For one voter, the choice is down to just two candidates.
35,000 FEET OVER THE SOUTH (CNN) – From the middle seat of a cross country flight to Atlanta, Cynthia Oglesby studied a newspaper account of Thursday night's CNN debate in Las Vegas.
A case worker on the graveyard shift outside Los Angeles, she missed the event live because of work, but was eager to see the details.
The 50-year-old mother of two grown children has been closely watching the presidential campaign. She wants to see California make a difference in the February 5 primaries.
"You do your homework, and then you don't lose any sleep over your choice", she said.
Blunt and plain-spoken (she told a reporter on the plane he looked older than his age), Oglesby assessed a race for her that's down to two candidates. She's narrowed her choice to Sen. Hillary Clinton or Sen. Barack Obama.
"I like that lady", she said, pointing to a photograph of Clinton, "and not because she's a woman."
Olgesby said she has followed Clinton since her days as first lady, noting "I know she'd be a better president than her husband."
She cites experience and intelligence, and a "gut feeling" for liking Clinton. "She has the country's best interests at heart. Maybe we haven't gotten some of the answers we should have from her, but she's been pretty straight forward. She's been evasive on some things, but they all have. You're not going to have answers for everthing."
She says she also likes Obama, but "he's got to show me something. I'm not sold on him at this point."
Romney's campaign has asked the New Hampshire attorney general to investigate the calls.
WASHINGTON (CNN) — Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney called reports of anti-Mormon phone calls made to voters in New Hampshire "un-American" Friday, shortly after his campaign said it has formally asked the state's attorney general to investigate the matter.
"I've seen over the last few weeks more and more reports of e-mails, of literature being passed out, and now push polls which attack me on the basis of religion and I think that's very, very disappointing and un-American," Romney said while campaigning in Nevada.
According to the Associated Press, potential voters in both New Hampshire and Iowa have received anonymous phone calls designed to spread a negative image of the former Massachusetts governor.
Specifically, the calls raise questions about his Mormon faith, and the deferments he received from the Vietnam War because he was doing missionary work in France.
In a statement released earlier in the day, Romney Communications Director Matt Rhoades said the calls were "repulsive."
"There is no excuse for these attacks," Rhoades added. "Gov. Romney is campaigning as an optimist who wants to lead the nation. These attacks are just the opposite. They are ugly and divisive."
Rhoades also said New Hampshire Sen. Judd Gregg, who is a chairman of Romney's campaign in the Granite State, has asked state Attorney General Kelly Ayotte to immediately open an investigation into the matter.
“New Hampshire voters are politically sophisticated enough to see through these types of negative campaign tactics and strongly resent this type of campaigning in our state," Gregg said. "I know Attorney General Kelly Ayotte will see through this case with the seriousness it deserves in a thorough and timely fashion.”
CNN is moving its presidential debate production operation to Florida for the Republican CNN/YouTube debate.
LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN) - Last night, it was the center of the political universe. But today it’s back to normal.
CNN and the Nevada Democratic Party held their presidential debate last night at the Cox Pavilion on the campus of the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. Inside the pavilion a crowd of some two thousand watched the seven Democratic White House hopefuls spar as they answered questions from CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, Campbell Brown, John Roberts and audience members.
Today the inside of the pavilion is filled with workers breaking down the debate set. The set is being packed up and will be moved to St. Petersburg, Florida. That’s where CNN and YouTube will hold a Republican presidential debate on November 28.
- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser
Rudy Giuliani campaigns in Henderson, Nevada
LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN) - Now that the Democrats are done debating in Las Vegas, it's time for the next act. Bring on the elephants.
A new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll of likely Nevada Republican caucus goers shows Rudy Giuliani in first place in the choice for a presidential nominee.
The former New York City mayor was the first choice of 29 percent in the survey out Friday.
Giuliani was campaigning in the Silver State earlier this week and he said that "we want to make sure that we give ourselves every chance to win Nevada."
Mitt Romney, who's campaigning in Las Vegas Friday, is in second place, at 21 percent. The former Massachusetts governor is followed by former Senator from Tennessee Fred Thompson with 14 percent and Senator John McCain of Arizona at 12 percent. Read the complete poll results (PDF)
The remaining GOP presidential candidates are all in single digits: Texas Rep. Ron Paul 8 percent, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee 4 percent, California Rep. Duncan Hunter 4 percent, and Colorado Rep. Tom Tancredo 3 percent.
