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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

On the Next Episode of The Lead

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national lead

July 16th, 2013
07:46 PM ET

Author: Book 'This Town' shows 'gilded age' and 'carnival' of Washington

Author Mark Leibovich covered politics for years, and is now the chief national correspondent for The New York Times Magazine.

Leibovich's  new book "This Town" describes Washington as a city that is "hopelessly interconnected," with "beautifully busy people constantly writing the story of their own lives."

Basically, Washington residents are really into themselves.

The book, out Tuesday, is getting a lot of attention in Washington, but  Leibovich says it should resonate with people outside of the beltway as well.

"Ultimately, I want people outside of Washington to know what the city that I think they fundamentally are disappointed in truly has come to," said Leibovich.
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pop lead

July 16th, 2013
06:58 PM ET

Brace yourselves for ‘Sharknado’ sequel

It's been five long days since the instant classic "Sharknado" debuted on Syfy and created a feeding frenzy on social media. But the wait is almost over. Sharknado's screenwriter tells Mashable that "Sharknado 2 " is already in the works, even though the Twitter buzz surrounding the first movie did not translate into ratings gold.

And for those of who can't wait for another terribly good action movie that looks like it was made on Vine, enter "Ghost Shark" – the next Syfy original premiers August 22.

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national lead

July 16th, 2013
06:51 PM ET

Prosecutor: Holder raises concerns, not hopes

In an address to the NAACP national convention in Orlando Tuesday, Attorney General Eric Holder criticized the "stand your ground" laws that allow for the use of deadly force in life-threatening situations.

"It’s time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods," said Holder. "These laws try to fix something that was never broken."
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pop lead

July 16th, 2013
06:44 PM ET

Backlash over Jenny McCarthy's 'View' on vaccines

ABC has chosen comedic actress Jenny McCarthy to join its powerhouse morning program "The View."

"She's funny and opinionated enough to help us start a new chapter here on 'The View,'" Barbara Walters, the show's creator, said Monday.

But some of those opinions are, according to her critics, potentially lethal to children.

The actress, and former Playboy Playmate is compelling, but she is also an outspoken and, many doctors and scientists say, irresponsible voice on the topic of vaccines. McCarthy believes immunizations led to developmental problems in her son Evan.
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national lead

July 16th, 2013
06:40 PM ET

Former juror: You don't want to hold a person's life in your hands

People can speculate all they want about what it was like to be a juror in the George Zimmerman trial, but many Americans will never fully understand what those six people experienced emotionally and how the process affected them.

But for those who have served on a jury in a high profile case, they have a bit of inkling as to what really goes on and just how tough it can be to render a verdict.

Mike Belmessieri served on the jury in the Scott Peterson murder trial.

Peterson was convicted of killing his pregnant wife, Laci, who disappeared in Modesto, California. Her body and the body of her unborn child eventually turned up on the San Francisco Bay.

Peterson is currently on death row.

Holding someone's life in your hands – and making a decision that will affect that life – is a lot of power to give to a regular person.

"It is an awesome responsibility to have a person's life in your hands," said Belmessieri. "The average citizen, they'll never get that opportunity. And they should thank the good Lord that they don't, because it's something you don't want to do."
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