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3:55 PM ET, September 15, 2015


 Top Items: 
CBS News:
New poll: Donald Trump still leads, but Ben Carson makes strong gains  —  Shares -  —  At 27 percent nationally, Donald Trump maintains his frontrunner status among Republican primary voters, but Ben Carson is now close behind him, a new CBS News/New York Times poll finds.
Mark Halperin / Bloomberg Business:
Can Donald Trump Be Stopped?  —  Like almost everyone I know who is working on, covering, or closely following the presidential election, I spend about 60 percent of my waking hours talking about Donald Trump.  People want to know if he can win, if he will win, and what might possibly derail his candidacy.
First Draft / New York Times:
Today in Politics: In New Poll, Ben Carson Pulls Up Alongside an Idling Donald Trump  —  Good Tuesday morning.  The day before the second Republican debate, campaigns are honing their strategies, Twitter is looking at donations, and polls are rearranging the numbers and the leader board.
Ed Kilgore / Washington Monthly:
Halperin Gets His Thug On  —  I guess this is Trump Panic Day (or perhaps week, depending on what happens in Wednesday's GOP candidate debate), and the best sign of that is not so much the reports of angst on Wall Street as the reaction of everybody's favorite Insider Journalist …
Tom Kludt / CNNMoney:
Conservative pundit Bill Kristol: If Trump wins, I'd support a third-party choice  —  Donald Trump has signed a pledge to support the Republican Party's presidential nominee — even if it isn't him.  But one of the best-known pundits in conservative media isn't making the same promise.
Summer Fields / ABC News:
The Note: A Clash Over Trump
Discussion: and American Spectator
Eric Bradner / CNN:
Latinos see Trump as hurting GOP brand
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Daily Kos
Kevin Cirilli / The Hill:
Trump: 'I'm not going anywhere'
Discussion: TIME, Politico and Washington Post
Laura Meckler / Wall Street Journal:
Price Tag of Bernie Sanders's Proposals: $18 Trillion  —  Democratic presidential candidate's agenda would greatly expand government  —  WASHINGTON—Sen. Bernie Sanders, whose liberal call to action has propelled his long-shot presidential campaign, is proposing an array of new programs …
Annie Karni / Politico:
How Hillary Clinton is using old photographs to make herself more ‘relatable’  —  In a bid to burnish her image with voters, the Clinton campaign is flooding the Internet with nostalgic pictures of the Democratic front-runner.  —  Splashed across social media and the airwaves, the photos are hard to miss.
Nate Cohn / New York Times:
Signs of Hillary Clinton's Troubles, in Charts  —  pts.  —  Source: The Huffington Post Pollster, Charles Franklin  —  Hillary Rodham Clinton was inevitably going to lose some of her aura once she started campaigning.  The high favorability ratings she earned as Secretary of State simply weren't sustainable.
Discussion: Political Wire
Libby Nelson / Vox:
POLICY & POLITICS  —  DES MOINES, Iowa — People concerned about liberal political correctness on college campuses have a powerful ally: President Obama.  —  At a town hall here on college affordability on Monday afternoon, one student asked Obama to respond to Republican presidential …
Jesse Byrnes / The Hill:
Obama hits ‘coddled’ liberal college students  —  President Obama is weighing in on the discussion over political dialogue on college campuses, saying students shouldn't be “coddled” from opposing views.  —  “It's not just sometimes folks who are mad that colleges are too liberal that have a problem.
Walter Russell Mead / The American Interest:
Fecklessness 101  —  Apparently the Obama administration turned down a Russian offer to dump Assad... because the Administration was sure he was going to fall on his own.  The Guardian reports: … If true, this was a staggering missed opportunity.  The President's string of misjudgments …
Discussion: Power Line and Guardian
Bastien Inzaurralde / Guardian:
West 'ignored Russian offer in 2012 to have Syria's Assad step aside'
Discussion: Hot Air and War in Context
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Florida Down on Bush, Rubio Campaigns  —  PPP's new Florida poll finds that a plurality of voters in the state think that both Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio should drop out.  —  Only 40% of voters in the state think Bush should keep running, compared to 47% who think he should drop out.
Discussion: Orlando Sentinel, Hot Air and Daily Kos
Federal Data: U.S. Annually Admits Quarter Of A Million Muslim Migrants  —  A Breitbart News review of State Department and Homeland Security data reveals that the United States already admits more than a quarter of a million Muslim migrants each year.  President Obama intends to add another 10,000 Syrian migrants on top of that.
Clemens Wergin / New York Times:
Germany's Real Refugee Crisis
Discussion: Guardian
Washington Post:
Post-ABC poll: Most say Kim Davis should issue marriage licenses to gay couples  —  Sixty-three percent of Americans say Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis should be required to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples regardless of her religious objections, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll.
Discussion: Daily Kos and Towleroad
Todd S. Purdum / Politico:
Donald Trump's Grand Inquisitor  —  Hugh Hewitt drew Trump's ire with a smart question.  On Wednesday night, the conservative talk radio host will be ready for round 2.  —  Getty  —  When the motor-mouthed mogul next takes the stage with the ten nearest rivals who have failed for months to trip him up …
Discussion: Hot Air
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Obama won't watch second GOP debate  —  President Obama will follow news coverage of the second Republican presidential primary debate on Wednesday night, but he won't be tuning in.  —  “He has better things to do,” press secretary Josh Earnest said when asked why Obama is skipping the debate, which will air on CNN.
Discussion: Political Wire
Kate Briquelet / The Daily Beast:
Alabama Official: God Told Me to Ban Saggy Pants  —  God may also ban short skirts and skimpy dresses in the Alabama town of Dadeville.  —  He thought about it, prayed about it, and now an Alabama councilman is close to ending one local evil that's plagued him for years: saggy pants.
David Vitter / New Orleans Times-Picayune:
David Vitter responds to question about prostitution scandal  —  U.S. Sen. David Vitter was forced to respond to question about his 2007 prostitution scandal Monday night (Sept. 14).  (Photo by Brianna Paciorka, |  The Times-Picayune) (Brianna Paciorka)
Discussion: The Hayride
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 More Items: 
Justin Wm / Washington Post:
Having sex with robots is really, really bad, Campaign Against Sex Robots says
Bremerton football coach investigated for post-game prayers
Discussion: Raw Story and Fox News Insider
The Huffington Post:
Ashley Parker / New York Times:
CNN Hopes to Capture Candidates' Combative Spirit in G.O.P. Debate
Caroline Fredrickson / The Atlantic:
There Is No Excuse for How Universities Treat Adjuncts
Discussion: ACS Blog
 Earlier Items: 
Luqman Adeniyi / The Texas Tribune:
Nationalist Group Wants TX Secession on Primary Ballot
Kim Holland / KRQE-TV:
Court-ordered religious classes raise concerns
Discussion: Friendly Atheist and Raw Story
Sean McElwee / The Atlantic:
Why Non-Voters Matter
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Labour's Dead Center
Discussion: Eschaton