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Tamara Keith

Tamara Keith is a NPR White House Correspondent and co-host of the NPR Politics Podcast. During the 2016 presidential campaign she was assigned to cover Hillary Clinton.

Prior to moving into her current role in January 2014, Keith was a Congressional Correspondent who put an emphasis on covering House Republicans, the budget, taxes, and the fiscal fights that dominated at the time. She began covering Congress in August 2011.

Keith joined NPR in 2009 as a Business Reporter. In that role, she reported on topics spanning the business world from covering the debt downgrade and debt ceiling crisis to the latest in policy debates, legal issues, and technology trends. In early 2010, she was on the ground in Haiti covering the aftermath of the country's disastrous earthquake and later she covered the oil spill in the Gulf. In 2011, Keith conceived of and solely reported The Road Back To Work, a year-long series featuring the audio diaries of six people in St. Louis who began the year unemployed and searching for work.

Keith has deep roots in public radio and got her start in news by writing and voicing essays for NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday as a teenager. While in college, she launched her career at NPR Member station KQED's California Report, covering topics including agriculture and the environment. In 2004, Keith began working at NPR Member station WOSU in Columbus, Ohio, where she reported on politics and the 2004 presidential campaign.

Keith then went back to California to open the state capital bureau for NPR Member station KPCC/Southern California Public Radio. In 2006, Keith returned to KQED, serving as the Sacramento-region reporter for two years.

In 2001, Keith began working on B-Side Radio, an hour-long public radio show and podcast that she co-founded, produced, hosted, edited, and distributed for nine years.

Keith earned a bachelor's degree in Philosophy from the University of California, Berkeley, and a master's degree at the UCB Graduate School of Journalism. Keith is part of the Politics Monday team on the PBS NewsHour, a weekly segment rounding up the latest political news. Keith is also a member of the Bad News Babes, a media softball team that once a year competes against female members of Congress in the Congressional Women's Softball game.

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We've been reaching out to Muslim-American thought leaders throughout the day. We'll hear that later. But first, here's more from NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith who was in Riyadh for the president's speech.

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President Trump arrived in Saudi Arabia on Saturday carrying baggage — namely, a swirl of controversy stemming from his firing of FBI Director James Comey and the ongoing Russia investigations. But his hosts in Riyadh aren't likely to be bothered by it all.

President Trump will try to leave his troubles behind as he departs on the first foreign trip of his presidency. It's an ambitious itinerary with stops in Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Vatican and two meetings with European leaders.

Here are five objectives to watch for as Trump goes overseas.

1. Will the cloud of controversy follow?

There has been one "bad news" headline after another involving the Trump administration breaking every day this week. But if the president is looking for a reprieve, recent history indicates he might be disappointed.

Updated at 3:15 p.m. ET

Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein were interviewing four candidates Wednesday to serve as interim FBI director, following the firing of James Comey.

Updated at 8:15 p.m. ET

In an all-staff email to employees in the Office of National Drug Control Policy, acting Director Richard Baum shared some news he described as "very discouraging for our Nation's effort to address drug abuse." A draft document from the White House budget office, obtained by NPR, proposes nearly zeroing out funding for the ONDCP and fully eliminating several programs involved in fighting the opioid crisis. Leaked documents indicate about a 94 percent overall cut.

The idea of measuring an American president by the accomplishments of his first 100 days in office goes back to 1933 and President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's dash to staunch a banking crisis and pull America out of the Great Depression.

Even though President Trump calls the 100-days measure "ridiculous," the White House is still touting what one press release called the president's "historic accomplishments" — including 28 laws he has signed since taking office.

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In an official statement, President Trump described the recent chemical attack in Syria as "reprehensible" and went on to argue the "heinous actions by the Bashar al-Assad regime are a consequence of the past administration's weakness and irresolution." In other words, he blamed former President Barack Obama.

It is perhaps no surprise that first lady Melania Trump's first official portrait is a glamour shot. The former model's bio page on the White House website goes into great detail about her career in the field.

The White House released the photo on Monday, with a simple press release stating that the photo was taken in the residence at the White House.

"I am honored to serve in the role of First Lady, and look forward to working on behalf of the American people over the coming years," Trump says in the announcement.

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Republican leaders plan to bring the American Health Care Act to the floor of the House for a vote next Thursday, and President Trump is now publicly applying his deal-making skills to ensure passage.

"I just want to let the world know, I am 100 percent in favor," Trump told reporters brought to the Oval Office to see the tail end of his meeting with about a dozen members of the Republican Study Committee. That group of House members includes some who'd been lukewarm about the bill going into the meeting.

President Trump's budget blueprint calls for eliminating dozens of government programs and zeroing out funding for 19 independent agencies. And that may only be a preview of things to come as the Trump administration seeks to reorganize the executive branch.

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Tom Hanks of Sully, Joe Versus the Volcano, Forrest Gump and Wait Wait Don't Tell Me fame wants the White House press corps to stay caffeinated.

The Oscar-winning actor sent a fancy Pasquini espresso machine and a bunch of espresso pods along with a typewritten note, which arrived on Thursday.

"To the White House Press Corps," Hanks wrote. "Keep up the good fight for Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Especially the Truth part."

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At a press conference this afternoon, Attorney General Jeff Sessions made an announcement.

(SOUNDBITE OF PRESS CONFERENCE)

When 2011 began, the worst recession in two generations was technically over, but Annica Trotter, Ray Meyer, and Jennifer and Brian Barfield were unemployed and searching for work. Six years later, their experience demonstrates life doesn't just snap back to normal after a job loss. Their economic recovery remains incomplete and in some ways their story is America's story.

President Trump is returning to the campaign trail Saturday night. Yes, it's less than a month into his presidency. But Trump's campaign, which never shut down after he won the election, is organizing the rally in Melbourne, Fla.

It's been a tumultuous start for Trump — from alternative facts about the size of his inauguration crowd, to courts halting his travel ban executive order and this week having to ask his national security adviser to resign. But now Trump is returning to the comfortable embrace of a campaign rally.

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It's been a fast-paced and rocky start for the Trump White House. There have been reports of infighting and even talk of a possible staff shakeup after just three weeks. NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith joins us now. Hi, Tam.

Updated on Feb. 10 at 1:40 p.m. ET.

If President Trump were to call a meeting of his Cabinet today, he wouldn't need a very big table. Or, he'd have to invite a bunch of Obama administration holdovers serving temporarily in acting roles.

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President Trump signed a record number of executive orders and presidential memoranda his first week in office — a total of 14 compared to President Obama's 13. But something is noticeably absent from those directives — ethics for the executive branch.

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As early as today, we may find out what President Trump means by extreme vetting. That's the phrase he settled on for the way he would want to screen visitors from certain countries. NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith is on the line to talk about this and much more.

Shortly before Donald Trump takes the oath of office on Friday, Mike Pence will put his hand on Ronald Reagan's Bible and be sworn in as vice president. It's a job that has varied in influence from administration to administration. So how will Pence cut his path?

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