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Making News Today…
For Edwards: 98 down, one to go
WASHINGTON (CNN) - As former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards prepares to campaign through the last of the 99 counties in Iowa, the Democratic presidential candidate delivers a major speech in Des Moines calling for a "social compact" between businesses, government and families.
On his tour through Iowa, Edwards has preached his vision of "One America" by talking about universal health care, reforming tax laws and better education. In his speech today, he'll discuss retirement benefits that stay with workers even if they change jobs.
"In America today, we need action measured by conviction, not just words," Edwards is expected to say. "In this election, you face a choice between honest leadership and say anything politics, between conviction and calculation, between strength and compromise. Let me tell you something: it takes strength to say no to the lobbyists and special interests – it's much easier to just go along to get along. But I will never compromise my principles for the sake of politics."
Edwards has already campaigned in 98 counties and he'll hit the 99th on Saturday.
–CNN Associate Producer Lauren Kornreich
McCain: 40th anniversary of capture by North Vietnamese
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Forty years ago, John McCain, then a Lt. Commander in the Navy, was shot down and captured by the North Vietnamese. Today, he commemorates the occasion as a Republican presidential candidate in Iowa with Col. Bud Day, a man credited with saving his life.
McCain's five-and-a-half years as a prisoner of war in the infamous "Hanoi Hilton" has come up throughout his campaign, notably in his staunch anti-torture stance. But it didn't stop his from taking that experience and mocking Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, in a new campaign ad.
"A few days ago, Sen. Clinton tried to spend one million dollars on the Woodstock concert museum," McCain said. "Now my friends, I wasn't there. I'm sure it was a cultural and pharmaceutical event. I was, I was tied up at the time."
–CNN Associate Producer Lauren Kornreich
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Political Hot Topics
(Today's top political stories from news organizations across the country)
Compiled by Lindsey Pope
CNN Washington Bureau
HUCKABEE, MCCAIN ONLY PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES AT IOWA AARP FORUM: Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said Thursday night that he regrets the fact that he and Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, were the only two Republican presidential candidates to show up at the AARP-sponsored 'Divided We Fail' forum held in Iowa. CNN.com: Huckabee and McCain ask 'Where's everybody else?'
NH STEERING AWAY FROM DECEMBER PRIMARY: Secretary of State William Gardner said yesterday that key developments in Iowa and Michigan this week could clear the way for New Hampshire to hold its first-in-the-nation presidential primary in early January, rather than December. New Hampshire Union-Leader: NH primary: Room to breathe?
"THE DIRTY SECRET IN AMERICA TODAY IS THAT MEDICARE AND SOCIAL SECURITY ARE GOING BROKE.": Two Republican presidential candidates had some tough talk Thursday about Social Security's future at a forum sponsored by the nation's largest group for seniors. USA Today: McCain, Huckabee talk tough on social security
"SECOND TIER" REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES GAINING STRENGTH: A new Field Poll out today finds that Rudy Giuliani has lost a sizable chunk of his lead over other Republicans in the race for California's primary voters, while so-called second-tier candidates like Mike Huckabee, Ron Paul, Duncan Hunter and Tom Tancredo show an increased combined strength. LA Times' Top of the Ticket: New California poll finds Rudy's support falls 10 points
CLINTON: "ORGANIZED", "METHODICAL", AND "DISCIPLINED": Hillary Rodham Clinton needs her rest. She shuns the nocturnal habits of her husband — the 2 a.m. staff calls, the all-hours games of hearts. “It doesn’t suit my body rhythms,” said Mrs. Clinton, who typically sleeps six or seven hours, sometimes beside the briefing book she had been reading. New York Times: A No-Nonsense Style Honed as Advocate
MCCAIN RIPS GIULIANI AS "INEXPERIENCED": Rudolph W. Giuliani’s statement on Wednesday that he was uncertain whether waterboarding, a simulated drowning technique, was torture drew a sharp rebuke yesterday from Senator John McCain, who said that his failure to call it torture reflected his inexperience. New York Times: McCain Rebukes Giuliani on Waterboarding Remark
