Fresh off his announcement that he will officially enter the race for president next week in New Hampshire, Mitt Romney made an official visit to Iowa, hoping to play a role in that state's first-in-the-nation caucus.
Amid speculation that Romney would skip much of the Iowa nomination process, including this August's Straw Poll, the former Massachusetts governor and 2008 contender said he was committed to Iowa, but stopped short of saying he was committed to the entire Iowa process. Continue »
As grumbles about the lackluster Republican presidential field grow louder, reports of the return of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin are growing stronger. The New York Times reported that Palin is moving herself and her campaign operation, which is being bulked up, to Arizona, where it's easier to catch a flight to Iowa or New Hampshire than it is from Wasilla, Alaska.
So what does a possible Palin campaign mean to the rest of the party? Well, it could be a blessing in disguise for the Romneys, Pawlentys, Gingriches and Huntsmans of the world.
Why? It's all about the base -- and specifically, the growing solidification of the very conservative wing of the Republican base. Let's imagine the political spectrum as a football field. The Democrats and liberals are the to the left and the Republicans and conservatives to the right. The 50-yard line is the absolute political center. Continue »
The Democratic victory in Tuesday's special congressional election in upstate New York may not be the start of a trend, but it marks the first time President Obama's party has been on the offensive since they lost control of the House of Representatives last year.
In the last few special elections, Democrats did fairly well, but only one of those outcomes predicted a trend. November 2009 saw a Democrat win the special election in New York's 23rd congressional district because a third party conservative candidate split the Republican vote.
And in May of 2010, a Democrat won the special election in Pennsylvania's 12th district, running as the legacy to his former boss and long time Representative John Murtha. The last special election that foreshadowed later results was the special election for the Massachusetts Senate seat long held by Ted Kennedy. The winner of that race was a Republican, Scott Brown, who ran on one issue: Health care.Continue »
Relief Program, or TARP, gives Democrats a chance to resell a program that has been painted as representing all that is wrong with government.
Of all of the actions taken by the federal government in response to the economic collapse in the fall of 2008, the TARP may be the most contentious and most hated of them all. Some in the Tea Party say that the vote for TARP, aka the bank bailout, is what set the movement afoot. Many see the $700 billion loan program as first push of socialism, yet others see it as the pragmatic, responsible and successful approach to steady the economy and keep the country afloat.Continue »
President Obama's surprise decision to release his long-form birth certificate has many in Washington shaking their heads.
At first blush, it looks like the move was a response to real-estate mogul Donald Trump's recent push on the so-called "birther" issue. As Trump mulls a run for the White House himself, he's been making Mr. Obama's citizenship and place of birth an issue, one that's getting more attention as Trump soars in early polls.
But Donald Trump is not the only birther proponent out there. In fact, Republicans have pushed the birther issue in more than a dozen state houses nationwide -- many pushing bills that would require candidates for president to submit birth certificates to state election officials.Continue »
Many in the Washington political world are talking about Haley Barbour, but not necessarily about why he decided not to run for president. Most are asking, what does this mean for Mitch Daniels?
Daniels, the governor of Indiana and former budget director for Georgw W. Bush, is a close friend of Barbour's and is seen as one of the Republican Party's leading voices on debt and deficits. He is a Harley Davidson riding politician who some think can be the Republican's best match for President Obama.Continue »
Nothing says "presidential primary" like a debate, which can be the first snapshots of the candidates voters see. But this year, the early debates aren't expected to give us the whole picture.
Unlike in years past, some of the more serious candidates are sitting out the early debates-leaving only a handful of contenders to take the stage and take each other on.
That's an entirely different story than in the 2008 campaign. Then, the debates started early, and the field was crowded. The first Republican debate in the '08 campaign was in May 2007, and 10 candidates competed--including big names like Sen. John McCain, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Rep. Ron Paul and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. The second debate took place less than two weeks later in South Carolina--and had the same 10 big-name participants.
