Politics & Government

Politics, elections, law, military and veteran's affairs

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Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz had a logistical dilemma in Iowa: how to house dozens of volunteers from across the country for a month.

The solution: a three-story unused business college dormitory in Des Moines that sleeps up to 100, also known as "Camp Cruz." The campaign is in the process of opening a second dorm to house even more volunteers.

"We had so many volunteers that wanted to come in from out of state, the idea of trying to find a way to house them in a hotel was going to be cost-prohibitive," said Bryan English, Cruz's Iowa State director.

Four years ago, the Iowa caucuses were very, very good to former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.

In a race where seemingly every Republican candidate took a turn at the head of the polls, Santorum peaked at just the right time. He won a razor-thin race in Iowa, proclaimed "game on" to a caucus-night crowd, and went on to be 2012's GOP runner-up.

Things are different this time for the 2012 caucus victor.

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An annual speech by Michigan's governor yesterday became a very public apology. Governor Rick Snyder spoke of a water contamination crisis in the city of Flint.

As the 2016 election year opens, new data shows that more Latinos will be eligible to vote than ever before. However, Hispanic political power may be sapped by the relatively young age of these potential voters and their geographic distribution.

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Sarah Palin is back in the presidential race. Today, she endorsed Republican frontrunner Donald Trump.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

The Supreme court has once again stepped into the fire of hot-button political issues. The court said Tuesday it would rule by summer on the legality of President Obama's executive action granting temporary legal status to as many as 4.5 million people who entered the U.S. illegally.

Updated at 8:30 p.m. ET

Tea Party darling Sarah Palin threw her support behind Donald Trump in a raucous speech Tuesday night, a blow to a surging Ted Cruz with less than two weeks to go until the Iowa caucuses.

Trump is "perfectly positioned to let you make America great again. Are you ready for that, Iowa?" Palin told a crowd in Ames, standing beside Trump. "No more pussyfooting around."

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After years of trying and failing to push new laws through Congress, gun control advocates are targeting American firearms makers from a different angle.

"The only thing they really understand is money," says Leah Gunn Barrett, executive director of the nonprofit New Yorkers Against Gun Violence. She's also part of a coalition called the Campaign to Unload, which encourages investors large and small to divest from owning stock in companies that make guns and ammunition.

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Ever scratch your head over political polls that seem to be looking at similar questions — say, how a candidate might do in Iowa — but predict wildly different outcomes?

Polls drive so much of the political news coverage you see and hear. Lots of politics and media reporters follow those polls and report on them — but they don't always explain where they came from, how they were conducted, or why exactly they're so important in the first place.

In January 2015, at a private conference in Palm Springs, Calif., the political network led by conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch announced plans to spend $889 million in the 2016 elections. The organization consists almost entirely of groups that don't register under the campaign finance laws and therefore don't publicly identify their donors.

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The U.S. Supreme Court tackles a case on Tuesday that can fairly be described as weird. The consequences, however, could be significant.

The Supreme Court has long held that the government cannot retaliate against its employees for exercising their First Amendment right of free speech or association. But what if the employee is mistakenly perceived as taking a political position, when in fact he was doing nothing of the sort?

President Obama says one of his biggest regrets is the growing polarization in American politics.

"I have, as president obviously, done soul-searching about what are things I could do differently to help bridge some of those divides," Obama told supporters at a town hall meeting in Baton Rouge last week. And he's not the only one worried by the deepening fault lines.

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It happens almost like clockwork, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton casts her gaze out over the crowd at her town hall style event looking for someone to call on, and then she spots cuteness.

The presidential primary has now reached the final two-week stretch before Iowans meet to caucus on Feb. 1, but Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is spending some of those precious final days making a swing through New Hampshire.

Unlike Iowa, where Cruz is neck and neck with Donald Trump, New Hampshire is a state where Trump dominates, leading the rest of the pack by nearly 20 points in recent polls.

But Cruz said he believes the campaign is entering a "different phase," where voters will take a closer look at candidates' records — particularly Trump's.

There were a few stumbles during Donald Trump's sojourn to Liberty University on Monday.

He mispronounced a book of the Bible. He cursed — twice. And on Martin Luther King Day, the GOP presidential candidate said he was honoring the slain civil-rights leader by dedicating to him the record crowds he says he drew for the school's opening convocation. (Students are required to attend.)

"We're going to protect Christianity. I can say that. I don't have to be politically correct," he thundered at the beginning of his speech at the conservative evangelical university.

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Turning 16 is considered a milestone. In many states, it means being able to drive, pay taxes and work like an adult. In Washington, D.C., 16-year-olds could soon take on another responsibility: the right to vote in a presidential election.

Michelle Blackwell is helping lead the effort to enfranchise teenagers in the nation's capital. But she's not your typical Washington politico. In D.C., the 44-year-old is better known as one of the top go-go singers around.

It might seem unusual that a 16-year-old Taiwanese pop starlet could motivate legions of youth to troop to the polls and vote for the island's opposition party candidate. But she apparently did, and thereby helped Democratic Progressive Party leader Tsai Ing-wen become Taiwan's democratically first elected female leader.

Plenty of politicos and pundits have rationalized Donald Trump's political ascent as the result of his enormous popularity among white working-class voters.

No doubt Trump is well-liked by many college-educated Republicans, but his real strength is among those without a bachelor's degree. In that demographic, most polls show the business-mogul-turned-GOP-presidential-candidate is trouncing his Republican rivals.

Hillary Clinton encountered rougher seas Sunday night in her latest meeting with her rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination. Both Sen. Bernard Sanders and former Gov. Martin O'Malley questioned her veracity and intensified their criticism of her policy positions and campaign financing.

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