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Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — A second top aide to Hillary Clinton testified before members of the House Select Committee on Benghazi for nine hours today, following news that a former Clinton aide who worked on Clinton's private email server plans to invoke the Fifth Amendment before the committee.

Jake Sullivan, Clinton's former deputy chief of staff and policy adviser at the State Department, was expected to answer questions about the 2012 attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, as well as Clinton's use of private email at the State Department.

Sullivan said he answered all the committee's questions today, but said the session was classified and did not go into details. He did not comment on Clinton's use of a private email server for official State Department business.

"I was very proud to have the opportunity to talk about the extraordinary service of my colleagues to our country, my colleagues at the State Department ... and the incredible work they did on behalf of our national interests every day,” he said after the deposition.

Rep. Susan Brooks, R-Indiana, told reporters that the session was “professional” and “very fact-focused.”

Chairman Trey Gowdy, R-South Carolina, said this morning that Sullivan, now a foreign policy adviser to Clinton's presidential campaign, was in a "unique position" to discuss U.S. policy and the American footprint in Libya in 2012.

Sullivan's appearance before members of the committee comes a day after Clinton confidante Cheryl Mills, Clinton's former chief of staff at the State Department, spent most of the day answering the committee's questions.

Mills thanked committee leaders Thursday for their professionalism and respect after her interview. Like Sullivan, she did not comment on the ongoing email controversy.

In an op-ed published today in the New York Times titled "Disband the Benghazi Committee," committee member Rep. Adam Schiff, D-California, criticized the investigation's focus on Hillary Clinton's use of private email ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

Gowdy said Mills was not asked any questions about private email use until the end of the nine-and-a-half hour interview.

"Our committee is the committee on Benghazi, not the committee on emails,” he said.

The committee's hearings with Clinton's top aides follow news that a former Clinton aide who worked on her email server plans to invoke his Fifth Amendment right not answer questions from the Benghazi Committee and other congressional inquiries.

Bryan Pagliano, a former Clinton 2008 campaign aide and State Department staffer, has decided invoke the Fifth in light of the ongoing FBI investigation into the security of Clinton’s email server, according to a letter from his attorneys to the committee earlier this week. The letter was a response to a subpoena from Gowdy compelling him to testify on Sept. 10 and provide documents related to his work on Clinton's server.

Pagliano also asked Gowdy to excuse him from appearing before the committee next week, though the chairman has not said whether he will still compel the former Clinton aide to do so.

Mark MacDougall, an attorney for Pagliano, declined to comment this afternoon.

The committee plans to next interview former CIA Deputy Director Mike Morrell, Gowdy said today. Huma Abedin, Clinton's closest aide, is also expected to testify in the near future.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama hosted Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz at the White House on Friday, the first visit since he became king earlier this year.

The two leaders' meeting comes as Gulf nations fear the Iran nuclear agreement will destabilize the region through the lifting of sanctions.

Despite those misgivings, a summary of the meeting provided by the White House said clearly that the king told the president he approves of the agreement.

“King Salman expressed his support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between Iran and the P5 1 countries, which once fully implemented will prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon and thereby enhance security in the region,” the White House account of the conversation said.

The two also discussed the fight against ISIS, the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, which shares a border with Saudi Arabia, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

In a rare move and show of respect, Obama greeted the Arab leader at his car in front of the West Wing.

Before their meeting began, Obama commented on their plans to discuss the implementation of the nuclear deal, as well as ways to resolve conflicts in Syria.

“This is obviously a challenging time in world affairs, particularly in the Middle East,” Obama said seated next to King Salman in the Oval Office. “We share a concern about Yemen and the need to restore a functioning government that is inclusive and can relieve the humanitarian situation there. We share concerns about the crisis in Syria and will have the opportunity to discuss how we can run a political transition process within Syria and how we can finally end the horrific situation there.”

Saudi Arabia has received criticism for refusing to accept any Syrian refugees, as the flood of migrants try to move across and into Europe.

“We continue to cooperate extremely closely in countering terrorism activities in the region and around the world, including our battle against ISIL,” Obama added, using the term for the militant group also known as ISIS. “And we’ll discuss the importance of an effectively implementing the deal to ensure Iran does not have a nuclear weapon while counteracting its destabilizing activities in the region.”