UNLIKE CHIEF RIVALS, ROMNEY NOT INTERESTED IN PERSONALLY EXECUTING OSAMA BIN LADEN: Presidential candidate Mitt Romney said Thursday that, unlike Republican rivals Rudy Giuliani and John McCain, he will not take part in the execution of Osama bin Laden if the terrorist leader is caught. DC Examiner: Romney says he won’t take part in execution of Osama bin Laden
UNDERDOG CANDIDATE, RON PAUL PREPARES FOR MEDIA BLITZ: If media muscle is any measure of a candidate, Republican Representative Ron Paul of Texas is getting ready to flex his. New York Times: Flush With New Millions, Underdog Vies to Compete
ADVISOR BRINGS GIULIANI, STEVE FORBES TOGETHER: A decade earlier, when Forbes made the flat tax part of the policy discussion, Giuliani dismissed it out of hand. Now, Giuliani was amenable. "The flat tax," he said, "would make a lot of sense." Washington Post: Giuliani's Policy Professor
SOME GOP CANDIDATES DECLARE SOLIDARITY: One thing seemed clear Thursday night at the AARP-sponsored 'Divided We Fail' candidate forum–Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee like each other. CNN.com: GOP candidates give praise…to each other
EDWARDS ATTACKS INSURANCE COMPANIES: Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards targeted big insurance companies Thursday as he continued to advance his plans for universal health care. USA Today: Edwards targets big insurance companies
SOME FORMER ADVISORS OF BILL CLINTON CROSSING OVER TO OBAMA CAMP: When Deval Patrick called on a sea of nearly 10,000 people to support Barack Obama for president, he became only the latest in a series of high-profile officials from Bill Clinton's administration endorsing, advising, or working for Obama, Hillary Clinton's rival for the Democratic nomination. Boston Globe: Obama luring ex-Bill Clinton aides
OBAMA USES FIREY LANGUAGE IN LA HEADQUARTERS ANNOUNCEMENT HAS SOME IN CALIFORNIA STEAMING: The presidential campaign of Barack Obama is gearing up for the big official opening of its Los Angeles campaign headquarters Sunday… LA Times' Top of the Ticket: Obama plans L.A. HQ opening - with unfortunate words
ANALYSIS: '08 RACE HAS BECOME ABOUT HILLARY: Memo to the Democratic presidential candidates: You can still beat Hillary Rodham Clinton, but you better act fast. Quad City Times: Analysis: It's Clinton's Race to Lose...
CANDIDATES STILL RAISING CAMPAIGN CASH DESPITE CALIFORNIA BLAZES: While California burns, top presidential candidates apparently think the Golden State is still golden – at least for campaign events and fundraising. San Francisco Chronicle: Fires provide no break from GOP fundraisers
ROMNEY TAKES HIS BUSINESS SAVY TO THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL: Mitt Romney built a fortune by taking over troubled companies and making the tough business decisions and shrewd financial adjustments to turn them into winning investments for himself and investors in his firm, Bain Capital. Politico: Minding business pays off for Romney
OBAMA ADDING SOME SOUL TO HIS '08 RUN: Barack Obama's presidential campaign on Friday begins a tour of gospel singers around this Bible Belt state to praise the Lord and offer testimonials on behalf of the candidate, a modern twist on a style of old-time politicking right out of the film "O Brother Where Art Thou." Chicago Tribune: Obama hopes gospel tour will help chances with black voters
BLOGS TRANSFORMING '08 DISCUSSION: Last spring, two hours after he used his Des Moines Register blog to ridicule a suggestion by a Hillary Clinton aide that she skip the Iowa caucuses, David Yepsen's phone rang. It was the former first lady. Washington Post: Mainstream Blogs Open Floodgates for Political Coverage
"ROCK THE CAUCUS" EYES FIRST TIME VOTERS: A nonpartisan effort to encourage young voters to take part in the Iowa caucuses will seek to secure pledges from high school seniors and college students. Des Moines Register: Youths told: Give pledge on caucus
STUDENT SPEAKS OUT AGAINST PROFESSOR: A politically conservative student armed with a video camera and a Web site is trying to force a Democratic congressional candidate out of his teaching job at Central Michigan University. AP: Student hounds prof running for Congress
“OUR MESSAGE SOUNDS LIKE AN AUDIT REPORT ON DEFENSE LOGISTICS,”: Democrats are losing the battle for voters’ hearts because the party’s message lacks emotional appeal, according to a widely circulated critique of House Democratic communications strategy. The Hill: Internal Dem memo faults party message
IS THERE ENOUGH ROOM IN WASHINGTON FOR BOTH NANCY AND HILLARY?: Hillary Rodham Clinton and Nancy Pelosi are the two most prominent women in American politics today — powerfully united by intense disdain for George Bush’s policies in Iraq and elsewhere around the world. Politico: The Clinton/Pelosi fault line
