WASHINGTON (CNN) - Will Vice President Cheney be a no-show at the Republican convention in Minnesota?
Republican officials say yes, citing a desire by Sen. John McCain's campaign to turn the page on the Bush-Cheney years. One GOP official told CNN there's a "mutual understanding" between Cheney's office and the McCain camp that he is "unlikely" to attend the convention.
A second Republican official said there are still "talks going on" between Cheney's office and the McCain camp and both sides are "still trying to work it out."
The conservative American Spectator first reported Monday Cheney, who has low national approval ratings but is still popular among conservatives, is not expected to attend the convention.
McCain spokesman Brian Rogers side-stepped a question about whether the Senator has invited Cheney, saying the campaign has "not announced the speakers or any details" about the convention at this point.
Cheney spokeswoman Megan Mitchell also told CNN the details for the convention are still in flux. "His schedule for next week has not even been set-up," Mitchell said, suggesting there has been no final decision on the convention.
(CNN) - Presumptive Republican nominee John McCain called Monday for immediate congressional action on the nation’s energy crisis, joining a call by his Republican colleagues for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to call legislators back from their August recess for a special session.
The Arizona senator said he would return to vote on any proposal. McCain has missed Senate votes since April, including several involving major energy measures – one of which, a summer gas tax holiday, was a standard element of his spring stump speech.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - As speculation over the number two slot rises, presidential candidate Barack Obama and potential v.p. contender Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana joined forces Monday, signing a letter with eight other senators that urges Defense Secretary Robert Gates to increase medical coverage and care for Iraq war veterans left with serious brain injuries.
The senators point to a recent study from the RAND Corporation that estimates 320,000 troops from the two Iraq wars experienced a traumatic brain injury, or TBI.
"We are concerned that at a time when TBI is recognized as the signature wound of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan," the senators write, "one of the most widely accepted and critical rehabilitative treatments for this injury… cognitive rehabilitation therapy, is excluded by the military's … health insurance program."
The other senators signing on to the letter include political notables Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass, Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass and Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-CT. Obama and Bayh's name are clearly perched at the top.
In the latest installment of CNN=Politics Daily, CNN’s Jessica Yellin outlines the Illinois senator’s new plan and his ten-year goal for energy independence.
Not to be overshadowed on one of the hottest election-year issues, presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain challenged Obama to pressure Congress to get back in session and deal with rising gas prices. White House Correspondent Ed Henry reports.
Meanwhile, President Bush is still receiving criticism for his planned trip to attend the Olympic Games in Beijing. Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider releases new poll results about Bush’s participation in the controversial event.
Finally, does former President Bill Clinton have any new thoughts about his role during the primary season? CNN’s Mary Snow has the answer.
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BOSTON, Massachusetts (CNN) -–Barack Obama turned 47 on Monday but it’s just another four-state day on the campaign trail for the Illinois senator with a morning speech in Michigan followed by an afternoon fundraiser in Boston.
But he won’t be getting a present today.
On Sunday night, Obama’s trip director Marvin Nicholson was getting out of a yellow taxi at his hotel in Chicago with his laundry and Obama’s present in the trunk. As he was greeted by hotel staff, the cab driver drove away with both the clean clothes and the present still in the trunk. The gift, which the campaign won’t reveal, was from senior adviser Robert Gibbs, bodyman Reggie Love and Nicholson.
Nicholson has been calling Chicago taxi companies trying to track the present down. If it’s any consolation to Obama, Harry Connick Jr. will sing him ‘Happy Birthday’ at the fundraiser, the Boston Globe reports.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new national poll suggests that most Americans think China is an economic threat to the United States, while the public is split on whether it is a military threat.
Seventy percent of those questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll released Monday afternoon said China is an economic threat to the United States, while 51 percent said it's a military threat as well.
The poll was released on the day President Bush left on a trip that will ultimately lead him to Beijing and the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics.
CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider said that "according to a new study by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, a growing number of Americans believe China's economy will one day be larger than that of the United States and that China will become America's chief competitor for power."
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Conservative columnist and former CNN host Robert Novak announced his immediate retirement Monday to focus on treatment of a malignant brain tumor.
The long-time Chicago Sun-Times commentator told the newspaper that his prognosis is "dire."
"The details are being worked out with the doctors this week, but the tentative plan is for radiation and chemotherapy," he said.
Novak's widely syndicated "Inside Report" began in 1963 at the New York Herald-Tribune. The column was co-written by Novak and long-time collaborator Rowland Evans until Evans' retirement in 1993.
"Inside Report" appeared four times a week in the Herald-Tribune and other publications of the Publishers Newspaper Syndicate for three years until the paper folded and the Sun-Times became its home newspaper.
The two also launched "The Evans-Novak Political Report," a twice-monthly newsletter that Novak continued after Evans' death in 2001.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - A group of House Republicans stayed in session and continued energy speeches Monday despite the summer adjournment in hopes of pressuring Democrats for a vote on oil drilling.
The speeches, a mix of democratic defiance and political showmanship, were part of a plan to pressure House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, to hold votes on offshore drilling, nuclear power and other GOP energy proposals.
Republicans refused to leave the House floor on Friday and began five hours of speeches protesting against Democratic energy policies immediately after the House of Representatives adjourned for its annual five-week break.
Listen: House GOP ask for the 'opportunity to vote'
The speeches picked up again Monday morning, and Republicans have pledged to keep up the effort.
"We'll continue at least this week," said Rep. Tom Price, R-Georgia. "Then we'll see what we know."
Price said 24 congressmen returned to the Capitol for Monday's session.
Listen: Price pushes for an offshore drilling vote
Rep. Mike Pence, R-Indiana, said that 40 Republican members are committed to rotate in shifts throughout the week. Asked how long they'll be there, he said, "We'll be here as long as we can."
When it comes to Hillary Clinton – not so fast.
Some Democrats are worried that Barack Obama isn't farther ahead in the polls at this point, especially when you consider the unpopularity of President Bush, the often unfocused campaign being run by John McCain and Obama's successful trip overseas. Suddenly some are wondering whether Obama should reconsider putting Clinton on the ticket.
(CNN) - Rep. Chet Edwards, who got a major plug as a potential VP contender Sunday from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, shrugged off questions about a potential spot on the ticket Monday – but did not deny interest in the job, or the possibility that he might be on Barack Obama’s shortlist.
“I am deeply grateful to Speaker Pelosi for her gracious comments about me and my work in Congress in behalf of veterans and military families,” he said in a statement released by his office, adding that “Senator Obama has earned the right to manage his own vice presidential selection process, and out of respect to him, any questions about the process should be directed to the Obama campaign.”
In an interview Sunday, Pelosi said, “I didn't want to see a discussion of candidates for vice president without showing the House of Representatives… I just wanted people to be aware of the extraordinary credentials of Chet Edwards. And I hope he will be the nominee.”