Clintons4McCain founder & PUMA gets smacked down on Hardball
Tag Archives: democratic convention
then on the No Spin Zone:
DENVER (CBS4/AP) ― CBS4 has learned at least four people are under arrest in connection with a possible plot to kill Barack Obama at his Thursday night acceptance speech in Denver. All are being held on either drug or weapons charges.
CBS4 Investigator Brian Maass reported one of the suspects told authorities they were “going to shoot Obama from a high vantage point using a … rifle … sighted at 750 yards.”
Law enforcement sources tell Maass that one of the suspects “was directly asked if they had come to Denver to kill Obama. He responded in the affirmative.”
The story began emerging Sunday morning when Aurora police arrested 28-year-old Tharin Gartrell. He was driving a rented pickup truck in an erratic manner according to sources.
Sources told CBS4 police found two high-powered, scoped rifles in the car along with camouflage clothing, walkie-talkies, wigs, a bulletproof vest, a spotting scope, licenses in the names of other people and 44 grams of methamphetamine. One of the rifles is listed as stolen from Kansas.
Aurora police alerted federal officials because of heightened security surrounding the Democratic convention, Dudley said.
“Clearly we found there are federal implications — otherwise we would not have notified them,” Det. Marcus Dudley with Aurora police said. “The weapons clearly would cause great concern.”
Subsequently authorities went to the Cherry Creek Hotel to contact an associate of Gartrell’s. But that man, identified as Shawn Robert Adolph, 33, who was wanted on numerous warrants, jumped out of a sixth floor hotel window. Law enforcement sources say Adolph broke an ankle in the fall and was captured moments later. Sources say he had a handcuff ring and was wearing a swastika, and is thought to have ties to white supremacist organizations.
A third man — an associate of Gartrell and Adolph, Nathan Johnson, 32, was also arrested. He told authorities that the two men “planned to kill Barack Obama at his acceptance speech.”
Johnson, along with his girlfriend, Natasha Gromek, are also under arrest on drug charges.
The Secret Service, FBI, ATF and the joint terrorism task force are all investigating the alleged plot.
The U.S. Attorneys Office has scheduled a news conference for Tuesday afternoon. The U.S. Attorney in Denver said it does not believe there is a credible threat to Obama or the convention.
“It’s premature to say that it was a valid threat or that these folks have the ability to carry it out,” said a U.S. government official familiar with the investigation. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.
U.S. Attorney Troy Eid said the case was under investigation.
“We’re absolutely confident there is no credible threat to the candidate, the Democratic National Convention, or the people of Colorado,” Eid said in a prepared statement.
(Political Animal) MCCAIN TRIES THE ‘CHICKEN PRANK’…. For the second time in two days, the McCain campaign has unveiled a television ad intended to drive a wedge between Hillary Clinton’s supporters and the candidate Hillary Clinton endorses and agrees with. In the new one, which the media is no doubt going to love, we see a former Clinton delegate from Wisconsin, touting her support for John McCain, and encouraging her other Democrats to follow her.
Now, I can’t begin to relate to what this woman is thinking. As recently as a couple of months ago, she wanted the nation to move in one direction; now she prefers the opposite direction. She preferred a progressive approach on key issues; now she prefers a conservative approach. She wanted a break away from the policies of George W. Bush; now she wants four more years like the last eight. I’m not even going to pretend to understand why.
But before the networks take the ad too seriously, they should consider an anecdote about the “chicken prank” from TNR’s Eve Fairbanks.
I almost feel like a dupe writing about the second pro-Hillary ad McCain released today at 6am: It’s a stunt, a trick meant to keep him in the press during the Democratic convention and gin up more Hillary-Obama-tension media storylines. Message: neener neener neener. It is, in fact, the political equivalent of a prank legendarily pulled at my high school in which students procured well fewer than 20 live chickens, numbered them 1 through 20 with magic markers (leaving some numbers out), set them loose, and then sat back and gleefully watched as hapless school officials ran around the school searching for the remaining missing chickens that had never actually existed.
Nobody knows how much truly dangerous anti-Obama sentiment exists among former Hillary supporters or how many Hillary delegates will vote for John McCain in November (this past June, McCain said that the woman in today’s ad, Wisconsin nurse Debra Bartoshevich, was the only Hillary delegate they knew of who was committed to pull the lever for McCain). But I guarantee some of us in the press will spend today haplessly running around looking for more of them out here, to fill out our stories about this ad and the angry-Hillary-brigades-hit-Denver storyline.
The vast majority of Democrats, especially those who found Hillary Clinton’s campaign appealing, will simply have no rational reason to do what Bartoshevich has inexplicably done. But to use Fairbanks’ metaphor, I also don’t doubt that the race for additional chickens is on.
For what it’s worth, while the McCain campaign is touting support from Bartoshevich, be prepared to hear more about high-profile Republicans throwing their support to Barack Obama.
From The Chicago Tribune
RALEIGH, N.C. — During an evening event in Raleigh, Obama said he was looking for a running mate who is independent, has “integrity” and got into politics “for the right reasons.”
