Andrea Seabrook

Andrea Seabrook covers Capitol Hill as NPR's Congressional Correspondent.

In each report, Seabrook explains the daily complexities of legislation and the longer trends in American politics. She delivers critical, insightful reporting – from the last Republican Majority, through the speakership of Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats' control of the House, to the GOP landslide of 2010. She and NPR's Peter Overby won the prestigious Joan S. Barone award for their Dollar Politics series, which exposed the intense lobbying effort around President Obama's Health Care legislation. Seabrook and Overby's most recent collaboration, this time on the flow of money during the 2010 midterm elections, was widely lauded and drew a huge audience spike on

An authority on the comings and goings of daily life on Capitol Hill, Seabrook has covered Congress for NPR since January 2003 She took a year-and-a-half break, in 2006 and 2007, to host the weekend edition of NPR's newsmagazine, All Things Considered. In that role, Seabrook covered a wide range of topics, from the uptick in violence in the Iraq war, to the history of video game music.

A frequent guest host of NPR programs, including Weekend Edition and Talk of the Nation, Seabrook has also anchored NPR's live coverage of national party conventions and election night in 2006 and 2008.

Seabrook joined NPR in 1998 as an editorial assistant for the music program, Anthem. After serving in a variety of editorial and production positions, she moved to NPR's Mexico Bureau to work as a producer and translator, providing fill-in coverage of Mexico and Central America. She returned to NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C. in the fall of 1999 and worked on NPR's Science Desk and the NPR/National Geographic series, "Radio Expeditions." Later she moved to NPR's Morning Edition, starting as an editorial assistant and then moving up to Assistant Editor. She then began her on-air career as a weekend general assignment reporter for all NPR programs.

Before coming to NPR, Seabrook lived, studied and worked in Mexico City, Mexico. She ran audio for movies and television, and even had a bit part in a Mexican soap opera.

Seabrook earned her bachelor's degree in biology from Earlham College and studied Latin American literature at UNAM - La Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico. While in college she worked at WECI, the student-run public radio station at Earlham College.



Wed August 24, 2011

CBO Releases Report On Economy, Federal Budget

The federal budget problem has gotten a little bit better. That's according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, which released a new report Wednesday. The CBO estimates that this year's deficit will hit about $1.3 trillion. That's a huge amount of red ink — but it's also slightly less red ink than last year.


Tue August 16, 2011

Va. Truck Stop Owner Irked At Washington Politicians

Corey Berkstresser's father bought the Lee Hi Travel Plaza in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains in the mid 80s. The family has worked hard to build up the business. But these days, gas prices are up and the effects of the bad economy are showing up everywhere. Even the tips the waitresses get are down. Everyone is blaming Washington for the mess.


Wed August 10, 2011

Debt Downgrade: A Spark For Political Compromise?

In the wake of the U.S. debt downgrade, the markets have been volatile, but the political fallout has been less clear so far. With Congress on its August recess, party leaders are lying low while they gather their rank-and-file and make plans for what's next.

When Standard & Poor's downgraded the country's credit rating, it was clear about why: Its statement said it "reflects our view that the effectiveness, stability, and predictability of American policymaking and political institutions have weakened at a time of ongoing fiscal and economic challenges."

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Tue July 26, 2011

Can Boehner's Debt Ceiling Plan Pass?

Speaker John Boehner's plan for raising the debt ceiling in two steps and cutting the budget comes to the House floor Wednesday. Does he have the votes to pass it? Then what?


Wed July 6, 2011

Obama Calls Democratic, GOP Leaders To Debt Talks

President Obama has invited Democratic and Republican congressional leaders to the White House Thursday for face-to-face meetings on the budget.

"It's my hope that everybody's going to leave their ultimatums at the door," Obama told reporters at the White House Tuesday. "That we'll all leave our political rhetoric at the door, and we're all going to do what's best for our economy and do what's best for our people."

The president would like to reach an agreement within two weeks, which would leave time to raise the federal debt ceiling before an Aug. 2 deadline.

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Wed June 29, 2011

Congress Reacts To Obama's Presser

President Obama tells Congress to get cracking on the deficit reduction talks — and maybe not take so many vacations. After all, Mister Obama said, his kids do their homework ahead of time, so why can't Congress?


Fri June 24, 2011

GOP Leaves Talks On Raising Federal Debt Ceiling

The Obama administration has set a hard deadline of August 2 for Congress to come up with a deal and pass it into law. But the parties hit a stalemate on the issue of taxes.


