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The Two-Way
3:53 pm
Sun July 14, 2013

Ailing Nelson Mandela Is Reportedly Improving

A man signs a large birthday card at Loftus Stadium in Pretoria for ailing former South African President Nelson Mandela's upcoming July 18 birthday. 'Madiba' is Mandela's clan name.
Alexander Joe AFP/Getty Images

Nelson Mandela remains hospitalized, but his health is reportedly improving after spending five weeks in a Pretoria hospital with a lung infection.

Former South African President Thabo Mbeki, who succeeded Mandela, the country's first black president, says that the former anti-apartheid and Nobel laureate could be discharged soon.

Mandela has been in critical condition since June 8 when he was hospitalized with the recurring infection, which he first contracted during his 27 years as a political prison.

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Law
3:49 pm
Sun July 14, 2013

Pennsylvania's Voter ID Law Gets Its Day In Court

The Penndot Drivers License Center in Butler, Pa., displays signs promoting the requirement for voters to show an acceptable photo ID at the polls. On Monday, a judge will rule on the constitutionality of the state's controversial voter ID law.
Keith Srakocic AP

Originally published on Sun July 14, 2013 10:13 pm

Pennsylvania's voter ID law will be back in state court Monday after more than a year of legal limbo. A state judge will decide whether the 2012 law — which hasn't been enforced — violates the state's constitution.

The measure requires voters to show a particular state-issued photo ID before casting ballots. Last week, civil rights advocates like the NAACP's John Jordan railed against the requirement.

"It's a ploy to take votes away from people who deserve them — veterans, seniors, students, people with disabilities, people of color and hard-working folk," Jordan said.

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News
3:49 pm
Sun July 14, 2013

The Civil Rights Stand Of A Young Gerald Ford

President Gerald Ford finishes giving a speech on Jan. 13, 1975. Ford was born 100 years ago Sunday.
Marion S. Trikosko Courtesy of Library of Congress

Originally published on Sun July 14, 2013 5:54 pm

President Gerald R. Ford, the only American to serve as both vice president and president without ever being elected to either office, was born 100 years ago Sunday.

Ford will be remembered for his role in the turbulent post-Watergate era. But a little-known story from his college days might also serve to define Ford's character.

The Gerald Ford We Know

In 1973, Ford was a congressman from Grand Rapids, Mich., who had risen through the ranks to become House minority leader. In those days before C-SPAN, Ford was barely known to most Americans.

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The Two-Way
2:23 pm
Sun July 14, 2013

'Harry Potter' Author Conjures Pseudonym For Debut Crime Novel

British author J.K. Rowling pictured at the 2013 Wimbledon Championships tennis tournament in June.
Glyn Kirk AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 15, 2013 12:11 pm

Amazon describes Robert Galbraith's best-selling novel, The Cuckoo's Calling, as "a brilliant debut mystery in a classic vein." But as brilliant and classically inclined as it might be, the real mystery until now has been all about the author.

It turns out that Robert Galbraith is the nom de plume of none other than J.K. Rowling, the famous creator of the phenomenally successful Harry Potter books.

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Author Interviews
2:22 pm
Sun July 14, 2013

Racing Hearts, Fluttering Wings: American 'Butterfly People'

Originally published on Sun July 14, 2013 5:54 pm

During the mid-19th century, an unexpected craze swept America: butterfly collecting. Eager to move on from the Civil War and driven by Europe's long-standing fascination with the insect, the movement captured the interest of Americans from all ages and walks of life.

In an extensive book, Butterfly People: An American Encounter with the Beauty of the World, William Leach documents this butterfly phenomenon — from its founders and followers, to its eventual fall.

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