[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.cheney.smiles.jpg caption="Vice President Cheney will speak at the GOP convention in September."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - The campaign camp of GOP presidential candidate John McCain has invited Vice President Dick Cheney to speak at the Republican National Convention, a spokeswoman said.
There had been concerns that Cheney had not been invited to address the gathering.
Cheney spokeswoman Megan Mitchell said it is likely Cheney will speak on the first night of the convention, but the exact day and time haven't been set.
The convention will be held September 1-4 in Minneapolis-St. Paul.
"The vice president looks forward to participating in the Republican national convention and continuing to work for the election of Senator McCain and other Republican candidates in the coming months." Mitchell said.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.ossetia.ap.jpg caption="Tensions are growing in South Ossetia."] DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN) - John McCain and Barack Obama on Friday condemned the outbreak of violence in the Georgian breakaway region of South Ossetia, calling on the United Nations Security Council to convene an emergency session - but the presumptive Republican nominee went further than his fall rival in assigning blame to Russia for the escalating hostilities.
"Russia should immediately and unconditionally cease its military operations and withdraw all forces from sovereign Georgian territory,” McCain said in a statement to reporters shortly after his campaign plane landed in Iowa.
“The consequences of Euro Atlantic stability and security are grave,” he added.
He also called for “a truly independent” international peacekeeping force for South Ossetia, and said the United States should work with the European Union and the OSCE to pressure Russia to halt its military efforts.
McCain has been a sharp critic of the policies of the Russian government headed by Vladimir Putin.
In a statement sent to reporters, Barack Obama called for an end to the violence, but stopped short of assigning blame, or making strong demands on Moscow. “I strongly condemn the outbreak of violence in Georgia, and urge an immediate end to armed conflict," he said.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/08/07/preston.energy/art.cash.credit.gi.jpg caption="Voters are focused on the continuing pain at the pump."] WASHINGTON (CNN) - Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell blames challenger Bruce Lunsford for the increase in the state's gas tax. Michigan Rep. John Dingell pledges to stop price gouging and rein in energy speculators.
And Oklahoma Corporation Commission candidate Rob Johnson expressed empathy for families feeling pain at the pump.
It is not just Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama who are trying to convince voters this year that they have the answers to ease the nation's reliance on foreign oil.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.sen.johnson.jpg caption="Sen. Johnson says he won't participate in fall debates."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) – Despite saying he is able to handle "100 percent" of his senatorial duties, Sen. Tim Johnson Friday said he would not participate in debates this fall due to lingering effects from a stroke.
Johnson suffered a stroke in December 2006, which forced him to temporarily leave the Senate. He returned in September 2007.
"I have been open and honest about my recovery," the South Dakota Democrat said in a statement. "While my speech continues to improve it is not yet 100 percent, and I have not yet reached a point in my rehab where my participation in a debate would accurately reflect my capabilities.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.accountable.america.jpg caption="Accountable America is offering a $100,00 reward. "]
(CNN) - Conservatives who support election-year efforts by so-called 527s and other independent groups are about to get a tough new notice: donate at your own risk.
A new liberal group, Accountable America, is offering a $100,000 reward for any information that results in “the conviction or judgment against a conservative or business-related organization” that runs afoul of federal campaign finance regulations – and is planning to send “warning” letters to roughly 10,000 major Republican donors next week laying out the PR headaches and risks they could encounter if they decide to donate outside the legal boundaries.
In a statement sent to reporters, organizers describe the new group as “an effort to deter attempts by Republican donors aimed at ‘swiftboating’ Democrats from Barack Obama to Senate and House candidates.”
Listen: Organizers lay out their plan on a conference call with reporters
The 527 advocacy organizations are independent groups that are not subject to Federal Election Commission regulations because they do not directly call for the election or defeat of candidates.
The campaign will also include a Web presence and possible television ads.
Long-time progressive operative and former MoveOn.org Washington director Tom Matzzie is heading the effort – which is targeting some top McCain donors, like Sheldon Adelson, by name.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.exxon.jpg caption="A new report shows Obama has received more money from Exxon employees."]
(CNN) - The Democratic National Committee’s new campaign to spotlight John McCain’s connection to big oil and highlight McCain oil industry contributors like Exxon ran into some inconvenient news this week when a new report revealed the Republican isn’t the oil giant’s favorite candidate.
An analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics found Barack Obama has received more money from Exxon’s employees, including top executives, than John McCain. And the company isn’t the only energy behemoth to favor the presumptive Democratic nominee: Chevron and BP executives and workers have also sent more money to the Illinois senator than to his fall rival.
"Through June, Exxon employees have given Obama $42,100 to McCain's $35,166,” said CRP in a new report. “Chevron favors Obama $35,157 to $28,500, and Obama edges out McCain with BP $16,046 vs. $11,500."
The top producers may favor Obama – but McCain has still pocketed more oil industry cash: $1.3 million, to Obama’s $394,000. The cash haul includes including McCain’s recent headline-grabbing advantage with Hess Corp., whose employees have donated $91,000 to the presumptive Republican nominee’s presidential bid, while giving Obama's just $8,000.
The industry’s support for McCain “shot up after the presumptive Republican nominee announced his support for offshore drilling,” CRP notes in the report, but “the trend started months before that.”
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/07/art.invesco.gi.jpg caption="Obama will accept his party's nomination at Invesco field."]
(CNN)– Tickets for Barack Obama’s Democratic National Convention speech at the Invesco Field in Denver sold out within 24 hours, according to campaign officials.
In early July, convention organizers announced the Illinois senator would officially accept the Democratic nomination at the 75,000 seat stadium rather than a 20,000 seat hall.
According to the Colorado Campaign for Change, the application process closed Thursday afternoon after more than 60,000 seats were snatched up.
Due to unprecedented demand, the campaign has created a waitlist for Coloradans hoping to get a chance to attend the August 28 event.
Obama's largest event to date was in Portland, Oregon, in May, where he drew an estimated crowd of approximately 75,000. He has done at least one previous stadium event, a joint appearance with talk show host Oprah Winfrey at Williams-Brice Stadium in South Carolina that drew about 29,000 people.
John F. Kennedy accepted the Democratic nomination for president in 1960 at Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, a 92,500-seat stadium in which an estimated 80,000 people gathered for his speech.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.obama.hands.jpg caption="Obama's campaign released a new ad Friday called 'Hands.'"]
(CNN) - Barack Obama’s campaign has released a new TV ad stressing his “green jobs” policy proposals.
“The hands that built this nation can build a new economy,” says the announcer in the 30-second spot. “The hands that harvest crops can also harvest the wind. The hands that install roofs can also install solar panels. The hands that build today’s cars can build the next generation of fuel-efficient vehicles.
“Barack Obama. A new vision for our economy. Fast track alternative fuels. Create five million jobs developing home-grown energy technologies because America’s future is in our hands,” he concludes.
The ad is the first from Obama’s campaign that is slated to run during its massive Olympic Games ad buy.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.mccainad0808.cnn.jpg caption="McCain's campaign released a new ad called 'Painful' Friday."]
(CNN) - John McCain’s campaign released another ad Friday that paints Barack Obama as an out-of-touch celebrity.
“Life in the spotlight must be grand, but for the rest of us times are tough,” says the announcer, as flashbulbs pop around Obama, crowds cheer, and magazine covers bearing his portrait flash on-screen.
“Obama voted to raise taxes on people making just $42,000. He promises more taxes on small business, seniors, your life savings, your family. Painful taxes, hard choices for your budget. Not ready to lead. That's the real Obama.”
Last month, the McCain team gave a slightly different figure than the one used in Friday’s new ad. "If you make over $32,000 per year, Barack Obama has voted to raise your taxes," wrote McCain chief policy adviser Doug Holtz-Eaken in a campaign memo sent to reporters.
The non-partisan Factcheck.org has pointed out that Obama's vote was on a non-binding resolution on the Bush tax cuts that did not have any actual effect on tax rates. Obama himself has said he supports extending the tax cuts on lower income levels, but would let those for the richest Americans expire.
The new ad - "Painful" - is being cycled in to the campaign’s ad buy in the battleground states of Colorado, Iowa, Michigan. Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio Pennsylvania, northern Virginia, and Wisconsin.
UPDATE: The Obama campaign said Friday the new McCain ad was "a lie, and it's part of the old, tired politics of a party in Washington that has run out of ideas and run out of steam.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.obamahawaii.ap.jpg caption="Obama’s Hawaiian vacation starts today."]
(CNN) - Barack Obama and his family are on their way to Hawaii aboard the Illinois senator's campaign plane. They'll journey to Oahu, where they will spend several days visiting his extended family.
They've been joined on board by more than a dozen family friends. The section of the plane usually reserved for staff is filled with children under the age of 12.