Morning Edition

Monday - Friday 6:00 am - 9:00 am

Every weekday for more than three decades, NPR's Morning Edition has taken listeners around the country and the world with multi-faceted stories and commentaries that inform challenge and occasionally amuse. Morning Edition is the most listened-to news radio program in the country. Irwin Gratz and the Maine Public Radio News team bring you regional updates throughout the morning.

State House Portrait Collection / Maine State Museum

When Maine became a state in 1820, it inherited a vast land from Massachusetts. Two hundred years ago today, three men assigned by Maine's first governor, William King, were on a special expedition.

Courtesy Cathy Rasco

COVID-19 has taken a huge toll on downtown retail and restaurant businesses all over the country. Some will not survive - and that has experts in Maine looking into the future of the state's downtowns five or 10 years down the road.

AP Images

Colby College is out with its latest poll on how Mainers plan to vote in the 2020 elections. The survey asked 847 likely voters about several issues, as well as candidate contests. including the presidential race and the battle for Maine's U.S. Senate seat.

Ed Morin / Maine Public

Several hundred people gathered Sunday evening in Portland's Monument Square for a vigil honoring late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Fred Bever / Maine Public

A landslide blocked the Presumpscot River In Westbrook River Wednesday.  And as the water rose behind it, the city declared a state of emergency, while the National Weather Service put the area on notice that flash floods could result. But so far, so good.

Courtesy Maine College of Art

It's been a turbulent year of protests and outrage over persistent issues surrounding racism. The city of South Portland this week took an uncommon step and voted to create a municipal Human Rights Commission that is thought to be the first in the state. Margaret Brownlee is diversity, equity and inclusion officer at Maine College of Art who helped shape the commission in South Portland. Brownlee talked about the initiative with Maine Public's Jennifer Mitchell.

Robbie Feinberg / Maine Public

Many young people in Maine have large gaps in their basic knowledge of the Holocaust, and more than half say they've recently seen Nazi symbols online or in their communities.

Rebecca Conley / Maine Public

Like many Maine parents, Amanda Hutter was left without a safety net when schools closed and switched to remote learning this spring. Her son is autistic and has behavioral challenges. Without access to special needs child care, Hutter was forced to leave her job in order to support him.

Courtesy RSU 29

As part of our continuing Deep Dive Coronavirus series, we're looking at how schools are preparing to re-open. To get a better sense of this we're talking this week with two school superintendents in very different parts of the state to understand similar challenges and different approaches as they tackle a complex situation.

Fred Bever / Maine Public

This week marks the start of a new academic year for most public schools in Maine. There are daunting challenges ahead for teachers, parents, administrators and a generation of children whose progress was stalled when the pandemic hit last spring.

Courtesy South Portland Schools

South Portland Schools Superintendent Ken Kunin, like many educators, got an unexpected lesson last spring in remote teaching, "It's very different when you're standing in front of your class and you can help them navigate their way through a lesson, through material," he says.

Steve Helber / Associated Press/file

The Trump administration late Tuesday announced that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control will be imposing a moratorium on evictions for Americans who are in dire financial straits due to the coronavirus pandemic. Maine Public's Morning Edition host Irwin Gratz spoke with Mike Spaulding, an attorney at Pine Tree Legal Assistance who specializes in housing issues, about how the moratorium will work, and for whom.

Gratz: Sir, welcome.

Spaulding: Thank you.

Willis Ryder Arnold / Maine Public

A number of public art works have sprung up in Portland that were created to celebrate Black life and honor those who have been killed by police officers in recent years. One of those works is Ashley Page’s “In Memory of Those Taken,” which incorporates a series of portraits. Willis Ryder Arnold spoke with Page about the role of public art in a time of cultural reckoning on the issues of race and police brutality.

Democratic National Convention / via AP

On Tuesday night, Maine state Rep. Craig Hickman cast Maine's delegate votes during the roll call at the Democratic National Convention. Rep. Hickman is African American, and - as he alluded to in his remarks - gay. And he's a small businessman, something he chose to highlight in his remarks. Rep. Hickman spoke with Maine Public's Morning Edition host Irwin Gratz.

Courtesy Gordon Weil

Sen. Kamala Harris, Joe Biden's picked for vice president, is an alum of Howard University, a school that turns out to have a tie to Maine. Here to tell us about it is Gordon Weil, a former state official and the author of "The Good Man: The Civil War's 'Christian General' and His Fight for Racial Equality." Weil spoke with Maine Public's Morning Edition host Irwin Gratz.