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5:05 PM ET, December 13, 2015


 Top Items: 
Eugene Scott / CNN:
Stage set for final GOP debate of 2015  —  Watch CNN's coverage of the fifth Republican presidential debate live from Las Vegas on Tuesday, December 15.  Coverage begins at 6 p.m. ET.  —  Washington (CNN)Nine candidates will appear in prime-time Tuesday night for the final Republican …
Dana Blanton / Fox News:
Fox News Poll: Cruz, Trump ahead in Iowa, Clinton holds caucus lead  —  Ted Cruz and Donald Trump are the top two candidates Iowa Republican caucus-goers say are the most qualified to handle the top two issues facing the country — the economy and national security.
Elliot Smilowitz / The Hill:
Rand Paul may end campaign if he misses debate cut  —  Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Saturday indicated he may end his White House bid if he does not end up in the main stage of CNN's GOP presidential debate on Tuesday.  —  “We will make an announcement, on that, on Tuesday,” …
Daniel Strauss / Politico:
Rand Paul remains on main debate stage
Discussion: Hot Air, CNN and The Right Scoop
Mark Murray / NBC News:
Trump Leads National GOP Horserace, Cruz Surges Into 2nd Place
‘Debate is very important,’ Paul says
David Edwards / Raw Story:
Donald Trump: Hillary ‘killed hundreds of thousands of people with her stupidity’  —  DON'T MISS STORIES.  FOLLOW RAW STORY!  —  Republican presidential Donald Trump asserted on Sunday that Democratic hopeful Hillary Clinton had killed “hundreds of thousands of people with her stupidity.”
Discussion: and
Kevin Robillard / Politico:
Trump attacks Cruz: ‘A little bit of a maniac’  —  GOP front-runner Donald Trump attacked Texas Sen. Ted Cruz as unqualified to be president, arguing his fellow conservative insurgent has been too intransigent to get things done.  —  “I don't think he's qualified to be president,” …
Bradford Richardson / The Hill:   Trump expecting shots from Cruz
Playing with fear  —  In America and Europe, right-wing populist politicians are on the march.  The threat is real  —  From the print edition  —  POPULISTS have a new grievance.  For many years, on both sides of the Atlantic, they have thrived on the belief that a selfish elite cannot …
Discussion: Instapundit
Nicholas Kristof / New York Times:
How Well Do You Know Religion?  —  Donald Trump's proposal …
Discussion: JustOneMinute
Matthew Yglesias / Vox:
A top Democratic opposition research group says it won't go after Marco Rubio — but why?  —  After an early career as a conservative operative dedicated to bringing down Bill Clinton, David Brock has emerged as one of the top guys in the world of Democratic-aligned fundraising, messaging, and opposition research.
Gabriel Debenedetti / Politico:
Podesta to donors: Cruz is likely GOP nominee
Discussion: PoliticusUSA and The Right Scoop
Tom Maguire / JustOneMinute:
NY Times Editors Continue War on Reality  —  The Times editors - yes, the folks who recently linked to an Onion wanna-be for factual support - continue their editorializing on guns, and the issue is far too important to let tedious facts get in their way:  —  Despair Over Gun Deaths Is Not an Option
New York Times:   Despair Over Gun Deaths Is Not an Option
Free Thought Project / Raw Story:
Missouri police chief resigns after caging family's lost puppy at a gun range and shooting it  —  DON'T MISS STORIES.  FOLLOW RAW STORY!  —  Police Chief Andrew Spencer resigned this week after it was revealed that he shot and killed an innocent dog that was in a cage and meant no one any harm.
Kristen Taketa / Crime Blog:
UNT police officer fatally shoots ax-wielding student near campus  —  The University of North Texas says Texas Rangers will help investigate an officer-involved shooting that left a man dead just off campus.  The body of the man who was shot has been obscured in this photograph from Bink Ruckthongsook.
Discussion: Associated Press
Judd Legum / ThinkProgress:
Rubio Outlines Plan To End Marriage Equality  —  In the landmark case of Obergefell v. Hodges, the Supreme Court found that same-sex marriage is a Constitutional right protected by the 14th Amendment.  —  Sunday on NBC's Meet The Press, Marco Rubio pledged, as President, to change that.
Scott Greer / The Daily Caller:
Law Professors: Trump's Muslim Moratorium Is Constitutional
James Fallows / The Atlantic:
Obama: Chessmaster, not Pawn … Four years ago at this time, I was in the middle of writing what became a cover story with the (immodest) title “Obama, Explained.”  In it, I examined whether the slow, understated, long-game approach of a one-term president about to run for re-election …
Bradford Richardson / The Hill:
Bridgegate racks up $8 million in legal fees  —  The law firm Gibson Dunn has billed New Jersey roughly $8 million since it was hired to defend Gov. Chris Christie (R) for the “Bridgegate” scandal, according to the Associated Press.  —  Christie, a Republican presidential candidate …
Joby Warrick / Washington Post:
196 countries approve historic climate agreement  —  BREAKING NEWS: Negotiators from 196 countries approved a landmark climate accord on Saturday that seeks to dramatically reduce emissions of the greenhouse gases blamed for a dangerous warming of the planet.
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 More Items: 
Kevin Robillard / Politico:
John Kerry: Climate deal is a ‘signal’
Kipp Jones / Breitbart:
Michael Moore Recruits Facebook Followers to Report Trump for ‘Hate Speech’
Bradford Richardson / The Hill:
Carson doubles down on threat to leave the GOP
New York Times:
Influential Southeast Asia Scholar Benedict Anderson Dies
Paul Sperry / New York Post:
They're ‘so nice,’ until they get religion and want to kill us
Chris Bodenner / The Atlantic:
‘Freedom of Speech Includes the Freedom to Hate’
 Earlier Items: 
Steven Mufson / Washington Post:
Paris accord is a big win for Obama, even as climate dangers still loom
Discussion: New York Times and Prairie Weather
Al Gore / The Huffington Post:
Speaking with One Voice to Solve the Climate Crisis
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Beth Brelje / Pocono Record:
Police shoot and kill armed man in East Stroudsburg Walmart
Discussion: ABC News
John Kass / Chicago Tribune:
Rahm Emanuel has lost his grip on the city and won't be reclaiming it
Christopher Helman / Forbes:
What Oil Bust? Texas Billionaire Gives Each Worker A $100,000 Bonus