January 24th, 2008
09:30 AM ET
9 years ago

Campaigner-in-chief feels a little worn out

LEXINGTON, South Carolina (CNN) - Did Bill Clinton have one of his trademark late nights on Wednesday? It sure seemed that way at a campaign event Thursday morning in Lexington, where Clinton showed up nearly an hour late to his first stop of the day.

"I feel like a little scrambled eggs this morning," a lethargic Clinton said, arriving to tepid applause. "But I will try to make sense of what I can."

Clinton said he was up late in Myrtle Beach answering three hours worth of questions from voters there, finally hitting the sack at 1 a.m.

It was indeed a sleepy affair. As reporters and audience members waited patiently through what seemed like the entire Clinton campaign soundtrack, a Clinton aide quietly removed several empty chairs from the line of sight of television cameras.

But, to be fair, Lexington County isn't exactly a Democratic stronghold: it's considered the most conservative county in South Carolina. He'll likely have a larger turnout later today at an event in heavily-Democratic Orangeburg.

- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

January 24th, 2008
09:00 AM ET
10 years ago

Huckabee struggles to keep 'scrappy little army' in fight


CNN's John King looks at Huckabee's cash-strapped campaign.

(CNN) - Mike Huckabee is working hard to keep his "scrappy little army" on the march, but with a disappointing second-place finish in South Carolina and in the middle of a resource-draining fight in Florida, the former Arkansas governor is having difficulties keeping his troops moving forward.

Huckabee's inability to turn his under-financed Iowa campaign, backed by a motivated network of evangelicals and home-schoolers, into a broad-based groundswell of support means he is short of campaign cash as he heads into the Florida Republican Primary January 29.

Despite his lack of resources, Huckabee said he is ready to compete in Florida.

Full story

Filed under: Florida • Mike Huckabee
January 24th, 2008
08:30 AM ET
10 years ago

Polls: Giuliani slipping in 'crucial' state

CNN's Dana Bash takes a look at whether Giuliani's Florida strategy is paying off. (Photo Credit: AP)

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Two new polls appear to show Republican Rudy Giuliani slipping in Florida, a state he once called "crucial" to his presidential chances.

In a survey conducted for the Miami Herald, the St. Petersburg Times, and Bay News 9, the former New York mayor only registers 15 percent among Republican primary voters. That puts him in a tie with former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who has spent little time in the state and has only a fraction of the organization Giuliani has there.

John McCain and Mitt Romney are statistically tied for the top spot in the poll - McCain's at 25 percent and Romney's at 23 percent.

Giuliani also finds himself in third place spot in a new American Research Group poll with 16 percent, a statistical tie with Mike Huckabee's 17 percent. John McCain is on top with 29 percent and Mitt Romney is second with 22 percent.

Speaking on CNN's The Situation Room Wednesday, Giuliani maintained he would win the state next Tuesday, and said his strategy of focusing exclusively on Florida over the last month will prove to be the right one.

"We are going to win in Florida, then we will be talking about exactly who made the right decisions," he said. "That's really, I am an optimist about the way you govern and an optimist about the way you run a campaign. That's the way I look at it."

In an interview Tuesday, Giuliani had appeared to downplay his focus on the state, telling an interviewer that the state would be an “important win,” but that “I don’t think any candidate ever puts himself in a corner and says, must win, have to win, must win.’’

The Miami Herald/St. Petersburg Times poll carries a margin of error of plus or minus 5.1 percent, while the ARG poll's margin of error is plus or minus four percentage points. Both were conducted January 20-22.

Related video: Watch Giuliani on Larry King Live Wednesday night

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Florida • Rudy Giuliani
January 24th, 2008
05:58 AM ET
10 years ago

TICKER MORNING EDITION: Thursday, January 24, 2008


WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton told a group of South Carolina voters Wednesday night that one of the perks of leaving the White House was the ability to say whatever's on his mind.

He seems to be taking full advantage of it.

His four-minute lecture to CNN’s Jessica Yellin on misplaced media priorities might have been more convincing if it hadn’t come surrounded by a day’s worth of headline-grabbing attack lines. The method to the week’s campaign trail madness is undeniable, and impressive: his wife hasn’t stumped in South Carolina since the debate, but the Clinton name hasn’t budged from the state’s front pages since she left. Today, she returns to South Carolina for a final 48-hour push.

