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5:40 PM ET, May 13, 2015


 Top Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Excessive Speed Probed in Amtrak Train Crash in Philadelphia  —  At least 7 people dead after train heading from Washington to New York derails  —  PHILADELPHIA—An Amtrak train involved in a fatal crash here appears to have been traveling at more than 100 miles an hour as it entered …
Kathryn A. Wolfe / Politico:
House panel votes to cut Amtrak budget hours after deadly crash  —  “Starving rail of funding will not enable safer train travel,” Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) said.  —  House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers said the cuts are needed to stay in line with the caps imposed …
Discussion: Big Think, Booman Tribune and The Week
New York Times:
Amtrak Train That Derailed Was Going 100 M.P.H., Officials Say; 7 Killed  —  PHILADELPHIA — The Amtrak train that derailed in Philadelphia on Tuesday night, killing at least seven people, was traveling at a speed of at least 100 miles an hour, twice the speed limit on that stretch of track …
Paul Nussbaum /
Sources: Train reportedly speeding; engineer mum  —  Investigators of Tuesday's deadly Amtrak derailment say they are focusing on reports that the train was traveling more than twice the 50-mile-an-hour speed limit when it entered a sharp curve in Frankford.
Mark Hensch / The Hill:
Report: Derailed Amtrak train was traveling at more than 100 mph
Discussion: Wall Street Journal
Associated Press:
The latest on Amtrak crash: Associated Press staffer killed
‘Absolute disastrous mess’: 6 dead, 146 injured after Amtrak train derails
Michael C Bender / Bloomberg Business:
Jeb Bush: Iraq Questioning Is Disservice to Slain Soldiers  —  Likely Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush said Wednesday that questioning about how he would have handled Iraq War authorization “does a disservice” to military service members killed in action.
Darrel Rowland / The Columbus Dispatch:
Gov. John Kasich says U.S. shouldn't have attacked Iraq  —  ' class="> Enlarge Image  —  Dealing with a question that tripped up Jeb Bush, Ohio Gov. John Kasich says that the U.S. never should have gone to Iraq, knowing what we know now.  —  “There's a lot of people who lost limbs and lives over there …
Quin Hillyer / National Review:
Yes, I Would Have Ousted Saddam from Power
Discussion: Weekly Standard and Hot Air
Marc Caputo / Politico:   Why Jeb Can't Ditch Dubya
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Walker Still Leads Nationally, Clinton Over 60%  —  PPP's national Republican poll for May continues to find Scott Walker leading the field, but it's tightly clustered and his support has actually dropped two consecutive surveys now.  —  Walker's at 18% to 13% for Marco Rubio …
Discussion: Daily Kos and Political Wire
Chris Moody / CNN:
Being Moody: This question stumps Republicans  —  Being Moody: Who's the greatest living president?  —  Greenville, South Carolina (CNN)It's a simple question, but one that stops Republican presidential hopefuls in their tracks: Who do you think is the greatest president alive today?
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
G.O.P. Seeks Strategy for Debates Amid Expanding Candidate List  —  WASHINGTON — Republican leaders, searching for a fair-minded but strategically wise way to conduct the presidential primary debates, are grappling with how to manage White House contenders in a sprawling field …
Jason Hancock / Kansas City Star:
Text images between Missouri House Speaker John Diehl and intern reveal sexually charged exchanges  —  Screenshots of text messages obtained by The Star  —  ›  —  ‹  —  Text messages obtained by The Star reveal a sexually charged relationship between House Speaker John Diehl …
Sarah Buynovsky / WNEP-TV:
Student Suing Misericordia University Officials After Failing to Pass Course … DALLAS TOWNSHIP — A nursing student is suing some Misericordia University officials after she failed to pass a course twice.  —  Jennifer Burbella of Stroudsburg said school officials failed to abide by federal law.
Discussion: WQAD-TV
Annie Karni / Politico:
Martin O'Malley to top progressives: Warren's not running, I am  —  Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley has a message for progressives clamoring for Sen. Elizabeth Warren's entry into the presidential race: she's not running, but I am.  —  As part of an effort to position himself …
Discussion: Political Wire
Nick Gass / Politico:
White House on Sherrod Brown: 'He'll find a way to apologize'  —  The White House responded Wednesday to Sen. Sherrod Brown's criticism of President Barack Obama's treatment of fellow Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren.  —  White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Brown is “a stand-up guy.”
