Linda Wertheimer

As NPR's senior national correspondent, Linda Wertheimer travels the country and the globe for NPR News, bringing her unique insights and wealth of experience to bear on the day's top news stories.

A respected leader in media and a beloved figure to listeners who have followed her three-decade-long NPR career, Wertheimer provides clear-eyed analysis and thoughtful reporting on all NPR News programs.

Before taking the senior national correspondent post in 2002, Wertheimer spent 13 years hosting of NPR's news magazine All Things Considered. During that time, Wertheimer helped build the afternoon news program's audience to record levels. The show grew from six million listeners in 1989 to nearly 10 million listeners by spring of 2001, making it one of the top afternoon drive-time, news radio programs in the country. Wertheimer's influence on All Things Considered — and, by extension, all of public radio — has been profound.

She joined NPR at the network's inception, and served as All Things Considered's first director starting with its debut on May 3, 1971. In the more than 40 years since, she has served NPR in a variety of roles including reporter and host.

From 1974 to 1989, Wertheimer provided highly praised and award-winning coverage of national politics and Congress for NPR, serving as its congressional and then national political correspondent. Wertheimer traveled the country with major presidential candidates, covered state presidential primaries and the general elections, and regularly reported from Congress on the major events of the day — from the Watergate impeachment hearings to the Reagan Revolution to historic tax reform legislation to the Iran-Contra affair. During this period, Wertheimer covered four presidential and eight congressional elections for NPR.

In 1976, Wertheimer became the first woman to anchor network coverage of a presidential nomination convention and of election night. Over her career at NPR, she has anchored ten presidential nomination conventions and 12 election nights.

Wertheimer is the first person to broadcast live from inside the United States Senate chamber. Her 37 days of live coverage of the Senate Panama Canal Treaty debates won her a special Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University award.

In 1995, Wertheimer shared in an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton Award given to NPR for its coverage of the first 100 days of the 104th Congress, the period that followed the 1994 Republican takeover of Congress.

Wertheimer has received numerous other journalism awards, including awards from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for her anchoring of The Iran-Contra Affair: A Special Report, a series of 41 half-hour programs on the Iran-Contra congressional hearings, from American Women in Radio/TV for her story Illegal Abortion, and from the American Legion for NPR's coverage of the Panama Treaty debates.

in 1997, Wertheimer was named one of the top 50 journalists in Washington by Washingtonian magazine and in 1998 as one of America's 200 most influential women by Vanity Fair.

A graduate of Wellesley College, Wertheimer received its highest alumni honor in 1985, the Distinguished Alumna Achievement Award. Wertheimer holds honorary degrees from Colby College, Wheaton College, and Illinois Wesleyan University.

Prior to joining NPR, Wertheimer worked for the British Broadcasting Corporation in London and for WCBS Radio in New York.

Her 1995 book, Listening to America: Twenty-five Years in the Life of a Nation as Heard on National Public Radio, published by Houghton Mifflin, celebrates NPR's history.

Pages

Digital Life
6:53 am
Fri March 21, 2014

Game Developers Conference: Not Your Typical Tech Convention

Brian Crecente, who is covering the Game Developers Conference this week for the video game website Polygon, talks about the latest trends in the industry.

NPR Story
5:05 am
Fri March 21, 2014

'Wheel Of Fortune' Player Cashes In With N And E

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 8:08 am

A Wheel of Fortune contestant guessed a 12-letter phrase in the bonus round Wednesday night with only two letters revealed — and he won $45,000.

Food
4:32 am
Fri March 21, 2014

A Cronut By Any Other Name Is Still A Cronut

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 6:45 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Linda Wertheimer. Little Big's Bakery in South Portland, Maine worked up its version of the cronut, the croissant-donut hybrid. The Mainers tried to stand out, spelling theirs C-R-A-U-X-nut. But the original New York baker sent a letter saying he has trademarked the cronut name, no matter how you spell it. So Little Big's took another stab at it. Now they call their popular pastry C-and-Ds - standing for cease and desist. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Middle East
4:09 am
Fri March 21, 2014

U.N. Report: All Sides Committing Atrocities In Syria

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 6:45 am

U.N. investigators are gathering the names of people they suspect of war crimes in Syria. In their latest report, they say all sides in the conflict are committing atrocities against civilians. We hear from Karen Abuzayd, who is with the U.N. Commission of Inquiry on Syria.

National Security
4:43 am
Tue August 6, 2013

Intercepted Al-Qaida Communication Prompts Warnings

Originally published on Tue August 6, 2013 5:06 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Read more
NPR Story
11:49 am
Sat July 27, 2013

Ex-Rep. Lindy Boggs: Advocate For Women, Dedicated To Family

Cokie Roberts (far left) and Steve Roberts with Cokie's mother, Lindy Boggs, and children Lee and Rebecca in 1969.
Courtesy of Cokie and Steve Roberts

Originally published on Sat July 27, 2013 12:01 pm

Lindy Boggs died Saturday morning. She was 97 years old, had served in Congress for close to 20 years and also as the U.S. ambassador to the Vatican, appointed by President Bill Clinton.

