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Morning Road Map

By Michelle Levi and Steve Chaggaris

McCain holds a town hall meeting in Lima, Ohio at 11:30am today. He's expected to talk specifically about jobs and his campaign manager's lobbying connection to local employer DHL and subsequent job losses. Later, he'll attend a fundraiser outside Cincinnati.

Obama will stop by a diner in St. Paul, Minn., this morning before heading back to Chicago for closed-door meetings. He heads to Hawaii for a week-long family vacation starting Friday.


Late yesterday, the McCain campaign released a new web video called "Praising McCain" which features Democrats such as Sens. John Kerry and Joe Biden and even his opponent Barack Obama saying nice things about the Republican presidential candidate. The video closes with Hillary Clinton saying, "I know Senator McCain has a lifetime of experience he will bring to the White House. And Senator Obama has a speech he gave in 2002." This video comes on the heels of potential McCain running mate Minn. Gov. Tim Pawlenty's praise of Obama yesterday. "Say what you will about Barack Obama, people gravitate when you have something positive to say," Pawlenty said.

Wilmington News Journal's Huffenberger, "McCain's campaign chair former DHL lobbyist": "McCain is scheduled to be in Wilmington today for a private meeting with a cross section of local people to hear about the potential loss of 7,400 to 10,000 jobs if DHL closes its air freight operations at the air park."

Associated Press' Fouhy, "McCain to discuss potential job losses in Ohio"

Washington Times' Dinan, "McCain takes lead on YouTube hits - 'Celebrity' attacks against Obama amuse younger generation"

Bloomberg News' Chen, "Bloomberg - McCain Irks Republicans With Confusion Over Social Security Tax"


LA Times' Nicholas, "Obama ready to unwind in Hawaii": "The presidential candidate says he needs a break. A poll indicates half of voters welcome his time off."

Associated Press' Niesse, "Island life in multiracial Hawaii shaped Obama"

NY Daily News' McAuliff, "Obama's oil ads run out of gas"

Washington Post's Weisman and Bacon, "Obama Hits Back, Too Softly For Some": "Such attacks have raised worries among Democratic strategists -- haunted by John F. Kerry's 2004 run and Al Gore's razor-thin loss in 2000 -- that Obama has not responded in kind with a parallel assault on McCain's character. Interviews with nearly a dozen Democratic strategists found those concerns to be widespread, although few wished to be quoted by name while Obama's campaign is demanding unity."

NY Times' Bai, "Is Obama the End of Black Politcs?"

NY Times' Broder, "Obama's View on Abortion May Divide Catholics"


Wall Street Journal, "The McCain Veepstakes": "Our view is that vice presidential nominees rarely matter much to election prospects because voters focus on the top of the ticket. A bad selection can hurt, of course, and veep nominees can be very important both to governing and especially to the future of the party. We'd advise Mr. McCain to make his choice based mainly on the latter two criteria, especially because at his age he could be a one-termer."

Washington Post's Milbank, "Outspoken Pawlenty Auditions for Role of Mr. Discretion"

Wall Street Journal's McKinnon and Belkin, "Possible McCain Running Mate Pawlenty Offers Ideas for Reforming Republicans"

USA Today's Brogan, "Pawlenty: GOP needs to grow base"

Wall Street Journal's Lublin and Jacoby, "Pressure to Donate to Romney Alleged in Complaint": "A former executive who says his boss pressured him to contribute to Republican Mitt Romney's presidential campaign has filed an employment-bias complaint that offers a rare glimpse behind the curtain of big-money corporate fund raising."

New York Times' Rohter, "Looking for Any Signs at Obama-Bayh Meeting"

WBBM-TV's Levine, "Obama Campaigns With Bayh, Fueling VP Speculation"

NY Daily News, "Three contenders for Obama veepstakes"


Hillary Clinton will hold a "web chat" with supporters at noon ET today on her website.

The Clinton and Obama campaigns released a joint Wednesday night in response to reports that Clinton is considering calling for her name to be placed in nomination at the Democratic Convention. "We are working together to make sure the fall campaign and the convention are a success. At the Democratic Convention, we will ensure that the voices of everyone who participated in this historic process are respected and our party will be fully unified heading into the November election." At a recent gathering of supporters, Clinton responded to a question on whether she would consider putting her name in for the DNC nomination. Clinton said, "I happen to believe that we will come out stronger if people feel that their voices were heard and their views were respected. I think that is a very big part of how we actually come out unified. No decisions have been made. And so we are trying to work all this through with the DNC and with the Obama campaign." You can see Clinton's remarks here:

Associated Press' Paulson, "Clinton aims to soothe delegates at Dem convention"

Time Magazine's Tumulty, "Have the Clintons Gotten Over It?"


Both John McCain and Barack Obama will attend a forum at the Saddleback Church in California next Saturday, August 16. The church's pastor, Rick Warren, is the focus of a Time Magazine article,

CAMPAIGN FUNDRAISINGSt. Petersburg Times' Allison and Bousquet, "Democrats question whether Crist friend used 'straw donors'": "Democrats pounced on reports Wednesday that a major fundraiser for Florida Gov. Charlie Crist and Republican presidential candidate John McCain had tapped suspiciously apolitical Californians of modest means for thousands of dollars in campaign contributions over the past two years."

New York Times' Luo, "Family's Donations to McCain Raise Questions"

WCCO-TV's Murphy, "Supporters Write Big Checks For Obama Fundraiser"


Washington Post's Kumar, "The Battle for Hampton Roads"

Wall Street Journal's Hitt, "The New Southern Strategy"


Wall Street Journal's Rove, "What McCain Should Do Next": "He's rightly raising questions about Mr. Obama's fitness to be president, starting with his failure to admit that the surge in Iraq worked. Mr. McCain should stay at it, though he'll need help to make the case... But to win, Mr. McCain must also make a compelling case for electing John McCain. Voters trust him on terrorism and Iraq and they see him as a patriot who puts country first. But they want to know for what purpose?"

Politico's Brown, "No Olympic break in campaign marathon"

Washington Post's Farhi, "Win Points for McCain! – Rewards Program for Online Commenters"

Chicago Sun-Times' Mitchell, "We can deny it, but race slithers into campaign": "From the moment Barack Obama went from a wannabe presidential contender to a front-runner, the race factor curled up and waited to strike anyone who got too close. Former President Bill Clinton got bit. So did the Rev. Jeremiah Wright."

USA Today's Jackson, "Third-party candidates try for ballot spots in most states"