The Takeaway

Monday - Friday 2 p.m.
  • Hosted by John Hockenberry
  • Local Host Mark Wozniak

The Takeaway is an hour-long national news program that relies on the contributions of listeners across the country to deliver the perspectives and analysis you need to understand the day’s news. Host John Hockenberry convenes conversations with both newsmakers and diverse voices, and brings in news leaders from producing partners, The New York Times and WGBH Boston, inviting you to learn more. Be a part of the American conversation on-air and online here at

The Takeaway is a unique partnership of global news leaders. It is a co-production of PRI (Public Radio International) and WNYC Radio in collaboration with The New York Times and WGBH Boston.

Ways to Connect

Is it murder if there’s no homicide?

21 hours ago

Jessie McKim has spent the last 20 years behind bars for a murder that never took place.

McKim of Kirksville, Missouri, is serving a life sentence without parole for murdering Wendy Wagnon back in 1997. (He was convicted in 1999.) But back in 2013, it was determined that Wagnon actually died from a meth overdose, even though prosecutors have argued that McKim strangled her. However, while the science says Wagnon was not murdered, a judge has denied McKim's request for relief because he has “not conclusively proved his innocence."

How Trump's border wall demands could lead to a government shutdown

Apr 24, 2017
Jose Luis Gonzalez/Reuters 

The deadline for Congress to pass a new federal budget — this Friday at midnight — is fast approaching, and recently, there appeared to be bipartisan support for a compromise. However, last week the White House introduced a new spending measure that seems to have scuttled that progress and could, potentially, result in a government shutdown.

The man had just risen from the dead.

He’s in his mid-20s. Sitting on a couch, pale as a ghost, sweaty, wide-eyed, disoriented — like he had just woken up from a nightmare.

“What happened?” asks Delray Beach Police Department Sgt. Ed McCabe.

“I guess ... I overdosed,” the man says.

The man’s roommates found him unconscious and he was turning blue, not breathing. He was overdosing on heroin. They pulled out two auto-injectors of naloxone — an overdose reversal drug — and jabbed them into his thigh.

He came to.

“How much did you use?” asks McCabe.

While Flint waits, Nestle pumps Michigan water on the cheap

Apr 19, 2017
Denis Balibouse/Reuters 

We've heard a lot about the environmental troubles in Michigan, and now there's a new chapter to this water saga: Nestle extracts billions of dollars worth of groundwater from western Michigan, but it pays the state just $200 a year in paperwork fees to do so.

Now, Nestle wants to more than triple its pumping in the region, from 150 gallons per minute to 400 gallons a minute. Locals and activists say Nestle’s pumping could cause damage to surrounding wetlands — and they point out logging and ranching companies have to pay a fee when they use resources on government land.

Scientists say the Great Barrier Reef is officially dying

Apr 18, 2017
<a href="">Tchami</a>/<a href="">CC BY 2.0 (image cropped)</a>

In recent years, things have been overwhelmingly bad for the Great Barrier Reef.

How we could simplify the American tax filing process

Apr 17, 2017

Because of Emancipation Day, a somewhat obscure holiday celebrated in Washington, DC, Americans have until Tuesday, April 18, to file taxes — three days later than the typical April 15 deadline.

If you're still working on yours, you're probably not alone: Americans will spend more than 6 billion hours preparing their taxes, which includes digging up W-2s, sifting through receipts and filling out any number of forms. The amount we spend to get it done by firms or by ourselves with software is also significantly high.

Jason Reed/Reuters&nbsp;

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov and President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Wednesday. It was the first Russia visit by a Trump Cabinet official, and after the US blamed chemical attacks and launched missile strikes on Russia's ally, the Syrian government, few expected any diplomatic breakthroughs.

Tillerson said afterward in a joint press conference with Lavrov that US-Russia relations have a hit a "low point."

President Trump, can the US act as global police and put 'America first’?

Apr 13, 2017
Omar Sanadiki/Reuters&nbsp;

Over President Donald Trump's first 100 days, we're asking him questions that our audience wants answers to. Join the project by tweeting this question to @realDonaldTrump with the hashtag #100Days100Qs.

