Today's 5 things: The Prez flexes his muscles

Obama to expand gun background checks
Obama to expand gun background checks

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Obama to expand gun background checks 01:17

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(CNN)Obama gets bolder. Iran gets the cold shoulder. And Oregon protesters tell us what they want, what they really, really want. It's Tuesday, and here are the five things you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door.

GUN CONTROL

All by myself: Just like on immigration, the President's about to go it alone on guns. Today, President Obama will announce some executive actions that will expand background checks on private sales and provide more funding for mental health treatment. That's not exactly prying guns from people's cold dead hands. But wanna guess how the Republican presidential candidates reacted?

IRAN-SAUDI TENSIONS

Picking sides: So who you with? Team Saudi Arabia or Team Iran? More countries threw their support behind the Saudis in the Kingdom's war of wills with Iran. Bahrain, Kuwait, the UAE and Sudan either severed or "downgraded" relations with Iran. This latest row between the two Mideast powerhouses started over the weekend when the Saudis executed a Shiite cleric. Protesters in the Shiite-majority Iran responded by attacking the Saudi embassy in Tehran. And it just snowballed from there.
Iran-Saudi Arabia tensions spread to other nations
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Iran-Saudi Arabia tensions spread to other nations 01:37

OREGON OCCUPATION

We're not gonna take it: Well at least now we know what they want. Late last night, Ammon Bundy -- the leader of the armed group occupying a federal building in a remote part of Oregon -- tweeted the group will end its protest when a pair of jailed ranchers go free and the federal government gives up control of a national forest. Police are nowhere to be seen, and we don't know if there are any negotiations going on. One thing's for sure: law enforcement's going out of its way to avoid another Waco-like ending.
Oregon showdown explained: Patriots or #YallQaeda?
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Oregon showdown explained: Patriots or #YallQaeda? 02:47

WALTER SCOTT CASE

Homeward bound: For the first time in months, Michael Slager is out of jail. He's the former cop from North Charleston, South Carolina, who was recorded on video last spring shooting Walter Scott in the back as he fled. Yesterday a judge let Slager out of jail after he posted his $500,000 bail. He's under house arrest, though, until his trial, set for October 31.
Michael Slager released from jail after posting bond
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Michael Slager released from jail after posting bond 01:06

CRIAG STRICKLAND

Hope fades: The worst fears of Craig Strickland's friends and family were confirmed yesterday. The country singer's body was found near Oklahoma's Kaw Lake. The up-and-coming vocalist went missing more than a week ago when he went duck hunting with a friend in a fierce winter storm. The body of his friend, Chase Morland, was found last week.
Missing country singer found dead
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Missing country singer found dead 01:25

BREAKFAST BROWSE

People are talking about these. Read up. Join in.
Periodic updates
Great, as if chemistry class wasn't hard enough already: four new elements will be added to the periodic table.
Two birds. One stone
Anne Hathaway tells the world she's pregnant and scoops the paparazzi with an Instagram photo to boot. Take that, privacy-invading photogs.
Putin on the spritz
Want to smell like Vladimir Putin? (Hey, we don't judge.) A new perfume inspired by the Russian strongman is now on sale.
Number of the day: 2
The number of Super Bowls won by New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin, who is resigning. He hasn't won the big game in four years, which is forever in football time.

AND FINALLY ...

Puppy love
This giddy doggie couldn't wait to unwrap his gift -- his owner, home for the holidays.