The Kerry-Edwards campaign pulled out of Missouri just three weeks before last year's election. John Edwards is being seen as making a thinly veiled criticism of ex-running mate John Kerry by stating that it wasn't his decision. A former Kerry strategist told NBC that campaign officials worked overtime to make sure all key players were on board when decisions to pull out of states were made. An Edwards aide insisted that it didn't work that way.
MSNBC: The urge is to compare Edwards to [Joe] Lieberman, who waited until after [Al] Gore bowed out to announce and organize his 2004 bid. One difference, though, is that Lieberman was deferring to the winner of the popular vote. Asked recently on ABC whether or not he would wait for Kerry as Lieberman did for Gore, Edwards said, "I have enormous respect for [Kerry], but I'll decide what's the right thing to do based on what's going on with my own family."
On ABC on February 20, Edwards said he wanted to fight back against the Swift Boat Vets "the day it started," but that "the decision was made not to do it, and I did not agree with that decision."
"Loyalty" is a subjective term in politics. Democratic strategist Donna Brazile sees John Edwards' efforts as politically smart, noting that when you campaign as the running mate, "You lose your voice, you lose your standing." Brazile adds, "That was the problem with Joe Lieberman." And after Lieberman courted Gore, she notes, Gore turned around and endorsed Dean for the nomination. "Edwards passed the loyalty test when he got on the ticket," she says.
Some are saying that Edwards didn't "help the ticket win any Southern states" in the 2004 Presidential election. One e-mail now circulating notes that Kerry-Edwards lost to Bush-Cheney in Wake County, NC -- i.e., Raleigh, where Edwards lives -- while the party's candidates for governor and US Senate won there. I don't think it's really all that hard to understand that the front runner, John Kerry, was tagged and framed as a "Massachusetts liberal" by extremely persuasive and successful GOP strategists, and that this had a direct effect on the North Carolina ballot.
Israel has drawn up secret plans for a combined air and ground attack on targets in Iran if diplomacy fails to halt the Iranian nuclear program.
US trade deficit widened by $2.6bn to $58.3bn, the second-highest monthly gap on record,despite a reduction in the cost of oil imports. With oil prices pushing towards record highs, the US deficit could soon climb above $60bn a month.
Iran has responded to combined pressure from the US and Europe by offering to halt development of most of its nuclear fuel cycle facilities while retaining the ability to enrich small amounts of uranium.
Pakistan made its first public admission this week that the smuggling network centered on Abdul-Qadeer Khan supplied Iran with centrifuges, ruling out that it supplied other, even more incriminating, technologies.
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan is heading to the Middle East for talks on boosting the peace process.
The United States is calculating how to respond to China's emergence as a strategic power.
US tycoon Robert Herring has offered $1m to Michael Schiavo, the husband of badly brain-damaged Terry Schiavo, to stop him from removing her feeding-tube next week.