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Edwards Looks Beyond Iowa

Former Sen. John Edwards's (D-N.C.) decision to take to the airwaves in New Hampshire is the most tangible sign yet that his campaign is seeking to change the perception that he is pinning his presidential hopes primarily on Iowa.

Following Edwards's surprisingly strong second place showing in the 2004 caucuses, the idea has emerged that the candidate has all but lived in the state since then -- laying the groundwork for his next run for president. For the last few months, the Edwards campaign has sought to push back hard against that idea for fear that it sets up a situation where he must win in Iowa to be seen as having any chance at the nomination.

The new ad in New Hampshire is a case in point. In it, Edwards embraces a broad message of grassroots change. "The strength of America is not just in the Oval Office, the strength of America is in this room right now," says Edwards. "It's the American people." (An interesting sidenote: an image of Elizabeth Edwards is shown in the ad, a sign -- and not a terribly surprising one -- that she will continue to be front and center in the campaign.)

To be frank, the message is less important than the simple fact that Edwards is up on television (read: spending money) in New Hampshire. It sends a signal that New Hampshire is important to his chances and that he is planning -- at least initially -- to dedicate real resources to the state in 2008. Edwards has also spent more time in Nevada than either Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) or Barack Obama (Ill.) -- his two main rivals for the nomination.

The attempt to broaden his electoral palette beyond Iowa is likely the result of Edwards's experience in 2004 when he failed to capitalize on his stronger than expected showing in Iowa due to a lack of organization on the ground in New Hampshire. He placed fourth in the New Hampshire primary (with 12 percent) and even though he bounced back to win South Carolina he was never able to find that Iowa momentum again. During that same campaign, Edwards watched Rep. Dick Gephardt (Mo.), who made no secret that an Iowa win was essential to his chances, fizzle in the caucuses and drop out before New Hampshire.

So, is Edwards the Gephardt of this cycle? Or his campaign sustainable no matter the results of the Iowa caucuses?

His campaign makes a compelling case that the conventional wisdom is wrong; that he has not showered the state with any more or less attention that the other Democratic frontrunners and, as a result, should not be expected to win the caucuses.

According to figures provided by the campaigns, Edwards has spent 18 days in Iowa since announcing his candidacy on Dec. 27, while Obama has been in Iowa for 20 days since announcing in February; Clinton (D-N.Y.) has been in the Hawkeye State for 15 days since joining the race in January. (She and former President Bill Clinton have a four-day trip through the state planned next week.)

So, Edwards has dedicated no more time than any of the other top tier candidates to Iowa since this campaign began. But what about the two years between his losing vice presidential candidacy and the announcement of his 2008 bid you ask? According to his campaign, Edwards spent 25 total days in Iowa in 2005 and 2006.

Washingtonpost.com's "Campaign Tracker" generally backs up these numbers, counting 46 Edwards events in Iowa since the start of 2007 -- 14 more than he has held in New Hampshire. By contrast Obama has done 43 events in Iowa this year, while Clinton has appeared at 28 events.

But numbers don't always tell the whole story. Every neutral Democratic observer we spoke to said Edwards must finish in the top two in Iowa to have a legitimate shot at the nomination.

Why?

First, because he is battling two candidates in Obama and Clinton who are almost certain to outspend him in Iowa and beyond. If Obama or Clinton take an unexpected hit in one of the early voting states, they will have a financial fall back plan to keep them in the game. Edwards' campaign insists they will have the money that they need to run their campaign in the early states and we believe them. But, if the campaign extends beyond South Carolina, it's hard to see Edwards still in the financial game unless he uses a win or strong second in Iowa to slingshot him into the top two in New Hampshire.

Second, and perhaps more importantly, the perception exists in the political chattering class -- that group of media, strategists and hangers-on that spend unnatural amounts of time thinking and talking about the race -- that Iowa is his best and only chance to sling a pebble and fell one or both of the Democratic Goliaths. Criticize it if you will (and we know you will) by that group carries an weighty influence in setting expectations for the candidates.

Polling done in the state has reinforced that idea as almost every survey we've seen shows Edwards in either first or second place -- a testament to his continued popularity but also a sign of the expectations that popularity has foisted on his campaign.

As we've said often in this space, perception is EVERYTHING in modern American politics. The Edwards' campaign can argue until they are blue in the face that Iowa isn't make or break for them but in a field with two incredibly well-known and well-financed candidates, it's hard to imagine a win-scenario for Edwards that doesn't include a first or second place showing in Iowa.