The White House has received enough support for the deal in Congress to provide veto-protection for the president.

King Salman echoed Obama’s concerns, and while not directly addressing the Syrian crisis or the Iran nuclear deal, he did call for stability in the region and the importance of cooperating with the U.S. to achieve it.

“We want to work together for world peace," he said through a translator. "Our region must achieve stability, which is essential for the prosperity of its people, and in our country, thank God we are prosperous, but we want prosperity for the entire region. We are willing to cooperate with you in order to achieve that.”

Vice President Joe Biden, National Security Adviser Susan Rice, and Secretary of State John Kerry were all in attendance.

The United States has recently ramped up sales of military equipment to Saudi Arabia, including a $1-billion arms deal the Pentagon in expected to approve soon for munitions and additional support over several years.

Obama last met with the Saudi royals in January, cutting his trip to India short to attend the funeral of Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz, the half-brother of the current king.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

-          Salman “expressed his support” for the Iran deal – despite the fact that the Gulf states have had many misgivings about it, although the Gulf states are likely to benefit militarily from the US when the deal is implemented


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Kendra Helmer/USAID(WASHINGTON) -- Hillary Clinton talks emails, declining favorability and more in a new interview.

A 30-minute interview with NBC's Andrea Mitchell touched on a wide range of issues, including Clinton’s declining favorability, Biden, Trump, the Iran nuclear deal, and more.

Here are some of the highlights of the interview:

EMAILS: “I didn’t really stop and think” about emails when starting at the State Department.

Clinton said that she “didn’t really stop and think” about emails when she started at State, and she doubled down on her belief that she did not send or receive classified material: “I did not send or receive any material deemed classified,” she said.

She explained how she dealt with classified material at the State Department, which she said was not on email. “I dealt with it in person. I dealt with it on secure phone lines. I had the traveling team, the technical team that went with me, and they set up tents so that when I was traveling anything that was classified would be protected from prying eyes. I take classified material very, very seriously. And we followed on the rules on classified material.”

FAVORABILITY/POLLING: “It certainly doesn’t make me feel good."

Clinton was asked about polling that show people use words like "liar, untrustworthy, crooked” to describe her. "Well, it certainly doesn't make me feel good,” she said. "But I am very confident that by the time this campaign has run its course people will know that what I've been saying is accurate and I will have a chance to do that in front of the entire world with the congressional committee hearing."

BIDEN/2016: “You can see he’s really struggling with it…give him the space and respect he deserves."

Asked about differences between her and Joe Biden, Clinton said: "I’m not going to address any of the political questions around my friend Joe Biden. He has to make a really difficult decision. You can see he’s really struggling with it, so I just wish the best for him and his family. If he continues as Vice President, he will continue to serve with great distinction. If he gets into this race, there will be plenty of time to get into the debate and the back and forth. But I think everybody should give him the space and respect he deserves to make what is a very difficult choice for him and his family.”

TRUMP/HUMA: "I think it's an unfortunate development in American politics that his campaign is all about who he's against."

When asked about Trump’s attacks on her Huma Abedin, Clinton said: “He's attacked so many people including my close aide and myself and many other people. You know, I can take that. I mean, that's just par for the course. I do regret that he is going after so many people. Many of them by name…I think it's an unfortunate development in American politics that his campaign is all about who he's against, whether it's immigrants or women broadcasters or aides of other candidates. He is the candidate of, you know, being against.” 12:18:05 "He can unfortunately do what he's doing, which I think is a bad development for our American political system.”

Clinton was also asked whether Trump had a point in raising the question of whether it was appropriate for Huma to be taking a state department salary and also be paid by an outside company, closely associated with Bill and Hillary Clinton. Interestingly, Clinton did not give a great defense of Huma, but attacked Trump for being “great at innuendo and conspiracy theories.”

"I was not directly involved in that,” she said, “But everything that she did was approved under the rules as they existed by the state department. And so I, again, he can -- you know, he's great at innuendo and conspiracy theories and really defaming people."

IRAN: People who don’t support Iran deal, “don’t believe in diplomacy.”

On Iran, Clinton reiterated her belief that while the “agreement is not perfect…it is a very important step” and essentially said that those who don’t support the Iran deal, don’t support diplomacy.