By all rights, John McCain should be a marked man as the Florida race winds down. The primary season isn’t over if McCain loses the state – it just might be if he wins. But credit his opponents’ shrinking cash reserves, or the soothing effect of the Florida sunshine: the Arizona senator has yet to face a negative ad since the race shifted there. A few opposing campaigns are coasting on fumes, so a last-minute gut-check wouldn’t exactly be the race’s the biggest shock - but with less than a week to go until Election Day, the odds of actually landing a knockout punch grow slimmer by the hour.

Tonight, McCain watches his back as the Republican field faces off for the final time before Florida’s voters head to the polls.

All the Democrats are in South Carolina; Republicans are in Florida.

- CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Ticker Morning Edition
January 24th, 2008
05:56 AM ET
10 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Thursday, January 24, 2008


Compiled by Jonathan Helman
CNN Washington Bureau

USA Today: Edwards Struggles For Attention, Even In Native State
This year, the spotlights that seem perpetually focused on his rivals, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, are casting such long shadows that Edwards is having difficulty emerging from them, even in South Carolina, where he was born.

Washington Post: Democrats Attack Iraq Security Proposal
The leading Democratic presidential candidates and their allies on Capitol Hill have launched fierce attacks in recent days on a White House plan to forge a new, long-term security agreement with the Iraqi government, complaining that the administration is trying to lock in a lasting U.S. military presence in Iraq before the next president takes office.

NY Times: Voters Showing a Darker Mood Than in 2000 Race
Candidates are confronting an electorate deeply unsettled about the United States’ ability to control its own destiny.

Washington Post: Romney, McCain Take Lead in Fla.; Tax Talk Pervades
After months of debate over illegal immigration, social issues and the Iraq war, the economy and taxes have emerged as the central focus of the Republican race in Florida.

LA Times: The Chinks In Giuliani's 9/11 Armor
Giuliani's composed performance on Sept. 11 is the foundation of his quest for the presidency. But some of the chaos that hobbled rescuers that morning was rooted in his blind spots as New York's mayor. The man who titled his autobiography "Leadership" proved to be masterfully reactive to crisis but sketchier in preparing for the unknown.


Filed under: Political Hot Topics
January 24th, 2008
05:51 AM ET
10 years ago

ON THE TRAIL: Thursday, January 24, 2008


Compiled by Rebecca Sinderbrand, CNN Associate Political Editor

* Hillary Clinton is in South Carolina, where she delivers a speech on the economy in Greenville before heading to Anderson.

* John Edwards holds “Back Home, Back Roads Barnstorm” events in Greenwood and Seneca.

* Rudy Giuliani attends a rally in Boca Raton, Florida, and participates in a presidential debate there in the evening.

* Mike Huckabee participates in the presidential debate in Boca Raton.

* John McCain holds a fundraiser in the morning followed by town halls and media availabilities in Palm Beach and West Palm Beach. Later he attends a pre-debate party in Deerfield Beach, and participates in the presidential debate in Boca Raton.

* Barack Obama is in South Carolina, where he attends a campaign event in Kingstree, a roundtable discussion in Beaufort, and rallies in Beaufort and North Charleston.

* Mitt Romney attends a pre-debate rally in Miami, and participates in the presidential debate in Boca Raton.

Filed under: On the Trail
January 24th, 2008
05:45 AM ET
10 years ago

CNN=Politics Daily

CNN=Politics Daily is The Best Political Podcast from the Best Political Team.

CNN=Politics Daily is The Best Political Podcast from the Best Political Team.

(CNN) - A new round in the political slugfest is underway as the presidential candidates push full force toward Super Tuesday.

In the latest installment of CNN=Politics Daily, former president Bill Clinton shoots back at the Obama campaign and the media, alleging he’s been falsely accused of playing the race card. CNN’s Jessica Yellin reports on the latest fallout.

Meanwhile, the Obama campaign insists the Illinois senator is the one who’s being targeted by hardball politics from the Clinton camp. Candy Crowley set the scene in South Carolina.

Finally, the hunt for delegates is underway. Courting voters and winning majorities is no longer as important as winning delegates in the Super Tuesday states, says Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider. He explains who the delegates are and which candidates they will likely help.

Click here to subscribe to CNN=Politics Daily.

- CNN’s Emily Sherman

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