Edwards' best chance at winning the top prize is to use his resources to cement his support in Iowa, which would ensure he'll remain a top contender all the way through the caucuses, while also trying to set some roots -- financial and organizational -- in New Hampshire. Polling in the state shows him regularly running behind Clinton and either slightly ahead or slightly behind Obama. That means Edwards can go either way in the state. Win Iowa and he catapults himself into contention; disappointment and his support likely goes elsewhere.

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 26, 2007; 3:32 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: Parsing the Polls: Bloomberg's Impact?

Comments

wow rufus let's not get carried away. I may not like Ann but I respect her 1st amendment right just as much as any one elses. I think what she said was rude, but not completly out of line. I think there is a cernal of truth in that Edwards is maximizing his situation.

Posted by: mountain man | June 27, 2007 9:17 PM | Report abuse

By that thinking NC, tony snow used his sickness to garner sympathy. As did Bush, his wife cheaney and so on. Unless you have ost a child how can you bad mouth him. Ann COulter and those like her have NO PLACE in REAL political conversation anymore. THEY JUST DON"T KNOW IT YET.

Posted by: rufus | June 27, 2007 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Face it, John Edwards did use his son's death for sympathy in the last election. He wore the Outward Bound pin of his son, spoke of it often as a reminder of his dead son who he would not talk about. And he's only running for Prez because of his son...blah blah... The same way he's using Lizzy's cancer for sympathy this time around. Coulter only pointed out (3 years ago) Edwards shameless pandering. It's true. Old trial lawyer trick. Also, the Edwards campaign workers ( or disciples, or followers, or whatever they are)who post here need to be more subtl eh Bruce G?

Posted by: NC | June 27, 2007 1:00 PM | Report abuse

lylepink - You continue to ignore the subjective factor on which most people base their votes. On paper and without any other knowledge, Richard Nixon looks like a great President. Do you think so?

As Richard Cohen mentioned the other day, in the 1972 election George McGovern, a certifiable war hero, theoretically would have been the logical choice to handle a war, not a rear echelon person like Nixon.

But as Cohen pointed out, Nixon read the polls and catered to what made people feel comfortable, he won 49 out of 50 States and one District.

No matter how much you tell people to check the facts, they are going to vote for whoever they feel will provide a degeree of comfort for the next four years.

That picture which accompanied the "Gatekeepers of Hillaryland" in the Post the other day was just another reason to feel uncomfortable about her. I've got 14 years of observing her closely which makes me uncomfortable.

I know the facts, I know the lies from her detractors, I also know the distortions from her supporters - she makes me uncomfortable. And apparently a lot of other people too.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 27, 2007 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Chris:

From where did the "idea emerge that (Edwards) all but lived (in Iowa)" since 2004?

We have his international travel to Africa focussed on world poverty, 'hands-on' work with students and volunteers cleaning up after Katrina in New Orleans, work for and analysis of hedge funds, involvement in supporting and promoting the "College For Everyone" program, selling, buying and constructing a new home, and even time for haircuts - the latter two being the primary focus of your fellow 'jounalists,.

He's obviously highly organized, efficient, dedicated, determined and able to deligate inasmuch as none of the other candidates in either party has produced position papers, goals and rationale for priorities and solutions as thoughtful or complete as John Edwards.

It is way past time for Americans to reject the cardboard cutout candidates and the divisive image politics and monied propaganda campaigns of the past few decades in favor of progressive, involved politics of a man who has already taken on and beaten the establishment as an attorney.

There isn't a bad apple in the Democrat barrel, but there's a hell of a Presidency in John Edwards.

Posted by: Bruce Gruber | June 27, 2007 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Raul David: Most of us that support Hillary have taken the time to do a little FACT checking. Those that oppose her will distort and flat out lie about anything that she can be remotely liked. You can answer your own question by asking how you feel about Bubba, and by the "Dynasties" remark, I doubt you hold him in very high regard.

Posted by: lylepink | June 27, 2007 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Dear Lylepink:

I am a second generation American, a legal citizen (as are my parents) of Hispanic heritage. We are all registered Democrats and college graduates. All of us but my father (retired) are professionally employed. (I am a high school teacher.) We are all liberals to varying degrees, and believe in choice, universal health care, protecting the environment, and public education.

And we all hate Hillary. Well, we don't "hate" her per se, but we all think she is on an ego trip and would not be the best president. The country where my parents were born claimed to be a "democracy," but in reality was ruled by big business, in the hands of a series of members of one family. We came to the United States to avoid this, and we do not believe that you and some others understand what you are supporting. Dynasties are not compatible with democracy.

