What do John Edwards and Barack Obama have to do to catch Hillary Clinton in the polls? Candy Crowley has the story.
(CNN) - A CNN/WMUR poll released Tuesday shows Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, with more than a twenty point lead over Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, and former Sen. John Edwards, D-North Carolina, remaining in third place in New Hampshire, a crucial early primary state in the 2008 presidential race. Candy Crowley takes a look at the dynamics of the contest between the three frontrunners for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination.
Related: Clinton pulling away from Obama in New Hampshire
Biden's Iraq plan recieived overwhelming support in the Senate Wednesday.
HANOVER, New Hampshire (CNN) – On the same day a new CNN/WMUR poll shows Sen. John McCain gaining ground in the crucial state of New Hampshire, CNN has learned the Arizona Republican is set to hit Granite State airwaves with his first television ad of the 2008 presidential campaign season .
A source close to the Republican presidential hopeful tells CNN the television spot will go up in the early-voting state soon. The campaign is expected to reveal more details on the ad buy Thursday.
Once the clear frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination, McCain found himself nearly broke last summer after his support for an immigration bill unpopular with the Republican base severely curbed his fundraising efforts.
But a CNN/WMUR poll released Wednesday indicates the 71-year-old four-term senator may be gaining ground in the state where he beat then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush in 2000. McCain registers 18 percent in the latest poll, an increase of 6 percentage points from July.
– CNN's Mark Preston and Alexander Mooney
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Joe Biden has something to gloat about at Wednesday night's New Hampshire presidential debate.
The Deleware Democrat's amendment to the Defense Authorization Bill calling for a fundamental change of policy in Iraq passed the Senate overwhelmingly Wednesday, 75-23.
The non-binding resolution is based on Biden's long-talked about plan to divide Iraq into three regions based on its ethnic makeup - Sunni, Shia, and Kurd.
“Slowly but surely, we’re building a consensus in the Congress around a way forward in Iraq," Biden said after the vote. "That’s significant, because it’s the only real way to end this war.”
"Everyone agrees that there is no military solution in Iraq, only a political solution," he added. "That begs the question: so, what is your political solution? We have an obligation to answer that question and today, leaders from both parties answered with one voice."
Sen. Sam Brownback of Kansas, who is running for president on the Republican side, was a co-sponsor of the measure.
The resolution also calls on the Bush administration to convene an international conference to help Iraqis agree on a federalized system of government.
Among Biden's Democratic White House rivals in the Senate, Hillary Clinton and Chris Dodd voted for the measure while Barack Obama skipped the vote.
– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
The Democratic presidential candidates debate tonight in New Hampshire.
COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) – The campaigns of Sen. Hillary Clinton and former Sen. John Edwards will hold debate watching parties across South Carolina tonight. The field of Democratic presidential candidates will debate in New Hampshire starting at 9 p.m. tonight.
The Edwards campaign will hold watch parties in Charleston and Columbia.
The Clinton campaign said there are watch parties being organized across the state, from the Lowcountry to the Upstate. Clinton will call into the house parties following the debate as a "special guest."
As for the other top-tier Democrat, Sen. Barack Obama, campaign spokesman Kevin Griffis says his staff is hard at work preparing for this weekend's "Walk for Change II," a large-scale, statewide door-to-door canvass that will follow up on the nationwide "Walk For Change" organized by the Obama campaign in June.
– CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby
WASHINGTON (CNN) - An association of doctors and nurses will air commercials criticizing the top three Democratic presidential candidates' health care plans during Wednesday night's debate.
The ads, paid for by the California Nurses Association, National Nurses Organizing Committee and Physicians for a National Health Plan, specifically target Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York and former Sen. John Edwards, D-North Carolina. They attack the candidates for including the option for Americans to choose their own private health insurance as part of their universal coverage plans.
"Being better than the Republicans on health care reform is simply not good enough," said Rose Ann DeMoro, Executive Director of CNA/NNOC. "All the candidates' proposals keep the insurance companies at the apex of power, and the health care industry uses their enormous wealth in lobbying and campaign contributions to corrupt the public debate."
The ads will run during the debate on MSNBC in Washington, D.C. and in New Hampshire and on the New England Cable Network.
–CNN Associate Producer Lauren Kornreich
NEW YORK (CNN) – A week after traveling to London for meetings and fund-raisers, Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani moved to further increase his foreign policy standing Wednesday as he met with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani.
