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August 23rd, 2012
11:36 PM ET

Anderson Cooper 'keeps DNC honest'

CNN's Anderson Cooper questions DNC Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz about various platform issues.

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August 23rd, 2012
11:30 PM ET

KTH: DNC compares Akin's views to RNC

Keeping both sides honest: Romney distances himself from Rep. Akin as the DNC tries to compare Akin to Republican ticket.
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November 4th, 2009
02:46 PM ET

The West is tough terrain for Democrats

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/06/30/colorado/art.colorado.afp.gi.jpg caption="Denver, Colorado, hosted the 2008 Democratic National Convention."]

Kevin Bohn and Jessica Yellin
CNN

The western United States, with its independent streak and growing population, is the terrain both political parties are hoping to mine for electoral gains in the coming years.

With Denver hosting the 2008 Democratic Convention and a more concentrated effort in the region, the Obama campaign was able to capture Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada in last year's presidential election. Some Democrats hoped those results foretold a transformation, but a year later, political experts are saying not so fast.

The West gives President Obama his lowest approval ratings, and the Democratic Party has a 45 percent approval rating in the area - the only region in the country in which it gets under 50 percent, according to an October 16-18 CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll.

"It's not as though people are lining up at the Republican Party headquarters. It's just that the bloom is off," said William Chaloupka, a long-time observer of Western politics and a professor at Colorado State University.

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September 9th, 2008
08:02 AM ET

Case of the Mundays on a Tuesday

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/09/08/art.huckabeeperforms.jpg caption="Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee plays the guitar with his band, Capitol Offense, at a party during the RNC-week festivities."]Alyssa Caplan
AC360° Staffer

It’s felt a little quiet at 360° the last couple of days. Not that it’s actually quiet. It's just that there's been so much noise the last couple of weeks, comparatively, it seems quiet.

As I sit at my desk, I wonder if, like me, journalists, politicians, and other conventioneers in offices across the country are looking longingly at the business cards they collected over the last couple of weeks, while pulling rogue streamers and pieces of confetti out of their pockets, muttering to themselves, “the party is over.”

The weird thing is, for anyone who worked at the conventions, (or even made a sport out of watching them and history in the making), it certainly wasn’t all fun and games. It was endless days, swollen feet, hoarse voices, looming fears of hurricanes, and weight gains or losses (depending upon stress coping style). I myself wasn’t technically working at the conventions, but used the time off as a sort of summer enrichment project. Some people follow Phish, I spent the last couple of weeks making my way from the DNC in Denver to the RNC in Minneapolis.

So while I figuratively pick the last flecks of glitter out of my hair, my thoughts turn to some of the characters I met along the way, some of the things my eyes saw…

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September 5th, 2008
04:09 PM ET

Gumbo, evangelicals and Palin

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/09/05/art.rnc08.balloons.jpg caption="Delegates look up as the balloons fall after Republican presidential nominee John McCain concluded his speech at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota, Thursday."]Ismael Estrada
AC360° Producer

We have been on quite the adventure tour the past couple of weeks...all to talk with you, the voters, all over the country. What seems like forever ago, we started our travels in Encinitas, CA where we watched the DNC with some senior citizens.

We moved on to Arizona to talk with Latinos and on to Louisiana to talk with young professionals. It was a mad scurry to a sporting goods store to pick up rain gear when we stopped for a few days in New Orleans to get nice and wet while covering Hurricane Gustav.

We then we packed up the cars and drove to Florida to kick back up our voter tours. It was in Pensacola that we talked with conservative evangelical Christians and hopped another flight up to Virginia to talk with women.

It’s been fun talking with voters to get a real sense of what our country’s voters are thinking. We chatted with so many great people while watching the conventions and dining over everything from fish tacos to gumbo to burgers.

We watched reactions to Obama’s acceptance speech, to the selection of Gov. Sarah Palin and McCain’s performance last night. The opinions were very interesting, some very passionate, many still undecided.

We are now sitting in a hotel putting together our stories on how evangelical Christians and women reacted to the conventions which you will see tonight.

August 28th, 2008
07:34 PM ET

Mile-long lines in the Mile-High city

Joe Johns
AC360° Correspondent

Wanted to send a quick note about the lines outside of INVESCO field:

There actually appear to be a couple lines leading in different directions.

The line we walked has got to be a couple miles long up to this point. Some police told us it is six miles long, but It snakes and undulates, making it quite difficult to judge.

It moves rapidly across the Auraria Blvd overpass then slows down once u get to the other side,
Just a continuous stream of people walking across a bridge on the boulevard near here
From the way they are dressed really a collection of every type of person…

From working class people in blue collar uniforms to men in suits and women in high heels.
It’s warm out and people who aren’t in the greatest shape are naturally huffing and puffing a bit.

I talked to one guy who said this is a little like getting to the Super Bowl… Which seems about right because that is another national ‘special security event‘ like the conventions.