I would be interested in your comments.

Respectfully,

Raul David

Posted by: Raul David Chavez | June 27, 2007 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Whine, whine, "Hillary Hater." Gloat, gloat, "insurmountable lead." Smugly condescend, "would be good at State or Interior." Cart Before Horse, "Hillary's VP pick." Irrelevant, "Bubba." Deny, deny, deny, "negatives don't matter."

PO-TUS, PO-TUS, I-M-O!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 27, 2007 10:58 AM | Report abuse

L.Sterling: You must not have watched TV for the past 15 years, even as I am typing now it is on MSNBC. Matthews is a "Hillary Hater" from way back.

Posted by: lylepink | June 27, 2007 9:06 AM | Report abuse

I think Mrs. Edwards made a major boo boo by being an invited caller to the Hardball show with Ann Coulter as the guest. This may get her an understanding by those that have lost a child in any manner, but the loss was already known by most folks.

Posted by: lylepink | June 27, 2007 8:58 AM | Report abuse

I don't get that chris matthews is a "Hillary Hater". Lylepink and other Hillary supporters take any criticial questions or criticism of their candidate as animosity. Candidates, and especially the present gaggle of 3, should be scrutinized, analyzed and criticized, early and often. It makes them better candidates and lets the public test their reactions. NO ONE is "entitled" or "inevitable" at this stage of the game...... If Edwards is faltering in the fundrasing , Chris and others should point that out.

Posted by: L.Sterling | June 27, 2007 8:56 AM | Report abuse

mountain man,

As an aside, I didn't reference Chris Matthews (that was another poster).

Anyway, first, Obama has already demonstrated that he is willing to implicitly criticize Clinton, and I suspect he will be more explicit about his criticisms later down the road, if he finds that necessary. Generally, this is one of the many problems with having a conversation about this race at such an early stage: what is happening in the campaigns now is not necessarily what will be happening later. Indeed, it would be quite foolish for the candidates to be making all their arguments right now, because relatively few people are paying any attention.

Second, as always it is worth noting that Obama's national poll numbers are actually remarkably good for someone in his position at this very early stage. Again, by all rights he should be behind both Edwards and Clinton, and probably even Gore, simply because he is so new to the national scene (and the polls confirm he is still relatively unknown). Again, because people simply are not paying attention right now there is little movement in these early polls. But Obama clearly has the opportunity to improve his numbers once people start paying attention and he becomes more familiar to them, provided of course that he can maintain his current positive-negative balance along the way.

Indeed, your argument seems to be that because his numbers have stabilized he is somehow permanently stuck in his current position. Again, when you think about where we are in the process that is really not a sensible claim. We know from history that the polls become increasingly volatile as the primaries near, and become incredibly volatile once the primaries actually start. In light of this history, it simply makes no sense to view the current national polls as somehow predictive of final results.

Finally, I will just note again that for those of us familiar with Obama from before his convention speech, this is all very familiar. Indeed, this looks an awful lot like the Illinois Senate primaries, where Obama was competing with more established and/or better financed candidates. Indeed, if anything is different this time it is that Obama is actually in much better shape now than he was at a similar stage of that primary campaign.

Posted by: DTM | June 27, 2007 8:29 AM | Report abuse

"Obama has also had months of glowing press and that hasn't changed his poll numbers at all he must be getting toward the end of his rope."

With all due respect Mountain man how can you say the candidate who polls consistently in second place is at the end of his rope? With your logic then every candidate is at the end of his rope behind Hillary. I would argue that a guy who is as young and new as Obama being able to make a viable challenge to Hillary is amazing in its own right. But then again i like to take time and hear from all the candidates rather than ordain a winner 7 months before the voting begins.

Posted by: dave | June 27, 2007 2:37 AM | Report abuse

DTM I don't think either Chris Mattews or WP Chris have ever said Hillary has a "insurmountable lead" if I'm wrong please show me a link where they say this.

I agree with you that things can still change, but with Obama claiming he's not going to go negative its hard to understand how he can beat hillary if he's not going to go after her. If he does go after her he's a hypocrit and loses cred. Obama's painted himself in a box and until that dynamic changes it's Hillary's for the taking. Obama has also had months of glowing press and that hasn't changed his poll numbers at all he must be getting toward the end of his rope.

Posted by: mountain man | June 26, 2007 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Yes, mountain man, blow us away by your backwoods intellect. Explain WHY Hillary is worthy of being considered a foregone conclusion.

