Domenico Montanaro

Domenico Montanaro is NPR's senior political editor/correspondent. Based in Washington, D.C., his work appears on air and online delivering analysis of the political climate in Washington and campaigns. He also helps edit political coverage.

Montanaro joined NPR in 2015 and oversaw coverage of the 2016 presidential campaign, including for broadcast and digital.

Before joining NPR, Montanaro served as political director and senior producer for politics and law at PBS NewsHour. There, he led domestic political and legal coverage, which included the 2014 midterm elections, the Supreme Court, and the unrest in Ferguson, Mo.

Prior to PBS NewsHour, Montanaro was deputy political editor at NBC News, where he covered two presidential elections and reported and edited for the network's political blog, "First Read." He has also worked at CBS News, ABC News, The Asbury Park Press in New Jersey, and taught high school English.

Montanaro earned a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Delaware and a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University.

A native of Queens, N.Y., Montanaro is a life-long Mets fan and college basketball junkie.

More Americans have now died from the coronavirus in less than two months than in the entire nine years of the Vietnam war — more than 58,000. But the United States crossed another threshold Tuesday — 1 million known coronavirus cases.

Updated at 11:35 a.m. ET

Americans are generally skeptical of too much government intervention. Over the past three decades, the number of people saying they want the government to do less usually outnumbers those saying they want it to do more, according to Gallup.

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Updated at 1:50 p.m. ET

Georgia is set to open up lots of businesses Friday — despite not meeting the benchmarks to move into phase one of the White House's reopening guidelines.

A month ago, President Trump went on Fox and downplayed the potential lethality of the novel coronavirus and compared it to the seasonal flu.

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The tension in America between the national government and states' rights is as old as the republic itself. That tension is about to play out in a starkly political way and on a grand scale over the next several weeks, as states consider how to reopen in the midst of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Worldwide total confirmed cases: 2,063,161

Total deaths: 136,938

U.S. total confirmed cases: 638,111

Confirmed U.S. deaths: 30,844

SOURCE: Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, as of 11:35 p.m. ET Wednesday

President Trump is promising to deliver on Thursday guidelines to "reopen" America. He said some states would open even before May 1. That's two weeks away.

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Editor's note: Sanders has suspended his campaign.


There comes a time in every campaign when a candidate needs to make a tough decision.

Ending a bid for president is one of the hardest things any candidate can do.

They put themselves out there; they open themselves — and their families — up to relentless criticism and, nowadays, social media abuse.

Easter is next Sunday, April 12. But the country isn't close to being "opened up" by then, as President Trump said he'd like to see during a March 24 news conference, a suggestion that was panned by experts.

The Trump administration announced Friday that doctors and hospitals can use federal aid to cover the costs of treating uninsured people who are suffering COVID-19.

The federal payments, part of a $100 billion aid package to health care providers, will specifically cover COVID-19 care. But some health policy experts say the program will be difficult to administer, because it's sometimes impossible to separate the cost of treating COVID-19 from the cost of treating a patient's other health problems, like kidney failure.

During his Thursday night briefing with the coronavirus task force, President Trump repeated a claim that the United States has done more testing for the contagion on a per capita basis than any other country.

Asked if he has any regrets about the way he's handled the coronavirus crisis so far, President Trump said no — and he cited polling to back him up.

"No, I think that we've handled it really well," Trump said on Monday. "The American public thinks that we've handled it well, if you look at polling data."

Survey data has been mixed.

The United States and South Korea had their first cases of coronavirus detected on the same day. The way the two countries responded, however, was very different.

South Korea quickly got tests out, which is being credited with helping flatten the country's curve of its coronavirus outbreak; the United States moved far more slowly, taking weeks to ramp up testing.

In arguing for returning the country to some kind of normal sooner rather than later, President Trump noted that 36,000 people, on average, die from the flu each year.

"But we've never closed down the country for the flu," the president said during an appearance on Fox News on Tuesday. "So you say to yourself, 'What is this all about?' "

This summer's Republican and Democratic conventions are still on, and organizers have no plans to change them at this point, despite fears of prolonged closings and disruptions to American life due to the novel coronavirus, officials from both parties said.

There are no talks of canceling the Democratic National Convention, Communications Director Xochitl Hinojosa said.

In what have turned out to be the last presidential primary elections in the month of March because of the novel coronavirus, Joe Biden swept all three states Tuesday by big margins and appears well on his way to being the Democratic nominee.

The former vice president won Florida by almost 40 points, Illinois by more than 20 and Arizona by double-digits, too.

It was a remarkable night that adds to Biden's delegate lead that, at this point and because of how Democrats allocate their delegates, looks insurmountable.

So much has changed since the last round of primaries just a week ago. Coronavirus is dominating everything, and elections are on the back burner.

Some states have postponed their primaries over coronavirus concerns, and officials in Ohio, which is one of the four big states that was supposed to vote Tuesday, have suspended in-person voting.

Americans have little trust in the information they are hearing from President Trump about the novel coronavirus, and their confidence in the federal government's response to it is declining sharply, according to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.

Just 46% of Americans now say the federal government is doing enough to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, down from 61% in February.

Just before the Democratic debate Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put out guidelines encouraging Americans not to gather in groups of 50 or more for the next eight weeks.

Updated at 11:24 a.m. ET

It was another big night for Joe Biden.

The former vice president won a set of resounding victories over Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on Tuesday, most notably in Michigan, which Sanders won four years ago.

Barring something catastrophic for Biden, the results now put him on a path to being the Democratic nominee and the candidate to take on President Trump in the fall.

The results out of Super Tuesday were unexpected. Former Vice President Joe Biden rode a surge of momentum all the way to the delegate lead and is now in the driver's seat for the Democratic presidential nomination.

The Democratic presidential contest is now a two-man race.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders went into Super Tuesday the front-runner, but it was Joe Biden's night. The former vice president rode a surge of momentum out of his big win in South Carolina on Saturday and established himself squarely as the principal alternative to Sanders.

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Super Tuesday is the biggest day of the Democratic primary campaign. Fourteen states will hold nominating contests to pick who they think should square off this fall against President Trump.

There are 1,357 delegates at stake, about a third of all delegates. So far, fewer than 4% of the delegates have been allocated.

Former Vice President Joe Biden had a big night in South Carolina, showing his promised strength with black voters.

If he had lost, Biden's campaign would likely have been dead. But he far exceeded expectations, with a nearly 30-point win in the state's Democratic presidential primary.

"And we are very much alive," Biden said during his victory speech Saturday night.

Asked during this week's debate in Charleston, S.C., if he would drop out if he doesn't win the primary there, former Vice President Joe Biden was blunt.

"I will win South Carolina," Biden said.

Asked again after the debate if he could carry on if he doesn't win South Carolina, Biden was equally declarative.

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