(CNN) —As the first week of the general election campaign winds down, both camps are sending signals that they’re ready for a long fight.
In the latest episode of CNN=Politics Daily, Sen. Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic nominee, launched a new website Thursday intended to combat rumors about him and his campaign. Suzanne Malveaux has the story.
A day after the resignation of the head of Obama’s vice presidential search team, Sen. John McCain sets his sights on another Obama adviser. Dana Bash takes a look at the latest salvo from the McCain campaign as well as both nominees’ claims of practicing a different kind of politics.
The Supreme Court dealt another blow Thursday to the Bush administration’s approach to the war on terror. Brian Todd reports on how differently Obama and McCain would battle terrorism if elected.
As the general election battle ramps up, who’s ahead with the American public in terms of personal qualities? Bill Schneider breaks down the latest CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll. The results may surprise you.
Click here to subscribe to CNN=Politics Daily.
WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Democratic National Committee announced Thursday that a significant part of their operations would be moving from Washington to Chicago, the home of the Obama campaign.
“We've begun a transition period here at the DNC that fully integrates our operations in DC with the Obama operation in Chicago and in the states,” DNC spokeswoman Karen Finney tells CNN. “Our goal is to quickly consolidate these efforts into one operation and effectively drive one national strategy.”
The political, field and constituency operations are being moved to Obama's Chicago headquarters, while the research and communications departments will remain in DC.
After winning the nomination, Obama decided to keep Howard Dean on as chairman of the DNC, and sent over senior aide Paul Tewes to oversee the collaboration.
“When the nominee comes in, we essentially merge the Democratic National Committee with the campaign of the presidential candidate,” Dean told reporters on Tuesday, “there’s not going to be a coordination problem.”
(CNN) - More Americans believe Sen. Barack Obama is better suited to handle the No. 1 issue on voters' minds - the country's economic woes – than his likely rival in the fall election, Sen. John McCain.
In what could be a warning sign for the Republican presumptive presidential nominee, a new poll released by CNN and the Opinion Research Corporation found that 50 percent of registered voters nationwide say the Illinois senator would best handle the economy, while only 44 percent said the same for McCain.
The news could be particularly troublesome for McCain given voters nationwide have consistently ranked the economy as the most important issue currently facing the country. In a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll released last week, 42 percent of registered voters named the ailing economy as their most pressing concern, almost twice the amount that named Iraq - the second most important issue. In the same poll, nearly 80 percent of Americans said the country's economic conditions were in poor shape.
CNN Polling Director Keating Holland notes that Obama's edge over McCain on the economy is even higher among voters most concerned with the issue.
"Voters who say the economy is the country's number-one problem say that Obama would do a better job than McCain on the economy by a 57 percent to 39 percent margin," Holland said.
The new poll doesn't offer McCain all bad news however. A majority of voters say the Arizona Republican is better suited than Obama to handle foreign policy issues. McCain repeatedly touts his foreign policy credentials on the campaign trail and 54 percent of voters aid he is best suited to handle such matters. Forty-three percent gave the nod to Obama when it came to foreign policy.
(CNN) - The latest five-to-four decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on the status of terror suspects at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba once again underscores the deeply divided nature of the court and the huge stakes in the presidential election.
The court broke up largely along the liberal-conservative makeup – with the traditional swing voter, Justice Anthony Kennedy, once again breaking the tie.
In the majority were the liberals – Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, David Souter and John Paul Stevens.
In the minority were Chief Justice John Roberts, and Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas.
The next president of the United States probably will be in a position to nominate at least one and maybe more Justices. John McCain says he would nominate conservatives like Roberts and Alito; Barack Obama says he prefers liberals like Ginsburg and Breyer.
So just as there are stark differences between the two candidates on foreign and domestic policy, there are also stark differences on the future of the Supreme Court. And placing new justices on the court will have an impact for a lot more than just four or eight years. It’s something to think about during this political season.
The House of Representatives has voted to send an impeachment resolution against President Bush to committee – where it's likely to die.
Congressman Dennis Kucinich introduced the 35 articles of impeachment this week. Most of the resolution focuses on the Iraq war but also charges the president with illegally detaining both U.S. citizens and foreign captives, condoning torture and mishandling the response to Hurricane Katrina.
But Congress doesn't want to hear it. They voted largely along party lines – 255 to 166 – to send the resolution to the House Judiciary Committee. This is exactly what happened to Kucinich's impeachment articles against Vice President Cheney last year. Congress sent that resolution to this same committee in November. So far, no action has been taken. Congress continues to refuse to exercise its constitutional responsibility of oversight of the executive branch of government.
To read more and contribute to the Cafferty File discussion click here
(CNN) – The day after Jim Johnson resigned from Barack Obama’s vice presidential candidate vetting committee, John McCain set his sights on Eric Holder - one of the two remaining members of the committee.
