MANCHESTER, New Hampshire (CNN) - Dozens of slightly disgruntled potential Obama supporters were turned away Sunday morning at his first rally of the day.
At the Palace Theatre in Manchester, New Hampshire, crowds lined up and down the block as they filed through the lobby and to their seats. But capacity was set at 850.
"That's it. I'm sorry," said a woman with the theatre as she had to shut the doors.
"I can't believe we waited in line," one woman was heard saying.
Some decided to stay outside, citing Obama's campaign theme as the reason.
"Hope. We have hope," a man in an Obama hat said, laughing.
"We've come all the way from Cape Cod just for this event," another said. "And just because we got here a little late, we haven't given up hope."
Theatre staff told CNN 901 people were let in the building. The Obama campaign says 950.
Obama took the stage 35 minutes late. The campaign said the reason was a combination of their leaving the hotel ten minutes late and the fact that it was a "smaller venue."
UPDATE: Obama communications director Robert Gibbs told reporters that Obama stopped "to talk and shake hands" with a group of 30 to 50 people who were kept outside, but acknowledged that doing that is "not ideal."
"On one hand it’s a nice problem to have," Gibbs said. "But obviously we want to make sure that…as many people as possible that come are able to get in."
- CNN Political Producer Chris Welch
(CNN) - CNN will air a special encore edition of the ABC News/WMUR/Facebook presidential debates — both Republican and Democratic — Sunday at 7 p.m. ET, the network has announced.
The debates follow a full day of political coverage starting with CNN’s Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer and continuing with New Hampshire’s “Ballot Bowl” coverage throughout the afternoon.
CNN Chief National Correspondent John King is set to anchor coverage around the debate.
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(CNN) - Fox News talk show host Bill O'Reilly had a confrontation with a staffer for Barack Obama’s campaign that the aide and several eyewitnesses claim became physical.
The incident began when O’Reilly tried to get Obama’s attention after a Nashua campaign event. He allegedly began yelling at Obama’s National Trip Director Marvin Nicholson to get out of the way. O’Reilly then, according to eyewitness accounts, shoved the staffer.
Nicholson told CNN O'Reilly grabbed him by the arm and started "pushing" him. Nicholson also said that when he asked O'Reilly to stop pushing him, the talk-show host responded that he was "low class."
O’Reilly soon got Obama’s attention, and the two men spoke briefly.
"They shook hands and Mr. O'Reilly said that he thought Sen. Obama was great and that he loved him, and he'd love to have him on the show," Nicholson said. "And then the senator said that he would think about coming on the show after the primaries."
Then the Secret Service intervened to ask O’Reilly to step back behind the barricade that marked the press area.
Speaking later on Fox News, O'Reilly said he tried to "gently remove" the Obama staffer so his camera could get a shot of the Illinois senator.
"We're sorry we had to have that little confrontation," O'Reilly added, "but no one on this earth is going to block a shot on The O'Reilly Factor. It is not going to happen."
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- CNN's Chris Welch contributed to this report
MANCHESTER, New Hampshire (CNN) - If John McCain shares a debate stage with a Democratic presidential hopeful again this year, it might not be the friendliest affair - but last night’s brief meeting on-stage with his counterparts in the other party was a pleasant reunion of sorts for the Arizona senator, says a campaign aide.
"He served with all of them in either the House or Senate and they exchanged pleasantries," the staffer tells CNN’s John King.
The aide says McCain and the New York senator exchanged greetings, and he asked her to say hello to former President Clinton for him.
The staffer says Clinton, in turn, complimented McCain on his New Hampshire resurgence, and "told him he is doing a good job."
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Democrat Barack Obama has won the backing of former Sen. and 2000 Democratic presidential hopeful Bill Bradley, the Illinois senator's campaign announced Sunday.
“Barack Obama is building a broad new coalition that brings together Democrats, Independents, and Republicans by once again making idealism a central focus of our politics,” Bradley said in a statement released by Obama's campaign.
“Because of his enormous appeal to Americans of all ages and backgrounds, Obama is the candidate best positioned to win in November," he added. "Barack knows above all that unless people can once again believe in our democracy, we won’t be able to do the things that need to be done on health care and education or to break our dependence on foreign oil."
The endorsement comes two days before the crucial presidential primary in New Hampshire. The latest CNN/WMUR poll shows a dead heat in the Granite State between Obama and Hillary Clinton, each drawing 33 percent among likely Democratic voters there.
- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Democrat Hillary Clinton pointedly criticized rival Barack Obama at a crucial New Hampshire debate Saturday night, seeking to paint him as a flip-flopper on key issues.
No longer the party's clear frontrunner after her third-place showing in Iowa, Clinton went after the Illinois Democrat at the top of the debate for what she said was shifted stances on the Patriot Act and funding the Iraq war.
"Well, you've changed positions within three years on, you know, a range of issues that you put forth when you ran for the Senate, and now you have changed," Clinton said. "You said you would vote against the Patriot Act. You came to the Senate; you voted for it. You said that you would vote against funding for the Iraq war. You came to the Senate, and you voted for $300 billion of it."
"So I just think it's fair for people to understand that many of the charges that have been leveled, not just at me, but also at Sen. Edwards, are not totally, you know, unrelated to the very record you have," she added.
Obama immediately took issue with Clinton's characterization, and hit back saying, "I think the people of America are looking for are folks who are going to be straight about the issues and are going to be interested in solving problems and bringing people together."
The crucial debate came the same day a CNN/WMUR poll out of the Granite State showed the two candidates locked in a dead-heat, each drawing 33 percent of support among likely Democratic voters in the state.
- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney