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AP Top Political News at 1:16 p.m. EST

US sending more special ops forces to fight Islamic State
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. is expanding its special operations force in Iraq and Syria to help fight Islamic State militants, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said Tuesday....

Report: Drug maker was focused on profits, not patients
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The makers of a breakthrough drug for hepatitis C put profits before patients in pricing the $1,000 pill that cures the liver-wasting disease, Senate investigators said Tuesday....

US appeals court reconsiders decision on ex-bin Laden aide
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A federal appeals court will reconsider the legality of the only remaining conviction of a Guantanamo Bay detainee who once served as Osama bin Laden's personal assistant....

Lawmaker: US military better prepared in Africa than in 2012
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A member of the House Benghazi committee says the military is better prepared now for an attack in Africa than it was when a U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya was attacked in 2012, killing four Americans....

From racing to rum, things to know about year-end tax breaks
WASHINGTON (AP) -- It's December, when Congress typically passes a last-minute package of temporary tax breaks, sparing millions of businesses and individuals from unwanted tax increases just weeks before the start of filing season....

Scientists debate boundaries, ethics of human gene editing
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Alternating the promise of cures for intractable diseases with anxiety about designer babies and eugenics, hundreds of scientists and ethicists from around the world began debating the boundaries of a revolutionary technology to edit the human genetic code....

House considers requiring search warrant to get old emails
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Investigators would need a search warrant to get people's old emails under a bill considered Tuesday by a House panel looking to update a nearly 30-year-old federal law to reflect today's communications....

Obama says Russia may finally come around on Assad's future
PARIS (AP) -- President Barack Obama expressed optimism Tuesday that Russia will ultimately come around on the need for Syrian President Bashar Assad to leave power to end his country's long civil war, but warned the turnaround would not come overnight....

Syrian refugees become issue in Illinois Senate race
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Republican senator in a tough re-election race is attacking his top Democratic rival for supporting more Syrian refugees in the U.S., marking the issue's first appearance in Senate campaign advertising....

AP Photo
Defense Secretary Ash Carter, left, accompanied by Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford Jr., testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, before the House Armed Services Committee hearing on the U.S. Strategy for Syria and Iraq and its Implications for the Region. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

Up to the Minute
O'Malley: I want to be your second choice _ for now

Trump says he should charge CNN for next debate appearance

Clinton rallies with female Senate Democrats _ except Warren

Clinton presses Venezuela to uphold will of voters

Jeb Bush says Trump 'uninformed,' not a serious candidate

Trump goes after GOP rivals Rubio, Bush in their home state

Carson visiting Syrian refugees in Jordan

As many African-American see it, there are 2 Ben Carsons

New Jersey's Chris Christie: Obama 'naive' on IS threat

Republican campaign rhetoric has Muslim-Americans on edge