“I think people in the media and observers will make a decision as to whether these people, individuals, should be part of Senator Obama’s campaign,” McCain told reporters in Boston. “I think it is a matter of record that Mr. Holder recommended the pardoning of Mr. [Marc] Rich.”
Rich was a commodities trader who fled to Europe in 1983 following tax evasion charges and allegations of illegal oil dealings with Iran. He was pardoned by former President Bill Clinton at the end of his second term while Holder was deputy attorney general. Critics of the pardon noted Rich's wife, Denise, was a generous contributor to the Democratic Party and the Clinton Library.
(CNN)— Barack Obama seized on rival John McCain’s recent comment that it’s “not too important” when troops start being withdrawn from Iraq, reminding voters Thursday that the Arizona senator has also said he would keep troops in the country for 100 years.
“I agree that obviously the most important thing is making sure that our young men and women aren't killed,” Obama said at a town hall event in Wisconsin. “But the notion that if they are not being killed that we can leave them there in perpetuity, 100 years John McCain says,” would be insensitive to the ‘burden’ the troops families face while having their loved ones over seas Obama said.
McCain was asked on NBC’s Today show Wednesday if he could estimate when troops could be expected home from Iraq.
"No, but that's not too important," McCain responded. "What's important is the casualties in Iraq. Americans are in South Korea. Americans are in Japan. American troops are in Germany. That's all fine. American casualties and the ability to withdraw; we will be able to withdraw."
Obama, who has been taking a more populist approach to voters lately, also sought to hone in on their money concerns reminding them about the sky rocketing costs of the Iraq war.
“[McCain’s] also not thinking about tax payers who are spending $10-12 billion a month in Iraq,” The Illinois senator said.
Adding, the money spent in Iraq could go toward job creation in the U.S.
(CNN) – In an interview out Thursday, Hillary Clinton’s former senior strategist Mark Penn blames the New York senator's loss to Barack Obama not on underestimating her opponent, but on disagreements within the campaign on how to go after him and on squandering their campaign warchest far too early.
“I wanted to question the basic underpinning of his campaign,” Penn told GQ Magazine’s Lisa DePaulo. “One – that he didn’t have the usual experience of somebody running for president, and two – that the positions he took on Iraq - you know, that were revered by the press - didn’t really hold up when you look through his record in the Senate.”
Penn said former President Bill Clinton agreed with him and went after Obama on Iraq which resulted in his infamous “fairy tale” comments but that the rest of the campaign wanted to hold back because they felt Clinton’s refusal to apologize for her Senate vote to authorize the Iraq war made her vulnerable.
“The reason that I would have gone after him early was precisely because I didn’t underestimate the power of a fresh new candidate who also had appeal to the African-American vote and the latte voters,” says Penn. “How do you stop something like that, right? You don’t stop something like that by being “warmer” [snorts]—by, you know, giving an interview on a personality show.”
(CNN) - Barack Obama is continuing to extend his lead over John McCain in a head-to-head matchup nationwide, a new CNN poll of polls indicates.
Check out the latest polls in the CNN Election Center
The Illinois senator now holds a 5 point lead over McCain among registered voters, 48 percent to 43 percent. In a CNN poll of polls conducted earlier this week, Obama's lead stood at 4 points, and in an average of national polls shortly before Hillary Clinton dropped out of the presidential race, Obama only held a 3 point lead over the Arizona senator.
The poll of polls consists of three recent surveys by Gallup, NBC/Wall Street Journal, and CNN/Opinion Research Corporation. The CNN poll was conducted entirely before Clinton formally gave up her White House bid on Saturday.
(CNN) - Is famed actor Jack Nicholson's support a kiss of death for Democratic presidential hopefuls?
According to The Washington Post, the Hollywood star picks presidential candidates who have repeatedly gone down in defeat.
Consider his track record this year: The newspaper reports Nicholson made his first foray into the 2008 presidential race by writing a $500 check to Ohio Rep. Dennis Kucinich's campaign on January 10, two weeks before he ended his presidential bid
Nicholson later wrote checks to help both Delaware Sen. Joe Biden and Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd pay off their campaign debts – both candidates ended their bids in early January.
In late February, Nicholson donated the maximum $2,300 to Hillary Clinton's White House bid. She went on to win the Ohio and Texas primaries days later, though her presidential hopes ultimately came up short.
According to the Post, Nicholson had yet to give to Barack Obama through the end of April.
Nicholson has a history of showing reluctance to the Democratic party's eventual nominee. In 2000, he backed former New Jersey Sen. Bill Bradley over Al Gore, and in 2004 he didn't support a candidate at all until Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry had already wrapped up the nomination.