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Kucinich's Unwavering Stance on Iraq

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This political video is a collection of clips that show Kucinich's opposition to the war in Iraq.

Kucinich is not just anti-Iraq war. He's antiwar, period.

In presidential debate, Democrats unite against US Iraq policy

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Eight Democrats vying for the White House were united Thursday in condemning President Bush's Iraq policy policy, at a presidential campaign debate more notable for the candidates' easy consensus than disagreement.

In the first televised debate of the 2008 campaign, more than 18 months before the November 4, 2008 election, Democrats were strongly critical of the Bush administration for continuing to funnel thousands of US troops and billions of dollars into what they see as a faltering Iraq war effort.

"The American people have said, Republicans and Democrats, that it's time to end this war," said top-tier candidate Senator Barack Obama, who aspires to become the country's first African-American president.

Obama criticized the "disastrous conditions that we've seen on the ground in Iraq."

Equally emphatic was Senator Joseph Biden, who condemned Bush's "fundamentally flawed policy."

"The real question," said Biden, "is are we going to be able to leave Iraq, get our troops out, and leave behind something other than chaos?"

The candidates pressed the case for a dramatic policy change in Iraq, armed with poll results showing a majority of Americans backing the Democratic push for a troop pullout.

Thursday's debate also was seen as a key step for each candidate in helping raise funds and attract staff, in what is becoming the longest and most expensive campaign for the US presidency in history. Read full story here.

MoveOn ad targets McCain's 'Bomb Iran' joke

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The liberal group MoveOn.org is launching an ad against Republican John McCain and his joke about bombing Iran, arguing that the nation "can't afford another reckless president."

Watch McCain's Bomb Iran video.

The group plans to spend about $100,000 to air a commercial on network and some cable television stations in Iowa and New Hampshire, states that hold early contests in the presidential nomination process, spokesman Alex Howe said Friday.

McCain, campaigning Wednesday in South Carolina, answered a question about military action against Iran with the chorus of the surf-rocker classic "Barbara Ann."

"That old, eh, that old Beach Boys song, Bomb Iran," he said. "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, anyway, ah ..."

His audience laughed, but MoveOn.org called the comment dangerous.

"America has lived through six years of a reckless foreign policy," an announcer says in the ad. "We're stuck in Iraq. More than 3,000 Americans are dead. And thousands more wounded.

"Now comes John McCain with his answer to what we should do about Iran. John McCain? We can't afford another reckless president."

The group ran ads in the same states in January, criticizing the Arizona senator's support for sending more troops to Iraq.

source: cnn.com

2008 presidential race hopeful McCain sings "bombs" to Iran

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Republican 2008 presidential race hopeful John McCain crooned the words "Bomb Iran" to a Beach Boys' tune in joking response to a question about any possible U.S. attack over Tehran's suspected nuclear weapons program.

"That old Beach Boys song, Bomb Iran ... bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb," the Vietnam War veteran warbled softly to the band's "Barbara Ann" when he was asked when the United States would send an "airmail message" to Iran.

Campaign spokesman Matt David said the question was asked somewhat in jest and that the Arizona senator was adding some levity to the discussion.

The United States and others have accused Tehran of seeking nuclear weapons, a charge Tehran denies. While U.S. officials have refused to take the military option off the table, they have said there were no plans to attack Iran and they would pursue a diplomatic solution.

McCain also gave a serious answer focusing on Iran's nuclear ambitions and desire to destroy Israel.

"It bothers me a great deal that they (Iran) might have a nuclear weapon or a missile, but it bothers me also to have a nuclear weapon knowing their relationship with various terrorist organizations, that they would give it to a terrorist organization," McCain said.

McCain's run for the White House, his second, has experienced some difficulties. He was third among Republicans in raising money during the first quarter, $12.5 million, and has been spending it as a faster clip than many candidates.

2008 presidential race candidates on the abortion issue

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Several of the 2008 candidates have already put out statements regarding today’s 5-4 Supreme Court decision upholding a nationwide ban on what opponents of the procedure call partial-birth abortion. Notice the differences between comments by Senator John McCain, a Republican who has said he opposes abortion except in cases of rape or incest, and Rudolph W. Giuliani, a Republican who has said he is personally anti-abortion but believes women should have the right to receive one. Mitt Romney, a Republican who has sought to persuade social conservatives that his abortion stance is genuine, also released a statement, as did some Democrats.

Read their views about abortion here.

McCain says he backs no gun control

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WASHINGTON - 2008 Republican presidential race candidate John McCain declared Wednesday he believes in "no gun control," making the strongest affirmation of support for gun rights in the GOP field since the Virginia Tech massacre.

The Arizona senator said in Summerville, S.C., that the country needs better ways to identify dangerous people like the gunman who killed 32 people and himself in the Blacksburg, Va., rampage. But he opposed weakening gun rights and, when asked whether ammunition clips sold to the public should be limited in size, said, "I don't think that's necessary at all."

