July 31st, 2008
08:30 AM ET

In this poker game, McCain should hold

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/18/art.mccainobama.jpg]Leslie Sanchez
AC360° Contributor
GOP Strategist

If conventional wisdom is correct and Barack Obama's vice presidential selection is days away, should John McCain pounce with his own Veep announcement? I say no.

For McCain, this game is more like Poker than Quick Draw. He’s got one singular advantage when it comes to the Veepstakes, which is that he can afford to wait and see Obama’s hold card. Once he sees which of two or three strategies Obama has decided to play, he can then decide which of his own cards to play.

Will the Democrats make a choice based on region, or gender? Will Obama play to “new politics”? Either way, expect McCain's choice to counterbalance Obama’s.

While Obama has been playing his cards close to his vest, one thing remains clear: unlike McCain, he has every reason to announce his choice sooner rather than later. FULL POST

Filed under: Barack Obama • John McCain • Leslie Sanchez • Raw Politics
July 31st, 2008
08:15 AM ET

AC360° Q&A - If McCain wins, Roe v. Wade will be overturned

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/31/art.larry.tribe.jpg width=292 height=320]
Editor's Note: Harvard Law School Professor Laurence Tribe is one of the United States’ preeminent constitutional scholars. An informal advisor to Senator Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, he is one of the presumptive Democratic nominee’s most ardent supporters. The liberal legal icon talks with AC360’s Jack Gray about the impact the next president will have on The Supreme Court, the possibility of Roe v. Wade being overturned and why Barack Obama is the most amazing student he ever taught.

Q. The economy, two wars, an energy crisis … are legal and judicial issues as important in this election?
A. I think they’re enormously important because they set the framework within which everything else is addressed. If we believe in democracy and the rule of law then an administration that is casual or reckless about the framework of the constitution simply can’t be trusted with either war or peace. So I think that although bread and butter issues of gas prices and home foreclosures are going to dominate individual consciousness, at some level people have to remember that it is our legal system and our political structure that defines our greatness as a nation and that projects our presence onto the world stage and indirectly accounts for our safety and security. If we don’t stand for a fundamental set of legal values abroad we will have an impossible time in the battle of ideas that constitutes the war on terrorism. FULL POST

Filed under: 360° Q & A • AC360° Staff • Barack Obama • Jack Gray • John McCain • Raw Politics • Supreme Court • T1
July 31st, 2008
08:06 AM ET

Morning Buzz: reality check

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/31/art.windmills.jpg caption="Giant wind turbines are powered by strong prevailing winds near Palm Springs, California."]
Barclay Palmer
AC360° Senior Producer

Good morning!!

How about a little reality check on the issue that Americans say concerns them most: the economy. And let's drill down to its core: energy.

Everybody's talking energy - President Bush is pushing Congress to act before it goes on vacation, each presidential candidate talks about it every day...

Why, even Al Gore and T. Boone Pickens are weighing in with urgent calls to develop independent, sustainable forms of energy... like Pickens' proposal to quickly build windmills fields and let the clean wind power us, rather than burn up the rest of the fossile fuel so quickly...

So... what about that?

Why don't we quickly build windmill fields on federal land - since everyone's calling this an urgent national security issue.

And why aren't the candidates and the President and the Congress even talking about that? A quick executive order - citing a national emergency - followed by a quick Congressional appropriation could get construction going before the end of the year.

Opening up offshore drilling, by contrast, wouldn't increase actual oil supply for years, although advocates argue it would have a valuable psychological effect on markets and bring down oil prices.


But why not get some actual results more quickly - and get some cleaner energy and sustainability along with it?

Why not?

If you're a committed offshore drilling advocate because you think it'll drive down prices in the near term, why not add this kind of option to have an even greater psychological effect? It doesn't have to be either/or. And political finger-pointing over offshore drilling ain't gonna get us new energy right away anyhow.

If energy is an urgent matter of national security, we need a call to arms, right?

So why aren't the President, the Congress and the candidates making an urgent call for these kind of measures - in addition to their other proposals?

Maybe this is why none of them are wildly popular among the public, as polls show, with Congress's popularity ratings in the low 20s, President Bush's only a little above that, and neither presidential candidate cracking 50%.

Hello. Warning signs.

Filed under: Barclay Palmer • The Buzz
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