July 28th, 2008
06:20 AM ET
6 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Monday, July 28, 2008

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USA Today: 100 days to go: The presidential race's red-letter days
The longest presidential election season in American history is about to enter its final stretch. Count 'em: 100 days to go.

New York Daily News: Barack Obama widens lead over John McCain in polls following world tour
Barack Obama's world tour scored big points back home.The presumptive Democratic nominee jumped to a significant 9-point lead over GOP rival John McCain – his largest lead since the Gallup Poll began tracking the general election horse race in March.

CNN: Bueller? Bueller? - McCain needs Rove
Preston on Politics: Ben Stein says he knows how John McCain can win in November: Karl Rove. That's right, that Karl Rove. At a time when McCain is seeking to distance himself from President Bush, Stein argues McCain needs to enlist Bush's chief political guru in order to defeat Barack Obama.

CNN Video: See Stein talk about the economy, John McCain’s presidential campaign, why he thinks McCain needs to enlist Karl Rove’s help, Al Franken’s Senate bid, Hollywood cocktail parties, and "Ferris Bueller's Day Off."

CNN Radio: McCain wants Obama to go ahead and say it
John McCain serves up the latest in the ongoing rhetorical ping-pong he and Barack Obama are playing over Iraq . Meanwhile, Obama is back to domestic matters and worries that his international escapades may not have played well at home. CNN’s Bob Costantini has today’s CNN Radio Political Ticker.


NY Times: Democrats Try to Break Grip of the Senate’s Dr. No
Congress has dealt for decades with catchall bills known as omnibus legislation. Now, for the first time, comes the Tomnibus. A product of Democratic frustration with the tactics of Senator Tom Coburn, an Oklahoma Republican and physician who has become the Dr. No of the Senate, the Tomnibus is a $10 billion collection of Coburn-blocked measures assembled by the Senate leadership in an effort to break his solitary grip on the legislative process.

USA Today: Record deficit expected in 2009
The White House has increased its estimate for next year's deficit to nearly $490 billion, a record figure that will saddle the next president with deepening budget problems in his first year in office, a report due out Monday shows.

WSJ: Cindy McCain: Rwanda's Women Are Leading the Way
I have recently returned from Rwanda. I was last there in 1994, at the height of the genocide that claimed the lives of more than 800,000 Rwandans. The memories of what I saw haunt me still. I wasn't sure what to expect all these years later, but I found a country that has found in its deep scars the will to move on and rebuild a civil society. And the renaissance is being led by women.

LA Times: Obama admits drop in Iraqi violence was more than he had anticipated
But it's not just due to the increase in U.S. troops, he says. Meanwhile, McCain backs away from comments about a 16-month military withdrawal plan.

AP: Obama looks for VP who says more than 'Yes, sir'
Funeral duty is not something that Barack Obama's vice president need worry much about, the presumptive Democratic nominee says. Obama refused again and again during an interview that aired Sunday to give hints on whom he might pick for a running mate, but he did describe the qualities he's looking for. Shyness and blind loyalty are not among them.

New York Sun: Chances Dim For Clinton As Obama V.P.
Senator Obama is offering more clues that he will pick someone other than Senator Clinton as his running mate, even as he insists his former rival is under consideration for the job.

CNN: McCaskill: Reluctant veeps not being honest
How can you tell if a prospective vice presidential candidate is lying? Well, one potential running mate says when they claim they don’t really want the job.

Financial Times: Obama turns focus to economic policies
Fresh from an international tour in which he sought to burnish his foreign policy credentials, Barack Obama will this week shift gears and seek to convince voters he would be better equipped than John McCain, his Republican rival, to run the sputtering US economy.

Washington Post: For Obama, Hurdles in Expanding Black Vote
Amanda Bass, a volunteer for Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign, had already tried once to get Wilmer Gray to register to vote. But when she glimpsed him in a black T-shirt and White Sox cap again on a recent weekday at the main bus stop here, she was determined to give it another try.

Politico: The McCain-Latino disconnect
GOP strategist Bill McInturff has long emphasized that earning 40 percent of the Hispanic vote is critical for Republicans to win. Today, McInturff is John McCain’s pollster, and by his metric McCain has a serious Latino problem.

NY Times: Democracy Institute Gives Donors Access to McCain
As Senator John McCain waited to speak at the annual awards dinner of the International Republican Institute, a democracy-building group he has led for 15 years, lobbyists and business executives dominated the stage at a Washington hotel ballroom.

WSJ: Obama Wins Praise Abroad, But Also Disappoints
Barack Obama wooed Europe and the Middle East last week with calls for a major transformation of U.S. foreign policy, pledging to withdraw American soldiers from Iraq while building closer trans-Atlantic ties.

CNN: Obama defends overseas trip: 'We did it really well'
Sen. Barack Obama on Sunday rejected criticism of his just-completed eight-day tour through the Middle East and Europe, saying the trip could ultimately help make him a more effective president.

WSJ: Republicans Seek to Capitalize On Drilling Support
Republicans are upping the ante on their bet that energy issues - especially increased domestic oil production - will be key to closing Democrats' imposing advantage with voters on the economy.

