The Congressional supercommittee, charged with coming up with a plan to cut the national deficit, had been invested with handling so many unrelated tasks that its failure last week has left Congress with a sizeable workload in its remaining weeks this year. Among them: possible extensions of the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits, and a continuation of the entire federal budget. NPR congressional correspondent David Welna joins us to set the stage for December.
A group of human rights activists in Mexico has asked the International Criminal Court in The Hague to investigate President Felipe Calderon in connection with the deadly war on drug cartels. The complaint, spearheaded by human rights lawyer Netzai Sandoval, claims war crimes have occurred. The complaint was filed a day after two dozen bodies were found dumped in Guadalajara. NPR's Jason Beaubien has more.
The spillover effects of Mexico's drug war are taking a grim toll in Central America. The region has the highest homicide rate in the world, according to a new U.N. report, as traffickers move more and more U.S.-bound cocaine through Central America's struggling and weak states.
Nick Miroff has this story from Honduras, with support from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.
NICK MIROFF, BYLINE: Operation Lightning is Honduras's response to the murder problem.