Thursday, June 19, 2008

6/19 Evening News: Reactions to Obama Opting Out

News Items
Obama Forgoes Public Funds in First for Major Candidate
Senator Barack Obama became the first candidate of a major party to decline public financing, arguing that the system had collapsed and would put him at a disadvantage.
Related Articles:
Newsweek: Obama bypasses public money - 1st since Watergate
ABC: Obama Poised for Huge Cash Edge
Huff Post: Author Of McCain-Feingold: Obama Smart To Opt Out Of Public Funds
FirstRead: How Does Public Financing Work?

McCain Accuses Obama of Flip-Flopping on Public Financing
Well--and he signed his name to it,” McCain told a group of fundraisers here today. “His status has changed from what was clearly not a frontrunner status to one that now has the ability to raise a lot of money. He has reversed his position on that. He has reversed his position on a number of issues.”
Related Articles:
FOX: Republicans Hammer Obama for Sidestepping Public Funds
FOX Blog: McCain Camp Hits Obama on Public Financing Decision
CNN: McCain attacks Obama for opting out of public financing
CNN: McCain team: Obama campaign lying about public financing talks
Politico: McCain: Obama decision 'disturbing'
FirstRead: McCain Camp Pounces on Obama Move

Obama team weighs Nunn, Edwards as running mates
Former Sens. John Edwards and Sam Nunn are on a list of potential running mates for Democrat Barack Obama, a congresswoman said Thursday, one day after she met with members of Obama's team vetting possible candidates.

Obama And The “Country I Love”
The Obama campaign is about to go up with its first television ad of the general election, a 60-second spot titled, “Country I Love” which begins airing in 18 states tomorrow.
Related Articles:
CNN:
Obama emphasizes patriotism in first general election ad
Politico: Obama releases first general election ad
FirstRead: Obama Up With First General Ads

Clyburn: Some House Democrats might not endorse Obama
House Majority Whip James Clyburn said Thursday he expects some Democratic legislators to hold back from endorsing Barack Obama because it could prove politically unwise in their congressional districts.

Obama softens NAFTA rhetoric
Before the Ohio primary in March, the battle between Democratic candidates Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton morphed into a fierce debate over free trade – a clash that seemed to hinge on which candidate could appear more anti-NAFTA.

Former Clinton-backing union endorses Obama
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees – a 1.4 million-member union that backed Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary – endorsed Barack Obama for president Thursday.

McCain Reiterates Opposition to Drilling in Wildlife Refuge
Senator John McCain's statement that he would be willing to “go back and look at it again” had sparked speculation that he might be changing his mind about drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

McCain backers supported legal measures for terrorists
Thompson accused Obama of being "inconsistent on matters of national security and foreign policy" ... But during Thompson’s presidential run, he also appeared to support legal pathways if Osama bin Laden were captured.

McCain Says Yes to Public Financing
Senator John McCain said Thursday afternoon that his campaign has decided to accept public financing even though his all-but-certain Democrat rival, Senator Barack Obama, has decided to opt out of the system.
Related Articles:
FirstRead: McCain to Accept Public Financing

McCain Tours Flood-Damaged Iowa
Sen. John McCain toured flood-damaged southeastern Iowa on Thursday, walking past half-submerged buildings, washed-out roads and thousands of sandbags filled hurriedly in a vain attempt to hold back the waters.

Cindy McCain criticizes Myanmar's leaders
Cindy McCain harshly criticized Myanmar's military junta Thursday while vowing to make improving human rights there a priority if she becomes America's next first lady.

Cindy McCain Presses Obama on Patriotism
On the subject of patriotism, while Laura Bush may be ready to give Michelle Obama the benefit of the doubt, Cindy McCain is not.
Related Articles:
CNN: Cindy McCain not backing down on Michelle Obama comment

Cindy McCain: Families of candidates not fair game
Cindy McCain, wife of John McCain, said Thursday the spouses of the presidential candidates should be allowed to have some privacy. "I do not think that spouses and family members … are fair game," she told CNN's John King.

NAFTA Back in the Spotlight
NAFTA was front and center in the lead-up to the Ohio Democratic primary, with the Obama and Clinton campaigns engaging in a heated debate on the issue as they angled to position themselves with working class voters.

Facebooking at Work
Both of the major presidential campaigns hit some pretty big milestones on Facebook over the last couple of days.

Press Dissatisfied With Treatment From Obama Campaign
"All traveling campaigns have a bubble-like quality," Kurtz noted, "but Obama seems unusually insulated." Kurtz went on to note an incident that struck him as a bit of a peculiarity...

MSNBC Pulls "Inappropriate" Michelle Obama "Hardball" Ad Depicting Silhouetted Female Dancers (VIDEO)
MSNBC ran an ad for "Hardball" Thursday morning teasing a segment on Michelle Obama's image makeover. The ad featured background artwork of female silhouetted dancers while the phrase, "HER NEW OUTLOOK?" was displayed on the screen.

PM Veepstakes Update
WHAT THEY’RE UP TO:LA Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) announced in New Orleans that National Guard will remain in the city through the rest of the year. Jim Webb held a hearing on drug policy.

