Good morning. I'm David Greene. Mayoral races across Mexico are turning into a zoo. In Xalapa, a cat named Morris is running with the campaign slogan: Tired of voting for rats? Vote for a cat. Candidates in other cities include Chon the Donkey and Tina the Chicken. Now, Morris the cat is in the lead - at least on social media.
He has 115,000 likes on Facebook, more than any of the five human candidates. And to think if he loses, that cat has eight more chances. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Syria's Arab neighbors are increasingly being drawn into that country's conflict. Over the weekend, the Egyptian president cut all diplomatic ties with Syria and called for a no-fly zone to protect rebels there.
In Jordan - right next door to Syria - King Abdullah told graduates at the country's military academy that he would defend against any spillover from the fighting. That followed a Pentagon decision to base Patriot missiles and a squadron of F-16 fighter planes in the country.
NPR's business news starts with an acquisition for Lowe's.
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GREENE: The home-improvement retailer Lowe's has reportedly agreed to buy Orchard Supply Hardware Stores. The sale price is expected to top $200 million. Now, Orchard is a California-based hardware and garden chain. It was once owned by Sears, and it's now about $230 million in debt.
When New England Patriots' owner Robert Kraft met with then-Russian President Vladmir Putin in 2005, he showed off his Super Bowl ring. Kraft told a crowd last week Putin put the ring on, and said, "I can kill someone with this ring." He then put it in his pocket, and walked away. The Kremlin says the ring was a gift.
This is Morning Edition from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene. After weeks of protest, security forces in Turkey carried out a violent crackdown yesterday, arresting hundreds of people in Istanbul and other cities around the country. Riot police tear gassed protesters who were trying to return to Istanbul's Taksim Square Sunday.
And let's stay in this part of the world. Over the weekend, Iran overwhelmingly elected a new president, a man seen by many as a reformer. More than half the voters in that country opted for this change.
The relatively moderate cleric, Hassan Rouhani, replaces Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who's been in power since 2005. Rouhani campaigned on a message of ending Iran's international isolation.
For reaction from Tehran, we're joined by The New York Times bureau chief there, Thomas Erdbrink.
Let's look now at another change in health care, and this one has to do with paperwork. Hospitals and clinics are slowly replacing paper files with sophisticated electronic health records. But with a variety of systems in use, they often can't easily share medical information with each other, and this can be a pretty serious problem in the case of an emergency.
As Elizabeth Stawicki reports, smartphones might be one way to bridge this electronic gap.
More than 40,000 scientists in Spain have signed a petition calling on the government to end cuts to their budget. They're blaming austerity for an exodus of the country's best and brightest researchers.
Lauren Frayer has more from Madrid.
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LAUREN FRAYER, BYLINE: Hundreds of lab-coated scientists delivered their petition to Spain's Economy Ministry. They marched there last week because the Science Ministry, itself, was closed in budget cuts.
Boring TV is such a hit in the Scandinavian nation of Norway that broadcasters are scrambling to produce even more shows to satisfy the appetites of viewers. One idea being considered is a live show with knitting experts, according to The Wall Street Journal.
OK, Scott just made clear economic issues have some competition for top billing at the G 8 Summit in Northern Ireland. We do, though, want to drill down into one economic question this morning, and that's why interest rates here at home are going up. The bond market has pushed them to the highest levels in 15 months, and that includes mortgage rates.
Let's turn, as we often do, to David Wessel. He's economics editor of The Wall Street Journal. David, good morning.