Manu Raju / Politico:
Scenes from the Democratic meltdown
Washington Post:
10 members of Congress took trip secretly funded by foreign government  —  The state-owned oil company of Azerbaijan secretly funded an all-expenses-paid trip to a conference at Baku on the Caspian Sea in 2013 for 10 members of Congress and 32 staff members, according to a confidential ethics report obtained by The Washington Post.
Wall Street Journal:
China Lashes Out Over U.S. Plan on South China Sea  —  Pentagon proposal to use aircraft and Navy vessels in region prompts swift response: ‘We are severely concerned’  —  Beijing condemned on Wednesday a proposed U.S. military plan to send aircraft and Navy ships near disputed South China Sea islands …
Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Military Proposes Challenge to China Sea Claims
Marco Rubio / Medium:
The Rubio Doctrine  —  Strength, globalization and core values should guide American foreign policy  —  I'd like to begin my remarks today by quoting from the closing of another set of remarks—from a speech that echoes across history due to its proximity to tragedy, but that stands more importantly …
Adam C. Smith / Tampa Bay Times:
Potty-mouthed Alan Grayson and his offshore investments  —  U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, the outspoken, populist Democrat who thunders against Wall Street fat cats,and used to to joke about Mitt Romney's low tax bill, incorporated a couple hedge funds in the Cayman Islands so investors could avoid taxes.
Discussion: Mediaite
Catherine Thompson / Talking Points Memo:
Oath Keepers Founder: Traitor McCain Should Be ‘Hung By The Neck Until Dead’  —  The founder of the Oath Keepers, a loose-knit group of current and former law enforcement officials and military who pledge to defend the Constitution, called for Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) to be “hung by the neck until dead” …
Robert Draper / New York Times:
The Great Democratic Crack-Up of 2016 … Maryland might seem a peculiar venue for a blood feud over the future of the Democratic Party.  It is the second-bluest state in the United States, after Massachusetts, according to Gallup; its registered Democrats, more than 30 percent of whom are black …
Justin Pidot / Slate:
Wyoming just criminalized citizen science.  —  Imagine visiting Yellowstone this summer.  You wake up before dawn to take a picture of the sunrise over the mists emanating from Yellowstone hot springs.  A thunderhead towers above the rising sun, and the picture turns out beautifully.
Facebook Media:
Introducing Instant Articles  —  As more people get their news on mobile devices, we want to make the experience faster and richer on Facebook.  People share a lot of articles on Facebook, particularly on our mobile app.  To date, however, these stories take an average of eight seconds to load …
New York Times:
Let Our Cities Move  —  EVERY day, millions of Americans rely on a remarkable network of roads, bridges, subways, trains and buses to connect us to work, school and opportunity.  But our transportation system, once the envy of the world, is in jeopardy.  —  In New York City …
Discussion: Liberaland
Samantha Audia / The College Fix:
College students told to report ‘hurtful statements’ to campus authorities  —  If someone says anything mean-spirited at the University of Colorado Boulder - campus administrators want to know about it.  Not only that - they want to know the offender's name, age, email address and more.
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 More Items: 
Kara Swisher / Re/code:
Google Comms and Policy Head Whetstone Takes Over That Job at Uber
Victor Davis Hanson / National Review:
The First — and a Half — Amendment  —  Free speech and artistic …
Josh Rogin / Bloomberg View:
U.S. Says Assad Caught With Sarin. Again.
Rob Quinn / USA Today:
USA about to get Cuba's lung cancer vaccine
Discussion: Big Think and ThinkProgress
Liza Mundy / Politico:
The Secret History of Women in the Senate
 Earlier Items: 
Erin Murphy / KCRG-TV:
Iowa landowner claims he was offered prostitute by oil pipeline company rep
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Raw Story
Andrew Dugan / Gallup:
Five Months Into GOP Congress, Approval Remains Low at 19%
Will Leitch / Bloomberg Business:
Two Former Leaders of the Free World Sitting Around Chatting
Andrew Tilghman / Marine Corps Times:
Missing U.S. helicopter carrying Marines reportedly spotted in Nepal
Michael Crowley / Politico:
John Kerry and John McCain: Once friends, now foes