US Sen. Elizabeth Warren speaks during a hearing before Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Feb. 10, 2015 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.
Photo by Alex Wong/Getty

In Case You Missed It: 5 great stories from the week of Feb. 9

Each week, msnbc.com collects the standout work published by our reporters in one convenient place.

Scott Walker’s politics of confrontation
by Zachary Roth

A deliberately polarizing approach and a breakout speech in Iowa have helped this charisma-challenged college dropout vault to the front of the GOP’s 2016 pack.

Chad Littlefield, the other ‘American Sniper’
by Michele Richinick

“Chad would tell you he was a ‘regular guy just taking care of business,’” his family wrote in his obituary.

Black Republican warns of new ‘slavery’
by Benjy Sarlin

A Republican event Wednesday showcasing its black rising stars showed why it’s easier to find and elect minority candidates than to win black votes.

FBI director calls out ‘hard truths’ about race and policing
by Trymaine Lee

FBI Director James Comey delivered a rare, blunt conversation on race and policing on Thursday, calling on law enforcement to confront “hard truths.”

Elizabeth Warren puts vaccine conspiracy theorists in their place
by Jane C. Timm

There was a moment at a Congressional committee hearing on Tuesday where the entire conversation about health risks and vaccines was laid bare. Sen. Elizabeth Warren asked a top Centers for Disease Control immunization expert whether vaccines are safe – eight different ways.

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In Case You Missed It: 5 great stories from the week of Feb. 9