Republican presidential candidates could face tough questions during tonight's debate, but we hope they will have created a safe space where their opinions won't be challenged. Donald Trump suggested boycotting Starbucks over its red holiday cups, breaking an earlier vow not to put boots on the ground in the War on Christmas. And Chris Coons threw his support behind Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, adding fuel to the conflagration that is speculation about a Clinton/Coons ticket. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Tuesday, November 10th, 2015:
CAN BEN CARSON HAVE IT ALL? Scott Conroy: "With 83 days until the Iowa caucuses kick off the presidential nominating contest, the state of the race for the White House on the GOP side remains as indecipherable as any in memory. Ten candidates are polling at more than 2 percent in national surveys, and no one is above 28 percent, according to the HuffPost Pollster average. To an extent far greater than it has in the first three Republican debates, the spotlight at Tuesday's main event will shine directly on Ben Carson, who has endured several days of a growing list of questions about whether he exaggerated or invented riveting stories from his past that have helped him sell books and propel him as a subject of widespread national admiration. The typically demure Carson has sought to turn into an asset the sudden scrutiny into his background by employing a familiar tactic: playing the victim to what he has characterized as an overzealous media. 'It's not particularly getting under my skin; obviously it's helping me,' Carson told reporters on Sunday after thanking the 'biased media' for helping his campaign raise $3.5 million over the controversy…. Donald Trump last week raised the specter that all of the made-for-TV moments in Carson’s biography may be a 'total fabrication,' and the former reality TV star is likely to look for opportunities to continue to press the issue of the renowned neurosurgeon's past on Tuesday." [HuffPost]
NO WHINERS - Debate moderator Neil Cavuto tells The Fix: "I understand candidates getting annoyed, but they better be careful about looking like whiners and babies."
JEB! @guypbenson: Bush folks telling reporters to expect a feisty/aggressive Jeb tonight. #GOPdebate
As always, make HuffingtonPost.com your debate headquarters tonight Undercard's at 7 p.m., main event at 9.
PRESIDENT TRUMP TO APPOINT MERRIMENT CZAR - Willa Frej: "On stage in Springfield, Illinois, the GOP presidential candidate lamented that 'Starbucks is taking Merry Christmas off' and suggested that people boycott the company. 'I have one of the most successful Starbucks, in Trump Tower,' he said. 'Maybe we should boycott Starbucks? I don't know. Seriously, I don't care. That's the end of that lease, but who cares?' 'If I become president, we're all going to be saying Merry Christmas again, that I can tell you,' he added." [HuffPost]
CUT, CUT COWER - Andrew Taylor burns: "House Speaker Paul Ryan promises a big, bold agenda and says lawmakers won't shy from difficult choices. But several recent votes demonstrate Congress' continuing penchant for small ball and timidity -- and the tendency of lawmakers to reverse course at the first tingle of political pain. A recent budget and debt deal and separate legislation to fund highway programs were laced with gimmicks masquerading as offsetting spending cuts. And, when some of the few real cuts stirred protests in farm communities and among the nation's largest banks, lawmakers quickly served notice that they would back down." [AP]
Chris Coons endorsed Hillary Clinton. THE Chris Coons, we mean.
DAVE DOWNER - Jamieson reports: "With protests underway in dozens of cities, presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) spoke to a crowd of low-wage workers outside the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, crediting them with raising the minimum wage in cities and states around the country. 'What you are doing and workers all over the United States are doing, you are having a profound impact,' Sanders said to cheers…. 'Now we’ve got to finish the job,' Sanders added. 'Fifteen bucks and a union.' The protest outside the Capitol was part of Fight for 15, the union-backed campaign in which service-sector workers are calling for a $15 minimum wage and union recognition. Many of the low-wage employees who showed up to hear Sanders speak work for federal contractors on government property, including the Capitol grounds, and are members of a union-backed group called Good Jobs Nation." [HuffPost]
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SENATE PASSES NDAA, OBAMA WILL SIGN DESPITE GITMO RESTRICTIONS - America's supermax prison wardens must be so offended by this. Jessica Schulberg: "The Senate voted 91-3 to approve the National Defense Authorization Act on Tuesday. The defense authorization bill contains legal obstacles to closing [the Guantanamo Bay prison facility], including a prohibition on using funds to transfer the prisoners to the U.S. or to build facilities to house them in the future. Because this is the president’s last year to close Guantanamo, provisions about the prison were once expected to be the center of a charged debate in Congress. But even lawmakers who support closing Guantanamo made little mention of the notorious prison facility after casting their votes...Almost immediately after Tuesday's vote, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the president would not veto the bill, which now has a veto-proof majority in both chambers of Congress." [HuffPost]
This video might help you make sense of the Mizzou mess.
