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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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world lead

May 21st, 2014
05:56 PM ET

Sen. Rand Paul: Evidence against Al-Awlaki compelling, but we shouldn't have killed him

(CNN) – Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul filibustered President Barack Obama's nomination of David Barron to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit Wednesday because of Barron's authorship of a memo analyzing the use of drones against overseas terrorists.
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world lead

May 21st, 2014
04:52 PM ET

Pentagon Spokesman: U.S. troops head to Africa, but we still don't know where missing girls are

(CNN) – The United States deployed 80 members of its armed forces to Chad to help in the search for the kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls, the White House said Wednesday

"These personnel will support the operation of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft for missions over northern Nigeria and the surrounding area," it said in a letter.

"The force will remain in Chad until its support in resolving the kidnapping situation is no longer required."

President Barack Obama informed the House speaker and the president of the Senate of the move.

The forces will be involved in maintaining aircraft and analyzing data, but because they are armed, the President is required by law to inform the speaker of the House, Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby said.

"These are not combat infantry troops that we put into Chad," Kirby told CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper" Wednesday. "These are folks that are there to support the reconnaissance mission."

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politics lead

May 21st, 2014
12:38 PM ET

House VA chairman: This problem is 'more than just Sec. Shinseki'

(CNN) –  Chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Florida, is calling on President Barack Obama to "restore accountability and transparency within the department."

"What we're finding now is every rock that we turn over, we are finding that there is a problem" Miller tells CNN's Jake Tapper.
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national lead

May 21st, 2014
11:23 AM ET

Obama on VA allegations: 'I will not stand for it'

(CNN) - He promised accountability and swift action, but he's not firing Veteran Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki – yet.

President Barack Obama sought to tamp down increasing calls for firm action on a growing controversy involving fraudulent record-keeping that covered up excessive and sometimes deadly waiting times for veterans at some VA facilities.

In a statement to reporters after meeting with Shinseki, Obama asked for more time to review what is going on, declaring that any proven misconduct will face punishment.

"If these allegations prove to be true, it is dishonorable, it is disgraceful, and I will not tolerate it, period," he said in his first public comments in weeks on the issue first reported by CNN last month.

Noting the public wants a "swift reckoning" on the VA issue, Obama instead defended the record of his administration and Shinseki - a retired Army general who has served as Veteran Affairs secretary throughout Obama's presidency.

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