POLITICS

HUFFPOST HILL - Candidate Strong, Like Bull

It was so warm this weekend we half expected an ethically murky water gun fight to break out between Joe Biden and members of the press. According to his doctor, the only thing that isn’t YUUUGGGEE about Donald Trump is his prostate. And President Obama seems intent on constantly reminding us that he’s concerned about our safety -- it’s unclear when he replaced his speechwriting staff with the transcript of a Life Alert commercial. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, December 14th, 2015:

PROGRESS MADE ON OMNIBUS - Mike Lillis and Scott Wong: "The talks remain notably fluid -- and remarkably secretive -- as the clock ticks down toward the extended deadline for federal funding, which expires at the end of Wednesday...Ryan has pledged he’ll abide by the GOP’s three-day rule to give lawmakers enough time to read the massive bill. That means if the bill isn’t introduced until Tuesday, the House will be delayed to Thursday, forcing Congress to pass yet another short-term funding extension…Pelosi and the Democrats appear ready to accept a major policy change by allowing an end to the current ban on crude oil exports -- a reform long sought by the petroleum industry and Republicans on Capitol Hill. But the Democrats’ compromise won’t come without significant concessions from across the aisle, and the prolonged stalemate appears largely rooted in the fight over what the Democrats can win in return for the oil export provision." [The Hill]

David Remnick has a sweeping story on John Kerry.

TRUMP HAS THE CLASSIEST, CLASSIEST SPLEEN - Possibly the worst publicly disseminated medical document since Dr. Zizmor's subway ads. Jeremy Diamond: "Donald Trump on Monday released a letter from his physician stating that the 69-year-old Republican presidential candidate's latest medical examination 'showed only positive results.' Trump's physician of 25 years, Dr. Harold Bornstein, said Trump 'has had no significant medical problems' and called the candidate's blood pressure and lab results 'astonishingly excellent' in a signed statement Trump released publicly on Monday. 'If elected, Mr. Trump, I can state unequivocally, will be the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency,' Bornstein, an internal medicine and gastroenterology specialist who works at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, wrote in the letter dated December 4." [CNN]

According to Jeb Bush's past predictions, Donald Trump's campaign will end at midnight tonight.

LATEST GAFFES SHOCKINGLY MAKE TRUMP MORE POPULAR - Fully 41 percent of Republican voters support Trump, according to the latest Monmouth University poll. The poll marks Trump's highest level of support in the Monmouth survey and none of the other candidates are even close. The HuffPost Pollster average has Trump at 36.5 percent, with Ted Cruz nipping his heels at … 14.7 percent.

THIRD ANNIVERSARY OF SANDY HOOK SLAUGHTER - Sam Stein spoke to Dan Malloy: "Quite frankly, a lot of my memories are of the parents who I had to tell or the spouses I had to tell, who weren't going to be reunited that day. I can tell you that, to this day, that weighs heavy having to have been the person who did that. I think about Sandy Hook every single day frankly. I wear a couple wristbands: one commemorating the tragic event itself and one marking up the final funeral that I attended, a little girl who died." [HuffPost]

Here's a list of gun laws passed since Sandy Hook.

Haircuts: Seth D. Michaels (h/t Seth D. Michaels), Adele (h/t internet)

DELANEY DOWNER - Paul LePage has struck on a clever way to keep the food stamp rolls down -- the trick is to not let people have food stamps. David Farmer reports: "The Maine Department of Health and Human Services is violating federal law and now ranks last among all states for its administration of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps. A sharply worded, Dec. 7 letter from the U.S. Department of Agriculture put DHHS on notice. 'The State’s chronically poor performance in timeliness is in direct conflict with the application processing statutory and regulatory provisions meant to protect low-income household’s right to receive nutrition assistance benefits in a timely manner,' wrote Ken Messner, the acting regional administrator for the USDA’s northeast region." [Bangor Daily News]

