This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep in Caracas, Venezuela. This country is about to hold a presidential election. Voters are replacing the late Hugo Chavez, who shouldered this oil-rich republic onto the world stage. He often denounced the United States as an oppressive empire - even as he sold Americans oil - and imported gasoline from U.S. refineries. The election of his successor this weekend gives us a chance to listen to a changing Latin America.
A jury in New Hampshire has ruled that Exxon-Mobile must pay the state $236 million. The money would help clean groundwater that was contaminated with a gasoline additive known as MTBE. But as New Hampshire Public Radio's Sam Evans-Brown reports, the story doesn't end there.
SAM EVANS-BROWN, BYLINE: In a little state like New Hampshire, $236 million is nothing to sneeze at.
Steven Nolder joined the federal public defender's office when it opened in Columbus, Ohio, nearly 18 years ago. Nolder handled his share of noteworthy cases, including the first federal death penalty trial in the district and the indictment of a former NFL quarterback embroiled in a ticket fraud scheme.
Lately, Nolder says, his professional world has turned upside down.
Let us now ponder the exquisite status of Tiger Woods, who has clawed back to the top of the charts thereby to proclaim, with the help of his Nike mouthpiece, that his ragged and raw past few years never really happened because — ta-da –– as his ad says: "Winning takes care of everything."
And yes, indeed, he is No. 1 in the rankings again. And, too, he has a beautiful new girlfriend, although, of course, I will not mention her name here, so as not to be a member of what he calls the "stalkerazzi."
Good morning, I'm David Greene. Yesterday, a Twitter hashtag threw fans of Cher into a panic. It read: #nowthatcherisdead - all one word - referring to the late British leader. But many read it as "now that Cher is dead."
One fan of the singer tweeted: I note the hashtag #nowthatcherisdead is trending. I can't confirm anywhere that Cher is dead - leading other users to tweet advice such as why hashtags need spaces.
With Louisville's victory over Michigan last night to win the NCAA tournament, it's time to make good on some promises. Louisville players have suggestions for their coach, Rick Pitino, who pledged to get a tattoo if they won. Player Shane Bohannon thinks his name should be tattooed on Pitino's body. Another player suggests the lower back is the best location. Pitino's family seems too stunned to make suggestions. One son said, he would have killed us if we got a tattoo.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene. President Obama is preparing to send budget plan to Capital Hill this week and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew will be key in selling that plan to Congress.
Right now, Secretary Lew is on another mission: to sell European leaders on the idea of easing austerity to boost economic growth. We reached Secretary Lew in Berlin. Mr. Secretary, welcome back to the program.
The director Danny Boyle is best known for the Oscar-winning "Slumdog Millionaire." His latest film is called "Trance," but Los Angeles Times and MORNING EDITION film critic Kenneth Turan was not put under its spell.
KENNETH TURAN, BYLINE: "Trance" begins with the auction of a painting by Goya.
(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "TRANCE")
JAMES MCAVOY: (As Simon) Telephone bidder now, $26 million; 26 on the telephone, 27 to the lady on the aisle. Selling, 27 million, 500 thousand pounds - sold...