January 29th, 2008
08:07 PM ET

Top Democrats turn their backs on Clinton?


Sen. Barack Obama shakes hands with Sen. John Kerry at the College of Charleston in South Carolina January 2008. Click the play button to see what Jack and our viewers had to say. (PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Senator Edward Kennedy's endorsement of Barack Obama yesterday got a lot of people talking about what effect the backing of one of the Senate's most senior Democrats would have on Obama's campaign. Will the young senator from Illinois inherit the Kennedy mystique that was the late president's?

It's also worth noting that Kennedy is far from the only member of the Democratic establishment who has decided to support Obama over Hillary Clinton.

The list is pretty impressive, powerful names like Senators John Kerry, Patrick Leahy and Kent Conrad, former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, and California Congressman George Miller.

It's interesting that they would turn their backs on Hillary, the wife of one of the party's most popular figures, and a key player in the party herself. But, a piece in "The Politico" today describes how Washington's liberal establishment has joined together around the view that Former President Bill Clinton is tarnishing his legacy and hurting his wife's presidential prospects in the process.

They point out how Clinton spent so much time as the dominant personality in the Democratic Party that it makes it easy to forget that lots of Democrats never liked him all that much. And, it seems like a lot of this anti-Clinton sentiment has resurfaced in Washington, where some see Clinton's campaigning to be inappropriate and even offensive.

Here’s my question to you: Why are so many powerful Democratic leaders turning their backs on Hillary Clinton and endorsing Barack Obama?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Barack Obama • Hillary Clinton
January 29th, 2008
05:45 PM ET

GOP front-runners call each other “liberals”?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/29/art.mccain2.ap.jpg caption=" Republican presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain ."]

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/29/art.romney.ap.jpg caption=" Republican presidential hopeful former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney."]

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The race between the two Republican front-runners, Mitt Romney and John McCain, is getting ugly.

The stakes in today's primary are huge. The winner in Florida might well be the Republican nominee. Reflecting the pressure, and like two kids in a schoolyard, they are now calling each other "liberals." That's not a word you hear among Republicans very often.

Romney went after McCain for some of his "liberal answers" to the country's problems, including campaign finance reform, his view on illegal immigration and his support of an energy bill that Romney said would raise costs for consumers.

McCain shot right back, accusing Romney of "wholesale deception of voters" and flip-flopping on the issues. McCain says Romney was a liberal governor of Massachusetts who raised taxes, worked with Ted Kennedy on a massive government mandated health care plan and did a poor job managing his state's economy.

The angry tone between the two also spread onto the airwaves, where McCain launched a new negative radio ad mocking Romney's economic record as governor and questioning his electability. The Romney campaign said of the ad "This is the McCain way"… sinking to a lower level when a race is close.

Here’s my question to you: What does it mean when the two front-runners for the Republican nomination, Mitt Romney and John McCain, are calling each other "liberals”?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: John McCain
January 29th, 2008
04:43 PM ET

The power of John Edwards?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/29/art.edwardssc.gi.jpg caption=" Senator John Edwards campaigns throughout South Carolina."]

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

He hasn't won anything yet, and his showing in some cases has been dismal. But John Edwards is showing no signs of getting out the race. Maybe he doesn't have anything else to do. His campaign says that Edwards will stay in it until the Democratic Party convention, and they're hopeful that we can still win it.

One top campaign official says quote: "There are numerous scenarios that lead to us being nominated." Right, like if Obama and Clinton drop out. But this same official points out that it's "essentially impossible" for one person to get a majority of delegates with three candidates in the race. That's because the Democrats allot all their delegates proportionally - no winner-take-all – and so far, Clinton and Obama have pretty much been splitting the lion's share of the delegates.

Even if he doesn't win, and he won't, Edwards could still play a role if the nomination ends up being decided by a brokered convention. In such a scenario, Edwards could use his delegates - potentially hundreds of them - to promote his platform or to act as a power broker. As one political analyst says: "It's obvious what he has in mind - if you can't be the king, then be the king or queen-maker".

And by staying in the game, Edwards can also influence the race in different states. For example, he could divide the white vote with Hillary Clinton like he did in South Carolina, which could help Barack Obama. Or, Edwards could attract some of the voters seeking "change", which could hurt Obama.

Here’s my question to you: If the Democrats wind up with a brokered convention, what role would John Edwards play?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: John Edwards