GOP rival Rudy Giuliani, too, voiced his support for the Second Amendment on Wednesday, but not in such absolute terms. Once an advocate of strong federal gun controls, the former New York mayor said "this tragedy does not alter the Second Amendment" while indicating he favors the right of states to pass their own restrictions. Read full report here.

2008 presidential race candidates on spot over gun-control

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Gun control has been treated with a mix of silence and discomfort in the presidential campaign, a stance that may become insupportable once the nation finds its voice in the aftermath of the Virginia Tech mass murder.

Democrats have been deliberately muted for months on an issue that, by their own reckoning, contributed to and perhaps sealed their defeat in the 2000 presidential election. That's when Al Gore's call for gun registration cost him votes in rural America and dulled the party's appetite for taking on the gun lobby.

Top Republicans in the race are trying to close ranks with their party's conservative base on a variety of issues, making gun control an unusually sensitive one for them, too, thanks to their liberal views in the past.

Enter the massacre at Blacksburg, Va., an attack so horrific it froze the presidential campaign in place. Candidates called off events and expressed only sorrow, not opinion, in the first hours.

Read full story here.

2008 presidential race candidate Joe Biden on Iraq war

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U.S. Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) offered an amendment to the emergency supplemental bill that would help fund the war in Iraq by cutting off the enormous and irresponsible tax breaks for the richest one percent of Americans.

Watch the political video of Senator Biden as he explains how we can work to get a politcal solution to end the cycle of violence in Iraq. Joe Biden on Iraq war.

According to Biden, the first five years of the Administration’s latest cuts, set to begin this year, will cost the U.S. Government $27 billion and will grow to more than $150 billion over the next ten years. Additionally, these breaks apply only to those with the highest incomes; over 97 percent of the billions in tax breaks will go to the wealthiest one percent of Americans.

“The President’s record of tax cuts during a time of war is a record of utter disregard for our nation’s financial future,” said Biden. “It is a record of indifference to the price our children and grandchildren will pay to redeem our debt when it comes due. It is time for us to call a halt to this irresponsibility. It is time for us to pay for the choices we make. It is time to pay our bills.

“Last year alone, millionaires collected an average tax cut of $103,000 from the breaks enacted since 2001. With the new breaks set to begin this year, more than 99 percent of Americans will get nothing, zero, zip, zilch -- it will all go to the top one percent. This is the cherry on top of the whipped cream for the most blessed among us.

“My amendment says: No more of these giveaways until we can pay our bills, meet our responsibilities, face up to our own duties. If we miss the chance to take this small step back toward fiscal sanity, if we mock the sacrifice of our troops with gold-plated giveaways to those from whom nothing is asked and to whom so much has already been given, shame on us.”

2008 Presidential race candidate John Edwards on climate change issue

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Our generation must be the one that ends our nation's dependence on oil and ushers in a new energy economy. We need energy independence from unstable and hostile areas of the world, from global warming pollution, and from the old ways of doing business. If we harness American ingenuity to reach for transformative change, we can emerge from the crisis of global warming with a new energy economy that stimulates innovation, brings the family farm back to life, and creates more than 1 million jobs in America's farms and industries. Today, John Edwards called for America to embrace three great goals for this generation:

  • Halt global warming by capping and reducing greenhouse gas pollution and leading the world to a new global climate change treaty.
  • Create a new energy economy and 1 million new jobs by investing in clean, renewable energy, sparking innovation, a new era in American industry, and life in family farms.
  • Meet the demand for new electricity through efficiency for the next decade, instead of producing more power.

As a result of the Edwards plan, by 2025 America will import 7.5 million fewer barrels of oil a day, produce 65 billion gallons of ethanol and other biofuels a year, generate 25 percent of our electricity from renewable sources, and produce more than 2 billion fewer tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year. Within a generation, America's cars and trucks will be virtually petroleum-free.

Watch the video of John Edwards on climate change.

Giuliani defends his pro-choice beliefs

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Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani defended his record favoring the use of public money for abortions, saying he wouldn't try to undo a Supreme Court ruling allowing the procedures.

"Ultimately I believe it's an individual right and a woman should make that choice," the former New York mayor said during a Statehouse news conference where he picked up three endorsements.

Watch political video of Rudy Giuliani talking about the public funding of abortion.

2008 presidential race candidate Romney's health care plan says everyone pays

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You have to buy car insurance if you own a car. You have to buy home insurance to get a mortgage. Why don't you have to buy health insurance?

Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney re-ignited that debate last month when he announced a plan to expand health coverage to all the state's residents, with a caveat that those who don't buy coverage could face a penalty.

"We can't have as a nation 40 million people — or, in my state, half a million — saying, 'I don't have insurance, and if I get sick, I want someone else to pay,' " says Romney.

It's the question behind all health care debates: Who should pay?

Romney's plan says everyone should: The state would work harder to enroll all residents eligible for Medicaid; employers, most of whom already offer insurance, would be encouraged to continue doing so voluntarily; and individuals who don't have insurance would have to sign on to one of two new insurance pools, one of which would be subsidized for lower-income residents.