The environment as a threat, and not just in the Lord of the Rings, fighting-tree kind of way: "Secretary of State John Kerry is directing a task force of government officials and experts to start including climate change and its threat on security in all foreign policy planning, he announced Tuesday. While addressing service members and students at the Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, Kerry said he wants U.S. embassies to consider climate-related events that could lead to conflicts -- such as drought, famine and extreme weather -- when working with host countries to prevent stresses on people's lives." [HuffPost's Laura Barron-Lopez]
DOJ TO CHALLENGE IMMIGRATION RULING - Elise Foley: "The Department of Justice plans to try to take the president's deportation relief programs to the Supreme Court, it announced Tuesday, one day after an appeals courtmaintained a hold on the policies moving forward. The department didn't say, however, when it would file an appeal with the Supreme Court -- and timing is critical if it wants the court to review the issue before President Barack Obama leaves office. The programs, Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents, or DAPA, and an expansion of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, would allow millions of undocumented immigrants with longstanding ties to the U.S. to remain in the country and work legally." [HuffPost]
JEB'S SUPER PAC READYING RUBIO ATTACK, JEB WON'T PARTAKE - Scott Conroy: "GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush’s super PAC may be chomping at the bit to attack Marco Rubio over his position on abortion, but in an interview with The Huffington Post, the former Florida governor demonstrated his own reluctance to go down that road. According to a New York Times report, the Bush-aligned super PAC, Right To Rise, is preparing to 'spend as much as $20 million to damage Mr. Rubio’s reputation and halt his sudden ascent in the polls.'...But when Bush was twice offered a direct opportunity to challenge Rubio’s position on abortion in an interview with HuffPost last week, he declined to do so. 'Can a Republican nominee win a general election without making [abortion] exceptions?' HuffPost asked Bush. 'I mean, you’re for exceptions.' Bush replied by focusing on his own position on the issue, noting that he was 'probably the most pro-life governor in the country,” but he declined to criticize Rubio’s view on opposing exceptions." [HuffPost]
ANYTHING FOR A VOTE - Melissa Jeltsen: "Republican presidential candidate and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie vetoed a bill on Monday that would have strengthened mechanisms for removing guns from domestic violence abusers. Under existing state law, individuals convicted of domestic violence or subject to a final restraining order are barred from possessing or buying guns. However, the law doesn’t require that offenders actually surrender the firearms they own, which makes the ban challenging to enforce. The proposed legislation would have required those prohibited from owning guns to turn them over to law enforcement or sell them within a short period of time...Christie issued a conditional veto, returning the bill to the state legislature with his suggestions. The governor's proposed changes include increasing penalties for domestic violence offenders and simplifying the process of arming domestic violence victims." [HuffPost]
@ABCPolitics: Source confirms to ABC that @RealBenCarson's Secret Service code name will be "Eli" and @realDonaldTrump's will be "Mogul." -@KFaulders
Let us pray we never see Bernie Sanders in a skintight fight kit: "Undefeated UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey is coming out swinging in support of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Rousey told Maxim in an interview published Tuesday she’s in Sanders’s corner in the 2016 presidential race because of his stance on campaign finance reform." [The Hill]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a child who loves "Star Wars."
GUY WHO RAN TARP CONTINUES TO THRIVE - Ben Walsh: "The Federal Reserve is in a bit of a rut -- it keeps hiring former Goldman Sachs executives. On Tuesday, the Minneapolis Fed named Neel Kashkari as its new president. In August, the Dallas Fed named former Goldman Sachs Vice Chairman Robert Kaplan as its president. With Kashkari's appointment, four of the Fed's 12 regional branches are run by former Goldman executives." [HuffPost]
- Create your very own font.
- Using rubber bands to destroy a watermelon.
- Julia Louis Dreyfuss swearing on the set of "Sesame Street" in the early 1990s.
@jonlovett: How is it possible that literally everyone is wrong
@emmaroller: I went to the new Warby Parker store in DC today. They had free candy and copies of @nplusonemag. It was like Millennial day care.
@woodruffbets: Ben Carson having a little fun at Politico's expense
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