Observances for Scalia. The body of late Justice Antonin Scalia lay in repose in the Great Hall of the Supreme Court building. President Obama and the first lady, along with members of the public, stopped by to pay their respects. (Bill Chappell, NPR)
U.S. Strikes ISIS. The Pentagon announced that U.S. warplanes struck an ISIS training camp in Libya, and local officials estimated that more than 40 people were killed. The strike reportedly targeted Noureddine Chouchane, a Tunisian operative linked to two attacks in the country last year. (Robert Burns and Maggie Michael, Associated Press)
It’s Not Personal. A spokesman for the pope said the pontiff’s comments Thursday that Donald Trump “is not Christian” were taken the wrong way. “In no way was this a personal attack, nor an indication of how to vote," said Father Federico Lombardi, adding that the pope simply thinks people “should build bridges, not walls.” (Crispian Balmer, Reuters)
Kurdish Militant Group Takes Credit for Car Bomb. The Kurdistan Freedom Hawks (TAK) claimed responsibility for Thursday’s car bombing in Ankara, Turkey that killed 28 people, according to statement on its website. The group said the attack was in response to the president’s policies. (Constanze Letsch, The Guardian)
The Weekend in One Paragraph. The South Carolina Republican primary takes place, with polls opening at 7 a.m. ET on Saturday. Meanwhile, in Nevada, the Democratic caucuses kick off at 11 a.m. PT. Also, on Saturday, the funeral service for the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will be held at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., where Vice President Joe Biden will be in attendance.
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“Welcome to the great Republican stalemate. No candidate commands anything approaching a majority of the primary electorate. Trump, in first place, pulls about one-third of the vote. All the candidates are locked in their narrow, mutually exclusive “lanes” of different kinds of voters. And rather than back down or seek accommodation, they keep upping the ante.” The Atlantic’s Molly Ball on the paralyzed state of the Republican presidential field.
‘Much Ado About MOX.’ Why are Republican presidential candidates showing such a keen interest in a little-known South Carolina nuclear power plant? (Gwynn Guilford, Quartz)
Not a Lame Duck Budget. While President Obama’s proposed 2017 budget includes some controversial spending increases, The New Republic’s Roy T. Meyers argues that there is plenty of room for compromise between Republicans and Democrats.
Why South Carolina Matters. Palmetto State voters have a strong record of predicting the eventual Republican nominee for president. Check out this graphic to see the state’s voting history—and a preview of what Super Tuesday might look like. (The Washington Post staff)
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