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PRESIDENT DELIVERS POINTLESS PUBLIC ADDRESS - At what point does he just start calling each of us individually and allowing for awkward pauses after hellos are exchanged? Josh Lederman: "President Barack Obama on Monday said the U.S.-led coalition is making progress against Islamic State militants in both Iraq and Syria, as he delivered an update on the campaign aimed at reassuring Americans worried about the spread of extremism-fuel terrorism. 'We are hitting ISIL harder than ever,' Obama said, using the shorthand for the Islamic State group. Obama said airstrikes had increased and the coalition had successfully knocked out key figures in the group's leadership 'one by one.' 'The point is, ISIL leaders cannot hide and our next message to them is simple: 'You are next.'' Obama said. The tough talk came after Obama met with this top national security advisers at the Pentagon." [AP]

CORKER DISCOVERS MILLIONS OF DOLLARS BENEATH COUCH CUSHION - Homie needs to stop having his capital gains sent to his Venmo account. Brody Mullins: "Sen. Bob Corker failed to properly disclose millions of dollars in income from real estate, hedge funds and other investments since entering the Senate in 2007, according to new financial reports filed by the Tennessee Republican. Mr. Corker late Friday filed a series of amendments showing that his personal financial reports as originally filed included dozens of errors and omissions. The new filings came after The Wall Street Journal asked the senator’s office about some irregularities in his prior financial reports..The new forms show that Mr. Corker had failed to properly disclose at least $2 million in income from investments in three small hedge funds based in his home state. He also didn’t properly report millions of dollars in income from commercial real-estate investments due to an accounting error. And he didn’t disclose millions of dollars in other assets and income from other financial transactions." [WSJ]

@Google_Kugle20: Happy Star Wars Week!

LINDSEY GRAHAM IMPRESSED BY JON STEWART'S LOBBYING SKILLS - Scott Conroy caught up with Graham in New Hampshire: "I think Jon, in taking on this cause as his cause with his visibility and profile -- and, quite frankly, his sincerity -- made a big difference,” Graham said. “He became the face and the voice of this cause, and he did it in a really nonpartisan manner. He was forceful, but he wanted to get a result. And I think his tenacity, along with those in the 9/11 community, won the day. I don’t know if it would’ve happened without him.” [HuffPost]

POLIS CLEARED BY ETHICS COMMITTEE - But was found guilty on five counts of excessive geekery. Matthew Fleming: "The House Ethics Committee on Monday announced it will not look further into allegations that Rep. Jared Polis used official resources to promote two businesses. In 2015, Riot Games, the maker of an online video game 'League of Legends' that Polis has played for years, contacted the Colorado Democrat to appear in a video promoting the game as part of a series of 'human interest' stories to 'capture and share more positive, human stories of fun, talented, competitive and responsible individuals who also just happen to be part of our player base,' according to the Ethics Committee release. Some of the video was shot in Polis’ Longworth office and as he walked through the Capitol. Another portion of the video highlighted Polis’ on the House floor and in committee discussing the Stop Online Piracy Act and Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act. Polis viewed his participation as part of his 'representational duties' and that it was a way to interact with constituents who played the game, according to the Ethics Committee release." [Roll Call]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a slow-motion cat.

COLONEL MUSTARD IN THE STUDY WITH A MAJORITY OWNERSHIP - It's like that time Sam Zell wore a commedia dell'arte mask for the first six months he owned the LA Times. Michael Calderone: "Las Vegas Review-Journal staffers have a simple question for their new owner: Who are you? Several staffers at the Review-Journal, the largest media outlet in Nevada, have questioned their new owner's decision to remain secret, an unusual arrangement that's stunned not only the newsroom, but journalists nationwide. Sean Whaley, a capital bureau reporter based in Carson City, tweeted Saturday night that he was 'offended & embarrassed' that the paper's new owner -- News + Media Capital Group LLC -- has not disclosed its financial backers since announcing Thursday night that it had acquired the paper...During a Friday meeting with publisher Jason Taylor, staffers didn't receive any timetable as to when the new owner may be revealed, according to a newsroom source." [HuffPost]

COMFORT FOOD

- Hell hath no fury like a urinal broken.

- The end is nigh.

TWITTERAMA

@elisefoley: Trump should release the long-form doctor’s note.

@pourmecoffee: As a general guideline, your doctor's annual physical report should not read like a WWE main event bout introduction.

@JeffYoung: "He has the proportional strength and speed of a douche, because he was bitten by a radioactive douche at age 15." RT @BKcolin: Trump medical records say his health is "astonishingly excellent"

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