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FROM THIS EPISODE

The first delegates to the Republican nominating convention will be chosen next week in New Hampshire. The Iowa caucuses were a popularity contest.

BANNER IMAGE: MANCHESTER, NH - JANUARY 04: Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney gives autographs during a town hall meeting at Central High School January 4, 2012 in Manchester, New Hampshire. Former presidential nominee Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) announced his endorsement of Romney after he beat former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum by only eight votes in Tuesday's 'first in the nation' Iowa Caucuses. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Producers:
Caitlin Shamberg
Katie Cooper
Frances Anderton

Making News Obama Names Consumer Watchdog by Recess Appointment over GOP Opposition 7 MIN, 27 SEC

President Obama today appointed Richard Cordray as head of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  Republicans have been blocking the action for months but, with Congress out of town, the Chief Executive is empowered to make what’s called a “recess appointment.”

Guests:
Jennifer Bendery, Huffington Post (@jbendery)

Reporter's Notebook Fact Stranger Than Fiction in Hollywood Arson Case 6 MIN, 54 SEC

Over this past New Year’s weekend, Los Angeles was terrorized by a serial arsonist who lit fire to 52 cars parked in apartment-house garages and carports. It’s a crime story full of characters that dramatize LA’s diversity and make real a genre of detective fiction. The suspected arsonist was arrested by a part-time Sheriff’s deputy who’s an immigrant from Iran. The suspect himself is the son of a woman police have been searching for—so she could be extradited back to Germany, where she is wanted on charges of fraud.

Guests:
Denise Hamilton, Crime writer and Editor, Los Angeles Noir

Main Topic Iowa’s Over. Let the Campaign Begin… 36 MIN, 15 SEC

The Iowa caucuses failed to produce a clear winner, and it’s on to New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida before the end of this month. Rick Santorum came within 8 votes of 1st-place Mitt Romney, and Ron Paul was not far behind.  But nobody got more than 25% of the vote. A dismal finish drove Michelle Bachman out of the race—but Rick Perry may still be a contender.  Newt Gingrich says he’s not ready to quit.

Guests:
Michael Scherer, Time Magazine (@michaelscherer)
Dean Spiliotes, Civic Scholar, Southern New Hampshire University
Dave Levinthal, Politico (@davelevinthal)
Gary Langer, ABC News (@LangerResearch)

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