With votes still being counted, Hillary Clinton is projected to win Democratic primaries in six states and is leading in several more. Clinton addressed her cheering supporters from the Ice Palace Film Studios in Miami, thanking her volunteers, organizers, and small-dollar donors while touching on issues such as equal pay for women, student loans, inclusiveness and religious diversity, and reinvigorating the middle class. She leveled her attacks less on her Democratic opponent, Bernie Sanders, than on the GOP front-runner, Donald Trump. She riffed off several of Trump's favorite phrases: "We know we've got work to do. But that work is not to make America great again," she said, to raucous applause. "America never stopped being great. We need to make America whole again." Watch her victory speech here:

Donald Trump Just Compared Himself to Gandhi

After approvingly retweeting a quote from Benito Mussolini this weekend, Donald Trump on Monday invoked the words of another famous political leader in support of his campaign: Mahatma Gandhi. Trump, the GOP front-runner who has promised to build a wall to keep Mexican people out of the United States, floated the idea of a national registry for Muslim Americans, and suggested killing the families of terrorists, would seem to share little in common with the legendary anti-war activist who led India's independence movement against British rule. Then again, both Trump and Gandhi made some pretty outlandish claims about black people.

Trump's usage of this quote is not only strange because of the implied comparison; it's also a misquote. Gandhi never said that. Rather, socialist leader Nicholas Klein did

This post has been updated to reflect that Trump misquoted Mahatma Gandhi.

Rubio Makes Fun of Trump for Spelling "Choker" Correctly

At a campaign rally on Friday morning, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida took out his phone and read from Donald Trump's Twitter account, hoping to mock the GOP front-runner. Things did not go according to plan. 

Rubio made fun of Trump's spelling of the word "choker"—except that Trump's tweet, as Rubio read it, spelled the word correctly. "He spelled choker C-H-O-K-E-R," Rubio said. "Chocker."

Trump did misspell the word in an earlier tweet, which he deleted.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie announced on Friday that he is endorsing Donald Trump for president.

"I am proud to be here to endorse Donald Trump for president of the United States," Christie said in a joint press conference with Trump by his side. 

"I will lend my support between now and November in every way that I can for Donald, to help make his campaign an even better campaign than it's already been and then to help him do whatever he needs to do to help make the country everything that we want it to be for our children and grandchildren."

Christie dropped out of the presidential race on February 10, after a sixth-place finish in the New Hampshire Republican primary. He told reporters he finalized his decision to endorse the real estate magnate Thursday morning. Among other reasons for backing Trump, Christie said he'd have the best chance to win the general election. "The one person Hillary Clinton does not want to see on that stage come next September is Donald Trump," he said.

"He's been my friend for many years," Trump said of Christie. "He's been a spectacular governor."

This is a breaking news post. We will update as more news becomes available.

While Republican presidential candidates continued scream-debating in Houston last night, Sen. Lindsey Graham took a shot at his former challengers with a series of insults that capture the insanity that is the remaining GOP presidential field.

The South Carolina senator, who was speaking at the Washington Press Club Foundation Dinner, nailed it with the following jabs:

At one point, Graham donned Donald Trump's trademark "Make America Great Again" cap and sarcastically endorsed the real estate magnate.

We'd say we miss you, Lindsey, but this is the party Republicans built.

During Thursday's CNN-Telemundo GOP debate, front-runner Donald Trump strayed from his colleagues on the campaign trail by saying some nice things about Planned Parenthood. 

"Millions and millions of women—cervical cancer, breast cancer—are helped by Planned Parenthood," he said. "So you can say whatever you want, but they have millions of women going through Planned Parenthood that are helped greatly."

He's made similar points before. "They do some very good work," Trump said of Planned Parenthood on Sunday's Meet the Press. "Cervical cancer, lots of women's issue, women's health issues are taken care of.”

But throughout the campaign, Trump has said—and he reiterated this point at Thursday's debate—that as long as Planned Parenthood continues to provide abortions, he would defund the women's health provider as a show of his pro-life bonafides.

"I would defund it because of the abortion factor, which they say is 3 percent. I don't know what percentage it is," he said at Thursday's debate in Texas. "But I would defund it, because I'm pro-life."

But here's the thing about Trump's pro-life pledge: The federal Hyde Amendment already prohibits the use of federal funding for abortions, except for those performed in cases of rape, incest, and where the life of the mother is at risk. This amendment has been attached to federal appropriations bills regularly since the 1970s. Planned Parenthood receives virtually no federal funds to provide abortions. It's that simple.

 

Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, the only black Democrat in the Senate, took a subtle jab at Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Thursday for ignoring issues affecting African Americans in his own state of Vermont.

Campaigning for Hillary Clinton at a black church in Florence, South Carolina, on Thursday, Booker fired up the crowd with invocations of past violence against African Americas—from "gas and billy clubs" on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, to the martyred teenager Emmett Till—while framing Clinton as the only candidate in the race voters could trust to fix the criminal justice system. "If you don't mind all this talk in this campaign about race, I want to get real with y'all for a minute," Booker said. His support for Clinton, he explained to the church audience, was because "she was here when it wasn't election time. I'm here because she was supporting criminal justice reform before it was [popular] to talk about it on the campaign trail."

