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TOP TALKER: "Backers of Iran sanctions struggle to build support in the Senate" by Burgess Everett: "The push to impose new economic sanctions on Iran is facing an increasingly uphill battle toward a veto-proof majority. Sen. Mark Kirk picked up a prominent supporter Monday — No. 3 Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer — for a bill that would ratchet up sanctions if diplomatic talks on curbing Iran’s nuclear program fall through. But rounding up other Democrats may be harder. And Schumer said his party is still discussing the best timing for a vote on an Iran bill, after President Barack Obama forcefully warned last week that he will veto any sanctions legislation that lands on his desk during the nuclear talks." [Politico; TheHill]

Feinstein, Murphy Introduce Resolution Supporting Negotiations with Iran: "Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) today led a group of senators on a resolution in support of ongoing P5+1 nuclear negotiations with Iran. The resolution states that the Senate is prepared to enact additional sanctions against Iran if current diplomatic efforts fail, but refuses to prejudge the outcome... In addition to Senators Feinstein and Murphy, the resolution is cosponsored by Senators Tom Carper (D-Del.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Angus King (I-Maine), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), John Tester (D-Mont.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)." [PressReleaseTheHill]

IRAN TALKS: "U.S. and Iranian Lawmakers Look to Take Nuclear Issue Into Their Own Hands" by David E. Sanger: "When the House of Representatives opens hearings on Tuesday about imposing new sanctions against Iran — a step that President Obama said would undermine nuclear talks with Tehran — the Republicans seeking to hem in negotiators will have some unintended allies 6,000 miles away. Conservatives in the Iranian Parliament say they are working on a resolution of their own to counter the economic pressure aimed at forcing Tehran’s hand and prevent Iran’s negotiating team from agreeing to production limits on nuclear fuel. Like many in Congress, they would be happy to see the current negotiations collapse." [NYTimes] • "Iran Sanctions Showdown Is Drawing New Battlelines in Congress" [DefenseOne]

HAPPENING TODAY: At 10AM, the Senate Banking Committee holds a hearing on the "perspectives on the strategic necessity of Iran sanctions" with witnesses Deputy Sec. of State Antony Blinken and Under Sec. of Treasury David S. Cohen. The committee will also hear from a second panel including Mark Dubowitz and Patrick Clawson [SenBanking] â€¢ At 10AM, House Foreign Affairs Committee on "Iran Nuclear Negotiations After the Second Extension: Where Are They Going?" with witnesses Eric S. Edelman, John Hannah, Ray Takeyh, and Robert Einhorn. [HouseFA]

"Democratic Congressman: A Lot Of Strong GOP Support For Israel "Has To Do With Fundraising"" by Andrew Kaczynski and Ilan Ben-Meir: "Rep. John Yarmuth says Republican House Speaker John Boehner inviting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to the House of Representatives is “close to subversion.” Speaking with the Stephanie Miller Show on Friday, the Kentucky Democrat added some Congress members’ strong support for Israel “had to do with fundraising.”... â€œYou know, I’m a Jewish member of Congress, I’m a strong supporter of Israel, but my first obligation is to the Constitution of the United States, not to the Constitution (?) of Israel. And unfortunately, I think, some of the demands that are made of members by AIPAC and some strong Jewish supporters are that we pay more attention — I guess we defer — to Israel more than we defer to the United States.” [BuzzFeed]

TOP TWEET: @Yair_Rosenberg -- "Oh man, Iran's state-run Press TV just fell for an Israeli satire site's story on Obama unfriending Netanyahu on FB" [Twitter]

PUNDITRY ON BIBI'S SPEECH CONTINUES: "Wickham: Adelson behind Israel flap?" [USA Today] • Marc Thiessen: "Why Netanyahu is right to go around Obama to Congress" [WashPost] • Jeremy Ben-Ami: "Why to postpone Netanyahu invitation" [CNN] • Raphael Ahren: "A polished address alone won’t lead lawmakers to back Iran sanctions bill. Pushed to a loyalty contest, even Republicans will side with Obama" [ToI] • John Marshall: "Will It Matter?" [TPM]

