(CNN) – Former Republican Rep. Bob Barr formally jumped into the White House race Monday as a candidate for the Libertarian Party's presidential nomination.
Barr, the onetime darling of conservatives who led the impeachment fight against former President Bill Clinton, said he is running because voters want a choice beyond the two political parties.
"They believe that America has more and better to offer than what the current political situation is serving up to us," he said Monday at the National Press Club in Washington. "The reason for that is very simple, they believe in America as I believe in America. We believe in an America that is not and should not be and should never be driven by fear as current policies on behalf of both parties are in this country."
Barr, 59, represented Georgia's 7th congressional district from 1995-2003, and became an increasingly vocal critic of President Bush, especially over the president's support of the Patriot Act. He formally left the Republican Party in 2006.
It remains unclear how much support he will draw, but CNN's Bill Schneider says Barr could be to John McCain what Ralph Nader was to Al Gore in 2000.
(CNN) - With the endorsement of Congressman and Senate candidate Tom Allen, Barack Obama pulled ahead of Hillary Clinton in CNN’s count of Democratic superdelegates Monday.
In a statement released by the Obama campaign, Allen said both Democratic candidates were “supremely qualified” to be president.
“I have been friends for a very long time with former President Clinton and Senator Clinton. I respect their service to our nation. Hillary Clinton has run a vigorous campaign and has attracted a passionate following in Maine and around the country. She loves this country and is a true leader. For her service, I am grateful,” he said.
“Most of the primary voters across the nation have now spoken. It is time to bring a graceful end to the primary campaign. We now need to unify the Democratic Party and focus on electing Senator Obama and a working majority in the United States Senate…”
Allen first met former President Bill Clinton when both were Oxford University students four decades ago.
UPDATE: Hawaii superdelegates Dolly Strazar and Sen. Daniel Akaka and Idaho Democratic Party chairman Keith Roark endorsed Obama Monday afternoon, bringing the CNN count to 277-273 in favor of Obama.
(CNN)— West Virgina’s Governor Joe Manchin echoed the sentiment of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton Monday saying his state is not ready to call the race for Barack Obama until every state has had its chance to vote.
“I see the numbers the same as you see them,” Manchin told American Morning anchor John Roberts. “It looks like [Obama] has done quite well, but it’s not over until it’s over. We’re going to enjoy this primary tomorrow, and I’m sure other states will enjoy theirs.”
Voters in West Virgina head to the polls in less than 24 hours, with 28 pledged delegates at stake.
Clinton, who has a significant lead in West Virginia polls, has spent three out of the past five days campaigning there.
Obama is scheduled to campaign there Monday, but plans to head to Missouri - an important general election swing state for Democrats – on Tuesday, another sign his campaign has begun looking past the primary battle.
Gov. Manchin - who is chairman of the Democratic Governor’s Association and one of six uncommitted superdelegate governors - said if Obama is the party’s nominee, he will work to help the Illinois senator win his state in the fall.
(CNN) – Kicking off a week-long push seen as outreach to independent and Democratic voters in crucial swing states, John McCain will deliver a speech in Portland, Oregon this morning outlining his vision for fighting global warming.
“We stand warned by serious and credible scientists across the world that time is short and the dangers are great,” McCain will say, according to prepared remarks. “The most relevant question now is whether our own government is equal to the challenge.”
McCain’s commitment to fight global warming puts him at odds with some Republicans in Congress and the Bush administration, which has not made climate change a top priority. His stance on carbon emissions places him closer on the environmental spectrum to Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.
In his speech, the Arizona senator will propose capping carbon emissions incrementally, with the goal of returning to 1990 emission levels by the year 2020 using a cap-and-trade program. Such a program would cap greenhouse gas emissions at certain levels, and allow more efficient energy producers to sell off emissions permits to other, less efficient companies, thereby creating market-wide incentives to reduce carbon output.
(CNN) - John Edwards still says he is remaining neutral in the Democratic presidential race, but the onetime candidate all but said Sunday it is impossible for Hillary Clinton win the Democratic nomination, and warned the New York senator not to damage the party in the primary campaign's final stretch.