But those achievements, great as they are, do not begin to sum up the life and accomplishments of Lindy Boggs. As many of you know, she is part of our family at NPR: Her daughter is Cokie Roberts. And she has many friends here, as she does everywhere.

Read more
Crime In The City
2:02 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Rotenberg's Toronto Thrillers Mix Canadian Courtesy With Murder

From the Toronto Islands — one of many real-life Toronto locales in Robert Rotenberg's legal thrillers — visitors have a clear view of the city's skyline.
Sean Dawsean Flickr

Robert Rotenberg has written four legal thrillers set in Toronto, that old industrial city on the shores of Lake Ontario. He's a criminal lawyer — all his books are centered on trials — and he loves his city so much that he makes multicultural Toronto a character in his books. His first release, Old City Hall, is even named after a Toronto landmark: a beautiful stone building that is now used as a courthouse.

Real Courtrooms, Real Courtesy

Read more
Law
4:23 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Feds Buckle On Emergency Contraception Age Restrictions

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer. The morning after pill is moving from behind the counter to on the shelf. Last night, the Obama administration announced it will comply with a court order that allows girls and women of any age to buy the emergency contraception without a prescription and without showing ID.

Read more
National Security
5:09 am
Fri June 7, 2013

Intelligence Community Mines Phone Records, Internet Data

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer. Just one day after we learned the National Security Agency has been secretly collecting telephone records from millions of Americans, it's been revealed that the agency is also running a massive Internet surveillance program.

Read more
U.S.
8:20 am
Wed June 5, 2013

National Security Adviser Donilon Resigns; Rice To Take Over

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

The Whitehouse has announced that President Obama's National Security Advisor is resigning and he will be replaced by Susan Rice, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. NPR's Ron Elving is here to tell us more. Ron, some months ago, Ms. Rice was rumored to be nominated Secretary of State - that, of course, did not happen. So why don't you give us a quick fill on the back story.

Read more
NPR Story
10:50 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Venezuela, World Leaders Mourn Hugo Chavez

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Leader from around the world have arrived in Venezuela to pay their final respects to President Hugo Chavez, who used his country's oil wealth to put in place his vision of socialism during 14 years in power. And this larger-than-life leader presumably will continue to inspire his followers. The Venezuelan government plans to embalm his body and keep it on display in a glass coffin.

Read more
Middle East
5:40 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Talks On Iran's Nuclear Program To Resume In April

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 6:37 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Iran now says compromise on its nuclear program may be possible. Of course, that comes with a number of ifs. Tehran says that's if international negotiators continue to take what it calls a more realistic approach. The big question, Western officials say, is whether Iran is willing to curb its nuclear activities. That is the message, after a two-day meeting between Iran and six world powers. NPR's Peter Kenyon joins us from Almaty, Kazakhstan where the talks just concluded.

Read more
Education
5:56 am
Mon February 18, 2013

Is The Call For Universal Pre-Kindergaren Warranted?

Originally published on Mon February 18, 2013 5:57 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Providing free preschool education to children across America is a priority for President Obama's second term in office.

(SOUNDBITE OF STATE OF THE UNION SPEECH)

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Every dollar we invest in high quality early childhood education can save more than seven dollars later on.

WERTHEIMER: The president made that case in last week's State of the Union message.

(SOUNDBITE OF STATE OF THE UNION SPEECH)

Read more
Analysis
6:05 am
Mon November 19, 2012

In Asia, Obama Reasserts His Foreign Policy Role

Originally published on Tue November 20, 2012 9:38 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Read more
National Security
3:57 am
Fri November 16, 2012

Petraeus To Testify At Closed Congressional Hearings

Originally published on Fri November 16, 2012 9:36 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer. Former CIA Director David Petraeus is testifying before two congressional committees today. He's been called to discuss the CIA's role in the attack at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, back in September; an attack that took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens. This also happens to be General Petraeus' first public appearance on Capitol Hill since he resigned over an extramarital affair.

Read more
Asia
9:23 am
Thu July 26, 2012

China Charges Bo Xilai's Wife In British Man's Killing

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 9:35 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

China announced today that it is prosecuting the wife of a disgraced party official for the murder of a British man. It's the latest sensational twist in the country's biggest political scandal in decades. NPR's Louisa Lim joins us now from Beijing. Louisa, could you bring us up to speed on this scandal and what the latest news is?

Read more
Crime In The City
2:03 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Dark Doings Among The D.C. Monuments

The Iwo Jima Memorial, on the Virginia side of the Potomac River overlooking Washington, D.C., is one of many capital landmarks that do double duty as crime scenes in the novels of author Mike Lawson.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 9:47 am

In Washington, D.C., the glittering marble of public buildings and monuments can conceal the darkest of deeds. And in the crime novels of Mike Lawson, they do.

"When I started writing, the very first decision I made was, I wanted the book set in D.C.," says Lawson, who recently published his seventh Washington-based thriller, House Blood. "That was before I had a character, or anything else."

And he had a reason.

Read more
Research News
4:08 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Physicists Find Evidence Of New Subatomic Particle

Originally published on Wed July 4, 2012 8:29 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. Good morning.

