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AP Top Political News at 12:16 p.m. EST

Reporter mocked by Trump says the 2 knew each other well
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Donald Trump said he couldn't have been making fun of a reporter's disability because he doesn't know the man. Not so, says the reporter....

After Paris, US political shift on privacy vs. security
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Paris attacks have renewed debate on the U.S. government's post-Sept. 11 domestic surveillance laws, leading to efforts to revive the issue on Capitol Hill and handing Marco Rubio an opening against Ted Cruz in the Republican presidential race....

As many African-American see it, there are 2 Ben Carsons
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- Ayauna King-Baker loved Ben Carson's "Gifted Hands" memoir so much that she made her daughter Shaliya read it. So when Carson showed up in town to sign copies of his new book, King-Baker dragged the giggly 13-year-old along to the bookstore so they could both meet him....

Carson visiting Syrian refugees in Jordan
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson is traveling to the Middle East this weekend to meet with Syrian refugees....

Presidential contenders differ sharply on climate, energy
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders calls climate change the greatest threat to national security. Front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton promises to install more than 500 million solar panels across the country....

Obama still pondering death penalty's role in justice system
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Even as President Barack Obama tries to make a hard case for overhauling sentences, rehabilitating prisoners and confronting racial bias in policing, he has been less clear about the death penalty....

President's oldest daughter among those scoping out colleges
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Michelle Obama's message for high school seniors fretting about their college prospects is simple....

Man charged after Thanksgiving lockdown at White House
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Secret Service says a man who jumped the White House fence draped in an American flag on Thanksgiving has been charged....

In 2016 campaign, both parties want reform in justice system
WASHINGTON (AP) -- On the campaign trail, among candidates of both parties, the idea of locking up drug criminals for life is a lot less popular than it was a generation ago....

Obama: Holiday means food, football, and not-too-dry turkey?
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama says Thanksgiving is a day for food, football and hoping "the turkey didn't turn out too dry."...