Drake's songs and new music from other artists on his OVO Sound label. More Life is due out sometime in December and follows the April release of his latest album, Views.

Over the weekend, Joanna Newsom celebrated the one-year anniversary of Divers by sharing a new song recorded during that album's sessions, "Make Hay." The piano-based pop song bounces lightly, with a woozily struck celesta and a Wurlizter warming Newsom's intricate writing.

Striking professors reached a tentative three-year contract Friday with the state of Pennsylvania. Faculty members had gone on strike Wednesday at 14 public colleges and universities across the state, according to Katie Meyers of NPR member station WITF.

In a year in which some traditional battleground states have trended towards the Democrats and don't look as competitive as they typically do, Florida remains stubbornly purple.

And that's partly because there are two simultaneous, counter-acting demographic trends going on — the browning and the graying of the Florida electorate.

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A Civil War History Lesson On Trump's Visit To Gettysburg

Donald Trump laid out his closing pitch to voters on Saturday in Pennsylvania, a battleground state that is home to many actual battlegrounds."It's my privilege to be here in Gettysburg, hallowed ground where so many lives were given," Trump said.Trump reiterated the major themes of his campaign, like cracking down on illegal immigration. He also promised to sue women who've come forward to accuse him of unwanted sexual contact. But first, he drew a parallel to the state of the nation during...
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What Are The Main Reasons Teachers Call It Quits?

For Ross Roberts, it was a lack of resources that drove him from the classroom. For Danielle Painton, it was too much emphasis on testing. For Sergio Gonzalez, it was a nasty political environment.Welcome to the U.S. teaching force, where the "I'm outta here" rate is an estimated 8 percent a year — twice that of high-performing countries like Finland or Singapore. And that 8 percent is a lot higher than other professions.The teaching force is "a leaky bucket, losing hundreds of thousands of...
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Getting Dental Care Can Be A Challenge For People With Disabilities

At the Marshfield Clinic dental center in Chippewa Falls, Wis., hygienist Karen Aslinger is getting her room ready. It's all quite routine — covering the chair's headrest with plastic, opening instruments, wiping down trays.But then she starts getting creative."My next patient is pretty tiny and frail, so I like to go to oral surgery and get a heated blanket. I wrap her up, and I think it soothes her," Aslinger says.The patient is 16-year-old Kathy Falk. She suffers from Rett syndrome, which...
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Out Of This World: How Artists Imagine Planets Yet Unseen

When scientists recently announced that they had discovered a new planet orbiting our closest stellar neighbor, Proxima Centuri, they also released an artist's conception of the planet.The picture of a craggy canyon, illuminated by a reddish-orange sunset, looked like an image that could have been taken on Mars by one of NASA's rovers. But the alien scene was actually completely made-up.It's part of an ever-increasing gallery of images depicting real planets beyond our solar system that, in...
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Atlantic Editor On Acrimony In U.S.: 'I Have To Imagine That It Actually Gets Worse'

Jeffrey Goldberg, The Atlantic's new editor, has had a long career as a reporter, covering Israel, Pakistan and Iran, and spending hours interviewing President Obama.And recently, Goldberg pressed for his magazine to endorse Hillary Clinton for president. He said it was right, even though it's only the third time in its history The Atlantic has endorsed a presidential candidate."The Atlantic was founded by abolitionists in 1857 to bring about an end of slavery. It was not merely a non-racist...
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A History Of Election Cake And Why Bakers Want To #MakeAmericaCakeAgain

Donald Trump's slogan "Make America Great Again" is an easy one to adapt for whatever your cause. There are ones like "Make America Gay Again," "Make America Skate Again," "Make America Read Again," "Make America Fair Again." You get the idea.Bakers, of course, had to get in on the action. How could you pass up "Make America Cake Again"?For bakers Susannah Gebhart and Maia Surdam, it's more than just a slogan. (They actually formally call it "Making America Cake Again" on their website,...
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PHOTOS: Finalists For The 2016 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards

The 2016 finalists for the second annual Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards have been announced, and they are predictably delightful.A grinning owl. A fish slapping a bear in the face. An unfortunate interaction between a buffalo and a bird. At least two eagles with very little dignity. Click through the slideshow for a selection of the finalists.The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards were established last year by a wildlife conservation organization. The group's website says it is "a...
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U.S. Soldiers Told To Repay Thousands In Signing Bonuses From Height Of War Effort

In most cases, when an employer pays a signing bonus to attract new workers, that payment is understood to be essentially unrecoverable. But the Pentagon has a different understanding — and it's ordering the California National Guard to claw back thousands of dollars paid to soldiers who reenlisted to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan.And in many cases, an employer would also have a tough time arguing that decade-old lapses in its own oversight should trigger wage garnishments and tax liens...
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Hark! Who Goes There? Why, It's A Puzzle For A 'Guard'

On-air challenge: This is a game of categories based on the word "guard." For each category I give you, name something in it starting with each of the letters G-U-A-R-D.For example, if the category were "Three-Syllable Girls' Names," you might say Gabrielle, Ursula, Andrea, Rosalind and Diana. Any answer that works is fine, and you can give the answers in any order.This week's special guest: Savannah Guthrie, co-host of NBC's Today.Next week's challenge: This is a two-week challenge. Take the...
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Strange Sounds, Burial Grounds And The Case Of The Twisted Dreamcatcher

Moshe the cat lives in an old brick house in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of Washington, D.C. His owner, Cassandra Slack, moved in a little more than a year ago.The first floor feels open and airy. Large windows bring a flood of light inside, making the original hardwood floors shine.But downstairs, in the basement where Slack lives, the atmosphere is different. The floor is carpeted, the lights are dim, and the ceiling is low.Slack had an eerie experience down here when she first moved in....
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Charlotte Holmes Is On The Case In 'A Study In Scarlet Women'

Your reaction to the following words will probably determine whether this book is for you. If your heart speeds up and you find yourself making grabby hands at the screen, maybe hopping in your chair muttering, "Give it to me now," I'm happy to tell you this book is available and worth your time to read once, possibly twice.Here are the words in question: "Gender-flipped Sherlock Holmes."Still here? Excellent. You want to read this book. You want to reserve at least a few hours of...
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'Thrill Me' Gets Personal About Life And Writing

"Books were portals meant for escapism," Benjamin Percy says in "Thrill Me," the titular essay in his new nonfiction collection. He's speaking of his childhood in rural Oregon, where he found new realities in the imaginative works of authors like Ian Fleming, Louis L'Amour, and Stephen King. "Pop lit" is what he calls it, although it's more generally known as genre fiction: thrillers, mysteries, Westerns, horror, fantasy, and science fiction. Percy knows the terrain. His own acclaimed novels,...
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Thank you for supporting WPSU!

WPSU-FM's Fall fund drive ended Friday with more than $130,000 contributed. Thanks very much for your support!

Find information about PA candidates, election news, and other valuable voter resources by visiting

Keystone Crossroads: Rust or Revival? explores the urgent challenges pressing upon Pennsylvania's cities. WPSU is a contributing station.

Public Radio for Central & Northern Pennsylvania

Hear WPSU-FM on the radio at the frequencies listed above, or stream WPSU-FM and our two HD channels right here by clicking the LISTEN LIVE button.

Reasons To Stay

WPSU's series "Reasons to Stay" explores what keeps people in central Pa. On the radio during Morning Edition, and on our multi-media website.

Add your voice!

Write an essay for WPSU's This I Believe or BookMark.

On-Air Schedule

It's Folk Season

Now that the Metropolitain Opera radio season has ended, The Folk Show is back on WPSU-FM Saturday afternoons from 1-5pm, now through the end of November.

WPSU's Community Calendar

Find out what's happening in Central & Northern PA on WPSU's Community Calendar! Submit your group's event at least 2 weeks in advance, and you might hear it announced on WPSU-FM.

Turn Your Old Clunker into Public Radio

Got an old car? The Car Talk Vehicle Donation Program will take it, and turn it into great public radio programs on WPSU-FM. To donate your car, visit the link below or call 1-866-789-8627. Thanks!

WPSU's Local Food Journey

Our Local Food Journey blog explores what it means to eat local in Central and Northern Pennsylvania.