More GOP 'Get Carter' Strategy
Perry, who held the call in anticipation of Obama’s meeting with Democratic governors on Friday, compared Obama’s talk of “change” to the “change” that he “heard back in the 70s with [former President] Jimmy Carter.”

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Polling Results
FOX News Poll: Americans Proud to Have Obama, McCain as President
In a tight race for the White House, majorities of Americans say they would be proud to have Barack Obama or John McCain as their president, according to a FOX News poll released Thursday.

Election 2008: Colorado Presidential Election
The Presidential race in Colorado has narrowed again, with Barack Obama dropping to just two percentage points ahead of Republican John McCain. One out of two Colorado residents say the Democrat is too inexperienced to be President.

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Commentaries
Special interest conventions
At the same time, both political parties, eager to raise boatloads of cash for their conventions, have opened their doors to special-interest money in exchange for generous goodie bags that offer coveted access to key power players.

Why Obama Opted Out of Public Financing--and What it Means
What's worse: a broken system or a broken promise? Barack Obama is betting on the former. In a video sent to supporters ... the Illinois senator and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee announced that, unlike Republican rival John McCain, he will refuse public financing for the general election...

Commentary: Obama's Flip-Flop on Public Financing
Senator Obama has announced he will opt out of public financing for the general election. He says he will "forgo" more than $80 million in public funds and go it alone. How was that decision made?

What's The Right Age For A President?
Just about half, 48 percent, said the “best” age for a president was the 50s, even though neither of the presumptive nominees is in his fifties (nor is Hillary Clinton).

Ties to Bush on offshore drilling may hurt McCain this fall
As he tries to woo independent voters, Sen. John McCain is relying on his image as a maverick, making it clear he's no President Bush. But the timing of Bush's support for offshore oil drilling this week may spell trouble for McCain's efforts to distance himself from the embattled White House.

Blitzer: When will Bill Clinton back Obama?
Bill and Hillary Clinton attended the memorial service for Tim Russert at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington on Thursday. That was the first time I have seen them since Senator Clinton dropped out of the presidential race and endorsed Barack Obama.

Schneider: Men could be the deciding factor
After the long, bruising primary battle with Sen. Hillary Clinton, a lot of Democrats were concerned that Sen. Barack Obama would have a problem getting support from women. But does he?

Roberts: The Obamacons
Conservative talk radio host Armstrong Williams has never voted for a Democratic presidential candidate. In fact, he says he has never even thought about the opposition. But this year – as Williams told me on today’s American Morning — things might be different.

In with the Old
Obama says he wants to hire a Team of Rivals for his Cabinet. He should start by keeping Robert Gates

Analysis: Obama chose winning over his word
The Democrat once made a conditional agreement to accept taxpayer money from the public financing system, and accompanying spending limits, if his Republican opponent did, too. No more.

Lionel Beehner: Obama's Foreign Policy Team Does Not Represent Change
The Obama campaign needs an infusion of young talent and new ideas, not moldy policy from folks whose idea of a rollicking Saturday night is sipping wine at the Council on Foreign Relations.

As Long As We're Talking About Michelle Obama, Did You Know Cindy McCain Was A Drug Addict?
In the mid-nineties, Cindy was addicted to prescription pain killers. Worse, she was stealing the drugs from the American Voluntary Medical Team, a third world relief organization she founded.

Fear of a Black President
A black president means anything is possible. It means that that last little parcel of earth -- which for 232 years has been solely inhabited by white men -- is now open to people of all colors.

But Who will Fix the System?
Obama now has an increased obligation to the American people that he will make overhauling our special interest-driven campaign finance apparatus for both Congress and the presidency a top priority.

Obama for President
We will turn out an army of 40,000 AFSCME activists to knock on doors, make phone calls, and talk with their co-workers and neighbors to produce an unprecedented turnout in the 2008 election.

Harball Flirts With Women Voters
If Chris Matthews and the mainstream media want to add something productive to the reproductive rights debate, they should move off the 70's polarization created by the far-right.

Thoughts on Sen. Obama's Decision to Opt Out of Public Financing
I find Obama's decision completely defensible and unsurprising. The system is broken. We cannot expect opt ins by successful candidates, especially in the internet age.

Can Electing Obama Get us Real Healthcare Reform?
Pragmatists are looking closely at the real-world political obstacles that have stymied health care reform in the past, and if progressives don't learn from past failures, we're doomed to repeat them again.

Democrats Still Have Work to Do to Win in November
I besiege Democrats not to take an Obama win for granted. We can't assume everyone in the country is aware of McCain's weaknesses and fidelity to the Bush agenda.

McCain Scores with Offshore Drilling Proposal
John McCain has drawn first blood in the political debate following Barack Obama's victory in the primaries. His call yesterday for offshore oil drilling ... puts the Democrats in the position of advocating the wear-your-sweater policies that made Jimmy Carter unpopular.

McCain Has Given Enough
"Dear Waiting at the Altar, He's right. Why rush? It's only been five years. He's going to know you so much better after 10. ... Yep, my lovely, I know it's hard to hear, but better to hear it now than 10 years from now." In sum, he's just not that into you. Would someone please send this book to John McCain?

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