Sen. Kent Conrad has chaired the Senate Budget Committee since 2006. The Democratic senator from North Dakota is retiring in January 2013, but before leaving the Senate, he is a key player in the negotiations to avoid the so-called "fiscal cliff." Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin speaks with Sen. Conrad about the challenges to achieving a budget compromise.
Theodore Roosevelt's Elkhorn Ranch in North Dakota is often called the Walden Pond of the West. But Roosevelt's ranch is now feeling the pressure of an oil boom that is industrializing the local landscape. Critics say a proposed gravel pit and a bridge could destroy the very thing that made such a lasting impression on Roosevelt: the restorative power of wilderness.
Republicans need a net pickup of four seats to win control of the U.S. Senate this November. One opportunity they see is in North Dakota, where longtime Democratic incumbent Kent Conrad has decided not to run for a sixth term.
Republican Rep. Rick Berg is expected to win the GOP nomination in next Tuesday's primary. If he does, he'll face Democrat Heidi Heitkamp.