(CNN) - Sen. John McCain sharply criticized calls for withdrawal from Iraq, telling a Missouri audience of the Veterans of Foreign Wars that those statements were politically opportunistic and strategically irresponsible.
“[Withdrawal] may appear to be the easier course of action, but it is a much more reckless one, and it does them no credit even if it gives them an advantage in the next election,” the presumptive Republican nominee said in a speech at the National World War I Museum.
McCain also asserted that major redeployment of troops from Iraq was really a policy of “withdraw and re-invade” because “trouble will come immediately.” He also warned of calamity should the United States withdraw from Iraq, he defended the record of recent progress and praised General David Petraeus, who is slated to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee Tuesday.
(CNN) — John McCain said Sunday night he hasn't personally seen signals Condoleezza Rice is interested in running as vice president, following a report the Secretary of State is angling for the No. 2 spot on the Republican presidential ticket.
"I missed those signals," McCain told reporters on his campaign plane. "I think she’s a great American, I think there’s very little that I can say that isn’t anything but the utmost praise for a great American citizen, who served as a role model to so many millions of people in this country and around the world."
The Arizona senator's comments come after Dan Senor, a leading Republican strategist, suggested on ABC Sunday that Rice is mounting a behind-the-scenes campaign to be McCain's running mate.
"Condi Rice has been actively, actually in recent weeks, campaigning for this," Senor, a former Bush administration official said. Senor cited Rice's recent appearance at the weekly meeting of Americans for Tax Reform — a leading organization of Republican insiders led by Grover Norquist — as evidence she is attempting to cozy up to the conservative elite.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Bush indicated he will force Congress to take up a free trade agreement between the United States and Colombia in an appearance at the White House Monday.
The move will require Congress to vote on the agreement within 90 working days.
Bush said the agreement would "advance America's national security interests in a critical region" and "strengthen a courageous ally in our hemisphere," as well as help the U.S. economy.
From Randy Kaye, Anderson Cooper 360 Correspondent
When I interviewed Philadelphia’s Mayor Michael Nutter a couple of weeks ago he seemed a bit uncomfortable with all the questions about why he endorsed Hillary Clinton. After all, Nutter is African American and finds himself at the center of a debate about whether high profile African Americans should automatically be endorsing Barack Obama.
WASHINGTON (CNN) – Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, John McCain and the nearly 20-plus other presidential hopefuls were not the only politicians participating in the money chase last year. Congressional candidates – incumbents and challengers – raised more than $500 million for their own campaigns in 2007, according to a new analysis released by the Federal Election Commission.
After crunching the numbers, the FEC concluded that candidates running for the Senate raised $164.5 million last year, while those seeking House seats took in nearly $343 million. The 2007 House total is a 22 percent increase from 2005 – the most recent comparable year. As the FEC notes it is difficult to compare Senate data to previous election cycles because different states hold contests every two years.
The FEC looked at 102 Senate and 929 House candidates.
Read the highlights after the jump
(CNN) - The Democratic presidential race is tightening in the key state of Pennsylvania, according to a new CNN analysis of recent polls there.
In the latest CNN "poll of polls," Hillary Clinton now holds a 7 point lead over Obama, 49 percent to 42 percent. Nine percent remain unsure of their vote.
That gap is 4 points narrower than a similar CNN poll of polls conducted Friday. In that average, Clinton held an 11 point lead, 51 percent to 40 percent.
The most recent poll of polls included recent surveys from the American Research Group, Muhlenberg College, and Quinnipiac University.
A decisive win in Pennsylvania's April 22 primary vote is seen as crucial for Clinton as she seeks to finish the primary season with enough momementum to convince the party's undecided superdelegates to give her the nomination.
(CNN) – Liberal radio talk show host Ed Schultz is sticking by his controversial comments about Sen. John McCain.
Schultz called the presumptive Republican nominee a “warmonger” at a North Dakota Democratic Party event last Friday and did not back away from the charge Monday morning.
“Labeling a candidate is not being disrespectful. And his policies fit the description, there’s no question about that,” Schultz told CNN’s John Roberts on American Morning, pointing to the Arizona senator’s positions on Iraq, Iran and Russia.
Schultz also took issue with McCain’s voting record on veterans’ benefits since 2001. “He has kicked the veteran to the side of the road like road kill with his votes,” Schultz told Roberts.
The Obama campaign distanced itself from Schultz’s initial comments Saturday, a response which Sen. McCain called “satisfactory” Sunday.
–CNN Associate Producer Martina Stewart
WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Bush is planning to address the nation Thursday morning about the Iraq war, according to sources in the Bush administration and on Capitol Hill.
The address will come after Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker wrap up two days of testimony to Congress.
Republican and Democratic officials said the president is expected to discuss the administration's decision to reduce combat tours of duty from 15 months to 12 months, as well as the future in Iraq.
MISSOULA, Montana (CNN) - Hillary Clinton on Sunday predicted “more twists and turns” in the primary battle with Barack Obama during a campaign event in Montana - one of the last two states to weigh in on the Democratic presidential race on June 3.
At a town hall meeting in Missoula, the senator from New York said the race is so close that “we don’t know how it is going to turn out.”
"This campaign has been exciting and incredibly energizing - for people all across the country - and I believe with all my heart that it is good for the Democratic Party to give the people of Montana a chance to vote in June, to have your vote counted and your voices heard," she also said.
While listing her credentials to be president, Clinton also said people vote for different reasons, including how a person looks or their hairstyle.
"And that is another difference, you know how long it takes me to get ready than my two opponents - I mean really just think about it," she joked. "I think I should get points for working as hard as I do plus the time it takes to get ready."
Compiled by Jonathan Helman
CNN Washington Bureau
Washington Post: The Next Campaign Stop: Iraq Hearings
When Army Gen. David H. Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker travel to Capitol Hill tomorrow, they might be the ones before the microphones, but the cameras will be trained on three of their inquisitors: Sens. John McCain, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama.
Philadelphia Inquirer: Mobilizing Voters Key To Pa. Primary
The remarkable thing about the last three-plus weeks in the Democratic presidential race is how much has happened – and how little impact any of it has had on the direction of the contest.
LA Times: The Presidential Race Might Come Down To Issues - Or Not
Voters want government to do more to fix the economy. They also want U.S. troops out of Iraq. The presumptive Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain, sides with a distinct minority on both counts. But on less tangible questions of leadership, strength and trustworthiness, polls show McCain beating Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, the Democratic candidates.
WSJ: Obama May Not Have Fully Contained Damage From Ex-Pastor
Sen. Barack Obama's Philadelphia speech on race relations last month seemed to put the controversial remarks of his former pastor behind him. But three weeks later, there is evidence of lingering damage.