ISRAELEX: "The Obama campaign strategist who could break the Israeli elections wide open" by Roy Arad: "With the help of American money and a former campaign adviser to President Barack Obama, V15 is trying to replace Israel’s government. The money and organization comes from V15’s partnership with OneVoice. Founded in 2002 by the Mexican-born, U.S.-based businessman and philanthropist Daniel Lubetzky, OneVoice describes itself on its website as “an international grassroots movement that amplifies the voice of mainstream Israelis and Palestinians."... Their secret campaign weapon is Jeremy Bird, a 36-year-old American political strategist who worked for Obama. Bird has come with a team of four consultants that will try to channel the energies of V15 into an organized methodology." [Haaretz]

2016 WATCH: "Perry Courts the Jewish Vote in Iowa" by Abby Livingston: "Working a small crowd at a kosher deli, Rick Perry glanced up at a mural on the wall. â€œThat’s right out of the King David Hotel window!” he said of the world-famous Jerusalem hotel, to knowing laughter. The event, organized by Jewish Republicans, is one of the last stops on Perry's weekend swing through central Iowa. Perry on Monday presented himself to the group as a man of the world — one who toured Israel and Auschwitz as governor and remains friendly with foreign leaders." [TexasTribune]

"Koch-backed network aims to spend nearly $1 billion on 2016 elections" by Matea Gold: "A network of conservative advocacy groups backed by Charles and David Koch aims to spend a staggering $889 million in advance of the next White House election, part of an expansive strategy to build on its 2014 victories that may involve jumping into the Republican primaries." [WashPost]

---National Student Board President of J Street U goes after Ted Cruz's Judeo-Christian values [Haaretz] • "How Big Is the GOP Presidential Field? Bob Ehrlich Is Preparing to Run" [NationalJournal] • Martin O'Malley ramps up in Iowa [Politico] • "Will Hillary's Campaign Be 'White Dude-Fest 2016'?" [DailyBeast] • "What exactly is Hillary's strategy to get voters excited about her candidacy" [WashPost]

ON THIS DATE IN... (via the AP): "On Jan. 27, 1945, Soviet troops liberated the Nazi concentration camps Auschwitz and Birkenau in Poland." [AP]

---"Leaders Mark Auschwitz Liberation 70 Years On Without Putin" [AP] • Rabbi Jonathan Sacks: "Why we all need Holocaust Memorial Day" [Telegraph] • "Spielberg: 70 years after Holocaust Jews still face anti-Semitism" [Reuters] • "Staying Put and Bearing Witness to the Holocaust" [NYTimes] • "Digitizing the Holocaust 70 Years After Auschwitz" [Bloomberg]
**Good Tuesday Morning! Enjoying the Daily Kickoff? Please share us with your friends & tell them to sign up at [JI].  Have a tip, scoop, or op-ed? We'd love to hear from you. Anything from hard news and punditry to the lighter stuff, including event coverage, job transitions, or even special birthdays, is much appreciated. Email**

BUSINESS BRIEFS: "Gary Barnett's One57 tax breaks may be under scrutiny by the feds" [BizJournal] • "Jeffrey Soffer reduces liability in Fontainebleau Las Vegas bankruptcy settlement" [Miami HeraldBizJournal] • "Delek in Accord to Sell Phoenix Stake to Foreign Company" [Bloomberg] • "Leon Black withdraws $400M Presidio bond offer" [FTimes] • "Paul Singer's Elliott discloses stake in Informatica, could push for sale" [Reuters] • "Is troubled hedgie Steve Cohen getting back in the SAC?" [NYPost] • "Landmarks May Thwart Russian Billinaire Abramovich's Megamansion Plan" [Curbed]

