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11:00 PM ET, February 19, 2016


 Top Items: 
Gideon Resnick / The Daily Beast:
Cruz, Carson Held Secret Meeting About Dirty Tricks in a Closet  —  Ted Cruz called a private meeting with the former neurosurgeon in South Carolina on Thursday night, the Carson campaign told The Daily Beast.  It did not go as planned.  —  Two grown men running for president met in a storage closet last night.
Henry Olsen / National Review:
I Don't Believe The Latest SC Polls - Here's Why  —  Two polls, one from Clemson University and the other from Opinion Savvy, have been released since I wrote my blog post on SC.  Both have Trump in the high 20s, suggesting tomorrow night will be closer than I predicted.  Here's why I discount each poll.
Discussion: The Right Scoop
MA Towery / Opinion Savvy:
Rubio Surges in South Carolina ahead of Saturday's Primary  —  We conducted our final poll for the South Carolina Republican presidential primary on February 18th and 19th, and the results show a sizable surge for the Rubio campaign, placing him within 3 points of Donald Trump.  —  The horse race:
Mark Murray / NBC News:
Donald Trump's Lead Slashed in South Carolina: Poll  —  Donald Trump is now leading Saturday's South Carolina Republican primary by 5 points — down from his 16-point lead in the state a month ago, according to results from a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll.
Marc Caputo / Politico:
Bush staff float resumes with Florida consultants  —  Several Jeb Bush campaign workers are already shopping their résumés with Florida political consultants as expectations mount inside his team that their candidate won't push on after South Carolina.
Katherine Krueger / Talking Points Memo:
Cruz, Carson Reportedly Had Secret Meeting In A Closet: 'It Didn't Go Well'
Steven Shepard / Politico:
Insiders predict Trump win in South Carolina, Clinton in Nevada
Discussion: Politicus USA
New York Times:
Republicans Speed Across South Carolina as Race Tightens
Katie Glueck / Politico:
Mark Sanford endorses Ted Cruz
Benjy Sarlin / MSNBC:
Trump hails torture, mass killings with ‘pigs blood’ ammo in SC  —  North Charleston, SC - Donald Trump closed his South Carolina campaign on Friday with a rambling speech highlighted by a giddy, almost childlike, enthusiasm for torturing and summarily executing the suspected enemies of America in the name of safety.
Theodore Schleifer / CNN:
Ted Cruz worry: Big South Carolina loss equals bad Super Tuesday  —  (CNN)What if the firewall crumbles?  —  That's the worry of a growing number of people close to Ted Cruz's campaign, who are privately beginning to fear that a big loss in South Carolina to Donald Trump on Saturday …
Marist Poll:
2/19: Trump in Close Race in South Carolina... Clinton with Wide Lead
Discussion: Politico, Fox News and Washington Post
Molly Ball / The Atlantic:
The Great Republican Stalemate
Discussion: CBS News, ThinkProgress and ABC News
Gary Legum / Salon:
Ted Cruz declares war on gluten-free meals (because we are living through the dumbest election in history)
Allegra Kirkland / Talking Points Memo:
Pro-Cruz Robocall Knocks Trump On ‘Our’ Confederate Flag In South Carolina
Discussion: The Bob and Chez Show
Sara Sjolin / MarketWatch:
Apple's iPhone sales fall for the first time, says Gartner
New York Times:
Justice Department Calls Apple's Refusal to Unlock iPhone ‘Marketing Strategy’
Connor Sheets /
Harper Lee dead at age of 89: ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ author passes away  —  Nelle Harper Lee, who won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1961 for her book, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” has died at the age of 89, multiple sources in her hometown of Monroeville, including the mayor's office, confirmed Friday morning.
Ed Pilkington / Guardian:
Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird author, dies aged 89
Discussion: American Spectator
Daniel Strauss / Politico:
Harry Reid accuses Republicans of ‘trickery and gimmicks’ in Nevada caucuses  —  Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) accused members of the Republican Party of resorting to “trickery and gimmicks” to spoil his state's Democratic caucuses.  —  “These Republican plans to interfere …
Harper Neidig / The Hill:
Nevada Dems threaten to prosecute people who vote in both caucuses
Discussion: Politicus USA and Joe.My.God.
Hillary Clinton just can't win: Democrats need to accept that only Bernie Sanders can defeat the GOP  —  Bernie Sanders will become our next president and it should come as no surprise to people actually paying attention  —  In one major poll, Bernie Sanders is now leading Hillary Clinton nationally.
Dolores Huerta:
On Immigration, Bernie Sanders is Not Who He Says He Is.
Daily Mail:
Hillary Clinton gets BOOED at MSNBC town hall when she says Bernie Sanders 'wasn't really a …
Discussion: TPNN
Nico Hines / The Daily Beast:
Bernie Sanders's Brother: He Backs ‘Class Warfare,’ Bill Clinton Was Worse Than Bush  —  Larry Sanders says Bernie is a ‘genuine socialist’ trying to save the Democratic Party from ‘dreadful’ Bill Clinton, who is either a ‘terrible rapist or a nice rapist’ to the media.
Jesse Byrnes / The Hill:
Bernie's brother: Media can't decide if Clinton is ‘terrible rapist’ or ‘nice rapist’
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Liam Stack / New York Times:
In Defense of Trump, Some Point (Wrongly) to Vatican Walls  —  Supporters of Donald J. Trump were quick to suggest on Thursday that Pope Francis was being hypocritical to criticize as un-Christian Mr. Trump's proposal to build a wall between the United States and Mexico because the pontiff himself lives …
Andrew Kaczynski / BuzzFeed:
Trump One Day Into Iraq Invasion: “It Looks Like A Tremendous Success”  —  And the stock market would continue to soar as a result, Trump said.  —  —  Donald Trump, faced with his own words from 2002 that directly contradict his claim he opposed an Iraq invasion early on …
Jesse Walker / Hit & Run:
The Southern Poverty Law Center Strikes Again  —  The Southern Poverty Law Center has published its annual report on “The Year in Hate and Extremism,” which as always includes its attempt to tally how many hate groups and how many anti-government “Patriot” groups exist in America.
Joanne Kaufman / New York Times:
My Parents, My Landlords  —  Enter neighborhood, city, zip or address  —  When Jessica Sanderoff graduated from college a decade ago and began searching for Manhattan apartments in her price range, she saw many things.  Fourth-floor walk-ups and fifth-floor walk-ups.
Discussion: Gothamist
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 More Items: 
Kevin Rawlinson / Guardian:
Italian author Umberto Eco dies aged 84
Richard Fausset / New York Times:
North Carolina Fights Over Its Election Rules
Courtney Couillard / Columbia Daily Spectator:
Columbia should pay for my period
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Dana Hull / Bloomberg Business:
Musk Gets Domain Name After Waiting a Decade
Peter Stone / The Huffington Post:
The Kochs Are Plotting A Multimillion-Dollar Assault On Electric Vehicles
Discussion: Daily Kos and Washington Post
Baltimore Sun:
State's highest court intervenes in Freddie Gray case, halting trials pending review
 Earlier Items: 
Len Burman / TaxVox:
The GOP Proposed Tax Cuts Would be Unprecedented
Donald Trump / Yahoo Politics:
Trump is accused of financially threatening woman during secret deposition
Discussion: Washington …
Lachlan Markay / Washington Free Beacon:
Katy Perry Cashes in on Clinton Support
Discussion: The Week
David Brooks / New York Times:
A Little Reality on Immigration
Tierney Sneed / Talking Points Memo:
GOP Sen. Murkowski Backtracks On Giving Obama's SCOTUS Nom A Hearing