"Ron Paul becomes the $6 million man."
That's the headline on The Politico about the Republican presidential candidate's astounding fund-raising accomplishment yesterday.
Paul did it again - raising more than $6 million online in a single day. That follows a fund-raiser last month that brought in about $4.2 million in a single day. The campaign says it’s raised more than $18 million this quarter. This could very well mean Paul will out raise his Republican rivals for the 4th quarter and be able to fund a presence in a lot of the states voting on February 5th.
Ron Paul has the kind of grass roots organization politicians dream about. In addition to his phenomenal fund-raising abilities, mostly among small individual campaign contributors, he has a devoted following that in any given moment can almost overpower the Internet.
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CNN's Mary Snow takes a look Ron Paul's "Boston Tea Party" over the weekend.
WASHINGTON (CNN) – The campaign of Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul said Monday that it had raised more than $6 million on Sunday – a sum that may be the largest single-day fundraising total in U.S. history.
The haul pads an already-massive campaign war chest. The Texas congressman has pulled in roughly $16 million for the fourth quarter, according to his campaign.
The congressman, the only outspokenly anti-war GOP presidential candidate, has garnered a major following online, and consistently pulled in healthy fundraising totals, but has had trouble converting that support into higher poll showings. He appears to have single-digit support in most recent polls of Republicans nationwide, and in early-voting states.
Earlier this year, Mitt Romney’s presidential exploratory committee said it had pulled in around $6.5 million in a 24-hour period, though that haul included both actual donations and pledges for future donations. The current record belongs to Democrat John Kerry, whose campaign received $5.7 million in a single day during the 2004 presidential race.
– CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand
Iowa's first lady endorsed Edwards Monday.
DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN) - Iowa First Lady Mari Culver offered her personal endorsement to former Sen. John Edwards at an afternoon campaign rally in Des Moines Monday.
Earlier, Mari Culver told the Des Moines Register she was acting on her own, and not speaking on behalf of her husband, Democratic Gov. Chet Culver.
"We as Democrats have the best field of candidates running that we've ever had,” Culver told a crowd of about 150 Edwards supporters. “Like you, however, I can only select one candidate to stand with on January 3. That is why today I publicly announce my support for John Edwards for president."
Culver, who also endorsed Edwards during his 2004 presidential bid, said one reason she really liked the former senator was his wife Elizabeth. She also said she was impressed with his commitment to fighting poverty, adding that "most importantly, John Edwards can win" - both in the caucuses and the general election.
In 2004, Christy Vilsack, wife of then-Gov. Tom Vilsack, endorsed John Kerry - a nod that some analysts credit with helping the Massachusetts senator come from behind to win the Democratic caucuses.
The high-profile endorsement comes just a day after the Des Moines Register snubbed Edwards, their 2004 pick, in favor of presidential rival Hillary Clinton. Political analyst Stu Rothenberg told CNN Monday’s endorsement is “an attempt to minimize the damage of an endorsement he got four years ago and didn't get this time.
"In terms of this endorsement dramatically changing the race, it ain't gonna do it," said Rothenberg.
–CNN Sr. Political Producer Matthew Hoye
Iowa Rep. Steve King is backing Thompson.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Iowa Republican Rep. Steve King has decided to back Fred Thompson's bid for the White House, the former Tennessee senator announced Monday.
"Congressman King's leadership in support of the sanctity of life and his efforts in the fight against illegal immigration have made him one of Iowa's great Republican leaders," Thompson said in a statement. "He's a tireless fighter for the 5th district of Iowa and I'm honored by his support. I look forward to working with Congressman King over the next three weeks and into 2008 in support of the traditional conservative values he and I share."
King's support of Thompson comes even though the three-term congressman shares a close relationship - and striking resemblance - to another GOP presidential hopeful: Colorado Rep. Tom Tancredo.
Iowa's other Republican congressman, Rep. Tom Latham, has not endorsed a presidential candidate.
– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Rudy Giuliani’s campaign is pulling spots from the pricey Boston ad market – a key avenue for reaching voters in neighboring New Hampshire.
Last week, the mayor’s Granite State allies told CNN that the heavy ad buys had not moved poll numbers as much as the campaign had hoped.
The former New York City mayor, who has been the leader in most national polls of Republican primary voters, has struggled in the early-voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire. His campaign has said they are focusing on Florida, which votes January 29, and on states that head to the polls February 5.
Giuliani aides, who say the campaign still intends to compete in the Granite State, told CNN that the decision to cut television ad buys there by almost half is a "resource adjustment" designed to preserve their fundraising war chest for future contests.
"The reality is that one of our objectives has always been to keep the race wide open until February 5. We've always looked at this from a longer-term, national perspective,” said a campaign official. “We have to constantly marshal our resources for Florida and February 5, while keeping options open for changes in the early states.”
This week, Giuliani is scheduled to spend two days out of five away from the trail, fundraising.
–CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand
Watch Lieberman endorse McCain Monday morning.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - The founder of the centrist Democratic Leadership Council released a statement Monday expressing his disappointment with Joe Lieberman’s decision to endorse Republican presidential candidate John McCain.
The Connecticut senator chaired the DLC for several years in the 90s.
“I am very saddened by Senator Lieberman’s choice, and profoundly disagree with it,” wrote Al From. “We need to elect a Democratic president in 2008.”
The DLC had come to Lieberman’s defense in 2006, when the senator faced a successful primary challenge from anti-war candidate Ned Lamont. In an op-ed, policy director Ed Kilgore described Lieberman’s opponents as "fundamentalist" liberals bent on a "purge" of the former Democratic vice presidential candidate because of his bi-partisan views.
Earlier: Lieberman officially backs McCain
McCain gets tough on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in a new South Carolina radio ad.
COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) - Sen. John McCain's campaign, sensing new momentum after a slew of high-profile endorsements, is up with a new radio ad in South Carolina that attacks Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for saying in April that the war in Iraq is "lost."
McCain's first ad in the state it echoes two familiar themes from his stump speech: that Democrats in Congress lack resolve on military matters, and that McCain is the most electable Republican in the presidential race.
"Seven months ago, Democrat majority leader Harry Reid said the war in Iraq was lost," the ad begins. "Well, he was wrong."
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, McCain's most prominent booster in the state, speaks for the majority of the spot, saying "the troop surge is working" and that "we need a president prepared to win."
Graham says "no candidate can match his record of service" and that McCain is "the only Republican who can beat Hillary Clinton in the general election."
The ad is another signal that the Arizona senator's campaign is stepping up its efforts here in advance of the January 19 Republican primary - a contest that will be crucial for him were he to win the New Hampshire primary a week earlier.
A McCain spokesman said the ad buy amounts to "1,000 spots over a concentrated period" and that it's the beginning of a “larger advertising program" in the state.
– CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama is set to get the backing of Iowa Rep. David Loebsack Monday, an endorsement that could give the Democratic presidential candidate a boost of momentum with less than three weeks until the state’s caucuses.
Loebsack is slated to make the announcement in Des Moines later Monday.
The endorsement - heavily courted by many of the presidential candidates - means the state's Democratic congressional delegation is now evenly split among the three major contenders. Rep. Bruce Braley announced earlier this month he was endorsing former Sen. John Edwards, while Rep. Leonard Boswell said last week he is supporting Sen. Hillary Clinton.
Meanwhile the Des Moines Register - the state's largest newspaper - endorsed Clinton over the weekend.
Clinton appeared on CNN's American Morning Monday.
(CNN) – The polls may be tightening in Iowa and New Hampshire, but Democrat Hillary Clinton tells CNN she isn’t concerned. “I just don't pay attention to those snapshots. I know the press does and I guess that's a tool that you try to use, but that's not how I judge how we're doing.
“I've done this a very long time and I never believe that any election is at all predictable, let alone inevitable,” the New York senator told American Morning anchor Kiran Chetry Monday.
And she continued a recent campaign attempt to lower expectations around her showing in early primary states.
“There's a lot of excitement and energy in my campaign, and I'm very confident that we're going to do well, but you know, obviously, this is a very abbreviated, intense process,” said Clinton.
“It starts on January 3rd, in the Iowa caucuses and I guess it ends sometime late on February 5th, after California on the west coast vote. So I’m in it for this entire month,” she said, adding she was “very confident and optimistic about the outcome.”
One milestone Clinton was excited about was this weekend’s Des Moines Register endorsement, telling CNN she was “pumped up” about the nod. “The editorial board of the Des Moines Register put all of the candidates through a grueling process, asking a lot of tough questions, evaluating us, doing independent research, and their editorial makes the case for my candidacy, that I'm ready to lead.”
Romney's new mailer calls Huckabee a "tax and spend governor."
COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) – Mitt Romney is on the air in South Carolina with a slew of upbeat television ads, but in mailboxes he's starting to draw some sharp contrasts with his rivals. Especially former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee
Romney's campaign in South Carolina has now sent out a two direct mail attacks on his Republican opponents, with key emphasis on Huckabee, the current frontrunner in Iowa and South Carolina.
Last week, Romney sent out an immigration mailer in the state hitting nearly all of his Republican rivals on immigration, claiming that Huckabee supports "de facto amnesty" and "special benefits for illegals."
This time, the former Massachusetts governor is talking taxes. A new Romney mail piece obtained by CNN takes on Huckabee and former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani, whose record is listed under the banner "Big City, Big Spender."
But Huckabee is the main target, with the Romney mailer calling him a "tax and spend governor" and highlighting his "21 tax increases as governor." (Romney, meanwhile, has a "record of results.")
The mailer's bullet-points draw liberally from the Club for Growth, the anti-tax group that has been hammering Huckabee for months over his fiscal record as governor.
Romney's mail in South Carolina has come a long way from the piece he sent out just a few weeks ago that failed to classify Huckabee as a "major candidate."