#79. @realDonaldTrump, can the US act as global police and put "America first"? #100Days100Qs

Yuri Gripas/Reuters&nbsp;

Over President Donald Trump's first 100 days, we're asking him questions that our audience wants answers to. Join the project by tweeting this question to @realDonaldTrump with the hashtag #100Days100Qs.

#54. @realDonaldTrump, why are you shrinking the EPA when Defense Sec. Mattis believes climate change is a national security threat? #100Days100Qs

Earlier this year, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that threatened to strip federal aid to "sanctuary cities" that he says fail to enforce the country's immigration policies. In Massachusetts, two of the state’s poorest cities — Lawrence and Chelsea — have filed a lawsuit challenging the executive order.

If Assad stayed, could Syria ever rebuild from war?

Apr 5, 2017
Bassam Khabieh/Reuters&nbsp;

A day after a suspected chemical attack killed scores of people in Syria, a major conference on the fate of the war-wracked country opened in Brussels.

"Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region" is focused on the rebuilding of Syria, an agenda some say may not be possible under the current regime, which is unlikely to change anytime soon.

President Lyndon B. Johnson and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. were allies in the fight for civil rights in America. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 made it through Congress because of Johnson’s ability to bring lawmakers together, and both laws became absolute necessities because of King’s global movement for equality.

In Venezuela, chaos worsens as political crisis grows

Apr 4, 2017
Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters&nbsp;

Men with sticks and rocks attacked Venezuelan opposition lawmakers who were protesting on Monday, as their country's political crisis continued to deepen. The legislators, their faces bloodied by the blows, were demanding the removal of Venezuela's Supreme Court judges.

Kathryn Hansen/NASA via Reuters/File Photo&nbsp;

Over President Donald Trump's first 100 days, we're asking him questions that our audience wants answers to. Join the project by tweeting this question to @realDonaldTrump with the hashtag #100Days100Qs.

#71. @realDonaldTrump, why are scientists finding their research suddenly being censored by the government?

Convincing the public about the threat of climate change is hard enough as it is, but what happens when climate scientists don't even have the numbers to prove it? 

#BlackWomenAtWork goes viral as women take a stand

Mar 31, 2017
Jonathan Ernst/Reuters&nbsp;

Earlier this week during a segment on “Fox and Friends,” the program ran a clip of US Representative Maxine Waters giving a strong anti-Donald Trump speech on the House floor.

Fox News Anchor Bill O’Reilly responded by making fun of her hair.

Courtesy of the team via Facebook&nbsp;

The US Women's National Hockey Team will return to defend their title in the world championships this year. Until Wednesday, the team had been locked in a 15-month contract dispute with the sport's national governing body, USA Hockey — over unfair pay and unequal treatment — and the women threatened to boycott a tournament earlier this month when talks stalled.

Lebanese women fight to overturn law that protects rapists

Mar 24, 2017
ABAAD Facebook page &nbsp;

A big vote is set to take place in the Lebanese parliament this week that could repeal a provision of the nation's penal code — article 522 — which states that men who rape women can walk free if they marry their victims.

Alia Awada, advocacy and campaign manager for the gender-equality group ABAAD, has been working to convince politicians and the Lebanese people that it's time to abolish the law.

When it comes to North Korea, the era of ‘strategic patience’ is over

Mar 21, 2017

On Sunday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's final day in Asia, a defiant North Korea claimed it tested a new type of rocket engine.

A couple days earlier, Tillerson called for an end to former President Barack Obama's "strategic patience" policy — waiting for economic sanctions to force North Korea to denuclearize — and the new secretary of state suggested that the US might even engage in pre-emptive action against North Korea.

Military commissaries, the discount grocery stores found on US bases around the world, are bracing for big changes as lawmakers and the Department of Defense seek to reduce their reliance on taxpayer funds.

The stores offer low prices for service members and retirees. But taxpayers pay more than a billion dollars a year to subsidize them.

The reforms were set in motion by a law passed late last year. The commissaries are considered a military benefit for service members and their families.

March Madness is upon us once again. This year's NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament welcomes five teams making their first-time appearance, including Northwestern University and the University of California, Davis.

