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Obama Ratchets Up the Attacks

(CBS)
From CBS News' Maria Gavrilovic:

OSKALOOSA, IOWA -- Barack Obama seems to be ratcheting up the attacks on everybody lately.

On Wednesday, Mitt Romney was his target.

Last night it was Hillary Clinton, when he claimed, "You could argue that there are more foreign policy experts from the Clinton administration supporting me than Senator Clinton" (according to lists released by both campaigns, it seems as if he misspoke).

Today, it's John Edwards, attacking his record on fighting special interest and lobbyists.

Obama has said this before: "Both of us agree that we have to take on the special interests and lobbyists. Both of us agree that they have too much influence in Washington. But I would argue that in positions where we actually had the chance to do something about it, I did something and John didn't. And, during the six years in the Senate, he wasn't passing laws that would reduce the power of lobbyists."

However, Obama took it a step further today in trying to characterize Edwards' record:

"John yesterday said that he didn't believe in 527s - those are these independent groups that raise money without disclosure, nobody knows who's giving the money, what's going on. He said I don't believe in them because this is like any other major loophole in campaign finance reform law. You've got these outside groups that are helping out candidates and it's a way of getting around the campaign finance laws."

"So he said he's opposed to them - we found out today that there is an outside group spending $750,000 – just bought three quarters of a million dollars worth of television time – and the individual who's running the group used to be John Edwards' campaign manager. So you can't say yesterday you don't believe in 'em, and today you have three quarters of a million dollars being spent for you. You can't just talk the talk," said Obama.

"The easiest thing in the world is to talk about change during election time," he continued.

"Everybody talks about change during election time, you've got to look at how they act when it's not convenient, when it's hard. And the one thing I'm proud of is my track record is strong on this and I've walked the walk."

Edwards yesterday addressed this issue saying, "What other groups do, by law, I have no control over. I can't tell them what to do or what not to do."

"It's one of the problems with the law, but it is the law. And we're required by the law to stay out of it."

CBS News' Aaron Lewis contributed to this report.