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First Read's Morning Clips

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OBAMA AGENDA: Countering extremism

NBC News on Obama's speech on countering extremism: "President Barack Obama on Wednesday said that the world is at war with those who have "perverted Islam," and stressed the importance of reaching out to young people most at risk of being recruited by radical groups. "No religion is responsible for terrorism, people are responsible for violence and terrorism," Obama said during a summit on countering the spread of violent radicalism."

The New York Times examines the criticism of the White House for avoiding the characterization of "Islamic" while discussing terrorism.

The president heads to Chicago to boost Rahm Emanuel -- and to designate a new national monument -- today, writes the Chicago Tribune.

The latest in Ukraine, from the Washington Post: "A Ukrainian appeal for international peacekeepers to calm its war-ravaged east ran into quick trouble Thursday after pro-Moscow rebels and Russian officials said any such mission violated the peace deal reached last week."

NBC’s Kristen Welker reports that the NSC is denying reports that the administration will hold direct talks with the Taliban in Doha this week.

US officials are using uncharacteristically blunt language to accuse the Israeli government of giving misleading information about nuclear talks with Iran, notes the Washington Post.

The New York Times looks at how criminal justice reform is bringing together the left and right.

OFF TO THE RACES: Giuliani: I do not believe that the president loves America”

Former NYC mayor and GOP presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani is quoted by POLITICO as saying at a private event featuring Scott Walker: "I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the president loves America. He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me. He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country.”

MSNBC’s Benjy Sarlin: “Looking to loosen the GOP’s stranglehold on redistricting, Democrats are launching a new super PAC devoted flipping key state legislatures ahead of the next round after the 2020 elections.”

Heading up the Advantage 2020 super PAC will be Mark Schauer, a former Michigan state senate leader and congressman who ran unsuccessfully against Republican Governor Rick Snyder in 2014.

BUSH: Via NBC's Leigh Ann Caldwell: Conservative group ForAmerica, headed by Brent Bozell, is declaring Jeb Bush "unelectable" and highlighting video of him praising Hillary Clinton in 2013.

The Wall Street Journal picks up on this theme: Bush's conservative agenda as governor could help shield him from fire from the right.

Here's our story on Jeb Bush's foreign policy address Wednesday afternoon.

He raised more than $4 million in Chicago yesterday.

CLINTON: From the Washington Post: "Since its creation in 2001, the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation has raised close to $2 billion from a vast global network that includes corporate titans, political donors, foreign governments and other wealthy interests, according to a Washington Post review of public records and newly released contribution data."

And the Wall Street Journal: "The Clinton Foundation has dropped its self-imposed ban on collecting funds from foreign governments and is winning contributions at an accelerating rate, raising ethical questions as Hillary Clinton ramps up her expected bid for the presidency. Recent donors include the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Australia, Germany and a Canadian government agency promoting the Keystone XL pipeline."

KASICH: The Columbus Dispatch quotes him as saying "I'm not even close to making a decision on this."

WALKER: POLITICO reports on Scott Walker's problem with immigration: He supported the 2006 immigration reform bill that many conservatives derided as 'amnesty.'

And around the country...

OREGON: New Gov. Kate Brown is taking the job with a sense of camaraderie, writes the Oregonian.

PROGRAMMING NOTES. *** Thursday’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall” line-up: Tamron Hall speaks with Executive Director of the Arab Association in NY Linda Sarsour about the summit on extremism at the White House , legal analyst Lisa Green about the American Sniper trial, WSJ Senior editor John Bussey about the labor disputes at America’s ports, and actor from the Walking Dead Chad Coleman about his new initiative “Laughter is the Best Medicine” in Ferguson MO.

*** Thursday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell interviews Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Fmr. U.S. Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford, the State Department’s Rick Stengel, LA’s Human Relations Commission Senior Policy Analyst Journana Silyan-Saba, Muslim Public Affairs Council President Salam Al-Marayati, the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza, Bloomberg Editor Jeanne Cummings and NBC’s Pete Williams and Charles Hadlock.

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