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Renee Montagne

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It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

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This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

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Ben Bernanke's latest comments are at the top of NPR's business news.

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This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne, in Kabul, Afghanistan.

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And I'm Steve Inskeep, in Washington, with David Greene.

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We're hearing this morning that Pope Benedict has left the Vatican. NPR's Sylvia Poggioli is covering the first papal retirement in 600 years, and she joins us now from Rome. And Sylvia, describe the scene for us there.

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Alright, to talk more about the politics behind the across-the-board cuts, here is NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson. Good morning.

MARA LIASSON, BYLINE: Good morning.

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This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

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Steve, thanks very much. Now let's go just beyond the capital building, into the National Mall. That's where NPR's Ailsa Chang is. And she's between the Capitol, as I understand it, Ailsa, and the Washington Monument, right there in the thick of things.

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It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

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It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

President Obama wants a Republican to be his next secretary of Defense, and some Republicans really don't like the choice.

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And joining us now, as she does most Monday, is Cokie Roberts. Good morning.

COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi, Renee. Happy New Year.

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This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm David Greene.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

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This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

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Let's turn now to the urgent diplomatic efforts underway. Secretary of State Clinton is now in Cairo, meeting with Egyptian leaders in efforts to reach a ceasefire. NPR's Leila Fadel joins us from Cairo to discuss the latest.

Good morning.

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This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

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And I'm Renee Montagne.

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