“It is better than the alternative,” she explained, “And I think that the American people are going to want a president who supports diplomacy even with those who are our adversaries to try to reach the kind of understandings that we have but who will also get up every day and enforce that agreement strongly and vigilantly. And I think that's a far better approach than some of the words you will hear on the same day that I deliver my speech from those who apparently don't believe in diplomacy, don't believe in the hard work of putting together international coalitions, don't believe in trying to get the best deal you can, and then don't believe that it needs to be enforced the way that I would enforce it.”

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The former governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson, slammed GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump in an interview with ABC News, calling his positions on immigration “racist” and “ludicrous.”

Richardson, who has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, also weighed in on the 2016 race, saying he did not think Vice President Joe Biden would ultimately enter the race for president.

See more of the conversation below.

Former Gov. Ed Rendell told the New York Times that Hillary Clinton’s campaign has been “incredibly tone-deaf” on the email issue. Do you agree?

Richardson: I don’t agree with tone-deaf statement. I do believe it could have been handled better, but the media has been over-obsessive about this controversy and most Republicans have tried to exploit the issue politically. Earlier in the flap, I would have said, "I turned to a private email system because I did not want to be hacked nor did I want my confidential and sensitive discussions with foreign leaders on front pages because of WikiLeaks." I would also emphasize that other secretaries of state like Colin Powell followed this practice and it was perfectly permissible and legal at the time. Nonetheless, I would also say it was a mistake to have followed this course of action given the controversy.

Vice President Joe Biden has not ruled out a potential bid for the presidency. Why would Hillary Clinton be a better candidate than Biden?

Richardson: Both Hillary and Biden are strong centrist-progressive candidates who could win a general election. Hillary would have an edge in the primary because of her superior organization, fundraising strength and the fact that she would be galvanizing women voters by becoming the first female president. In the end, I do not think Joe Biden will enter the race because of personal issues, such as his family situation. But he would be formidable if he entered because of his genuineness and his stellar record as vice president.

Sen. Bernie Sanders is making gains on Clinton in Iowa. Are you worried about her ability to maintain her lead in that state?

Richardson: I predict Clinton will narrowly beat Sanders in Iowa because of her superior organization in a caucus setting. Sanders has attracted a sizable progressive base in a state that has perhaps the most liberal Democratic constituency of all fifty, yet devoid of minorities and other Hillary-based voters. Once the primaries move out of Iowa and New Hampshire, Hillary’s strength among women, African Americas and Hispanics, and other activist voters will emerge and she will coast to the nomination.

Turning to the GOP, what do you make of Donald Trump's presence in the race? What explains his success so far?

Richardson: I am flabbergasted by Trump’s notoriety in the race. He is appealing to a frustration and an anti-establishment climate in the Republican electorate and little else. His celebrity and outrageous positions are tapping into a tea party faction that is propelling him to twenty plus percent [in the polls] but no higher. And the press is giving him undeserved attention and not scrutinizing his ridiculous positions on most issues.

What do you make of Trump’s immigration proposal?

Richardson: Trump’s immigration positions do not deserve a response because they are so outlandish. If you force me to give you three words to describe them they would be: ludicrous, impractical and racist.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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ABC News(NEW YORK) — Where will the 2016 presidential candidates be on Friday? Read below to find out their schedules:

Hillary Clinton

All eyes will be on Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, as she emerges from her vacation in the Hamptons to participate in a rare television interview Friday afternoon with Andrea Mitchell at NBC. She then hosts a healthcare roundtable in Puerto Rico.

Marco Rubio

Republican Marco Rubio will also be in Puerto Rico Friday afternoon for a rally.

Bernie Sanders

Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders holds four events Friday in the first-in-the-nation caucus state of Iowa.

Martin O’Malley; Lindsey Graham; Chris Christie

Martin O'Malley plans to meet with the presidential selfie girls in New Hampshire, while Lindsey Graham and Chris Christie will also be in the state, all three trying to gain grassroots momentum in races dominated by other candidates so far.

Scott Walker

Republican Scott Walker, now sinking out of the top GOP tiers, is in Texas for a meet and greet.

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Jeff Swensen/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign has just spent roughly $4 million to continue airing ads in Iowa and New Hampshire through the next two months, a Clinton aide confirms to ABC News.