The private meeting happened at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York, as the United Nations General Assembly sessions wound down.
Giuliani did not comment afterwards, but his campaign called the meeting a "productive exchange of ideas."
"The Mayor was clear in his support of a unified Iraq, indicating that if he is President he will keep an American presence there for as long as is necessary," a campaign spokeswoman said.
“President Talabani explained the status of what is happening in Iraq by region – it was an optimistic report. The President also detailed the historical relationship between Northern Iraq, Iran and Syria.”
– CNN Political Desk Editor Steve Brusk
Obama campaigned in Peterborough, New Hampshire Wednesday.
PETERBOROUGH, New Hampshire (CNN) - Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama appealed for supporters to step up their efforts in New Hampshire Wednesday, one day after a CNN/WMUR poll of Granite State Democrats showed the Illinois senator trailing rival Hillary Clinton by 23 points.
"I'm hoping that you don’t just say 'Oh that was a nice speech, maybe I will vote for the guy,'" Obama told hundreds of Granite Staters assembled in a field in Peterborough. "I hope that you sign up. I hope that you decide to become a volunteer. I hope you decide to become a precinct captain. I hope that you decide to get engaged in our policy committees."
A poll released Tuesday conducted by the University of New Hampshire for CNN and WMUR showed Obama at 20 percentage points, 7 points less than where he was in July and 23 points behind New York Sen. Hillary Clinton.
But Obama told CNN he isn't concerned with the latest poll numbers.
"I never worry about polls," he said as he greeted enthusiastic supporters.
– CNN's Mark Preston and Alexander Mooney
Watch the chairman of South Carolina's Republican Party discuss Mitt Romney and the other GOP presidential candidates.
COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) – In an interview with CNN about the leading Republican presidential candidates, South Carolina GOP chairman Katon Dawson tried to explain why former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, despite investing serious resources here, is still trailing in state polls.
"You know, it's hard to tell," said Dawson. "Out there in the grassroots where we are, you have to introduce yourself, and he's had to introduce himself to South Carolina. There are other very well-known names ... [former New York City mayor] Rudy Giuliani is virtually known by the entire electorate in the Republican primary, where certainly Mitt Romney had zero name ID when he came in here. I mean nobody really knew who the governor of Massachusetts was and even the fact that he was a Republican."
Dawson compared Romney's low poll numbers to those of former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, who has also had to introduce himself to South Carolinians. But Dawson noted that Romney has spent significantly more than Huckabee.
Sen. Larry Craig is seeking to overturn his guilty plea stemming from an airport bathroom sex sting.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Larry Craig won't resign from the Senate while awaiting a judge's ruling on his effort to get a guilty plea withdrawn in a restroom sex sting, a source said Wednesday.
A judge in Minnesota was to hear arguments Wednesday afternoon in the case.
The Idaho Republican was arrested June 11 during a police sting in a Minneapolis airport men's room for allegedly making sexual overtures to an undercover male police officer. He entered a written guilty plea to a disorderly conduct charge in August.
Craig had said he would resign from the Senate if he could not get the guilty plea overturned by this Sunday.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg greets President Bush.
NEW YORK, New York (CNN) - Democrat-turned-Republican -turned-Independent Mayor Michael Bloomberg stood alongside President Bush Wednesday, as the president touted one of his main domestic priorities.
As he wrapped up his trip to New York City, Bush made a case for Congress to renew the No Child Left Behind Act, saying, “Don't go backward when it comes to educational excellence."
The New York mayor joined forty fourth and fifth graders from P.S. 76 for the announcement, and First Lady Laura Bush.
President Bush cited new results from the National Report Card showing improvements among fourth and eighth grade students in math and reading test results. The president also noted that the New York City school system recently won the Broad Prize, an award given to the urban school district that shows the greatest improvement in poor and minority student achievement. Bush said No Child Left Behind Act was a factor in the city’s progress, but praised Bloomberg for his leadership.
The president said, “The mayor is a no-nonsense guy who understands that if you set a goal, you expect to see results in achieving that goal. He knows how to ask tough questions, and he's pretty good about moving aside bureaucracy that will inhibit the people he has selected to achieve the goal.”
– CNN Political Desk Manager Steve Brusk