This week in the Press Pool with Julie Mason, we talked about the surveillance state, Jersey vengeance, Clinton vengeance, and the written works of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Although we’re more than two years out from the next presidential election, so much happening in politics right now is loaded with portent for 2016.

One of the best stories we read all week was by Peter Hamby of CNN, detailing Hillary Clinton’s Iowa problems. Democrats in Iowa like and admire the former secretary of state — but they would really like some new faces in the mix for 2016. Where is the passion?

In related Hillary Clinton developments, The Hill newspaper ran excerpts from an upcoming book, HRC, by Hill White House reporter Amie Parnes and POLITICO White House bureau chief Jonathan Allen, detailing Clinton’s compilation of an enemies list after the 2008 campaign. Julie talked about crimes against the Clintons with Bob Cusack, managing editor of The Hill.

President Obama on Friday defended the NSA surveillance and proposed some changes to the program. Reid Epstein, White House reporter for Politico, joined Julie to preview the speech — noting that the administration wanted to put the issue to rest ahead of the State of the Union on January 28.

Ryan Reilly, Justice Department and Supreme Court reporter at the Huffington Post, jumped in the Press Pool to talk about his print exclusive on a 36-page manifesto written by 9/11 mastermind KSM. The document, which seeks to convert his lawyers, captors and judges to Islam, critiques the West for permissiveness, infidelity and Playstation.

And on the day New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie addressed Garden State lawmakers with his State of the State address, Drudge Report editor Joe Curl joined Julie to talk about Christie’s textbook crisis management.

Do you love politics but despair of lame cable news chatter? Do you yearn in your darkest heart for an irreverent, informed discussion of the news? Join the Press Pool with Julie Mason weekdays from 3-6 pm ET on POTUS, Ch. 124, and follow Julie on Twitter @Juliemason

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