Villanova University, the defending national champions, earned the overall No. 1 seed. Experienced teams like the University of North Carolina, the University of Kansas and the University of Arizona made it back to the Big Dance, but there's no telling what could happen in a field where the top-ranked team from the regular season changed several times.

'Asteroid hunters' search for space rocks that could collide with Earth

Mar 15, 2017

Millions of rocky and metallic leftovers from the formation of the universe orbit the same sun that we do, many of them found between Mars and Jupiter in what is known as the asteroid belt. And while most of these asteroids peacefully coexist with planet Earth, some of them end up on more hostile trajectories.

It may be terrifying to think that an asteroid could collide with Earth at any moment, but some of our planet's citizens have a plan for dealing with hazardous space rocks.

Here's how to experience SXSW from your living room

Mar 11, 2017

The massive arts festival South by Southwest has just kicked off. It features everything from tech talks and movie premieres to stand-up comedy shows, podcast recordings, and of course, lots of concerts.

But if you can't make it to Austin, Texas, for the festival, don't worry — you can still enjoy it from the comfort of your own home, says Melissa Locker, the culture reporter for Time magazine, The Guardian and The Takeaway.

Here's exactly who benefits from the GOP's new health care bill

Mar 9, 2017
Eric Thayer/Reuters&nbsp;

House Republicans unveiled their long-awaited plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act this week. Democrats and some moderate Republicans have already said the plan will hurt Americans who rely on insurance plans under the ACA, while ultra-conservative members of Congress are criticizing the plan and calling it "Obamacare Lite."

Stephanie Keith/Reuters&nbsp;

Over President Donald Trump's first 100 days, we're asking him questions that our audience wants answers to. Join the project by tweeting this question to @realDonaldTrump with the hashtag #100Days100Qs.

#46. @realDonaldTrump: How will your administration deal with US-citizen children whose parents are deported? #100Days100Qs

According to the 2016 Current Population Survey from the US Census Bureau, immigrants and their US-born children make up 27 percent of the overall US population. 

Republicans have long talked about repealing  former President Barack Obama’s signature health care law — the Affordable Care Act — and on Monday, GOP leaders in the House of Representatives released details about what they intend to replace Obamacare with.

Mike Segar/Reuters

Over President Donald Trump's first 100 days, we're asking him questions that our audience wants answers to. Join the project by tweeting this question to @realDonaldTrump with the hashtag #100Days100Qs.

#43. @realDonaldTrump what is your administration’s official stance on organized labor? #100Days100Qs

Bomb threats are one part of a wave of anti-Semitism in America

Mar 2, 2017
Tom Gannam/Reuters&nbsp;

Since January, 100 different Jewish day schools and community centers have been evacuated after bomb threats. Just this Monday, sites in 16 cities across the US were targeted.

<a href="">Casey Florig</a>/CC BY 2.0 (image cropped)

#38. @realDonaldTrump Do you support rehabilitation or incarceration for nonviolent drug offenders? #100Days100Qs

In 1999, Aaron Glasscock was just 22 and two months shy of graduating from college when he was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison for a nonviolent drug offense: conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine. Nearly 20 years later, Glasscock is out of prison, as his sentence was commuted by President Barack Obama.

Immigrants reflect on American values after deadly Kansas shooting

Feb 27, 2017
Dave Kaup/Reuters&nbsp;

An evening at the Austins Bar & Grill in Olathe, Kansas, quickly turned deadly when a gunman entered the establishment and reportedly yelled, “Get out of my country,” before he shot two Indian immigrants. The incident, which took place last Wednesday and was allegedly carried out by Adam W. Purinton, has renewed concerns about anti-immigrant sentiments in America. 

Remember when Zack Morris (smart aleck, picture-perfect smile), Kelly Kapowski (cheerleader, the object of Zack’s affections) and Samuel “Screech” Powers (lovable, curly-headed nerd) were household names?

So many Gen Xers and other children of the ’90s and their parents spent part of their Saturday mornings following them on the popular TV show, “Saved by the Bell,” set at the fictional Bayside High School in Palisades, California.