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Hillary and Bernie face off in Democratic debate & more news headlines

TGIF! Nobody gets much done on Fridays anyway, so wake up slowly with these news headlines.

1. The gloves are off, gently

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders faced off last night in a debate in which they grappled with questions as to what it means to be a Democrat and how “above the fray” they are in terms of opposition tactics. The two have largely steered clear of the kind of mud-slinging that’s characterized the Republican primary, but last night they pulled no punches, sort of: Clinton accused Sanders of being a master of the “artful smear” and Sanders once again insinuated that Clinton is a shill of Wall Street. — MSNBC

2. But everybody does it

The State Department’s Inspector General has released a memo stating that other secretaries of state, like Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, have also handled classified information on their personal email. The memo was released to Rep. Elijah Cummings; Cummings said this was just further evidence that the Republican investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails was a partisan effort to torpedo her campaign. — ABC News

3. Recount

The Des Moines Register has called for a recount of Monday night’s results at the Iowa Democratic caucuses, calling the chaotic scene a “debacle.” The paper’s reporters, present at the caucuses, saw “opportunities for error.” The state’s editorial board has refused to do a recount, despite the extremely thin margin by which Clinton won. — CNN

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4. Unwanted houseguest

The U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention announced today that Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, is being “arbitrarily detained” by remaining in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he’s wanted for sex crimes, or the U.S., where he fears he will be tried for revealing state secrets. Sweden and the U.K. rejected the group’s decision, which in any case is not binding. Sweden said, effectively, “Hey, he’s free to leave that embassy any time he wants.” I’m sure the Ecuadorians would be relieved, at least. — CNN

5. Worse than Waterworld

Another day, another piece of bull*$%t news out of Flint: Today we learned that the governor’s office, who said they learned of the connection between an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease and the Flint water three weeks ago, actually knew nine months ago. The Detroit Free Press reports that there were 87 cases of the disease, including nine deaths, over a nearly year and a half period — and high-ranking officials knew that it was directly connected to the water — but the public was never told about the outbreak. Talk about a dereliction of duty. — Slate

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6. Oh dear

Syrian rebels are losing the battle for Aleppo, which will mean a fresh humanitarian crisis as more refugees flee the country. The Russians have backed government loyalists and launched a blitz of airstrikes against this northern city; the government has captured smaller nearby villages and the residents fear the city could soon be completely surrounded. The potential for a new humanitarian crisis is alarming: The U.N. has struggled to deliver food, medical care and other aid to towns and cities held by government forces. — The Washington Post

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