Here's a video of 2008 presidential race candidate Mitt Romney talking about his health care plan.

Top 10 Political Video Sites

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Here's my top ten list of political video sites.

  1. Realclearpolitics.com

    Updated every morning and throughout the day, RCP culls and publishes the best commentary, news, polling data, and links to important resources from all points of the political compass and covering all the important issues of the day. RealClearPolitics has become a trusted filter for anyone interested in politics.

  2. Youtube.com/youchoose

    You Choose '08 offers "official" channels for candidates' videos, with tallies of the number of views.

  3. Isupportthismessage.com

    The site aimed at providing feedback to messages being sent by politicians and interest groups. The site, founded by a trio of dot-com veterans and political insiders, will post video, audio and print messages from interest groups and politicians, and allow users to comment on and post their own multimedia messages in response. It also displays the percentages of site readers who support and oppose individual messages. Isupportthismessage.com will then provide hard copy and electronic reports to interest groups, Congressional offices and candidates.

  4. TechPresident.com

    A group blog from Andrew Rasiej and Micah Sifry about how the 2008 Presidential campaigns are using the Web. The site maintains a count of the candidates "Friends" on MySpace, the popularity of campaign videos on YouTube, and links to most recent images uploaded to the Flickr photo-sharing site that are tagged with the name of one of the presidential candidates.

  5. Mediaresearch.org

    Written from a politically right-wing American perspective, this site is very interesting for how it depicts media bias.

  6. Politicstv.com

    A unit of ptvMedia, a four-year-old political Web Video consulting firm, picks up clips of candidates, and media coverage. Channels include Comedy, where you can still see Daily Show clips, a Hall of Fame which has the Hillary/1984 spot, and highlights of political-related media coverage.

  7. Prezvid.com

    Jeff Jarvis' politics site. He's been focused on how "voter generated" video can impact the campaigns and inviting people to submit questions they'd like answered by the candidates.

  8. Jameskotecki.blogspot.com

    A 21-year-old Georgetown University student, Kotecki is a critic of campaign videos posted on YouTube. He produces his commentaries using a Webcam, apparently in his dorm room.

  9. Onegoodmove.org

    It is constantly updated with news, video clips, and various links that are decidedly anti-Bush, anti-religion, and always either informative, entertaining, or both. Worth bookmarking for a daily visit.

  10. Mediamatters.org

    Media Matters for America is a Web-based, not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.

Military experience rare among '08 field

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The 2008 presidential race is long on war rhetoric and short on warriors. Despite the high-profile roles of the battle against terrorism and conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan in the presidential campaign, few of the candidates can claim military experience on their resumes.

Of the top tier of 2008 candidates, only Republican John McCainhas been to war and served in uniform.

Yet, while the demand for a president with a military background might be expected to run high in the post-Sept. 11 era, few see that as a determining factor in the 2008 race. Read full story here.

Recent election 2008 polls: Clinton, Giuliani up front, but Romney rising in 2008 race

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Latest polling in the 2008 White House campaign shows Hillary Clinton leading a three-way race for the Democratic nomination, while Rudolph Giuliani heads the Republican field, with former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney showing early signs of a surge.

While opinion surveys are simply long-range indicators nine months before first nominating contests, they do serve to set perceptions of the race in the media and among likely voters, and spotlight trends that can be used by campaign chiefs to sharpen tactics.

New York Senator Clinton appears to be maintaining the lead in national polls that she has had for months. Read full story here.

How can we engage more people in the democratic process?

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I will be asking questions to help create dialogue around this and many other important topics so please add me to your Answers Network so that we can begin exchanging ideas and hopefully make changes that will benefit the future.

Found this question by 2008 presidential race candidate Sen. Barack Obama in Yahoo Answers.

Obama pulls in $20M for 2008 presidential race

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Democratic Senator Barack Obama reportedly pulled in 20 million dollars in donations for his White House campaign, only a few million shy of front-runner Hillary Clinton.

Citing unnamed aides of Obama, who seeks to become the country's first-ever African-American president, the New York Times said Obama brought in 20 million dollars (15 million euros) in the first three months of the race, compared to Senator Clinton's 26 million, "enough to ratchet up the anxiety in the Clinton camp."

Clinton reported the size of her war chest as of a key fund-raising deadline on Saturday, while Obama has yet to officially reveal his takings on the campaign trail. Read full story here.

Tommy Thompson to run for president

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WASHINGTON - Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson on Sunday joined the crowded field of Republicans running for the White House in 2008 and proclaimed himself the "reliable conservative" in the 2008 presidential race .
Thompson, who was health and human services secretary during Bush's first term, also said he is the only GOP candidate who has helped assemble both a state and federal budget.

Since announcing last year he was forming a presidential exploratory committee to raise money and gauge support, Thompson has lagged behind better-known rivals. Read full story here.