Financial Times: Energy crisis sees Pelosi run a tight ship
Energy and the price of a gallon of petrol will no doubt be at the forefront of Nancy Pelosi’s mind this week when – as is her routine – she travels in from her regular hair appointment in Georgetown to Capitol Hill in a convoy of two SUVs.

LA Times: Tax rebate checks are swallowed by economic malaise
It is better than nothing. That has been the subdued mantra repeated by working Americans in recent weeks as they spend the Bush administration's final tax rebate in an economy racked by soaring gasoline costs, housing foreclosures, toppling banks and Wall Street jitters.

WSJ: Bush, Gilani to Discuss Pakistan's Approach To Battling Terror
When Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani meets U.S. President George W. Bush on Monday in Washington, the two leaders will discuss a Pakistani counterterrorism strategy that might be dubbed "War and Peace."

CNN: McCain, Obama accuse each other of shifting on Iraq
With just 100 days until the election, Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama are accusing each other of shifting their positions when it comes to Iraq.

Washington Post: McCain Says Obama Plays Politics on Iraq
In his most direct challenge yet of his Democratic presidential rival's Iraq policy, Sen. John McCain suggested yesterday that Sen. Barack Obama had crafted a war strategy designed to further his own political advancement.

Washington Post: Obama Links Economy to Foreign Policy
Ahead of a week of campaign appearances focused on the economy, Sen. Barack Obama suggested Sunday that there is a domestic economic benefit to improved U.S. relations with the rest of the world.

NY Times: Mr. President? Not Quite, but Quite Presidential
Senator Barack Obama has stood before a lectern adorned with a faux presidential seal. Senator John McCain recently began giving a radio address every Saturday. Mr. Obama’s campaign plane has been nicknamed O-Force One. (Obama-’08/President is stitched into the captain’s chair.) Mr. McCain gave a speech in Columbus in May hypothetically looking back on his first term in office.

USA Today: McCain sides with ban on affirmative action
Republican presidential candidate John McCain said Sunday that he favors a proposed referendum in Arizona that would ban affirmative action, reversing a position he took a decade ago.

CNN: Did McCain 'flip' on affirmative action measure?
Sen. John McCain said Sunday he supports an Arizona ballot initiative aimed at ending race- and gender-based preference programs — an announcement his rival cast as a reversal from his previous stance.

AP: Oops! Wrong Larry shown on Idaho campaign buttons
Some Democratic campaign buttons made for distribution in Idaho show an unlikely pair: Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama and Republican Sen. Larry Craig. But don't expect the staunch Republican to throw his support behind Obama or for the presidential candidate to ask Craig to change his mind and run for Senate again. Apparently the button manufacturer picked a picture of the wrong Idaho Larry.

Politico: Anti-immigration groups go green
Readers of the Nation and other left-leaning magazines may have noticed a new addition to the usual advertisements — full-page advocacy ads by an ad hoc coalition of anti-immigration organizations.

CNN: Obama sees doctor for sore hip
Just back from an eight-day trip to the Middle East and Europe, Barack Obama went to see a doctor Sunday night at the University of Chicago Medical Center to examine a sore hip.

CNN: Hagel says judgment more important than experience
Two former military men who traveled to war zones with Sen. Barack Obama (D-Illinois) say the presumptive Democratic nominee is qualified to be commander in chief, despite his lack of military experience.

NY Times: In Volatile Times, Investors Tune in All and Any Predictions
The news hit Wall Street trading floors on the morning of July 2: Some analyst at Merrill Lynch was saying the General Motors Corporation might go bankrupt. Skip to next paragraph Within minutes, the share price of G.M., the landmark corporation that once symbolized America’s industrial might, was plunging to its lowest point since 1954.

WSJ: In Pakistan Mountains, Jihadis Train for War
Here in the remote mountains of Pakistan, a deep, mostly dry riverbed has been turned into a training camp where about two dozen young men, most in their teens, receive rigorous training for the war against NATO troops in neighboring Afghanistan.

Washington Post: U.S. Says Contractor Made Little Progress on Iraq Projects
The U.S. government paid a California contractor $142 million to build prisons, fire stations and police facilities in Iraq that it never built or finished, according to audits by a watchdog office. The Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) said Parsons of Pasadena, Calif., received the money, part of a total of $333 million but only completed about one-third of the projects, which also included courthouses and border control stations.

Washington Post: Private Contractors' Role in Afghanistan To Grow With Awarding of Latest Contracts
With billions of dollars newly available in fiscal 2008 supplemental war funding, the Congressional Research Service last month estimated that the Defense Department is now spending $2.3 billion a month in Afghanistan. Add $500 million monthly from the State Department and more from other agencies, and the total U.S. outlay in Afghanistan this fiscal year will be about $34 billion.

CNN: Rabbi condemns release of purported Obama prayer note
The rabbi who supervises Jerusalem's Western Wall condemned the removal of a prayer note purportedly written by Sen. Barack Obama, saying the action was "sacrilegious."

USA Today: Flickr, Library of Congress find something in 'Common'
A collaboration between the Library of Congress and the Internet photo-sharing community Flickr is giving photography enthusiasts a chance to play history detective.


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