- CNN's Bill Schneider and Paul Steinhauser
(CNN) - In this episode of CNN's All Access go behind the scenes at CNN's Democratic presidential debate in Las Vegas.
Get a glimpse of how CNN's Political Unit puts together a large production and hear from Wolf Blitzer, John Roberts, Campbell Brown, and the Political Unit's Director Sam Feist.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - With over 20 presidential debates so far in this election season, the candidates have gotten their fair share of zingers and one-liners in. CNN's Jeanne Moos takes a look at the 10 most memorable ones.
Among those on the list:
– Mike Huckabee: "We've had a Congress that spends money like John Edwards at a beauty shop." (May 15)
– Joe Biden: "Rudy Giuliani - there's only three things he mentions in a sentence: a noun, a verb, and 9/11." (October 30)
– Mitt Romney: "This is a lot like ‘Law and Order.' It has a huge cast. The series seems to go on forever, and Fred Thompson shows up at the end." (October 9)
– Joe Biden: "Dennis [Kucinich], the thing I like most about you is your wife." (July 23)
– John McCain (on Clinton's support of a Woodstock museum): "I wasn't there. I am sure it was a cultural and pharmaceutical event. I was tied up at the time." (October 21)
Watch Jeanne Moos' report for the complete list and add your own suggestions in the comment section below!
Or better yet, catch the Democrats go at it in Las Vegas – again this weekend: Sat. & Sun., 6 & 10 p.m. ET. It was the most watched debate of the primary season.
Huckabee continues to get good news out of Iowa.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new Iowa poll indicates Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is nearly tied for first with rival Mitt Romney, the latest in a string of Hawkeye State polls showing good news for the former Arkansas governor.
Huckabee draws support from 24 percent of likely Republican caucus-goers in a new Des Moines Register poll released Friday. That puts him only 2 percentage points behind former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Meanwhile, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson are tied in third place with 11 percent. Arizona Sen. John McCain is only slightly behind with 10 percent.
But with 48 days to go before the January 3 caucus, the poll also found 13 percent of Republicans are completely undecided.
On the Democratic side, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton is at 27 percent, holding a 6 point lead over both Illinois Sen. Barack Obama and a 7 point lead over former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson draws 12 percent
The poll surveyed 1200 likely caucus-goers, 600 from each party, and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
- CNN Political Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN) - Hot on the heels of CNN's presidential Democratic debate at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, the candidates made their way to a ballroom at the Paris Hotel on Las Vegas's famed Strip for the Clark County Democratic Party's Jefferson Jackson dinner.
Billed by Nevada Congresswoman Shelley Berkley as the "biggest event in Clark County Democratic party history," candidates took to the stage one by one to address an electric crowd of 2,200 Nevada Democrats, including some 80% of Clark County's precinct captains for the January 19 caucus.
As a birthday gift, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson spoke first and used his Western credentials as a way of relating to the Nevadans, the first Western voters of the primary and caucus season. Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich chose an issue close to Nevada's heart, touting his record of voting against turning nearby Yucca Mountain into a nuclear waste site.
Few eyebrows were raised when Senator Barack Obama of Illinois went after frontrunner Senator Hillary Clinton of New York. He took several thinly veiled shots at his main rival saying, "Telling the American people what we think they want to hear instead of what they need to hear just won't do. Poll testing our position because we're afraid of what Mitt or Rudy might say about us just won't do."
Sen. Hillary Clinton
LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN) - Sen. Hillary Clinton stepped into the ring Thursday in this city known for prize fights, successfully beating back an onslaught of punches thrown from the left and right as her opponents sought to rattle the front-runner seven weeks before the Iowa caucuses.
Clinton, who entered this Democratic debate vulnerable following a lackluster performance two weeks ago, came out fighting in the first round.
For the New York Democrat, a good defense was a strong offense, and she sought to silence her critics who stood just feet away.
"I don't mind taking hits on my record, on issues," she said. "But when somebody starts throwing mud, at least we can hope that it's both accurate and not right out of the Republican playbook."