In Iowa, the campaign spent an additional $1.5 million, and in New Hampshire, another $2.6 million. The ramped up funds will ensure airtime through September and October for the campaign to continue airing the same ads -- which focus on Clinton's mother -- that we’ve already seen.

This additional buy comes, of course, as polls show Democratic opponent Bernie Sanders closing in on Clinton in New Hampshire, and as Biden mulls whether to jump into the race.

Already the campaign spent $2 million ($1 million in each state) for the first five weeks of airtime.

In addition, the campaign has spent $7.7 million to reserve airtime in Iowa and New Hampshire from November to January — leading up to the caucuses and primary.

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Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- A photo and story posted to the Facebook page "Humans of New York" on Thursday received attention and praise from the president on Thursday.

The post featured an Iranian man writing about his son, who he calls "a very emotional young man" who "likes to solve other people's problems." He recalls an instance when he purchased two pounds of fresh apricots and let his son carry them home. Along the walk, the man says, he asked his son to give him an apricot, but his son said that he'd already given them all away.

"I knew then that I was raising a humanitarian," the post reads.

In a comment on the photo, The White House called the story "inspirational," saying that the fulfillment of instilling values in children "resonated with [President Obama]."

"I hope this young man never loses his desire to help others," the White House comment continued. "I'm going to continue doing whatever I can to make this world a place where he and every young person like him can live up to their full potential."

Signed "-bo," the comment was written by Barack Obama himself, and joked "if I ever get to meet him, I hope he'll save me an apricot."

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ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Donald Trump is all in.

The Republican presidential frontrunner said he will commit to supporting the eventual Republican nominee on Thursday, ruling out a third-party bid for the Oval Office that would likely draw general election voters away from the Republican nominee.

“The best way forward for the Republicans to win is if I win the nomination and go against whoever [the Democrats] happen to put up. And for that reason I have signed the pledge,” he said to a crowd. “So I will be totally pledging my allegiance to the Republican Party.”

The real estate mogul announced his plans at the Trump Tower in New York after a meeting with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus. The RNC has asked all Republican candidates to sign a pledge to commit to supporting the eventual nominee and not launching a third-party bid.

Trump had previously threatened to leave the door open to an independent run if he thought Republican party leaders were treating him unfairly. He raised his hand in the opening minutes of the first GOP debate to signal that he was leaving the option on the table.

As Trump held the pledge up for the crowd, reporters pointed out that he had listed "August 3" as the date instead of "September 3." "We'll change it," Trump said.

Over the last several days, Trump has been part of an escalating feud with fellow Republican Jeb Bush. Trump most recently drew criticism for saying that the former Florida governor should “set the example by speaking English while in the United States.”

Still, a new national Monmouth University poll out Thursday shows Trump garnering 30 percent of Republican voters, his highest support in a national poll yet this cycle. Neurosurgeon Ben Carson had 18 percent support, while Bush and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz tied with 8 percent.

ABC News has confirmed that roughly half the Republican field has already signed or plans to sign the RNC’s pledge.

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Scott Olson/Getty Images(ATLANTA) -- Vice President Joe Biden weighed in on the possibility of a 2016 presidential run Thursday night, telling an audience in Atlanta that he is unsure about pursuing the nation's highest office.

"The honest to God answer is I just don’t know,” Biden said when asked about 2016 during the Eizenstat lecture at the Ahavath Achim Synagogue in Atlanta.

The VP said he is still weighing whether he and his family have the “emotional energy” for another campaign -- especially after Biden's son Beau passed away.

It’s the first time the vice president has publicly discussed a 2016 bid since speculation about his presidential ambitions grew over the past month.

The vice president has spent the past several weeks huddling with advisers and family to discuss a potential third run for the White House.

Biden noted that others have raised questions about whether he can raise enough money or construct an organization to execute a successful campaign. But he wondered if he could get through a presidential campaign and if he and his family could make the "arduous commitment."

Sources close to Biden have said he would likely make a decision by the end of the month. Tonight, the vice president said, "there's no way to put a timetable on this."

"If I can reach that conclusion that we can do it in a fashion that would still make it viable, I will not hesitate to do it," he said. "I have to be honest with you...I can't look you straight in the eye and say now I know I can do it."

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- In a major policy shift, the Justice Department announced Thursday that the FBI, DEA and U.S. Marshals Service will now have to obtain a warrant before using a cellphone scanning device to track down wanted criminals. Before the announcement, those law enforcement agencies have been able to use those devices -- commonly known as Stingrays -- virtually at will.