In case the contrast he was trying to draw wasn't clear, Booker got more specific. "This is not just a South Carolina issue," he said. "I don't care what state you come from. Heck, Vermont! People told me, 'Cory, they don't have black people in Vermont.' I'm sorry to tell you this, there are 50 states; we got black people in every state! That's true!"

He continued, "And the problems of racial disparity did not begin in this campaign. They go deep in every state. Vermont has 1 percent African Americans. But their prison population is 11 percent black! You want to speak about injustice—I see campaigns and candidates running all over this country. Don't you come to my communities, talk about how much you care, talk your passion for criminal justice, and then I don't hear from you after an election. And I didn't hear from you before the election!"

Clinton has focused on winning black voters in counties where she lost big to Barack Obama (including Florence County, where Obama beat her by 42 points), emphasizing Sanders' votes against gun control measures and her friendship with a group of African American women who lost their children to gun violence or in police custody. But her aggressive push on criminal justice is in part defensive; she's been criticized on the left for supporting, among other things, welfare reform and the 1994 crime bill. At a fundraiser in Charleston on Wednesday night, she was confronted by a young black woman about comments she'd made as First Lady in support of the crime bill, alleging that "super-predators" were threatening urban communities. Clinton said on Thursday, "I shouldn't have used those words."

 
Vincente Fox on Donald Trump

Former Mexican President Vincente Fox to Donald J. Trump: I'm NOT going to pay for that f****g wall."

Posted by Jorge Ramos on Thursday, February 25, 2016

In an interview with Jorge Ramos on Fusion, former Mexican President Vicente Fox said emphatically that if Donald Trump were to be elected to the Oval Office in November and make good on his promise of building a wall along the US-Mexico border, Mexico should not foot the bill, as Trump has suggested.

"I declare: I'm not going to pay for that fucking wall," Fox said. "He should pay for it. He's got the money."

David Duke, a white supremacist and former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard, added his name to Donald Trump's ever-growing list of racist supporters when he urged listeners of his radio show on Wednesday to volunteer to help elect the real estate magnate to the White House.

"Voting against Donald Trump at this point is really treason to your heritage," Duke said.

Duke sought to shame his listeners into mobilizing and getting off their "rear end that's getting fatter and fatter for many of you every day on your chairs."

He stopped short of an official endorsement. "But I do support his candidacy, and I support voting for him as a strategic action," he said. "I hope he does everything we hope he will do."

While Duke did not detail exactly which of Trump's campaign promises he was referring to, it's safe to assume they include the Republican front-runner's pledges to ban Muslims from entering the United States and to build a wall along the Mexican border.

Duke's call to arms on Wednesday fits squarely into a recent analysis of Trump's base. According to that analysis, 20 percent of his supporters think freeing slaves after the Civil War was a wrong move for the country, and 70 percent would love to see the Confederate flag flying above state grounds again.

The audio clip from Duke's show was first reported by BuzzFeed and can be heard below:

If Apple is forced to help unlock the iPhone used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, what else can the government make private companies do? Don't ask FBI Director James Comey.

Members of the House Intelligence Committee repeatedly asked Comey that question during a committee hearing on Thursday. It was Comey's first public appearance before Congress since a Los Angeles court ordered Apple last week to help the FBI by writing new code that would bypass security features on Farook's phone. Apple refused, and the battle between the company and the FBI is now major national news.

The fight centers on whether Apple, by complying with the court order to write new code for the FBI's use, would set a precedent allowing the government to request essentially anything from tech companies to aid investigations, whether it was cracking encryption or sneaking surveillance tools into software updates. But when faced with several questions on the topic, Comey pleaded ignorance.

"I think the answer would best come from a technical expert and a good lawyer. I'm neither of those," he said in response to a question from Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, about the potential limits on the government's powers to demand help from tech companies. Comey is in fact a good lawyer—he received a law degree from the University of Chicago in 1985 and served as deputy attorney general, the second-in-command at the Department of Justice, during the Bush administration.

Another committee member, Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.), later tried again. "Where does this authority end?" he asked Comey. "Can you paint a very bright line for us with respect to where you think that authority ends?"

"I don't think I can," Comey replied. "I'm really not qualified as someone to give you a good answer to that one." When Himes attempted to clarify, asking if the FBI thought its ability to request help stopped with just Farook's iPhone—a position Comey has taken over the past week—Comey again ducked. "I actually have not thought of it," he told Himes. "The FBI focuses on case and then case and then case."

Comey did acknowledge that the Apple case "would be instructive for other courts," but he argued that the order would be limited because it applied only to an iPhone 5c—the model Farook used—running a specific version of Apple's iOS operating system. Many tech experts disagree with that argument, saying the FBI's request for new code could be demanded for almost any device.

While Comey did not directly address the notion of precedent, some of the FBI's supporters in law enforcement have said publicly that the Apple case could give them the ability to demand that companies provide them access to the phones of criminal suspects for any number of crimes. Apple is currently fighting at least 12 other similar orders for help gaining access to phones held by law enforcement, and Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance, a leading advocate for giving government access to encrypted devices, says his office has 175 phones that law enforcement officials want to access.