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3 a.m. call. Obama announces running mate: Joe Biden, six-term senator from Delaware

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and his vice presidential running mate Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., wave to supporters outside the Old State Capitol on Saturday, Aug. 23, 2008, in Springfield, Ill.

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The long- awaited text message announcing Obama- Biden '08 arrived in cell phones and inboxes just after 3 a.m. ET on Saturday. The 3 a.m. timing may evoke memories of an attack ad run by Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., questioning whether Obama would be ready to lead in the event of a 3 a.m. phone call. In the end however, Obama supporters got a 3 a.m. cell phone text message and e-mail about Biden, rather than Clinton.

Media reports in the hours before the official announcement strongly hinted at the Obama pick: A private plane was tracked flying from Chicago's Midway airport to New Castle, Del., and the Secret Service had been dispatched to protect Biden, the six-term senator. In the early morning hours, those hints were confirmed prior to the Obama camp's text message.  read more »

Deficit zooming to new record of half trillion for fiscal year 2009 - Impact of Iraq War

The US Government's budget deficit is tipped to soar to a record of nearly half a trillion dollars in fiscal 2009

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WASHINGTON - The White House predicted yesterday that President Bush would leave a record $482 billion deficit to his successor, a sobering turnabout in the nation's fiscal condition from 2001, when Bush took office after three consecutive years of budget surpluses.

The worst may be yet to come. The deficit announced by Jim Nussle, the White House budget director, does not reflect the full cost of military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the potential $50 billion cost of another economic stimulus package, or the possibility of steeper losses in tax revenues if individual income or corporate profits decline.

The new deficit numbers also do not account for any drains on the national treasury that might result from further declines in the housing market. The White House forecast was prepared before passage of the huge housing assistance package that Bush has promised to sign. That legislation would put taxpayer money at risk in numerous ways, especially if housing prices continue to decline.

Costly wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have<br />
sapped the US budget  read more »

Planned Ron Paul rally blossoms into 3-day mini-convention due to unprecedented response, moves to larger venue at Target Center

Ron Paul

(quote)

(CNN)— Former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul is moving forward with plans for his own rally during the Republican National Convention —and is moving his location to a larger arena to accommodate the unprecedented response.

The three day event called ‘Rally for the Republic’ will officially launch Paul’s new political action group: the ‘Campaign for Liberty.’ When planning for the event began earlier this year, it was originally scheduled to take place at the University of Minnesota, but due to a “strong initial response,” it was moved to The Target in Minneapolis, which can house up to 18,000 people. The GOP holds its convention across the river in St. Paul.

Ron Paul will hold his own Rally August 31 through September 1

"The Rally for the Republic will send a powerful, positive message to the Republican Party that there is an army of grassroots activists across the country ready to work with them if steer back to their traditions of limited government and personal liberty," said Campaign for Liberty spokesman Jesse Benton.

Paul, who has often voiced his differing policy views from presumptive Republican nominee John McCain, has made it clear in past interviews with CNN his supporters won’t be in Minneapolis to interfere or cause problems for the Republican Party. “We’re not going to disrupt them,” Paul told CNN last month. “We’re not going to demonstrate as much as present a positive case for values that we believe should be the Republican values.”

Ron Paul

From August 31 through September 1, the former presidential dark horse will hold a series of grassroots leadership and training events culminating with a “celebration of traditional Republican values,” where Grover Norquist, Tucker Carlson, Gov. Gary Johnson, Barry Goldwater Jr. and Bruce Fein are expected to speak.

The Texas congressman, who opposes the Iraq war and is a libertarian on economic issues, drew an avid following during the Republican primaries. He won 1.2 million votes and raised nearly $35 million. His campaign said the Campaign for Liberty, formed June 16 when he ended his presidential bid, has attracted over 71,000 members.

(unquote)

Photos courtesy of Getty Images

Original Source: Boston Globe and CNN

"Return to Our Roots" - Ron Paul's Convention to Rival GOP 2008

Ron Paul plans his own convention

(quote)

Presidential candidate Ron Paul is planning a rally during the Republican National Convention to show what his party stands for.

The Texas congressman has tentatively reserved the Williams Arena at the University of Minnesota on Sept. 2, the second day of the Republican convention.

Ron Paul

"We plan on having a large rally. We want it to be a celebration of Republican values and what the Republican Party has traditionally stood for," said Paul spokesman Jesse

Benton on Tuesday. Benton also said that Paul wants to send a message to the Republicans 'that we need to return to our roots' of limited government and personal responsibility.

Paul's campaign picked up substantial steam during the GOP primaries, when the libertarian leaning Texan raised about $35 million almost entirely online and garnered more than a million votes.

Paul secured at least 35 convention delegates, but Republican Party big-wigs are denying him a speaking slot and he has decided to stage his own convention.