Read more
Analysis
5:53 am
Mon July 2, 2012

Democrats, GOP Say Health Ruling Works For Them

Originally published on Mon July 2, 2012 6:23 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Members of Congress have left town for the Fourth of July recess, but Washington is still reacting to the Supreme Court decision upholding President Obama's health care law. Each party is looking for ways to use the decision to its advantage in the fall campaign. Going into the weekend, a Gallup poll showed voters evenly split; 46 percent said they approved of the ruling, 46 percent disapprove.

Read more
NPR Story
4:09 am
Thu June 28, 2012

European Leaders Grapple With Saving Euro

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 11:34 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Read more
Sports
5:26 am
Tue January 3, 2012

College Football Bowl Games Cap 2011 Season

Originally published on Tue January 3, 2012 5:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

The big bowls are underway. The five games in the Bowl Championship Series stand out in the crowded college football postseason. They command the largest national television audience and pay out the most money. They also generate the most controversy, although yesterday, the first two BCS bowl games generally created nothing but thrills.

Oregon beat Wisconsin 45 to 38 in the Rose Bowl and Oklahoma State won a 41-38 nail-biter over Stanford in the Fiesta Bowl. NPR's Tom Goldman joins us with more.

Good morning, Tom.

Read more
Around the Nation
5:43 am
Mon January 2, 2012

Google Searches Are A Window Into Our Culture

Millions of people are searching for things every day on Google. The people at the giant search engine realized that if they tracked those searches, the patterns can tell us about what's happening with people's lives.

Middle East
5:06 am
Fri December 30, 2011

Egyptian Military Raids Foreign-Funded NGO Offices

Originally published on Fri December 30, 2011 7:07 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Egyptian security forces stormed the offices of 17 non-governmental organizations yesterday, including several American-based groups. Two of those, the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute, have been monitoring elections at the invitation of the Egyptian government. A third U.S.-based group, Freedom House, earlier this week, applied for official recognition.

Read more
Sports
4:26 am
Mon December 26, 2011

NBA Stars Didn't Disappoint In Season Openers

Originally published on Mon December 26, 2011 6:16 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Perhaps more than any other major professional sports league in this country, the National Basketball Association is star-driven. And yesterday, the stars did not disappoint. A Christmas slate of season-opening games featured the electric play of the league's Most Valuable Player, Derrick Rose, and the NBA's top scorer, Kevin Durant, and this guy named LeBron James as well. NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman monitored as much as he could of 13 hours of NBA action. And he joins me now.

Good morning, Tom.

Read more
Politics
10:50 am
Fri December 23, 2011

What's Behind House GOP's Payroll Tax Reversal?

Originally published on Fri December 23, 2011 11:01 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

A bitter fight in Congress is come to an end just in time for Christmas. The House and the Senate this morning, approved an extension of payroll tax cuts for every worker and benefits for the long-term unemployed. This required a major reversal for House Republicans who, earlier this week, voted to reject a nearly identical compromise.

Read more
World
8:00 am
Thu December 22, 2011

U.S. Admits To Some Mistakes In Deadly Pakistan Raid

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

The United States has admitted that NATO forces made mistakes that led to the deaths of two dozen Pakistani soldiers. The incident happened along the Afghan-Pakistan border in November. Pakistan had claimed the U.S. purposely attacked its troops and the incident contributed to a spiraling deterioration in relations between the two allies. Now, according to the Pentagon's investigation, the United States admits some responsibility for the deadly raid. In a moment we'll have the view from Pakistan.

Read more
Middle East
3:00 am
Thu December 22, 2011

Hundreds Killed In Bloody Month For Syrian Uprising

Originally published on Thu December 22, 2011 6:01 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer. In Syria, this week has been one of the bloodiest reported in months. Activists and groups monitoring Syria say hundreds have been killed as the government moves against villages and towns near the Turkish border. The Syrian government acknowledges the campaign but calls it a fight against terrorists.

Read more
Analysis
3:00 am
Mon December 19, 2011

Payroll Tax Holiday Extension Is In Jeopardy

Millions of Americans, who have benefited from a holiday in paying Social Security payroll taxes, cannot count on that being extended beyond the first of the year. House Speaker John Boehner said Sunday that the bipartisan deal worked out by the Senate to keep the tax cut going for another couple of months would not pass muster with House Republicans.

Latin America
3:00 am
Fri December 9, 2011

5 Years Later: Calderon's War On Cartels

Originally published on Fri December 9, 2011 9:35 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This Sunday marks the fifth anniversary of Mexican President Felipe Calderon declaring all-out war against the drug traffickers in his country. On December 11th of 2006, he vowed to use all the powers of the state to bring the druglords to heel. The narco-war of Calderon´s presidency has left a stunning casualty toll - more than 40,000 people dead.

NPR's Jason Beaubien joins me from Mexico City to talk about the Calderon administration's battle with the cartels. Good morning, Jason.

Read more
Europe
3:00 am
Fri December 9, 2011

23 European Countries Sign On To Fiscal Pact

After meeting Friday in Brussels until the early morning hours, most European leaders agreed to a plan to move ahead with more budget discipline. Are world financial markets likely to see the talks as a failure or as progress?

Pages