DOJ officials confirmed Thursday that Stingrays are widely used by federal, state and local law enforcement in criminal investigations: the U.S. Marshals Service has a fleet of planes stationed at airports around the country equipped with Stingrays to hunt for federal fugitives. The FBI says it has used the technology in high-profile kidnapping cases, and the DEA often employs it to run down drug dealers. Baltimore police have acknowledged using Stingray technology on more than 4,000 cases since 2007.

The Stingray technology can locate a specific suspect by scanning thousands of phones to pinpoint the suspect’s phone signal. But the cellphones and locations of thousands of innocent people can be ‘pinged’ by a Stingray while it is searching for a suspect’s phone in the sea of digital signals. Some privacy advocates have raised concerns, and charge that the technology violates the rights of cellphone users whose location is swept up in the search for a criminal.

Federal and local law enforcement officials traditionally have been reluctant to talk about how the technology works, and when and how they employ it. Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates said Thursday law enforcement officials have not wanted to disclose much about Stingrays, because they didn’t want to “give the bad guys a road map on how to defeat it.”

In announcing the policy change, Yates said the Stingray technology has been “instrumental in aiding law enforcement in a broad array of investigations, including kidnapping, fugitive investigations and complicated narcotics cases.” But she conceded that there were no consistent guidelines in federal law enforcement for the use of Stingrays. She could not even say how many times federal agents have used Stingrays in the recent past.

“The cell simulators do not collect any content,” Yates pointed out, but “this new policy ensures our protocols for this technology are consistent, well-managed and respectful of individuals’ privacy and civil liberties.”

In addition to the requirement to obtain a search warrant, the new policy:

  • Bans using the technology to collect the content of any communication in the course of criminal investigations. E-mails, texts, contact lists and images held on the phone itself are out-of-bounds.
  • Requires that when the technology is use to located a known cellphone, all other unrelated data collected must be deleted as soon as the targeted device is located.
  • Establishes new management controls that will track and report the number of times the technology is employed.
  • Provides limited, emergency exceptions to the requirement of obtaining a warrant, such as in the case of a child kidnapping.

Yates said that the FBI and other federal law enforcement will now have to revise agreements with state and local police on the use of Stingrays, and how and when information gathered by the technology can be shared.

Thursday's policy change does not apply to state and local police, or Department of Homeland Security agencies like the Secret Service, but Yates conceded that the new DOJ rules would probably have a “trickle-down effect” and eventually impact law enforcement’s use of Stingray’s nationwide.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- A safety review has been ordered for the Defense Department’s nine labs and facilities involved in the production, shipment and handling of live and inactivated agents and toxins after anthrax was discovered outside the primary containment area at the Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, military officials said on Thursday.

The contamination was found on Aug. 20 in a secure area of the facility, and according to a Pentagon statement there is no evidence that lab employees were exposed to anthrax or that there was any threat to the general public. The area was later decontaminated and no anthrax was found in later testing, officials said.

Army Secretary John McHugh ordered the ten-day safety review for the nine Defense Department labs since the Army is responsible for the program.

"The safety review ensures labs will follow appropriate protocols for handling materials, including proper training, record-keeping, and standard operating procedures. Each lab will report back on its findings within ten days," McHugh said in a statement.

“The Secretary of the Army is the Executive Agent for DoD Biological Select Agent and Toxin Biosafety program and acted out of an abundance of caution," he added.

The contamination was discovered as part of the ongoing investigation at Dugway into the mistaken shipment of live anthrax to lab facilities to all 50 states and nine countries.

The Army has also expanded the existing suspension of production, handling, testing and shipment of anthrax to also include Critical Reagents Program (CRP) and other agents and toxins, officials said.

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Maryland Department of General Services(WASHINGTON) -- Documents obtained by ABC News reveal some of the stately furniture used by 2016 Democratic hopeful Martin O’Malley when he lived in Maryland’s governor’s mansion were later purchased by his family at steeply discounted rates when they moved out of the residence earlier this year.

There is a photograph of a brown rustic Maitland Smith armoire originally purchased for $3,695 by the state and used in the lower family room of the residence in Annapolis, Maryland, where O’Malley served as governor from 2007 to 2015.

