Monday, February 25, 2008

"TRAIL MIX: Can Obama Withstand Negative Campaigning?"

There have been questions as to whether Barack Obama can withstand the upcoming negative campaigning if he is the Democratic nominee, but he's already holding up against three different campaigns, says Alec MacGillis at's The Trail. Republicans have attacked him patriotism, Hillary Clinton has called into question his campaign ethics, and now Ralph Nader has put in his two-cents worth.
We may not have heard the last of Mitt Romney. His son, Josh Romney, said the it is "possible" that his father would rejoin the Republican race after dropping out earlier this month, either as a vice presidential nominee, or as "the Republican Party's standard bearer if the campaign of Sen. John McCain falters," says Andrew Malcolm at the L.A. Times' Top of the Ticket.

McCain has had trouble proving his conservative credentials, but some Republicans are willing to support him, despite his moderate stances on some issues. Two conservative governors, Tim Pawlenty from Minnesota and Mark Sanford from South Carolina said they support the Arizona senator and could be on his short list for vice president, says Mark Memmott at USA Today's On Politics.

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison from Texas agrees with one presidential candidate about what to do with Cuba, but it might not be the expected one. Comments the Texas senator made to George Stephanopoulous suggested that she would open to the heads of state from Cuba and the United States talking, a position supported by Obama, says Frank James at the Chicago Tribune's The Swamp.

The Democrats do not seem happy that Ralph Nader has joined the race, says Kate Phillips at The New York Times' The Caucus. Clinton said the his run on the Green Party ticket in 2000 "prevented Al Gore from being the greenest president we ever had." Obama's criticisms were a tinged with respect: "Ralph Nader deserves enormous credit for the work he did as a consumer advocate. But his function as a perennial candidate is not putting food on the table of workers."

The Democratic National Committee isn't letting McCain get away with backing off his promises. The DNC filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission about McCain withdrawing from the public financing system, says Susan Davis at The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire. The Democrats argue that because he used the promise of public funds of obtain a loan last year, he is obligated to stay in the system.

Everyone's in on the joke that the media is perhaps a little too Obama-friendly, but now even Obama is insinuating that they're on his side.

When the Illinois senator reiterated in Ohio that he is not a Muslim, he said "We had to send CNN to look at the school that I attended in Indonesia where kids were wearing short pants and listening to iPods to indicate that this was not a madrassa but was a secular school in Indonesia," Sasha Issenberg at the Boston Globe's Political Intelligence reports.

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