Appearing on CBS' Face the Nation, Edwards said Clinton has to be “has to be really careful that she’s not damaging our prospects," with continuing to take jabs at Obama.
"She doesn't need my advice, she knows this full well," Edwards said. "If she makes the case for herself, which she's completely entitled to do, she has to be really careful that she's not damaging our prospects, the Democratic Party, and our cause, for the fall."
Edwards also praised Clinton for the "strength and fortitude she has shown."
"I know how hard it is to get up and go out there every day, speak to the media, speak to crowds, when people are urging you to get out of the race. I mean, it's a very hard place to be in," he said. “But she's shown a lot of strength about that."
But the former North Carolina senator all but said her chances for winning the White House are over.
"The math is very, very hard for her," he said regarding her deficit in delegates to Obama. "The problem is, I think, you can no longer make a compelling case for the math.”
(CNN) - A top Clinton adviser this morning said that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is open to the possibility of loaning her campaign more money to continue in the race.
Terry McAuliffe, the Clinton campaign chairman, told Tim Russert on “Meet the Press” that he spoke to Clinton about the possibility of contributing more money and “she said that she would be willing to do it.” However, McAuliffe insists, “We haven’t needed it.”
Russert pressed the issue, asking McAuliffe if the Clintons will be able to repay all debts after the campaign is over. “We plan on it,” he replied.
The Clintons have contributed a sizeable amount to Hillary’s campaign, loaning $6.4 million in just the last few weeks. The total amount loaned is estimated to be around $11 million, with the campaign $20 million in debt.
(CNN) – John McCain and Barack Obama both lost campaign advisers this weekend because of problematic foreign relationships.
Doug Goodyear, McCain’s Convention chief executive officer, and Doug Davenport, one of his regional campaign managers, both resigned after Newsweek reported that GOP firm DCI - where Goodyear had served as CEO and Davenport had headed the lobbying effort - had represented Myanmar’s ruling military junta.
“Today I offered my resignation so as not to become a distraction in this campaign,” Goodyear wrote in a statement released by the McCain campaign Sunday. “I continue to strongly support John McCain for president, and wish him the best of luck in this campaign.”
Earlier, Robert Malley – an unpaid Middle East policy adviser to the Obama campaign – resigned after hearing the Times of London was planning to report on his meetings with Hamas in his role as head of the International Crisis Group. Obama himself has said that he would not meet with the Palestinian group.
"My job with the International Crisis Group is to meet with all sorts of savory and unsavory people and report on what they say. I've never denied whom I meet with; that's what I do,” Malley told NBC News in a weekend interview.
Compiled by Jonathan Helman
CNN Washington Bureau
Washington Post: Environmental Stances Are Balancing Act For McCain
McCain has made the environment one of the key elements of his presidential bid. He speaks passionately about the issue of climate change on the campaign trail, and he plans to outline his vision for combating global warming in a major speech today in Portland, Oregon. But an examination of McCain's voting record shows an inconsistent approach to the environment: He champions some "green" causes while casting sometimes contradictory votes on others.
WSJ: Obama Gains in Party's Top Ranks
Barack Obama's new edge in endorsements from Democratic leaders not only signals the party's establishment is solidifying behind him, but also could allay concerns among party liberals and his supporters that these superdelegates might throw the presidential nomination to Hillary Clinton.
USA Today: West Virginia Savors Moment In Spotlight
West Virginia Democrats and unaffiliated voters — who together make up more than 800,000 registered voters — find themselves debating Iraq withdrawal plans and the benefits of universal coverage, as the campaigns blanket the state with ads and rallies.
WSJ: Obama, Clinton Adjust Aim, Target McCain
Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton stepped up their criticism of John McCain and aimed fewer potshots at each other amid signs the nomination fight is winding down and the Democratic Party is coalescing around Sen. Obama.
Compiled by Jonathan Helman, CNN Washington Bureau
*Hillary Clinton is in West Virginia today. She has a Coffee with Hillary Clinton event in Montgomery, attends a town hall meeting in Clear Fork, and attends rallies in Logan and Fairmont.
*John McCain gives a speech in Portland, Oregon.
*Barack Obama attends an event in Charleston, West Virginia and a rally in Louisville, Kentucky.