STARTUP NATION: "Israeli Content Discovery Platform Curiyo Raises A Million To Help Online Publishers Increase Visitors' Time On Site" by Sarah Perez: "Curiyo, a company that makes software which consumers, bloggers and publishers use to enhance an online article with subtle links that direct you to useful facts and other information, has raised an additional round of just under $1 million in funding. Included in the round were both new and existing investors, crowdfunding platform OurCrowd, Morton H. Meyerson, Tom Glocer (former Reuters CEO) and Techra Investments. The Jerusalem-based startup was founded in 2011 by Bob Rosenschein, the founder and former CEO of the site" [TechCrunch] • "Israeli smartphone servicing company Cellomat raises $2.25M" [Globes] • "Police Are Preassuring Google to Turn Off Waze's Cop-Tracking Feature" [TimeMag]

MIDDLE EAST FUNDING: "Obama Cuts Funds for the Syrian Rebels He Claims to Support" [DailyBeast] • "Covert CIA Mission to Arm Syrian Rebels Goes Awry" [WSJ] • Jeffrey Goldberg: "Hamas Warns: Give Us Money Or We'll Become Terrorists" [TheAtlantic]

Journalist Who Reported on Argentine Prosecutor's Death Flees to Israel: "Damián Pachter, the first journalist to report the suspicious death of an Argentine prosecutor, has fled to Israel, saying that he feared for his life in Argentina. In an account published on Monday in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Mr. Pachter said he concluded late on Friday that he was being followed by an Argentine intelligence officer who “wore jeans, a jeans jacket and Ray-Ban sunglasses,” and decided to leave the country immediately. He said that he flew to Israel by way of Montevideo, Uruguay, and Madrid." [NYTimes] • "In first public comments since prosecutor's mysterious death, Argentine president rejects his accusations" [AP] • "Hopes for Justice in 1994 Attack on Jewish Center Dim" [WSJ]

Voters Guide: World Zionist Congress elections [JewishJournal]

SPORTS BLINK: Tom Brady has a menorah -- as witnessed by the NYTimes' Mark Leibovich: "He marched me back into the house, through the kitchen and past a shelf that displayed a large glass menorah. “We’re not Jewish,” Brady said when I asked him about this. “But I think we’re into everything. . . . I don’t know what I believe. I think there’s a belief system, I’m just not sure what it is.” After Brady won his third Super Bowl in 2005, he seemed to betray a wistful sense of anticlimax in an interview with Steve Kroft on “60 Minutes.” “Maybe a lot of people would say, ‘Hey, man, this is what it is, I’ve reached my goal,' ” he told Kroft. “Me, I think, God, it’s got to be more than this.” I read this quote back to Brady, nearly 10 years and zero Super Bowl victories later, and he laughed at his naïveté. “I got a litany of Bibles sent to me after that,” Brady told me. “When I think back on that, what a narrow perspective I had. I’m 27. I don’t know [expletive]. Not that I know [expletive] at 37.”... 

"Robert Kraft cuts a considerably more rumpled figure in his office than the bespoke magnate we see in the owner’s box. On this day, he wore a wrinkled blue dress shirt, and his hair and desk were a mess. He was sucking hard candy to alleviate a dry throat. Multiple TVs were on, and one office wall was filled with game balls and numerous prints and photos, including one of Kraft at the Western Wall beside a skullcap-wearing Brady. Kraft, who was raised in an observant Jewish family in Brookline, Mass., speaks with familial pride about many of the players who have come through Foxborough." [NYTimes] • "When Deflategate it over, Robert Kraft is coming for Roger Goodell" [USA Today]

HOLLYWOOD: "Outspoken comedian Chelsea Handler arrives in the Holy Land: Chelsea Handler has touched down in the Holy Land. In true brazen Handler fashion, the Jewish American comedian happily posted a photo of her at the Western Wall on Monday with a caption playing on the famous Lil Jon song, ‘Get Low.’ [JPost; Twitter]

VIRAL: "BuzzFeed video testers taste Bamba, Bisli, Crembo and other Israeli treats" [BuzzFeed/ToI]

Howard Mortman... Steve Wynn... Chief Justice John Roberts... 

That's all folks; have a great day!
**Have a tip, suggestion, or even an op-ed? We'd love to hear from you. Email**
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