Another inventory document shows a dark-brown leather sofa, purchased just days before then governor-elect O’Malley’s first inauguration in 2007 for $2,247. It was used in the Government House’s sitting room, before O’Malley’s wife, Catherine O’Malley, bought it almost exactly eight years later for $449.40. The Maitland Smith armoire, she scored for $739.

As first reported by the Baltimore Sun, the O’Malley family bought 54 items in total from the state upon their departure from the Government House after the furniture was deemed “unserviceable” by the Maryland Department of General Services, marked for disposal and offered to the family for about $9,600 after taxpayers had reportedly paid $62,000 for the furniture.

The office of O’Malley’s successor, Gov. Larry Hogan, took to Facebook after the Sun’s story was published writing that “the private quarters of the mansion looked like Cindy Lou Who's house after the Grinch swept through.”

“If they call that expensive, beautiful, barely used furniture 'junk,' I'd hate to hear what they call the 20 year old stuff I brought with me from my house to replace it all,” Hogan added.

The Maryland Department of General Services (DGS), which outfits government property and sold the O’Malleys the furniture, has a rule in its own inventory control manual prohibiting “the preferential sale or gratuitous disposition of property to a State official or employee."

Last week, after receiving the Baltimore Sun’s inquiries, an attorney for DGS wrote to the Maryland State Ethics Commission seeking a determination as to whether items should first be put up for competitive bids or auction before being sold to an outgoing public elected official like O’Malley and his predecessor, former Republican Gov. Bob Ehrlich. DGS confirmed to ABC News that in O’Malley’s case, that did not happen.

“The letter sent Friday shows clearly that this is an intergovernmental procedural policy issue,” O’Malley’s former chief of staff, John Griffin, wrote in a statement provided by the presidential campaign.

“DGS always manages gubernatorial transition in and out of the residence including determining that non-historic residential property could be purchased and determining the purchase price. The O’Malleys deferred to DGS authority and followed their protocol and standard operating procedure that was consistent with at least one prior administration.”

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Inside Look at the Discounted Furniture Martin O'Malley Bought From Governor's Mansion


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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Presidential candidate Rand Paul unveiled a new smartphone app this week while rival John Kasich popped up on Snapchat in New Hampshire.

Both examples highlight how 2016 presidential candidates are using social media and relatively new platforms to reach young, digitally savvy voters, drawing donations and interest to their campaigns.

The Rand Paul 2016 app was developed by the Kentucky senator’s campaign and is one of several steps Paul has taken to reach social media users.

“We go where the people are. He’s on Snapchat, Periscope, Instagram, we have our own app. We like to engage on every platform,” said Sergio Gor, spokesman for the Rand Paul campaign. “It’s not just TV.”

Paul is one of few presidential candidates with a smartphone app. He joins Sen. Ted Cruz who released an app last month. Paul’s app will be utilized on campaign stops and rallies as well as online by the campaign.

The app, available for both iPhone and Android users, provides news about Sen. Paul, featured videos, his stances on different issues and makes it easy to click to donate to the campaign or endorse Paul. It will also send push notifications based on app users’ locations. There’s also a tab called “Fun Stuff” that has a “Meme-Erator” and a Photo Booth that lets you take a virtual selfie with Sen. Paul. Already, the virtual selfies have popped up on Twitter.

Sara Sturdivant, an undecided voter in Massachusetts, tweeted her own virtual selfie with Paul this week.

“Social media is going to be front and center this presidential race,” Sturdivant said.

Sturdivant discovered the Rand Paul app through Twitter and she keeps up with several campaigns using the social media site. While she doesn’t agree with all of Paul’s stances, she finds him “refreshingly honest” and thinks the app shows Paul’s sense of humor.

“I think it shows a forward thinking aspect to Rand Paul, but I think it also shows some humor that he doesn’t take himself so seriously,” Sturdivant said. “There’s a lot of humor in politics.”

Some Paul app users have used virtual selfie booth to poke fun at the candidate rather than support him. Shortly after the app’s release, photos popped up on twitter of Paul with Nicki Minaj, a toilet seat, Legos and women kissing Paul on the cheek. It’s also been used to show Paul with images of Hitler and Timothy McVeigh. Some have tweeted anticipating that the “Meme-Erator” and virtual selfie could backfire for the campaign. That’s not something Paul spokesman Gor is worried about.