“I want somebody who is mad right now that people are losing their jobs and is mad right now that people are seeing their incomes decline,” Obama said. “That’s the kind of person that I want.”
Obama is scheduled to travel on a bus tour across North Carolina and Virginia on Wednesday, while the latter part of his week remains unscheduled and offers a possible window for an announcement.
from CBS News Blogs
Posted by Brian Montopoli at CBS News
According to the New York Times, the New York Daily News and others, Barack Obama is primarily focused on three men as his search for a running mate draws to a close this week: Indiana Senator Evan Bayh, Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, and Delaware Senator Joseph Biden.
Biden is perhaps the name with the most buzz at the moment, thanks in part to his foreign policy bona fides, which were recently showcased during his high profile trip to Georgia and call for aid to the country.
“Barring a big surprise or last-minute change of heart, the choice is likely to be Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee,” Howard Fineman wrote on MSNBC today. Time’s Mark Halperin is also suggesting Biden will join Obama on the ticket. And Obama mentioned Biden in a speech today, further fueling speculation.
Now we are getting a preview of how Republicans might target the ticket should Biden get the nod. Earlier today, the Republican National Committee sent around a blog post from Politico’s Ben Smith showing a Biden ad from 1988.
It opens with an announcer saying this: “The White House isn’t the place to learn how to deal with international crisis, the balance of power, war and peace, and the economic future of the next generation. A President has got to know the territory, but that’s not enough.”
That sounds not unlike some of the criticism leveled at Obama, a relative newcomer to the political scene, both by Republicans and former rival Hillary Clinton. Should Biden join Obama on the ticket, it’s likely that Republicans will push this line of attack – particularly since they can link it to his running mate.
Biden is also taking some heat in the liberal blogosphere. In a post yesterday, Markos at Daily Kos questioned Biden’s judgment because the Delaware senator voted for the war.
“It strikes me that any pick designed to cover up a ‘flaw’ in Obama (i.e. ‘lack of foreign policy credentials’) only accentuates those flaws,” Kos writes of Biden. “Make him secretary of state.”
Kos also picks up on one purported problem with Biden – that his long tenure in Washington makes him a bad fit with Obama’s message.
“I’d love to see him pick a fresh face in politics who reinforces Obama’s message of change,” he writes. “Biden doesn’t.”
Obama is expected to announce his running mate to supporters late Friday and appear with him at the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois on Saturday.
Delaware State Election Commissioner Elaine Manlove told CBSNews.com this afternoon that Biden, who is up for reelection this year, “can run for both seats” if he becomes the vice presidential nominee.
She said the state’s governor, who is sworn in on the same day as the president, would appoint a replacement for Biden should he win Senate reelection and the vice presidency. (Ruth Ann Minner, a Democrat, is presently the state’s governor.) Whomever the governor appoints would serve a two year term.
from the Christian Science Monitor
By Jimmy Orr | 08.19.08
All the talk this morning is about the upcoming VP selection. Around the Internet, hysterics ensued yesterday when a New York Times article proclaimed that Barack Obama had determined his running mate. Determined, perhaps. Announced, not yet.
There was some hysteria over on the GOP side as well when Mike Allen’s headline over at Politico screamed that August 29 would be the day John McCain announces his forthcoming saddle pal.
Since we’ve got over a week to go through the endless reasons why a Tim Pawlenty selection would signal to some pundits that McCain is obviously not concerned with conservative cross-dressing anarchists in southern North Dakota, we’ll keep focused on the Obama and his upcoming pick.
The Obama road show
The soon-to-be Democratic nominee is in Florida and North Carolina today. Virginia tomorrow. Then the week opens up for an all out love fest for the happy ticket in determined battleground states.
So who is going to be traveling with Obama? The names on the short lists have remained pretty constant.
It’s Delaware Senator Joe Biden, Indiana Senator Evan Bayh and Virginia Governor Tim Kaine. Although Kansas Governor Kathy Sebelius is still a mention and former rival Senator Hillary Clinton is considered a longshot but a favorite of many. Incredibly, FOX News includes Massachusetts Senator John Kerry as a possible selection.
Then you hear from those “close” to the Senator and those “close” to the campaign and those “close” to advisers who know people in the campaign and those “close” to the guy who works at Dunkin’ Donuts who lives a block down the street from a guy whose sister used to date a lounge singer who watches Hardball a lot. And they’ll all tell you why they know who the selection will be.
Who got it first four years ago? An airline mechanic.
Bryan Smith, a US Airways mechanic, arrived at work on June 5, 2004, the day before Kerry gathered reporters at his wife’s estate near Pittsburgh and formally announced that Edwards was his No. 2. As Smith told NPR, he was passing through a hangar at the Pittsburgh airport to get to his work area “when I was informed by, I am assuming, Mr. Kerry’s people that I should not peek in that hangar and that it was, in fact, closed for the day.”
So he did what you would have done: Every time he passed through that hangar that day, he took a look.
