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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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politics lead

December 30th, 2014
06:11 PM ET

House Speaker, Louisiana Democrat back embattled Rep. Scalise

Washington (CNN) - House Republican leadership is standing by Rep. Steve Scalise, the No. 3-ranking House Republican, in the wake of a firestorm of criticism surrounding his 2002 speech to a white supremacist group.

Scalise's position as House majority whip has been thrown into doubt by the revelation, and the congressman had been calling members to gauge the level of support he had from his party, according to a senior House Republican source.

But House Speaker John Boehner, in a statement issued Tuesday afternoon, said Scalise has his "full confidence" as whip.

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national lead

December 23rd, 2014
04:54 PM ET

De Blasio consoles NYC in wake of police shooting

(CNN) - New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio took on the role of the consoler on Tuesday in the wake of the weekend's shooting of two New York police officers, following in the footsteps of many before him that have had to knit the city back together following tragedy.

De Blasio, accompanied by his wife, laid flowers at the memorial set up for officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu in Brooklyn near where they were shot as they sat in their patrol car.

Later Tuesday, de Blasio offered hugs to the city's residents and a moment of silence for the two officers at City Hall, and urged the city to focus on the families of the slain officers and work to move forward.

"There's a lot of pain right now. We have to work our way through that pain. We have to keep working to bring police and community closer together," he said. "We have to work for that more perfect union. We have to put the divisions of the past behind us."

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national lead

December 22nd, 2014
05:35 PM ET

De Blasio facing tensions further strained by police shootings

(CNN) - The point-blank shooting of two New York City police officers this weekend is testing whether Mayor Bill de Blasio's brand of unapologetic liberalism can work in a city that's spent decades under mayors who made law and order a top priority.

De Blasio's pledge to reform police practices helped sweep him into office last year. And in recent weeks he's pushed for the right of demonstrators to gather to protest the killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, two unarmed African-American men, at the hands of white police officers.

But critics - including those in the police force - are accusing him of fomenting an anti-police fervor that contributed to the killings of officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos.

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politics lead

November 28th, 2014
07:01 PM ET

CNN Poll: Majority of Americans say things are going well

Washington (CNN) - For the first time since 2007, a majority of Americans think things are going well in the nation, a new CNN/ORC International poll found.

It's a slim majority — just 52 percent of Americans said things are going well, while 48 percent said things are going badly — but it's the most positive appraisal of the state of the nation that the poll has found since January of 2007.

And it marks consistent improvement in the mood of the nation over the past few months, despite a series of national security crises and continued gridlock in Washington. In September, 50 percent of respondents said things were going well.

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