“People can take anything out of context. It’s meant as a tool for people who support the Senator, want to learn about the Senator, want to get engaged and want to get involved,” Gor said.

In addition to a selfie and memes, the app also appeals to the gamer. Users can unlock a space shooting game that allows a user to shoot at logos of the campaigns of Paul’s rivals including Jeb Bush, Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.

While Paul’s smartphone app is available to voters nationwide, Ohio Governor John Kasich used Snapchat to zoom in on the Granite State.

In a first-of-its kind advertising scheme, New Hampshirites woke up on Wednesday morning to a brand new filter on SnapChat – with a message from Ohio Governor John Kasich.

It was paid for by Kasich for America, marking the first time a Presidential campaign has paid for a custom filter on the app.

The morning message featured the Kasich logo, rendered in bacon, because hey – what voter doesn’t like bacon?

“Someone teased us that our ‘K flag’ logo looked like strips of bacon,” Kasich spokesperson Scott Milburn told ABC News. “So when the Snapchat idea surfaced as something to test drive, we thought a bacon-themed filter for the morning would be funny.”

Filters can be added to any photo by swiping. While some turn pictures sepia, or black and white, others add graphics and messages – sometimes limited to a geographical region. This “geofilter” was only available to users in New Hampshire.

In what Snapchat confirmed was a first for its app, the filter was only accessible during morning hours, creating an ultra-targeted advertising opportunity for the Kasich campaign.

The app is seen as a link to young voters like Jenna Guilmain, a college student who discovered the filter Wednesday morning at her home in North Havervill, N.H.

“I think it was a smart move,” the 19 year-old said, noting that Kasich has not received as much attention from her peer group as Jeb Bush or Donald Trump. “The thought process is ‘what is this filter, who is this, let me look them up.”

The Kasich camp declined to say how much the ad cost, but Milburn said he was open to more collaborations with Snapchat.

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is threatening legal action over Internet ads that feature her image to promote anti-aging products.

In Brewer’s case, the ads make false claims about her romantic life, stating, “divorced for being too old, see her revenge makeover.” Brewer and husband John have been married for decades, she said.

“We’ve been married over 50 years,” Brewer said. “The image there was me, and it was ugly and very inappropriate.”

The Arizona Republic first reported about the advertisements featuring images of Brewer.

Native advertisements such as the ones featuring Brewer, a Repubican, are frequently found along the edges of websites, labeled as “sponsored content” or “popular stories.” They’re actually paid advertisements meant to entice readers into clicking on plugs for everything from wrinkle creams to plastic surgery.

“What it is, is a very nasty, mean, lying advertisement put out there by somebody without my permission, and I’m highly offended,” Brewer, 70, said.

Other celebrities have dealt with similar matters, including Ellen DeGeneres, who on her talk show blasted advertisers for using her image in a skincare ad without permission. Now Brewer is fighting back, considering her legal options.

The companies that distributed the ads online — Revcontent and Content.ad — said they don’t create the material; they simply post it. But they said they are responding to Brewer’s request and taking steps to remove the images.

Brewer, who served as Arizona’s governor from 2009 until January, says the situation has been humiliating for her.

“The damage is done,” Brewer said. “They got what they wanted out of it.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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ABC News(NEW YORK) — It’s a busy day on the campaign trail Thursday.

After his exclusive interview on ABC’s Good Morning America from Manchester, New Hampshire Thursday, Jeb Bush is holding two town halls in the first primary state. Chris Christie and Lindsey Graham are also in the Granite State.

As for Iowa, Bernie Sanders has three events in the state, and Bobby Jindal will be in Dubuque, Iowa Thursday evening.

Donald Trump is in New York City where he is holding an afternoon news conference with RNC chairman Reince Priebus outside of Trump Tower. It will follow a private meeting the two are having where they are expected to discuss the RNC’s loyalty pledge. ABC’s Jonathan Karl reported Thursday morning Trump is expected to sign that pledge.

Hillary Clinton is still on vacation in the Hamptons and off the trail.

Mike Huckabee is making three stops in South Carolina while Ted Cruz is on home turf in Texas holding three rallies.

Marco Rubio is in Tennessee — an SEC primary state — holding an afternoon rally in Chattanooga.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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