“Around 6 that evening, I peeked in and saw they were putting John Edwards’ name on the airplane,” he said. “They concealed it rather quickly — they taped paper over the logos. I just happened to peek in at the right time.”
He said although he posted the information in an aviation chat room, the mainstream media didn’t pick it up. Perhaps the media will all be monitoring these forums intently over the next 36 – 48 hours.
Or you can look at more traditional clues. Who is getting mentioned by the candidate?
Delaware’s Joe Biden
Obama did mention Joe Biden this morning.
In a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Orlando, Obama said he was “proud to join my friend, Senator Joe Biden, in calling for an additional one billion dollars in reconstruction assistance for the people of Georgia.”
Add this, according to one pundit at CNN, to the fact that “Biden has been uncharacteristcally quiet recently” and we’ve got what the pundit calls a “counter-clue” to the more noisy Evan Bayh.
Let’s see if we can’t get something a little more solid. MSNBC’s Howard Fineman this morning said he had conversations with those who were actually vetted by the search committee:
My bottom line is this: Barring a big surprise or last-minute change of heart, the choice is likely to be Sen. Joe Biden of Deleware, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee. He is a lively and feisty if unpredictable campaigner with working-class roots and a street-level feel for the hot spots of the globe — which he can use to go toe-to-toe with Sen. John McCain.
He goes on to say that one of the finalists for the VP slot would bet his life on the Biden pick.
Just in case Fineman is off target, we can look at last week’s Sunday shows for clues. These shows they say are auditions for the big job. And if that’s the case we’re looking at Evan Bayh, Tim Kaine and Georgia President Mikheil Saakashvili.
Assuming that Obama was unable to convince Saakashvili to join his ticket and subsequently bend the constitution to allow it, we’ll look at the first two selections.
Virginia’s Tim Kaine
Folks down in Richmond are ruling out their own Governor because of a rumor of a planned stop in Chester, Virginia. The event is closed to the public.
You wouldn’t think that a Presidential nominee would be holding closed events if he’s just announced his VP candidate, would you? You’d think the more cheering people, the more waving signs and banners, the better, as the candidates are running toward their convention in Denver next week? What good would a closed event be for publicity and momentum?
However, the TV blog that reported the Chester rumor will continue to monitor this in case it is all a smokescreen. Stay tuned.
Indiana’s Evan Bayh
As for the oft-discussed Senator from Indiana? Bloggers on the left continue not to like him. The so-called “100,000 Strong Against Evan Bayh for VP” group on Facebook (the group really only has 3,853 members – but who’s counting) received a lot of press last week.
As for news this morning, it looks like Bayh is being mentioned in an Internet hoax is making the rounds. Someone over at the conservative Free Republic posted an alleged screenshot of CNN that they claim accidentally made it up on the news network’s site announcing Senator Bayh’s selection.
Gotta love what the always-enjoyable Oliver Berkman at the Guardian’s U.S. campaign site said of the screenshot in question:
If it really is [authentic], I’ll eat my own face, but the tale it relates deserves points for being imaginative. Sadly it loses them for being full of spelling errors and ridiculously bad writing, and for using the wrong font.
Keep your blackberries handy. Obama’s text is coming soon.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Within the last few hours I’ve spoken with two of the finalists for the role of Barack Obama’s running-mate, and to two other sources who are close to the process.
My bottom line is this: Barring a big surprise or last-minute change of heart, the choice is likely to be Sen. Joe Biden of Deleware, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.
He is a lively and feisty if unpredictable campaigner with working-class roots and a street-level feel for the hot spots of the globe — which he can use to go toe-to-toe with Sen. John McCain.
“If I had to bet my life on it, I’d bet it is Joe,” said one of the other contenders.
Said another, “Barack is moving toward a seasoned Beltway type, and that probably means Biden.”
And a source personally close to Obama simply said “Biden makes the most sense.”
Besides his experience, Biden brings other things to the table.
He is from a modest Catholic background in Scranton, Pa. He represents Delaware, but has long been a figure in Eastern Pennsylvania — a key swing state.
And he is a voluble and combative character, even with his ready smile.
“Joe won’t be afraid to get in McCain’s face, which is what Obama needs,” said one non-contender source.
Others have pointed out to Obama that this is why Biden would be hard to control as vice president.
But maybe Obama has decided to worry about that later.
Biden’s personal story is compelling. He lost his first wife in an auto accident and is devoted to his second, Jill — a lifelong teacher.
Biden has largely escaped any hint of scandal, personal or political, in a long career, even though he was forced to withdraw from the Democratic race in 1988 amid charges of plaigiarism.
Those charges now seem sadly trivial given all that’s happened since.
Another name on Obama’s short list is Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana.
But unlike Biden, Bayh is known for his mild demeanor. In addition to his lack of evident fire, Bayh has another handicap — ongoing questions about his wife’s business dealings. Also in the running is Virginia govenor Tom Kaine. But he may fall short because of his lack of foreign policy experience.
Also vetted of course were Sen. Hillary Clinton and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson.
And who is the dark, dark horse in this Veepstakes? I think it is former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle.
But the spotlight keeps moving back to Biden.