(We know how you feel, but what is the reasoning behind it. You know, what makes Her Ex-First Ladyness so much more worthy than others of RETURNING to the White House, rather than allowing someone else a shot at what is still supposedly not a Clinton family right.)

Explain to us why we should agree to endure whiny nasality of both Celine Dion and Mrs. Clinton for over a year. I still have some hopes of enjoying the summer.

Posted by: Anonymoose | June 26, 2007 11:34 PM | Report abuse

lylepink,

The next few weeks takes us to July or maybe August, so I doubt that is a crucial period. History says people won't be making up their mind until days or at most weeks before the caucuses, not months.

But if Iowa was in fact right around the corner, I think it would be clear that any of Edwards, Obama, and Clinton would likely get a bump if they won, do OK if they finished second, and be in trouble if they finished third. And I agree Richardson could surprise and finish in third (or higher), and a fourth place finish would be a disaster for any of Edwards, Obama, or Clinton.

But again, it is way too early for this sort of conversation.

Posted by: DTM | June 26, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Lylepink, what is your Richardson theory?

Posted by: Marj in Austin | June 26, 2007 10:28 PM | Report abuse

mountain man,

We obviously don't share the same definition of journalism. My definition of journalism is reporting the facts. It's fair to highlight Clinton's lead in the polls, but there is no factual basis to conclude and relay to the public that it's an insurmountable lead, which history defies. If history is a good indicator--as it always is--early political polls ALWAYS prove wrong and one would have to be a fool (or have an agenda), NOT politically wise as you suggest, to conclude seven months before the first primary that Obama or Edwards or any of the lower tier candidates DON'T have a viable chance of overcoming her lead. Again, with history as a guide, a candidate like Edwards or Biden has a good chance of shocking everyone. And I say that as an Obama supporter. I don't want any reporter to agree with my views, just report the facts w/o imposing their's.

Posted by: DTD | June 26, 2007 10:27 PM | Report abuse

DTM: I think you are about right about Edwards, about the only way he can remain a credibile contender is to finish in the top two in Iowa, as with Obama in the top three. The Richardson theory I have is mainly based on his having major improvement in the next debate, and his overall performance until then has got to get much better. A lot is at stake in Iowa and the way these next few weeks plays out on the campaign trail, could greatly influence the folks in Iowa.

Posted by: lylepink | June 26, 2007 9:54 PM | Report abuse

ellec,
Has it ever occurred to you that the Borgen Project Website is full of crap with the 19B estimate? By itself, the UNs World Food Program spends nearly 3 Billion per year fighting hunger. As just one of literally hundreds of public, private and religious groups that devote money to fighting world hunger, that 19 billion estimate means that world hunger should already be eliminated. And on a side note, Edwards should be working on plans to get the rest of the world to start contributing - the US is far and away the most generous country in the world.

Posted by: Dave! | June 26, 2007 9:49 PM | Report abuse

I love how Chris tries to cast Edwards as someone running an upstart campaign.

What Chris never likes to mention is that Edwards was the 2004 VP nominee, and by all rights, he should be the favorite at this stage, with the best name recognition and the most money. One might allow Clinton parity on the basis of the Bill Factor, but the fact that Edwards is behind Obama (the junior Senator from Illinois) in the national polls and in fundraising is simply astonishing.

And that is why the stakes are so high for Edwards in Iowa. If he doesn't improve on his result in 2004--which means winning--then the only possible conclusion is that Democrats have fully processed what he has to offer, and found him wanting.

Posted by: DTM | June 26, 2007 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Edwards' firm stance on poverty and inequality is exactly why I support his presidency
campaign. The poverty in America alone is astounding, but when viewed in a global perspective, something really needs to be done. Our leaders need to support the UN Millennium Development Goals to end poverty. Imagine how different the world would be. On the Borgen Project Website, it states that it costs $19 billion annually to relieve starvation and malnutrition, which is peanuts considering our $522 billion military budget this year.

Posted by: ellec | June 26, 2007 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Hillary is picking up in polls where she was behind because of the "Push Polling" she is now doing in Iowa and NH according to the Politico and Iowa Independant. Isn't this what Bush and Company did to McCain?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 26, 2007 8:25 PM | Report abuse

DTD: Chris Matthews is a long time Hillary "Hater" and when I hear him say anything good about Hillary, which I haven't btw, I can almost guarantee in the next breath he will try and trash her in some way. Hillary is by far the best the dems have to begin on the first day to change this country back to what most us a voted for in 06, and the changes, such as getting out of Iraq, and many others that we hopeing for, and know she has the political skill to get them accomplished.