CANDIDATES PICK UP CAMPAIGN CASH FROM AMERICA'S PASTTIME: As the Boston Red Sox and Colorado Rockies play for baseball's championship, a different kind of World Series is going on in the race for the White House. USA Today: Baseball bosses play on political field
EX GOVERNORS MAY FACE OFF IN VIRGINIA SENATE RACE: A matchup between two former governors appears likely after 11th District Rep. Thomas M. Davis III withdrew his name yesterday from the 2008 U.S. Senate race. Richmond Times Dispatch: Warner, Gilmore likely to face off
NEW MEXICO MAYOR TO ANNOUNCE SUPPORT FOR DOMENICI'S SENATE SEAT: Albuquerque Mayor Martin Chavez, a leading Democratic candidate to replace retiring Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), is set Thursday to unveil a cadre of supporters, which suggests that both Gov. Bill Richardson (D) and Lt. Gov. Diane Denish (D) will take a pass on the 2008 Senate race in New Mexico. Roll Call: Chavez Consolidating Democratic Establishment Support in New Mexico
RANGEL UNVEILS TAX RELIEF PLAN: The Democrats' top tax-writer yesterday introduced a massive plan to give tax relief to 90 million working families, a long-anticipated tax-code overhaul that Republicans criticized as the largest proposed tax increase in U.S. history. Washington Times: Rangel pitches tax 'relief'
CONGRESS TO SPEND THE HOLIDAYS ON THE HILL?: House members hoping to spend quality time with their families during the holiday season got some bad news this week: they may be in Washington days before both Thanksgiving and Christmas. The Hill: Votes deep into December
STATE DEPARTMENT: "GIVE [THE LOS ANGELES TIMES] WHAT WE CAN AND THEN DUMP THE REST ON BLACKWATER…WE CAN'T WIN THIS ONE.": Even as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice defended her department's oversight of private security contractors, new evidence surfaced Thursday that the U.S. sought to conceal details of Blackwater shootings of Iraqi civilians more than two years ago. LA Times: Officials balked on '05 Blackwater inquiry
CIA, THE TERRORBUSTERS: The CIA, where secret agents are sometimes known as “spooks” and which uses “ghost prisons” overseas for enhanced interrogations, now appears to be taking a lead from a supernatural comedy film. The Times of London: Who you gonna call? Terrorbusters
On the Trail:
Compiled by Lauren Kornreich
CNN Washington Bureau
* Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, commemorates the 40th anniversary of the day he was shot down over Hanoi and captured with a rally with Col. Bud Day at the Clarion Hotel and Conference Center in Sioux City, Iowa. Later, he holds a meet and greet at the Pizza Ranch in Sheldon and hosts a town hall meeting at Alpha Omega Publications in Rock Rapids.
* Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, holds a "Countdown to Change" fundraiser at the Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio.
* Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney holds an "Ask Mitt Anything" town hall breakfast at the Sheraton West Des Moines Hotel and is a guest on Iowa Press on Iowa Public Television in Johnston. Later, Romney holds "Ask Mitt Anything" town hall meetings in Mt. Pleasant and Fort Madison.
* Sen. Joe Biden, D-Delaware, participates in the AARP "Divided We Fail" forum at the Puritan Conference Center in Manchester, New Hampshire. Later, he keynotes the Salem Democrats' fall gala at the Brookstone Event Center in Derry.
* Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards holds a discussion with STAR*PAC at First Christian Church and delivers a major speech at the Temple for Performing Arts in Des Moines, Iowa. Later, Edwards holds town hall meetings in Boone, Iowa Falls and Forest City.
* Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee attends the "Red Ribbon Week" Rally at Woodbury Central High School in Moville, Iowa. Later, he plays bass guitar with his band, Capitol Offense, and special guest star Barry Boudreau at "Rockin' in the Caucuses: 2007-2008 Road to the White House" at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake.
* Texas Rep. Ron Paul and former Alaska Sen. Mike Gravel address a conference hosted by the Arab American Institute in Dearborn, Michigan.
* Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, files his candidacy papers to participate in the New Hampshire primary at the State House in Concord.
* Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, also visits Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa.
* Elizabeth Edwards campaigns in New Hampshire with stops in Brentwood, Concord and Milton.
* Michelle Obama meets with local Democrats in Iowa. She stops in Hampton, Eagle Grove, Algona and Mason City.
* The Senate Radio-Television Correspondents' Gallery Daybook
* The House Radio-Television Correspondents' Gallery Daybook