Thu June 16, 2011

Remembering Weiner's Political Career

Rep. Anthony Weiner was a rising star who wanted to be the next mayor of New York. Instead, he's out of Congress and in rehab.


Wed June 15, 2011

Bernanke: Government Borrowing Is Unsustainable

The influential group, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, held a meeting Tuesday that featured heavy-hitters from the economic world, including Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. They warned that the budget crisis is worse than many people assume, and fixing it will be very painful.


Fri June 10, 2011

Zombies Walk The Halls Of Congress


NPR can now confirm that there are zombies in the U.S. Capitol.

OK, not the kind that pop out of graves and eat brains, but a different kind of undead — the undead political career. This week New York Rep. Anthony Weiner said he is staying put, even though some top Democrats have publicly called for him to resign.

He's not the first one to stay in politics after serious ethics violations, trying to revive a seemingly lifeless career.

In this contrived scenario, there are three categories of Congressional Zombies:

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Wed June 8, 2011

Democrats Ponder Should Rep. Weiner Stay Or Go?

Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner of New York says he will not resign from his House seat.

Weiner admitted this week that he had inappropriate exchanges with women online — exchanges that included tweeting a lewd picture of himself.

Weiner isn't the first member of Congress to be caught up in a scandal.

Test your memory by recalling who said: "I did not have sexual relations with that woman."

And then later said: "Indeed I did have a relationship with Ms. Lewinsky that was not appropriate. In fact, it was wrong."

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Tue June 7, 2011

Rep. Weiner Says He Won't Resign Over Lewd Photo

At a news conference in New York Monday, Rep. Anthony Weiner admitted he sent a lewd photo of himself over the Internet. He also said he carried on inappropriate Internet conversations with a half dozen women. Weiner said he was ashamed and embarrassed, but added he would not resign. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has called for an ethics investigation.


Fri May 27, 2011

Obama Wields His ... Autopen?

As the news broke on Friday that President Obama signed the Patriot Act extension from France via autopen, you could almost hear thousands of Americans asking in unison, "What's an autopen?"

Well, it's a device that's often used by rock stars or sports heroes and yes, the President of the United States, usually to sign letters. This is the first time we know of that an autopen has signed a bill into law, though its use was carefully considered by the Justice Department in the George W. Bush administration.

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Thu May 26, 2011

After Senate's Medicare Vote, Ryan Remains Unbowed



It's been a tough week for Congressman Paul Ryan. He wrote the House Republican's budget, including the plan that would eventually privatize Medicare. Ryan's plan played a big part in a special election in upstate New York this week, an election that flipped the seat from Republican to Democrat. Then yesterday, a majority of the Senate, including five Republicans, voted to kill the Ryan budget.

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Fri May 20, 2011

Pelosi: 'You Can't Let Their Anger Take You Down'

Pelosi flexes her muscles after being elected as the first female House speaker on Jan. 4, 2007.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Political wives have been all over the news this week. They've been portrayed as victims of their husbands' infidelity, and as obstacles to their husbands' careers.

But what about women who aren't accessories to candidates, but are the politicians themselves? The person who achieved the highest political rank for a woman in American history shares her experience.

When talking about women in politics, Nancy Pelosi thinks back to her high school debate team.

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Wed May 18, 2011

Politicians And Their Wives: What's Fair Game?

Connie Schultz, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, watches as her husband, Ohio Democrat Sherrod Brown, gives his victory speech after being elected senator in 2006.
Jamie Rose Getty Images

Political wives have been at the top of the news this week.

There's Maria Shriver and her husband's infidelity; Callista Gingrich, the third wife of presidential candidate Newt Gingrich; and Cheri Daniels, the politically reluctant spouse of Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels who, years ago, divorced her current husband, married another man, then came back.

It's striking, really, considering it wasn't so long ago that the private lives of politicians were considered off limits, and even protected by the media.

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Wed May 4, 2011

Post-Bin Laden, Same Old Congress

You might think that Osama bin Laden's death would serve as a game-changer — and perhaps in some ways it has — but if you look at what lawmakers are saying and doing, it's politics as usual.

Let's start with who lawmakers credit for this win.

"Nearly ten years ago, President Bush stood before the nation after 9/11 and pledged to the American people that we will not tire and we will not falter and we will not fail in our quest to defeat those who intend to do us harm through acts of terror," House Republican Leader Eric Cantor said.

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Mon May 2, 2011
NPR Story

Congress Quick To React To Bin Laden's Death

Congressional leaders are reacting to the news that U.S. forces killed Osama Bin Laden in a military operation.