This time it's a different photograph.Continue »
Speaking at a tax-day rally in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Saturday, billionaire real estate magnate Donald Trump was both charming and funny. He got many laughs, and his speech was at times coherent, at times nonsensical and rambling. He said many times he was considering running for President. It is easy to tell why he's popular at this stage in the game: he's funny, witty, confident, and entertaining.
Much of the laughter came while Trump was boasting, showing off his trademark ego. He told the crowd he was proud of the billions of dollars he's earned and relished the idea of showing the world how much money he has.
If he runs, he said: "I really look forward to disclosing my financials. I built a great company."Continue »
Updated 5:32 p.m. Eastern Time
Republican budget architect Rep. Paul Ryan today characterized his new budget plan this way: "This is not a budget, this is a cause."
And that cause, he suggested, is to grow the economy by reducing the size and scope of the federal government. Ryan's proposal, called "The Path to Prosperity," says the plan starts "not be asking what is the 'right mix' of tax increases and spending cuts to balance the budget, but by asking what is the purpose of government, and then raising only as much revenue as the federal government needs to efficiently fund those missions that rightly belong in its domain, while maximizing economic growth and job creation."
Budgets are statements of both policy and politics, and the Republican budget is no exception. So how have members of the GOP responded? By applauding Ryan for just making that statement and to address the looming federal debt -- while not necessarily addressing the specifics of his policy proposals, which include politically-perilous entitlement reform.Continue »
"So even though I'm focused on the job you elected me to do, and the race may not reach full speed for a year or more, the work of laying the foundation for our campaign must start today," the current president wrote to his supporters when announcing his intention to keep his job through 2016.
How he does his current job will be the determining factor if he gets another four years.Continue »
This means the first debate of the 2012 season will be a few days later, May 5, as FOX News and the Republican Party of South Carolina host candidates and potential candidates to a forum in that important early primary state. The South Carolina Republican Party tells CBS News that their debate is happening as scheduled.
The Reagan Library debate is in conjunction with media partners Politico, NBC News and Telemundo. With only one top tier candidate, Tim Pawlenty, having officially filed the paperwork for a Presidential Exploratory Committee, not enough candidates were ready to commit to the debate to hold it on its original date.Continue »
Against criticism that he acted alone and without offering a clear mission or a clear exit, the president offered a systematic analysis of the situation on the ground in Libya and a defense of his actions.
President Obama, like the college professor he used to be, addressed his opponents' criticisms of him point by point.
He defended the military intervention, arguing that the international situation was ideal for U.S. involvement.Continue »
Yesterday, he said that the mission is already working because it prevented a "catastrophe" and the "atrocities" that could have occurred had the Qaddafi regime's forces successfully attacked the rebel stronghold of Benghazi enforcing Qaddafi's decree to "show no mercy" to the opposition.
So the primary stated goal of the military campaign is use the "extraordinary capabilities" of the U.S. to create the space necessary for an international coalition to enforce a no-fly-zone and ceasefire in Libya.
Throughout his day in Brasilia yesterday and now in Rio de Janeiro, the president has led a two track agenda -- one, the task at hand of his push to get American goods into the booming Brazilian economy, and the other, beginning military action across the Atlantic in Libya.
Speaking to the people of Rio today, Mr. Obama made only a passing mention of the conflict, "We've seen the people of Libya take a courageous stand against a regime determined to brutalize its own citizens."
But his lack of words today doesn't mean Libya hasn't been front and center in his day. Hours before he left his hotel for his tour and speech here, he was briefed on the latest on the military operations in Libya by his top national security aides, including Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.Continue »
Latest update 4:28 p.m. EDT
As the Obama administration responds to the Libyan conflict, one thing appears to be certain: they don't want to appear to be in charge.
While world leaders met in Paris to discuss the way forward, including military operations to enforce the United Nations-backed cease-fire and no-fly-zone, the President was meeting with Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff in Brasilia's Presidential Palace.
And when the leaders' meeting finished, the first Western voice speaking out against Libya's government was French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who said Libya's "murder madness" had to stop, but said diplomacy was not closed if the Qaddafi regime would end its aggression against the rebels.Continue »