US Secretary of State John Kerry (3rd L) is welcomed and escorted by US Ambasador to South Korea Sung Y. Kim (2nd L) and deputy director general of South Korea's Foriegn Ministry, Moon Seoung-hyun (2nd R), in front of a traditional honour guard (R and L) at Seoul air base on April 12, 2013. Kerry was expected to meet South Korean officials for discussion on North Korea and its expected missile launch.
April 12th, 2013
04:50 PM ET
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(CNN) – Welcome to CNN Radio News Day.
- Secretary of State John Kerry visited Seoul today to try to ease some of the tension that's been building in the Korean Peninsula. Kerry met with South Korea's president and military leaders in charge of 28,000 U.S. troops stationed in the country's capital. He said the U.S. will hold off on a number of military exercises, and is lowering its rhetoric. CNN's Anna Coren in Seoul, says Kerry's comments could be seen as an olive branch:
"He did seem to open the door for diplomacy. Basically the United States will talk to North Korea if it's serious about de-nuclearization."
- For the first time in more than 20 years, the Senate is opening debate on gun control – specifically legislation on background checks. But next week the conversation will also pivot to an issue many feel is important to keeping Americans safe in the gun discussion – mental health. Many states have been cutting mental health funding in the economic downturn. In Chicago, protestors are shining a light on consequences of cuts. Matt Ginsberg-Jaeckle recalls one woman's anguish over a clinic slated to close:
"She told the mayor to his face, if you close my clinic, I will die. And within a month of him closing the clinic, she was dead.”
- The Affordable Care Act doesn't officially start reforming health care until January 1, 2014. But some states with unique challenges, like California, are already trying to educate residents about issues that might arise. Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, says all of this is too big for people to wait until the last minute:
“It's the biggest overhaul of health care since we launched Medicare 50 years ago. A total game-changer for health insurance in America...and California.”
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