New polling today on the race for the White House.\

New Quinnipiac polling out this morning shows Trump remains front-runner nationally.Trump gets 39%, Rubio gets 19%, Cruz 18% followed with single digits by Kasich, Bush and Carson. It suggests Bernie Sanders has caught Hillary Clinton nationally with Clinton at 44% and Sanders at 42%.

New CNN/ORC polling shows Trump remains the front runner in South Carolina though his numbers have fallen. He gets 38% followed by Cruz at 22% and Rubio at 14%. That echoes new PPP polling showing Trump with 35% to Cruz and Rubio tied at 18% each.

That CNN/ORC polling shows Clinton remains the dominant force in SC with 56% to Sanders’ 38%. PPP shows Clinton at 55% to Sanders 24%.

Busy day on the campaign trail just three days before GOP voters head to the polls in the South Carolina primary. Several events for us to monitor during our hours.

1130EST -- OH Gov Kasich holds a rally. Bluffton Promenade, Bluffton, SC. LIVE via LiveU

1130EST -- Sen Cruz holds Press conference, Hampton Inn and Suites Seneca-Clemson Area 1011 E North 1st street Seneca, SC...FNC LiveU (Gallo)

1200EST -- Sen Cruz holds a meet & greet. Seneca Family Restaurant, Seneca, SC. LIVE via LiveU

1345EST -- Sen Rubio holds a town hall meeting. Odell Weeks Activity Center, Aiken, SC. LIVE via LiveU


On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton has an event at Noon.


1200EST -- Hillary Clinton holds a "Get out the vote" organizing event. Parkway Ballroom, Chicago, IL. LIVE via LiveU

President Obama weighing in the presidential race last night. Christi Parsons and Michael A. Memoli writing in the Los Angeles Times,

”President Obama on Tuesday issued his strongest warning yet about the Republican candidates for president with a two-word message on why voters should choose solemnly: nuclear codes.

Bluntly questioning front-runner Donald Trump's temperament, Obama said, "Whoever is standing where I'm standing right now has the nuclear codes with them and can order 21-year-olds into a firefight." A restive electorate ultimately will decline to elect Trump, he predicted.

"The American people are pretty sensible," Obama said. "And I think they'll make a sensible choice in the end." Though he referred specifically to Trump, Obama also took care to warn about all of the GOP candidates."Not a single one of them" is talking about some of the world's biggest problems, he said.

The words represented Obama's most energetic criticism of the Republicans running to replace him. For months, he has mostly kept a studied distance from the fray and resisted invitations to engage in political analysis.”


Hillary Clinton is campaigning today in Chicago trying to shore up support among the African-American community. She’ll appear with the mother of Sandra Bland who died in police custody after a conflict with a police officer. Meantime, Clinton’s support in Nevada is being questioned as Bernie continues to surge.  

James Hohmann writes today in the Washinton Post:

The Nevada caucuses were once considered a lock for Hillary Clinton. Just last month, campaign manager Robby Mook said she was ahead there by 25 points.

But the dynamic on the ground has shifted rapidly in the wake of Bernie Sanders' 22-point victory in New Hampshire.

"The Clinton panic is palpable," Jon Ralston, who runs a Nevada politics website, wrote in a dispatch on Tuesday. "Clinton spent Monday in Nevada and sent her husband to fill in at Florida events after her campaign clearly sensed the firewall buckling here. . . . There is a dearth of reliable public polling in Nevada, but no one on either side has asserted a victory is not within reach for Sanders. "Her staff repeatedly claimed that Nevada was as white as the first two early states," Ralston continued. "This was not only visibly false, but a clear sign that she wasn't just lowering expectations but showing real fear she could lose Nevada.

Jeb Bush may be making his last stand in South Carolina.. he needs a win to convince the country can be the Trump alternative. His brother former President George W Bush making the case for him this week. David A. Graham in the Atlantic writes today:

“Time and again this election, Jeb Bush has been outshone by more charismatic candidates. On Monday, there was a slight variation on the story. Once again, Jeb was outdone by a much more talented politician, but this time, it was a backer and not a rival: Jeb’s big brother George W. Bush.

It was the former president’s first appearance on the campaign trail this cycle, and it came just a few days before the South Carolina Republican primary, which is shaping up to be a make-or-break moment for Jeb. President Bush, along with his wife Laura and Senator Lindsey Graham, helped pack 3,000 people in for a rally in North Charleston. It’s proof that his popularity endures in South Carolina, but it’s too early to tell whether that popularity will prove transferrable.”

President Obama says he will move forward with naming a replacement nominee to the Supreme Court after the death of Justice Scalia. He says there is no basis in the constitution for refusing to hold hearings on his nominee.

Apple is refusing to help with the investigation of the San Bernardino terror attacks. It’s rejecting a request to hack one of the terrorist’s phones saying it would create a backdoor to hacking other iPhones. A U.S. magistrate had ordered Apple to break into the phone’s encryption.

Pope Francis wrapping up a five day trip to Mexico with a visit to the U.S. border today and a mass in Ciudad Juarez. 30,000 are expected to gather in El Paso at the Sun Bowl stadium to watch the mass going on across the border.

The U.S. sent stealth jets over the Korean peninsula as part of a show of force in the face of aggressive moves by North Korea including a nuke test and a ballistic missile test. Tensions are extremely high on the border.

China deploying missiles on contested islands in the South China Sea.. in an escalation of the border standoff.

After a record heat wave in California, the Golden State getting hit with a massive storm today. 2 feet of snow could fall on the mountains.. desperately needed to help relieve a multi-year drought.

An amateur archaeologist has found evidence of a 1559 Spanish settlement on the shores of Pensacola Bay. We’ll reach out to Tom Garner to see if he wants to come on to talk about his amazing discovery.

For more news, follow me on Twitter: @ClintPHenderson