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First Read's Morning Clips: About Saturday

Marco Rubio
Republican presidential candidate, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., right, shakes hands with invited guests after his speech at a rally Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016, in North Las Vegas. Jae C. Hong / AP

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OFF TO THE RACES: About what happened Saturday night

The big picture, from the New York Times: "Senator Bernie Sanders vowed on Sunday to fight on after losing the Nevada caucuses, predicting that he would pull off a historic political upset by this summer’s party convention. But the often overlooked delegate count in the Democratic primary shows Mr. Sanders slipping significantly behind Hillary Clinton in the race for the nomination, and the odds of his overtaking her growing increasingly remote."

And on the GOP side, from the Washington Post: "After coursing through the first three intimate contests, the Republican presidential race is now accelerating to full throttle, becoming a truly national election that appears to favor celebrity front-runner Donald Trump against a bitterly divided field of opponents."

From NBC's Perry Bacon Jr., on Saturday's results: "Front-Runners Get Major Wins, Solidify Their Advantages Ahead of Super Tuesday"

NBC's Leigh Ann Caldwell writes: "With former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush out of the race for President, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio's team is scrambling to sweep up the supporters that made Bush's campaign the flushest, if not the most successful. While Rubio is expected to be the biggest benefactor of Bush's exit, some donors are expressing reservations about quickly investing in another candidate with no guarantee of victory in a year where money has not dictated success."

Cruz and Rubio are competing to become Trump's top rival, writes the New York Times: "Mainstream Republicans grappled on Sunday with Donald J. Trump’s sweeping victory in South Carolina as if cycling through stages of grief, with some refusing to accept that he could be the party’s eventual nominee and others searching for ways to prevent his insurgent candidacy from becoming unstoppable."

RNC chairman Reince Priebus said the party is "prepared for anything" when it comes to the possibility of a brokered convention.

BLOOMBERG: From POLITICO: "The multi-billionaire media mogul has held out the possibility of an independent candidacy as a tonic for centrists fearful of a Trump presidency. But even as Trump bolstered his chances for the Republican nomination with a solid win in South Carolina, Bloomberg's trial balloon has yet to gain much altitude, even among those most likely to favor his candidacy."

BUSH: Benjy Sarlin offers his big takeaway from covering Bush's campaign. "This was a candidate who stood for an entire generation of Republican Party building, who was the figurative and literal heir to the family brand that had graced nearly every GOP ticket for a generation. And he ceded the race to a candidate whose campaign was a walking insult to his family legacy and everything Bush's supporters told themselves the party stood for."

The Washington Post looks at how his campaign misjudged the mood of the electorate and the impact of traditional campaign tactics.

CLINTON: From one of us(!): Here are six things we learned from Clinton's victory in Nevada over the weekend.

The RNC is out with a new video reminding voters of the Clintons' ugly clashes over race back during the 2008 primary.

KASICH: From NBC's Kailani Koenig: "Republican presidential hopeful and Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Sunday signed a bill that aims to strip funding from Planned Parenthood in the state. It’s a long-expected but controversial move that ignites a debate that seeped into his presidential campaign. Kasich faced a number of protesters this week while campaigning in South Carolina who challenged him on the issue during his events."

RUBIO: He got the endorsement of former Minnesota governor and onetime presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty.

SANDERS: He told one of us(!) that turnout wasn't as high as he wanted it to be in Nevada.

The Washington Post: "Although Sanders campaigned in South Carolina on Sunday, his prospects there are dim — as evidenced by the fact that he neglected to mention the Palmetto State’s contest as he ticked off a handful of upcoming states where he can win. Nonetheless, the race will probably continue for a long time, as it did in 2008 — with one factor reversed. This time, the African American vote is expected to be a big advantage for Clinton."

POLITICO writes that, in 1974, Sanders advocated for the elimination of the CIA.

TRUMP: NBC's Ali Vitali reports that Donald Trump spent much of his latest rally in Atlanta complaining about the lighting.

On Meet the Press, he said of a 2002 quote supporting the Iraq war: "Who know what was in my head?"

The Wall Street Journal's analysis: "By the end of Saturday night, the reality was simply this: It isn’t clear who is the real alternative to Mr. Trump. South Carolina, with its large population of evangelical Christians, was supposed to be the ideal spot for Mr. Cruz, yet he failed to win. Mr. Rubio made a nice comeback from an embarrassing finish in New Hampshire, but he still hasn’t shown that he can actually win anywhere."

OBAMA AGENDA: Court fight

The New York Times has running updates on the battle over Justice Scalia's seat.

The Washington Post editorial board: "Rethink life tenure"

NBC's Jon Schuppe reminds us: Clarence Thomas hasn't asked a question during oral arguments in a decade.

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