U.S. coal companies are having a banner year this year. There are a bunch of mergers, new mines and high stock prices. It's a resurgence of 19th-century America. And it's happening thanks to 21st-century China.
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has a big job: corralling the different elements of his own party, and at the same time trying to bring both parties together to make laws.
More than a century ago, Thomas Reed was doing the same thing. Though he's forgotten today, Reed — a Republican from Maine — was one of the most effective and important speakers in history. His changes to parliamentary procedure turbocharged the House's ability to get things done, letting government develop the size and scope it has today.
A week of destructive weather has torn up the nation's midsection — with tornadoes from Texas to Oklahoma City to Joplin, Mo., which a week later continues to dig out from the deadliest twister in more than 60 years. We take a look back at the week and hear from Alabamans still coming to grips with the damage.