First Read's Morning Clips

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OBAMA AGENDA: It’s tricky -- tricky, tricky, tricky…

The New York Times on the tricky attempts to forge a nuke deal with Iran. "As negotiators head back to Vienna this week for what they hope will be the final round of talks, Mr. Obama’s top national security advisers put the chance of reaching an agreement this month at 40 to 50 percent. “In the end this is a political decision for the Iranians,” Mr. Obama told a small group of recent visitors to the White House, a statement that could be true for him as well."

President Obama called the ISIS beheading of Peter Kassig, a U.S. Army Ranger who became an aid worker, an act of "pure evil."

After a "productive" trip abroad, Obama faces major confrontations with Republicans over immigration and the Keystone XL pipeline, notes the AP.

A decent headline for the administration on health care, from the New York Times: "Some Hiccups, but Federal Health Exchange Website Is in Good Health." MORE: "The Obama administration said Sunday that 100,000 people had submitted applications for health insurance on the first day of open enrollment, and it offered practical advice to consumers who had been locked out of their accounts."

Next September, Pope Francis will visit the United States for the first time since becoming Pope.

Trouble in Asia, and headwinds for the US economy, from Reuters: "Japan's economy unexpectedly slipped into recession in the third quarter, setting the stage for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to delay an unpopular sales tax hike and call a snap election two years before he has to go to the polls."

Writes Dan Balz: “The scars from six years of political conflict between President Obama and Republican congressional leaders have quickly washed away all those gauzy comments about cooperation that were offered in the aftermath of the midterm elections. Today, Washington is bracing for a major collision over immigration, with each side calculating the risks and rewards of their actions.”

CONGRESS: Interwined

National Journal writes how the legacies of John Boehner and Barack Obama are intertwined, as both seek a deal to seal the narratives of their respective careers.

The Washington Post: “GOP leaders set sights on tax reform but fret over newly combative Obama”

NBC's Alex Moe reports: "House Republicans on Friday quietly adopted a new rule that could complicate Rep. Paul Ryan’s options if he decides to run for president in 2016. The rule would require committee chairmen to resign their leadership posts if they were to run for another office such as for president or for the Senate. The next highest ranking Republican on the committee would then take over until a new chairman is selected."

The Benghazi select committee (remember that?) will meet over the lame duck session, notes Roll Call.


Chris Christie is headed to Canada, writes the Wall Street Journal.

John McCormick of Bloomberg profiles Steve Grubbs, Rand Paul's top Iowa strategist.

Here's a wrap up of Bobby Jindal's interview with one of us(!) over the weekend.

ALASKA: Sean Parnell conceded to Bill Walker on Saturday night, reports the Alaska Dispatch News.

CALIFORNIA: Jerry Brown won in a landslide, but he's still raising money from donors, even though he doesn't seem to have any campaign debt, writes the LA Times.

Ami Bera is still leading Doug Ose as votes continue to be counted in the closely watched race.

FLORIDA: The Tampa Bay Times looks at 2016 jockeying by both Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush -- and notes that the latter is the top choice of influential donors in the state.

GEORGIA: Former Georgia Gov. Carl Sanders has died.

LOUISIANA: POLITICO, on Mary Landrieu: "Does Mary Landrieu have a prayer?" (Short answer: Probably not.)

Sarah Palin campaigned with Bill Cassidy in Louisiana over the weekend.

MASSACHUSETTS: "Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren plans to oppose President Obama’s pick for a top Treasury post, a move that signals a disconnection with party establishment even as she takes a role within Democratic leadership,” writes the Boston Globe. “A Warren aide said Friday the senator will not support Antonio Weiss, a Harvard-educated Wall Street investment banker the president nominated earlier this week for Treasury undersecretary of domestic finance."

NEW HAMPSHIRE: Democrats have a deep 2016 bench in New Hampshire, notes


*** Monday’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall” line-up: Tamron Hall interviews: Orange is the New Black actress Diane Guerrero & National Day Laborer Organizing Network director Marisa Franco in Phoenix on the immigration debate; The Boston Globe’s Renee Graham on the Bill Cosby rape allegations; and Anne Rice, author of the new book “Prince Lestat.”

*** Monday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell interviews Michael Downey, friend of American aid worker Peter Kassig, who was beheaded by Isis, MSNBC’s Jose Diaz-Balart and Trymaine Lee, NBC’s Richard Engel, Ayman Mohyeldin and Luke Russert, the New York Times’ Mark Landler and the Washington Post’s Sally Jenkins and Chris Cillizza.

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.