(CNN) - Clinton campaign chairman Terry McAuliffe assured CNN’s Candy Crowley that former President Bill Clinton and presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama will be discussing Clinton’s role in the campaign within the next two days.
“I believe that in the next 24 to 48 hours they will talk and off we will go,” McAuliffe stated on Sunday’s Late Edition.
Clinton has remained behind the scenes so far during the general election. He was not present at the Democratic event in Unity, New Hampshire on Friday and has only released a one-sentence statement saying that he will do whatever he can to help the Illinois senator win the election.
Many analysts have said that Clinton’s not-so-subtle absence from the campaign is because he is angry and bitter about his wife losing the nomination.
McAuliffe defended the former president, saying that he has been taking time to let his wife finish up her campaign and secure her relationship with Obama.
“She was the candidate, she got 18 million votes, she’s the political leader of the Clinton family now,” McAuliffe said.
Obama asked to talk to President Clinton on Friday and Hillary Clinton told him, “Absolutely,” according to McAuliffe.
Now that President Clinton is back from a five-nation tour during which he attended Nelson Mandela’s 90th birthday party, McAuliffe predicts that they will be speaking shortly—but stressed that the attention should be on Hillary Clinton and Obama coming together.
(CNN) – John McCain spent 45 minutes meeting with the Rev. Billy Graham and his son Franklin at Graham’s North Carolina home Sunday morning.
The meeting took place at Graham’s home in Montreat, North Carolina, known as Little Piney Cove, about 25 miles outside Asheville. The house is a mountaintop retreat near Black Mountain in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The campaign says Rev. Graham, though quite ill, sat up in the chair during the meeting and participated in the talks with McCain and Franklin.
Advance notification of the meeting did not mention the 89-year-old Rev. Graham would be taking part.
Singer Ricky Skaggs, who was already scheduled to have lunch with the Grahams, came early and met McCain.
Franklin Graham issued a written statement a short time after the meeting. He said, “My father and I were pleased to have an opportunity to meet and visit with Sen. John McCain today. Sen. McCain’s office had requested a meeting in recent months and we appreciate the effort he made to travel to my father’s home. The senator and I both have sons currently serving in the military, and also have a common interest in aviation. I was impressed by his personal faith and his moral clarity on important social issues facing America today."
(CNN) - Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) gave a bleak outlook on the prospects for a Republican-led Senate in 2009.
During an interview with CNN’s Late Edition, McConnell told guest host Candy Crowley that the numbers were not in the GOP’s favor.
“We are not going to be back in the majority in the Senate next year,” said McConnell. “The numbers make that impossible.”
Republicans in the Senate have been gearing up for the elections in November despite grim conditions. Five GOP senators are retiring this year: Sen. Wayne Allard (CO), Sen. John Warner (VA), Sen. Pete Domenici (NM), Sen. Chuck Hagel (NE), and Sen. Larry Craig (ID). Other Republicans are running in competitive elections, such as Norm Coleman (MN), who faces well-known comedian and outspoken Democrat Al Franken in November.
Each party holds the same number of members in the Senate (49-49), but the Democrats hold a slim majority with two independents, Sens. Bernie Sanders and Joe Lieberman, caucusing with their party. However, many are predicting that the Democrats could pick up as many as six seats in the fall, giving them a clear majority.
Despite the GOP’s troubles, McConnell remains hopeful about his party’s chances and predicts they will hold most, if not all, of their seats. “I'm optimistic we can stay roughly where we are,” he told Crowley. “We have a robust minority.”
Gov. Bobby Jindal, R-Louisiana, told CNN's Candy Crowley on Sunday that he thinks John McCain has to be more proactive in his dialogue on domestic issues if he wants to win the White House.
While the Arizona senator scores well on issues related to foreign policy and national security, recent polls show that Barack Obama leads McCain on economic matters.
When asked how the presumptive Republican nominee can overcome this hurdle, Jindal suggested that McCain needs to overtly emphasize his policy differences with those of the presumptive Democratic nominee.
“Senator McCain has to talk more proactively about his views on domestic issues, how he contrasts with Senator Obama,” the governor said on Late Edition.
Highlighting McCain’s positions on health care, taxes, and a “robust national energy policy,” Jindal said: “I think the majority of the American people agree with Senator McCain’s positions, but he needs to draw that contrast so people can see the difference.”
The nation’s youngest governor, Jindal has often been mentioned as a possible vice presidential candidate. He is a staunch social conservative who could possibly offset any reservations Republicans have about McCain’s conservative credentials.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Straight Talk Express - perhaps the most visible symbol of Arizona Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign - is taking to the skies.
The Republican Party's presumptive nominee will unveil his new campaign airplane on Monday: a Boeing 737-400.
The aircraft shares its name with McCain's ever-present campaign bus, which has been a staple of the candidate's 2000 and 2008 campaigns.
The 95-seat plane - with seats for the candidate, his staffers and the press - has the "Straight Talk Express" logo emblazoned on its fuselage.
(CNN) - He may be running for the most powerful job in the world, but Sen. Barack Obama still has to flash his gym ID like the rest of us.
Wanting to get a quick treadmill session in before his first public event with Sen. Hillary Clinton Friday morning, the Illinois senator headed to the newly-opened Washington Sports Club in the Columbia Heights neighborhood.
But the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee did not get far when he and his entourage of Secret Service agents tried to walk past the front desk without stopping, according to the gym's general manager, Gonzalo Perez-Tamayo.
Perez-Tamayo told CNN the club trains its employees to adopt a strict policy of asking every member for his or her gym ID upon entry, even if they happen to be seeking the Oval Office.
The employee manning the front desk at the time, Takehia Wheeler, immediately stopped Obama as he was breezing past.
"It's always a rush in the morning, everyone's trying to come in quickly," Perez-Tamayo said. "She asked him for his last name and he said 'Obama,' then she asked him for his first name."
"It was very funny, she then realized who he was and said, 'Oh I am so sorry!" Perez-Tamayo added.
For the record, Obama is a member at the Washington Sports Club gym network.
The Illinois senator did not appear frustrated by the inconvenience, Perez-Tamayo also said, but he probably realized he needs to get a gym card if he wants to avoid the mix up in the future.
"If he doesn't want to get stopped he needs a card," Perez-Tamayo said. "It's the same for everybody."
(CNN) - Hours after sparring with Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama over immigration, Sen. John McCain told a fundraiser in Kentucky Saturday night, “Senator Obama’s word cannot be trusted”.
The comment came at a private event in Louisville, as McCain criticized Obama for reversing positions on public financing and other issues.
The Republican candidate told the crowd, McCain said, “You know, this election is about trust, and trusting people’s word, and unfortunately apparently on several items, Senator Obama’s word cannot be trusted.”
He was introduced by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who joked the two don’t always see eye to eye. In his comments, McCain said, “I take difficult positions sometimes. Mitch will tell you, I’m not elected Ms. Congeniality every year in the United States senate. But the fact is that I’ll keep my word to the American people and you can trust me.”
The charge came after Obama at the National Association of Latino Elected Officials accused McCain of backing down on immigration reform for political reasons.
He said, “One place where Senator McCain used to offer change was on immigration. He was a champion of comprehensive reform, and I admired him for it. But when he was running for his party's nomination, he walked away from that commitment and he's said he wouldn't even support his own legislation if it came up for a vote. We can't vacillate. We can't shift.”