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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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pop lead

August 8th, 2013
06:28 PM ET

Celebrities like Hanson, Pharrell Williams cash in on branded booze

The beat is invigorating, the harmony inspiring, the chorus intoxicating. But if listeners can't achieve that musical buzz from Hanson's “MMMBop," then why not try Hanson's MMMhops to go with it?

That is the name for Hanson's new beer due out this fall.

“I think there is a natural connection between drinking beer and watching live music,” the band said in an interview with Fuse.

It is not a stretch to say that alcohol historically fits somewhere under the umbrella of sex, drugs and rock and roll, so it shouldn't be a surprise that many musicians have tried to shift from rock to Amber Boch, if you will.
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world lead

August 8th, 2013
06:08 PM ET

Analysis: Campaign manager bashing boss Sen. McConnell reflects rise of tea party

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's campaign manager Jesse Benton was caught dissing his boss on tape Thursday, and he is not being fired.

Benton has "got leverage here because the fact is, Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), veteran U.S. senator, the Senate Minority Leader, needs this staffer badly," said Jonathan Martin, national correspondent with The New York Times.
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Magazine says it will not use the name Redskins

sports lead

August 8th, 2013
05:38 PM ET

Magazine says it will not use the name Redskins

For months, a group of congressmen have been pressing the NFL and Redskins owner Dan Snyder to drop the team's name, Redskins, saying it is offensive, racist, and derogatory.
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politics lead

August 8th, 2013
05:24 PM ET

Secret telephone recording roils McConnell campaign

Washington (CNN) – Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's campaign manager, Jesse Benton, stressed his loyalty to the Kentucky Republican Thursday just hours after a recording surfaced of Benton expressing half-hearted support for McConnell.

Benton made the off-message comments in a January telephone conversation with conservative activist Dennis Fusaro, a former colleague from Texas Rep. Ron Paul's 2008 presidential campaign.

"Between you and me I'm sort of holding my nose for two years, because what we're doing here is going to be a big benefit for Rand [Paul] in '16," Benton said in the recording. "That's my long vision."

Benton did not know Fusaro was recording the conversation, which was posted on the libertarian website EconomicPolicyJournal.com. CNN has authenticated the recording.

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world lead

August 8th, 2013
05:20 PM ET

2014 Olympics brings test on gay rights

Russia's law banning gay propaganda has garnered criticism from the White House, and called into question how gay athletes will be treated during the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

Russian officials seem to be walking back some of their comments on what the ban means. Russian sports minister Vitali Mutko said Thursday, "The law is not intended to limit or violate the the rights of citizens of any country, any religion, any preferences. The law is against propaganda, among the underage."

Former senior adviser to President Bill Clinton and NewYorker.com writer Richard Socarides said those words are not reassuring, and the nature of the law, and what constitutes propaganda remains vague.

"You could basically be arrested at any point for doing anything," said Socarides.
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