Posted by: lylepink | June 26, 2007 7:55 PM | Report abuse

"Something new from Chris...reporting the news rather than shaping it"

Good call. That used to be the model of a "journalist". Not in the last ten years. Not since Fox "News" destroyed all credibile news going for the ratings.

Posted by: JKrish | June 26, 2007 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Edwards is shooting to pull in $9 million. He was on Jay Leno last night, with mixed results. He took a shot at himself with self-depracating humor "you can't afford (bigger meals at Wendy's) when you're spending your money on haircuts." But when Leno asked them what they thought about Hillary's Sopranos ad, they responded "we got good stuff on our site too" which, to me, sounded a bit desperate. Edwards pulled in $7 million so far....half of what he pulled in last quarter. If Richardson or Dodd outraises him he might start to fade out and fall lower in the ranks.

Posted by: Justin Perez | June 26, 2007 6:11 PM | Report abuse

So DTD anyone who disagrees with you isn't a journalist? Both Chris's report the campaigns from a political perspective. I know that's bad news for Obama but both reporters have lots of political experance and maybe they see something you don't.

Posted by: mountain man | June 26, 2007 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Say the right are not fascist's if you want. I think history AND the FACTS say differant. Ann Coulter claims to be a Christian. Is that possible? No. Are the right fascists. Yes

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 26, 2007 6:02 PM | Report abuse

The republicans dream word


"Fascist America in 10 easy steps

Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy
Create a gulag
Develop a thug caste
Set up an internal surveillance system
Harass citizens' groups
Engage in arbitrary detention and release
Target key individuals
Control the press
Equate dissent with treason
Suspend the rule of law "

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 26, 2007 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Everyone should look up this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin's_Law

It's so accurate it's eerie.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | June 26, 2007 5:53 PM | Report abuse

bad sign for Edwards. He has made his stand in IA and the fact that he's shifting his focus now means he must not feel good about his chances there. Iowans do remember things like he is up in NH before he is up in IA. Sounds petty to the rest of us but it matters to them.

Posted by: mountain man | June 26, 2007 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Something new from Chris...reporting the news rather than shaping it. To listen to Chris and Chris Matthews the last several weeks, the nomination is guaranteed to Hillary Clinton so Obama and Edwards should close shop. I'm glad to see that Chris' journalistic integrity has perhaps kicked in to remind him and us that it's not the media's place to pronounce any candidate's inevitability especially 7 months before the first ballot is cast.

Posted by: DTD | June 26, 2007 5:17 PM | Report abuse

For uncensored news please bookmark:

www.wsws.org
www.takingaimradio.info
otherside123.blogspot.com
www.onlinejournal.com
www.globalresearch.ca

http://www.gregpalast.com/the-tears-of-a-clone/

THE TEARS OF A CLONE

Conyers Closes in on Karl and his Rove-bots ...

By Greg Palast
Special to The BRAD BLOG

(Listen to the podcast of this article here)

Boo-hoo! I made Tim Griffin cry.

He cried. Then he lied.

You remember Tim. Karl Rove's right hand (right claw?) man. The GOP's ragin' cagin' man.

Griffin is the Rove-bot exposed by our BBC Newsnight investigations team as the man who gathered and sent out the infamous 'caging' lists to Republican state chairmen during the 2004 election.

gregclintoncaptioned.jpgCaging lists, BBC discovered, were used secretly as a basis to challenge the right to vote of thousands of citizens - including the homeless, students and soldiers sent overseas. The day after BBC broadcast that the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, John Conyers, sought our evidence on Griffin, Tim resigned his post as US Attorney for Arkansas. That job was a little gift from Karl Rove who made room for his man Griffin by demanding the firing of US prosecutor Bud Cummins.

Last week, our cameras captured Griffin, all teary-eyed, in his humiliating kiss-off speech delivered in Little Rock at the University of Arkansas Bill Clinton School for Public Service where he moaned that, "public service isn't worth it."

True. In the old Jim Crow days in Arkansas, you could get yourself elected by blocking African-Americans. (The voters his caging game targeted are - quelle surprise! - disproportionately Black citizens.)Palast and Conyers Looking over the E-mails

But today, Griffin can't even get an unemployment check. When he resigned two weeks ago following our broadcast, the cover story was that the voter persecutor-turned-prosecutor had resigned to work for Presidential wannabe Fred Thompson. But when Thompson's staff was asked by a reporter why they would hire the 'cagin' man,' suddenly, the 'Law and Order' star decided associating with Griffin might take the shine off Thompson's badge, even if it is from the props department.