(unquote)

young Ron Paul and bride

"Ron Paul is the candidate who upholds the original intent and spirit of the Constitution and has an extensive congressional record to back it up." - Public Forum Letter, The Salt Lake Tribune  read more »

Video: Ron Paul, presidential candidate: "I deal in philosophy. It's a challenge in philosophy. I am determined..."


(quote)

(This is a rush transcript from "Your World with Neil Cavuto," June 10, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.)

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Well, the Republican National Convention just got some competition, not from the Democrats, but from another Republican — Ron Paul just announcing he's holding a convention of his own. It will be the same day and in the same city as the RNC Convention.

Presidential candidate Ron Paul joins me now.

What are you — what are you up to, Congressman?

REP. RON PAUL (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I don't know whether we'll call it a convention. We're certainly going to have a meeting.

But we're sort of following up on what happened early in the presidential primary races. As you recall, early on, I was excluded from a forum out in Iowa. It happened to be a tax group. And I have no idea why I was singled out and excluded. But we went and had a rally next door. We didn't crash the party. We didn't try to cause any problems. We just went next door. And our rally was a lot bigger than the presidential forum was.

So, at the national convention, we believe, since we won't have very much of a role to play there, that we will see what kind of numbers that we have, where Republicans could come together to remind the party of its promises for limited government.

That's the roots of the Republican Party, and I still think there are still a lot of Republicans that believe that government ought to be small and balanced budgets and free markets and all these principles that, for so long now, we have been neglecting.  read more »

Obama, After Clinching Democratic Nomination, Must Heal Rift, Unite Party, Reconcile With Hillary, to Face off Against McCain

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Barack Obama, who clinched the Democratic presidential nomination after a historic insurgent campaign, faces a new challenge: uniting the party and responding to growing pressure to choose rival Hillary Clinton as his running mate.

Obama, 46, last night passed the threshold of 2,118 delegates needed for the nomination. Throughout a five-month campaign spanning 54 contests, he shattered fundraising records, and galvanized millions of new voters. Still, Clinton, 60, refused to concede and has put out the word that she is open to a vice presidential nomination. She also attracted important party constituents, such as older women and working-class voters, and won nine of the last 16 contests, giving her leverage as Obama heads into the general election against Republican John McCain.

Although there are indications that Obama isn't enthusiastic about choosing her as his running mate, the Illinois senator reached out to Clinton and her supporters in his victory speech. "Because of this primary, there are millions of Americans who have cast their ballot for the very first time," he said at a rally in St. Paul, Minnesota. "Let us unite in a common effort to chart a new course for America."

(unquote)

Photos courtesy of AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster and AP Photo/LM Otero

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton shakes hands with Sen. Barack Obama during a forum in Grantham

Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain

Original Source: Bloomberg

Former Presidential Candidate McGovern Urges Obama, Hillary To Unite

Original Source: Reuters and CBS News

(quote)

As the race for the Democratic nomination for U.S. president wears on, Republican Jack Schmidt is thinking the same thing many conservatives are -- this is good for Republicans.

"They are beating themselves up to McCain's advantage," said Schmidt, 79, a retired broker, referring to presumptive Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain. "He's got some baggage too, but no one is paying attention to that."

"The longer they drag it out, the better for our candidate. The longer they beat each other up the less they're beating up our candidate. It's totally to our advantage and it's great," said Chelsea Chapman, an oil and gas accountant and the president of the Houston young Republicans.

(unquote)

(quote)

(AP) Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton should stop beating up on each other in the remaining Democratic contests and focus their ire on the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, George McGovern said Tuesday.

In a letter published in the New York Times and at a news conference in Sioux Falls, the former Democratic senator from South Dakota and 1972 presidential nominee outlined what he called a formula to unify the party and defeat Sen. John McCain.

"We can reduce the danger of Sen. Clinton and Sen. Obama criticizing each other for the next month and giving McCain a free ride," said McGovern, 85. "They are constantly pointing out weaknesses in the opposing candidate, which is what politicians do when they run for office. You can't blame them for that. But meanwhile, McCain is free to go around the country talking about motherhood and the flag and all those non-controversial things and looking like a statesman who is above the hurly-burly of politics."

McGovern's proposal is for Obama, the front runner, and Clinton to appear together at least once in each of the five remaining primaries in Kentucky, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Montana and South Dakota. The plan also could be used in Michigan and Florida if the party reconsiders its decision not to count those states' delegates, he said.

"One of them is going to lose and this would send them out in harmony and place the party and country's interests above their own," he said.

(unquote)

Photos courtesy of AP and National Ledger

Republicans glory in extended Democratic battle

McGovern Urges Obama, Clinton To Unite

former Democratic presidential candidate George McGovern

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