With public opinion ratings “the envy of every politician in Washington,” Pope Francis received President Obama at the Vatican for an hour-long visit. Gwen Ifill talks to Rev. Thomas Reese of the National Catholic Reporter and Stephen Schneck of the Catholic University of America to make sense of the meeting and assess what unites the pontiff and the president.
Five days before the March 31 enrollment deadline, the Obama administration says that Americans will have more time to sign up on federal health care exchanges if they’ve begun but can’t finish the process on time. Gwen Ifill talks to Mary Agnes Carey of Kaiser Health News and Ceci Connolly of PricewaterhouseCoopers Health Research Institute for a closer look at the extension and its critics.
President Obama announced that he wants Congress to stop the National Security Agency from gathering bulk phone records and holding them for five years. What’s at stake in the president’s push to limit the scope of U.S. surveillance? Gwen Ifill talks to Kate Martin of the Center for National Security Studies and Gary Schmitt of the American Enterprise Institute.
Japan said it would relinquish a large cache of weapons-grade plutonium and highly enriched uranium -- enough to build dozens of nuclear weapons -- to the U.S. for disposal, just as a nuclear security summit opens at The Hague. Gwen Ifill assesses the deal with Matthew Bunn of Harvard University.
Gwen Ifill talks to chief foreign affairs correspondent Margaret Warner, reporting from Kiev, about the vulnerability of the Ukrainian military, as well as how Ukrainians are reacting to the secession of Crimea and their feelings about the role of the West in their conflict with Russia.
PBS Newshour: New lead, new challenges: How weather, deep water and confusion may factor in search for Malaysian jet
Satellite cameras recorded two objects about 1,400 miles off the coast of Perth, Australia, in the Southern Indian Ocean, raising the possibility that they may be part of the missing Malaysian Airlines jet. But even with a more targeted area to focus on, the challenges of locating the aircraft are daunting. Gwen Ifill learns more from Andy Pasztor of The Wall Street Journal.
The sluggish health care rollout, a president with struggling approval ratings and the influence of outside money all have Democrats worried about midterm elections. They could have a tough time taking back control of the House in November, while their hopes of holding onto their advantage in the Senate have dimmed. Gwen Ifill gets analysis from Amy Walter and Stuart Rothenberg.
The Justice Department announced a record $1.2 billion dollar penalty leveled at automaker Toyota. A four-year criminal investigation determined the car company had concealed unintended acceleration issues, a serious safety concern. That case could serve as a warning to General Motors, now facing its own federal investigation. Gwen Ifill talks to David Shepardson of the Detroit News and Joan Claybrook, president emeritus of Public Citizen.
PBS Newshour: Despite dip in unemployment, Yellen says Fed will hold low short-term interest rates for now
In her first news conference, Janet Yellen announced that the Federal Reserve will continue its suppression of short-term interest rates. Yellen, who was the Fed’s vice-chair under Ben Bernanke, also discussed how her role has changed. Gwen Ifill gets an assessment of Yellen’s remarks from David Wessel of the Brookings Institution.
What are the boundaries of Vladimir Putin’s ambitions? Gwen Ifill talks to Janusz Bugajski of the Center for Strategic and International Studies and Nadia Diuk of the National Endowment for Democracy about the historical precedent for Russia trying to destabilize or partition countries that have ethnic Russian populations.