A hotel executive and Democratic fundraiser has pleaded guilty in New York to witness tampering and conspiracy to evade campaign finance laws.» Read More
Here's why the Norman Hsu case is so alarming--for Hillary Clinton and other presidential candidates, not to mention the investors who prosecutors say were swindled out of $60-million. It's that no one knows how big this iceberg is.
Here are notes of interest from the political front. The first one on Newt Gingrich is from a breakfast meeting I attended this week with other journalists. The former Speaker sees a bleak Republican outlook but keeps a potential 2008 candidacy alive.
I noted earlier that the questions rivals had raised about Hillary Clinton's health plan indicated she may have hit the political sweet spot. Republican Mitt Romney slammed her for a "big government" plan whose signal feature matched one he backed as Massachusetts governor.
John Edwards is attacking Hillary Clinton on health care. He argues that her approach isn't sufficiently confrontational, that she'd be too friendly to the insurance industry and thus couldn't deliver on the priority Democratic primary voters care about most: universal health coverage. .
Hillary Clinton's new health plan is a sign of how the debate has shifted since 1993. It's universal -- the individual mandate she's called for would see to that--but less ambitious in design than the version that crashed and burned during her husband's presidency...
Here are some more highlights from our NBC/WSJ poll, which tells a lot about the state of the race for the White House. Though rivals question Hillary Clinton's "electability," she outpaces all of them in the public's assessment of qualifications for the presidency. 46% of Americans express confidence in her “skills and ability necessary to be president”...
Public discontent with the Iraq war has slightly eased, increasing President Bush’s political maneuvering room at a critical point in debates over war costs and troop levels. Those shifts in public opinion remain modest. Yet only one in four Americans say troops should leave now regardless of conditions on the ground...
The decision by Hillary Clinton's campaign to return $850,000 in donations tied to scandal-plagued donor Norman Hsu represents an attempt to stop a damaging story line--and raise the stakes on rivals seeking to capitalize. The refunds, among the largest in political history, set a precedent that will create pressure in future situations involved tainted donors.
Barack Obama trails Hillary Clinton in polls nationally as well as in key states like Iowa and New Hampshire. But he continues to draw impressive crowds--which is sometimes, though not always, a leading indicator of political momentum.
You'll get a nice look at political stagecraft this week with Fred Thompson's carefully calibrated entry on Thursday into the Republican presidential race. There's a Wednesday night GOP debate in New Hampshire that Thompson chose not to participate, lest it muddy his opening message. But instead of leaving the stage altogether, here's how he will attract attention that day...
Summer isn't over yet, but the languid pace that has prevailed in Washington since Congress left town in August has now definitively vanished. On every front, the White House and Congress, Republicans and Democrats, are girding for political action that will unfold rapidly with its ultimate consequences uncertain.
After watching for weeks as the mortgage meltdown roiled the markets and squeezed homeowners, President Bush inserted himself directly into the matter today. It remain unclear how much his intervention will help investors, lenders or homeowners. But there's no mystery about why he did it.
After initially dismissed questions surrounding donor Norman Hsu, Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential race has moved to limit the fallout. The campaign has said it will give away Hsu's donations, and Hsu himself has said he will no longer give money to candidates now that reports have surfaced that he's a fugitive from California authorities in a 1990s grand theft case.
The 2008 presidential race will produce a sharp debate over tax policy–-on individuals, estates, investments and corporations. But voters will have to wait for the general election to hear it. That’s because there’s substantial agreement on the biggest policy questions within each party’s field of primary candidates. And for now, those broad areas of consensus have left primary rivals to bicker at the margins.
In addition to campaign finance, Sen. Barack Obama has found a new issue to use in pushing his campaign for changing business as usual--the subprime mess. In a piece in the Financial Times today, Obama blames the problem partly on the mortgage industry's lobbying clout. It's a nifty attempt to add to voters' growing list of complaints against Washington...
I blogged yesterday about the possibility that the campaign finance questions kindled by the Wall Street Journal yesterday--which involved a top fund-raiser named Norman Hsu--could get any worse for Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton. That is precisely what happened today.
The political world is buzzing over the salacious news surrounding Sen. Larry Craig of Idaho, the conservative Republican caught up in a police sting that targeted sexual activity in a men's restroom. The news endangers Craig's career, at minimum, and might conceivably threaten the GOP's grip on his Senate seat should he be ultimately be forced aside. At a time when Republican social conservatives are already dispirited by the woes of President Bush...
We are creeping closer to the point of full engagement in the 2008 presidential race--but not there yet. On the Democratic side, John Edwards and Barack Obama are gingerly ramping up their criticism of front-runner Hilllary Rodham Clinton. With the Iowa caucuses just four months away--and Clinton leading polls nationally and in early states alike--they need to.
One question about market turbulence that I'll be watching is its effect on the 2008 presidential race. It's not clear the disruptions will prove long lasting, much less lead to an economic recession. If it proves a short-term blip, the effects will be negligible.
In an exclusive interview with CNBC's Becky Quick last night in Omaha before his Barack Obama fundraiser, Warren Buffett said the current market chaos and turmoil will probably create buying opportunities for him and Berkshire Hathaway. UPDATED AT 9:45am et WITH VIDEO CLIPS OF BECKY'S SQUAWK BOX REPORTS.