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First Read’s Morning Clips

OFF THE RACES: Leaders of the pack (again) -- Trump and Carson

In a new NYT/CBS poll, Ben Carson has pulled nearly even with Donald Trump, while Scott Walker is down to 2 percent.

Twitter has created a way for candidates to solicit donations directly through the social media platform.

The Washington Post reports on the GOP candidates' attempts at casting themselves as a modern-day Reagan. "Donald Trump will present himself as the exemplar of American strength and vigor. Ben Carson will be the sunny optimist who discovered his calling for politics late in life. Scott Walker sees himself as the conservative revolutionary, while John Kasich describes himself as the principled pragmatist."

BUSH: Here come the super PAC ads. The Tampa Bay Times: "The Super PAC backing Jeb Bush today kicks off a $24-million TV campaign for Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina that aims to educate Republican voters who, according to the committee's internal polling, know surprisingly little about Bush beyond the last name."

More from the Des Moines Register: "Right to Rise USA has already booked $5.89 million in advertising to aid former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and more is expected. The PAC doesn't intend to let up, except for occasional holiday breaks, until the caucuses on Feb. 1."

Marc Thiessen writes in the Washington Post that Jeb Bush is "running a BlackBerry campaign in an iPhone election."

This morning the Bush campaign is pushing out an op-ed the governor wrote about the tax plan he rolled out last week, NBC’s Jordan Frasier writes. The piece is running in this morning's Orange County Register and says the Bush tax plan is "Reagan-inspired." In looking ahead to tomorrow's debate, Bush ties Trump to Democrats: "I relish the opportunity Wednesday to contrast my vision for sparking economic growth and lifting up the middle class with those of other candidates, like Donald Trump, who have supported the liberal big government, high tax philosophy espoused by Nancy Pelosi, Elizabeth Warren, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama."

CHRISTIE: He says "nobody cares" about a "food fight" between Donald Trump and Jeb Bush.

CLINTON: She joked that having her husband as a running mate "has crossed my mind," reports Monica Alba.

NBC's Alba also reports on Clinton’s push to combat campus sexual assault.

From the Huffington Post: " A super PAC backing Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is going negative, circulating an email that yokes her chief rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) to some of the more controversial remarks made by Jeremy Corbyn, the United Kingdom's new Labour Party leader, including his praise for the late Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan leader who provided discounted fuel to Vermont in a deal supported by Sanders."

FIORINA: Bloomberg writes that, under her leadership at HP, the company sold millions of dollars worth of products to Iran through a subsidiary.

O’MALLEY: He’ll appear on Seth Meyers’ show tonight.

RUBIO: Former Romney policy director Lanhee Chen is signing on with Marco Rubio. (Yet another sign that Romney World is lining up behind Rubio.)

SANDERS: The price tag on Bernie Sanders's proposals? $18 trillion, writes the Wall Street Journal.

TRUMP: NBC's Ali Vitali reports that Trump declared "we're really killing it," during his Dallas rally.

NBC's Kelly O'Donnell writes that the Architect of the Capitol is refuting Donald Trump's claim that scaffolding around the building's dome will be dismantled and reassembled before inauguration.

Wow, the Des Moines Register Editorial Board on Trump's language about women: "The thinking behind the words represents a bigotry that generations of women have struggled to overcome in workplaces, the military, politics and their own homes. It is increasingly difficult to believe he could garner support from any male with a mother, daughter, wife or sister, let alone support from any female. The way he talks about the opposite sex is disgraceful."

PROGRAMMING NOTES.

*** Tuesday’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall” line-up: Tamron Hall speaks with both Republican Strategist Matt Schlapp and Daily Beast Contributor and Founder of Citizen Jane Politics Patricia Murphy about the latest political headlines; NBC’s Adam Reiss about yesterday’s tragic shooting at Delta State University; and Twisted Sister Frontman, Radio Show Host, and Actor Dee Snider about the 30th anniversary of the Parental Music Resource Center hearings and Donald Trump.

*** Tuesday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell will interview Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sen. Tom Carper, Save the Children CEO Carolyn Miles, the Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart, the AP’s Julie Pace and NBC’s Peter Alexander, Richard Engel, Jinah Kim and Ron Mott.