Take a look at some of these photos:

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August 28th, 2008
03:00 PM ET

Race, history and tears in the Obama nomination

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/28/art.vert.dnc.barackobama.jpg caption="Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama makes a surprise appearance at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Wednesday." width=292 height=320]Candy Crowley | Bio
AC360° Contributor
CNN Senior Political Correspondent

Editor's Note: Candy spoke with Wolf Blitzer last night after Barack Obama was declared the Democratic Party's Presidential Candidate. Here's what she had to say:

One quick story: We were down in Mississippi at one point at Jackson State University, I think, and we were doing our live shots and there were guards all around and local police. And there was one local policeman stationed right where we were and so I was talking to him and he was from Jackson. And I said, you know, have you ever heard (Barack Obama) speak before?

And he said no. And I said well this will be exciting. And he said oh, well I have to - I'm working, you know. But I've seen him on TV. And about halfway through Obama's speech, I looked over at this guard and saw tears just streaming down his face.

So you saw that a lot... and you knew what a sense of history and how important this really was, in particular, to African-Americans.

But I will also tell you that Obama tends to draw very diverse crowds. And I would say - ask white people in the crowd, what do you like about him? And they generally said well, he's against the war or I like this or that plan. But the second thing they almost always said to me invariably was, I think it would say so much about our country if we nominated a half-black, half-white man. I think it would say how much we've progressed over the years.

So you always got that sense of history when you were traveling with Obama, from the very first day that I was with him in Springfield, Illinois, when he announced. You would ask people, what are you doing here? Because it was freezing. And there were just blocks and blocks and blocks of people.

You'd say, why are you here?
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August 28th, 2008
12:06 PM ET

Wasn't ready then, isn't ready now

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/28/art.obamadnc.jpg]

Leslie Sanchez | Bio
CNN Political Contributor
Republican Strategist

Once again, the Democrats shoot themselves in the foot. In a half-baked effort to establish “unity” within their own ranks, they haul out Bill and Hillary Clinton – probably the only two people in politics who can, by their mere presence, unite Republicans.

Bill Clinton gave a slick speech tonight. His wife couldn’t bring herself to say that Barack Obama is ready to be President, so Bill overcompensated: he said “ready” so much, you’d think he was trying to convince himself.

But with Bill Clinton, the question always is, “is he lying now, or was he lying before?” All through the Primaries, Bill went around the country telling everybody who’d listen that Obama is ill-prepared for the White House. Which is it then?

I especially liked the point in the speech when Clinton recalled how, in his 1992 run, his opponents charged that he was too inexperienced for the nation’s highest office.

They were right. Bill’s first two years in office were such a disaster – careening from crisis to crisis – that by 1994, Americans were so disgusted that they elected Republicans to a majority in both Houses of Congress for the first time in more than 4O years.

Bill Clinton wasn’t ready then, and Barack Obama is not ready now. America can’t go through another two years like we sustained while Bill Clinton was riding around with training wheels.

August 28th, 2008
11:41 AM ET

Behind the scenes at the CNN Grill

CNNs Jeanne Moos encourages you to analyze the dance moves of poltical pundits at the Democratic National Convention
CNNs Jeanne Moos encourages you to analyze the dance moves of poltical pundits at the Democratic National Convention

Kay Jones
AC360° Editorial Producer

We’ve been working hard this week at the DNC, but with work comes a time to let loose. Roland Martin and Donna Brazile did the best job, dancing in the middle of the CNN Grill long after they went off the air. Since we didn’t have a camera able to tape it, you should check out Jeanne Moos’ report on all the convention dancing. You will get a good idea of what went down here last night.

It was a really interesting mix of people here, from Colorado Governor Bill Ritter’s sons, August and Abe, to Ashley Judd, Jamie Foxx and Days of Our Lives’ own Deidre Hall. Time’s Karen Tumulty, ABC’s Kate Snow, EXTRA’s Carlos Diaz and our own Campbell Brown, Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper were spotted at various times throughout the night chatting up the various guests here. Speaker Nancy Pelosi made her way in for an interview and her staff wanted to come back. She, unfortunately, couldn’t make it due to other commitments. But Rep. Gary Ackerman of New York did make it, and he and his wife really enjoyed dinner as well as the atmosphere.

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August 28th, 2008
10:49 AM ET

What's really at stake in this election?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/28/art.dncwednesday.jpg]

Jeffrey Toobin | Bio
CNN Senior Political Analyst

Conventions are about politics, not policies, so it's not surprising that we've lately been preoccupied with Hillary Clinton's body language and John McCain's real estate.

But it seems timely to offer a reminder that this election is really about something - about issues that will affect the lives of every American and, most likely, everyone in the world.

Presidential candidates are cagey about specifics, so here's some informed speculation about how the world might look differently if McCain or Barack Obama wins in November:

Obama has three clear priorities for his presidency. He wants to end the war in Iraq, he wants to undertake a major expansion of guaranteed health care, and he wants to change energy policy to lower our dependence on foreign oil and start to address global warming. Can he do any or all of these?

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