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Dylan Scott

Dylan Scott is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. He previously reported for Governing magazine in Washington, D.C., and the Las Vegas Sun. His work has been recognized with a 2013 American Society of Business Publication Editors award for Best Feature Series and a 2010 Associated Press Society of Ohio award for Best Investigative Reporting. He can be reached at dylan@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Dylan

Don't expect Alabama to soon join the ranks of other GOP-led states that have signed onto Obamacare's Medicaid expansion, but Gov. Robert Bentley (R) opened the door ever so slightly in new comments reported Thursday.

"I wouldn't be opposed to a block grant for the entire Medicaid system," Bentley said, as reported by al.com, after saying something similar in an address to the state legislature. His answer was in response to a question about the Medicaid expansion specifically.

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More than 300 ex-Obama campaign staffers are issuing an open letter on Friday, urging Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) to run for president in 2016, the New York Times's Nick Confessore reported.

“We believed in an unlikely candidate who no one thought had a chance,” the letter reads. “Rising income inequality is the challenge of our times, and we want someone who will stand up for working families and take on the Wall Street banks and special interests that took down our economy.”

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The government funding bill colloquially called the CRomnibus that the House passed on Thursday night included a GOP-proposed change to an Obamacare program long loathed by Republicans.

A House aide confirmed to TPM that Republican staffers requested the change to the so-called risk corridor program, which is designed to keep premiums stable by making payments to insurers if they lose more money than expected in the law's first few years.

Some health policy wonks picked up on the language, but it received negligible attention compared to the campaign finance and Dodd-Frank provisions that nearly derailed the spending bill in the House on Thursday night.

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The fate of Obamacare will again be in the hands of the U.S. Supreme Court next year -- and if the conservative justices rule to invalidate tax credits offered through the federal HealthCare.gov, dealing a punishing blow to the law, it isn't at all clear that the White House will have the legal and practical leeway to save it.

That was the conclusion of three academics in a new analysis published in the New England Journal of Medicine which outlined the challenges that the Obama administration would face in that worst-case Supreme Court scenario. The most obvious solution to an adverse Supreme Court ruling is to turn every exchange into a state exchange, allowing the law's tax credits to flow again -- but how easy will it be for the administration to do that?

"We're quite pessimistic. The operational, legal and political challenges here are immense," Nicholas Bagley, a University of Michigan law professor who co-authored the article, told TPM in a phone interview on Thursday. "The more I've looked at this, the more alarmed I've grown."

The problem is three-pronged: Legal, because the Affordable Care Act sets some very specific requirements for state-based exchanges; practical, because states might not have time or authority to act after the Court ruling comes down in June, as expected; and political, because Republican intransigence against Obamacare is currently one of the defining elements of American politics.

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A retired Air Force psychologist, who has been alleged in press reports for nearly a decade to be an architect of the Central Intelligence Agency's torture program, gave a first-ever on-camera interview to Vice News in the wake of the Senate Intelligence Committee's damning report on the so-called enhanced interrogation program.

Vice News spoke with Dr. James Mitchell in his element, paddling in the marshlands of Florida, over drinks at his local watering hole, and at his home in Tampa. He and interviewer Kaj Larsen covered the utility of the agency's harsh tactics, his relationship with and understanding of radical Islam, and his own reflections on more than a decade at war with terror.

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Outgoing Texas governor and presumed 2016 Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry isn't worried about his perceived lack of book smarts because that's not, he says, what a presidential campaign is about.

"Running for the presidency's not an IQ test," Perry said in an interview with NBC News. "It is a test of an individual's resolve. It's a test of an individual's philosophy. It's a test of an individual's life's experiences."

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Over the last three years, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has set up at least three private equity funds, incorporating in countries like the United Kingdom and soliciting foreign investors from China and elsewhere. His most recent venture was first disclosed in a Nov. 27 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Bloomberg Politics' Joshua Green laid out the web of Bush's financial dealings in a new report Thursday, revelations that raise both substantive and practical questions about his prospects for a presidential candidacy in 2016.

Bush was named chairman and manager of BH Global Aviation, described by Bloomberg as a "new offshore private equity fund" that raised $61 million in September. It was incorporated in November in the United Kingdom and Wales, which experts told Green functioned as a tax haven for overseas investors.

According to Bloomberg, Bush has also launched another $26 million fund, supported by a Chinese business conglomerate, and a $40 million shale oil exploration fund in the last two years through a Florida-based holding company. All three funds are under the auspices of Bush's Florida company Britton Hill Holdings.

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The day after the grassroots group he founded announced it would help draft Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) for a 2016 presidential run, former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean endorsed Hillary Clinton if she chooses to seek the White House.

"Hillary Clinton is by far the most qualified person in the United States to serve as President. If she runs, I will support her," Dean wrote in an op-ed for Politico magazine titled "I'm Ready for Hillary."

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Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker surely meant well when well-wishing a Jewish constituent, but his Hebrew could use a little work if he's going to make a run at the White House.

The Capital Times reported Wednesday on a undated letter, unearthed in the John Doe investigation that has dogged Walker, in which Walker mixed up his Jewish salutations and makeshift explosives while he was serving as Milwaukee County executive.

"Thank you again and Molotov," read the note from Walker to Franklyn Gimbel, chairman of the Wisconsin Center District, a convention complex, who had asked Walker to set up a menorah at the county courthouse to celebrate Hanukkah.

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Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam (R) said Tuesday that his administration expects to have a decision on expanding Medicaid under Obamacare by Christmas.

"If we're going to get something done this legislative session we need to be able to have it defined, so we can start the process of explaining how it will work. Either way we'll have an answer really before Christmas," he said, according to the Daily News Journal.

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