Griffin, instead of saying that public service "isn't worth it," should have said, "Crime doesn't pay." Because, according to experts such as law professor Robert F. Kennedy Jr., 'caging,' when used to target Black voters' rights, is a go-to-prison crime.

By resigning, Tim may not avoid the hard questions about caging - or the hard time that might result. When I passed the first set of documents to Conyers (a real film noir moment, in a New York hotel room near midnight), the soft-spoken Congressman said that, resignation or not, "We aren't done with Mr. Griffin yet..."

Tears Not Truth

Back in Little Rock, when asked about caging, Rove's guy linked a few fibs to a few whoppers to some malefactious mendacity. That is, he lied.

"I didn't cage votes. I didn't cage mail," Griffin asserted.

At the risk of making you cry again, Tim, may I point you to an email dated August 26, 2004. It says, "Subject: Re: Caging." And it says, "From: Tim Griffin - Research/Communications" with the email tgriffin@rnchq.org. RNCHQ is the Republican National Committee Headquarters, is it not, Mr. Griffin? Now do you remember caging mail?

For the rest please go to:

http://www.gregpalast.com/the-tears-of-a-clone/

Posted by: che | June 26, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse

For uncensored news please bookmark:

www.wsws.org
www.takingaimradio.info
otherside123.blogspot.com
www.onlinejournal.com
www.globalresearch.ca

http://www.unknownnews.org/

http://www.alternet.org/blogs/peek/54498/

Over 140,000 Rove Emails Illegally Destroyed

Nico Pitney: An investigation led by Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) uncovers 'extensive destruction' of RNC emails, violations of Records Act.

House investigators have learned that the Bush administration's use of Republican National Committee email accounts is far greater than previously disclosed -- 140,216 emails sent or received by Karl Rove alone -- and that the RNC has overseen "extensive destruction" of many of the emails, including all email records for 51 White House officials.

For the last several months, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has been "investigating whether White House officials violated the Presidential Records Act" by using email accounts maintained by the RNC and the Bush-Cheney '04 campaign for official White House communications. Today's findings confirm that the accounts were used "for official purposes, such as communicating with federal agencies about federal appointments and policies." The report adds:

Given the heavy reliance by White House officials on RNC e-mail accounts, the high rank of the White House officials involved, and the large quantity of missing e-mails, the potential violation of the Presidential Records Act may be extensive.

Some other key findings:

- RNC account use far greater than believed: Despite White House spokesperson Dana Perino's claim that 50 White House officials used RNC email accounts "over the course of the administration," the committee learned that at least 88 White House officials had RNC e-mail accounts.

- Bush-Cheney 04 campaign stonewalling: The committee says it may need to "issue compulsory process" to force the cooperation of the Bush-Cheney '04 campaign. Despite providing at least eleven White House officials with email accounts, "the campaign has unjustifiably refused" to provide the Committee with even the most basic information about the accounts, including the number of e-mails that have been preserved.

- Destroyed RNC emails may be preserved by federal agencies. The RNC has preserved only 130 e-mails sent to Karl Rove during Bush's first term and no e-mails sent by Rove prior to November 2003. "For many other White House officials, the RNC has no e-mails from before the fall of 2006." Several federal agencies contacted by the committee have indicated they "have preserved official communications that were destroyed by the RNC," but others have resisted the investigation.

- Gonzales may have known about RNC account use. According to a deposition from Rove's former assistant Susan Ralston, in 2001, then-White House counsel Alberto Gonzales "may have known that White House officials were using RNC e-mail accounts for official business, but took no action to preserve these presidential records." The committee calls for an investigation into Gonzales' actions on this matter.

Posted by: che | June 26, 2007 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Does anybody know why the ny times Murdoch/china ,front page story, is getting buried. I don't see it on one site other than NY times. Why is nobody talking about this today, ANYWHERE. This scares me a bit. HAs all dissent been silenced? Or are they scared?

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/26/world/asia/26murdoch.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

They even swept it from the NY TIMES site once the announcment HE WAS BUYING THE WALL STREET JOURNAL. Scary stuff. Our media is in the bag. They have sold us out. In turn the country has been sold out to the fascists/china

Posted by: rufus | June 26, 2007 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Edwards is a sleeper amongst the Dems. True antiwar types have nowehere else to turn; even if his rhetoric is jumbled and naive.
http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | June 26, 2007 4:12 PM | Report abuse

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