The produce aisle may not yet be restocked at the Stop & Shop in Toms River, N.J., and other perishables may still be hard to come by. But rest assured, the local pizza joint is hopping.
"We've been busy, very busy," says Marissa Henderson, granddaughter of the proprietor of Geno D's pizzeria in Toms River. It was one of the few restaurants open in the area in the wake of the hurricane that rolled through earlier this week.
Alabama's Constitution still includes language referring to poll taxes and segregated schools. Voters are poised to decide on an amendment to excise the outdated lines, but some African-American leaders in the state are opposing the change.
State-mandated segregation is a thing of the past in Alabama, but the state's antiquated 1901 constitution paints a different picture. On Tuesday, Alabama voters will decide whether to strip language from the state's governing document that calls for poll taxes and separate schools for "white and colored."
In 2004, voters rejected an amendment to purge those remnants of Jim Crow from the constitution by fewer than 2,000 votes.
The fury of the great storm Sandy shocked a lot of people, like John Miksad, vice president of the New York electric utility Consolidated Edison. "We hit 14-foot tides — that was the biggest surprise," he told a press conference this week. "The water just kept rising and rising and rising."
That rising water flooded streets, buildings and parts of the city's underground electricity grid. Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers lost power. But it might have been worse if the power lines had not been underground.
There's little doubt that President Obama will win a large majority of the minority vote. Polls this year show the Latino voters supporting him by large margins, and that could make the difference in some swing states. Of course, back in 2008, 95 percent of African-Americans voted for Barack Obama. The key in this election is to get those voters to actually cast their ballots, which is why the president is spending these last days of the campaign reaching out to African-Americans. Here's NPR's Cheryl Corley.
President Obama is on the road, too, after spending time to focus on helping the Northeast recover from the massive storm called Sandy. A politician at the center of that storm is now backing the president. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has endorsed the president for reelection, saying he has the values and the vision to guide the country into the future, even though Bloomberg added he was disappointed with the past four years under President Obama.
Along with other post-Hurricane Sandy reconstruction, New York and New Jersey are trying to reassemble their election preparations. The storm affected hundreds of polling stations. Neither of these reliably Democratic states was poised to decide the presidential election, but public officials are still scrambling to make voting possible for millions of people in the evacuation zones. NPR's Quil Lawrence reports.
And a week that features Halloween is a good time to take a look at all the scary things that could happen when Election Day finally rolls around next Tuesday. NPR's national political correspondent Mara Liasson has been asking what else we could witness in this unpredictable campaign.
MARA LIASSON, BYLINE: The Romney campaign is predicting it will win. So is the Obama team. But what it both of them turn out to be wrong?
OK. So, it was really hard to get gas in the New York area yesterday. One very simple thing could be done that might change everything: drastically raise the price of gas. Now, if that happened, we would surely consider it price-gouging. But some economists think it would be a really good idea. Here's Zoe Chace of our Planet Money team.
MICHELLE MEDINA: So, everybody here's OK? You guys OK? All right. Yeah, we're still on line with him.
Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 11:43 am
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
Climate change was a big part of the announcement Mayor Bloomberg made yesterday endorsing President Obama for reelection.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
Bloomberg owns a media company, is politically independent, and made his endorsement in a memorable way. He said Mitt Romney has taken sensible positions in the past but reversed course on all of them.
MONTAGNE: He also said President Obama's term has been disappointing. But he argued the president was better on a range of issues, especially climate change.