Brand New Series

This is a first in a series of the mud slinging or political postioning that is happening for the 2008 Presidential Election.  As we know George W. Bush can’t run again(OH GLORIS DAY’S), and Dick Cheney says he is not going to run.  1952 was the last time it was an open election, which to me means.  There is no incumbernt prsident or vice-president is running, I think this will be the nastiest election in my lifetime(27 yrs.) and some other peoples lifes.  With the 24 hour cable news network, and the internet.  Get ready for the dirt.

On to the 1st Entry.  This is from the Omaha World-Herald.

WASHINGTON – While Sen. Chuck Hagel mulls a presidential run in 2008, his potential GOP rivals are trying to poach some of his Nebraska Republican allies.

Gov. Dave Heineman has received personal phone calls from two candidates. Attorney General Jon Bruning has been treated to lunch and a hard sell.

Reps. Lee Terry and Jeff Fortenberry also have been approached.

“There’s no question the presidential campaign is moving forward at a fairly aggressive rate,” Heineman said.

He has been personally contacted by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Heineman said he is doing nothing until Hagel has made up his mind. “Senator Hagel is a very good friend of mine,” he said, “and I will support him if he runs.”

It’s common for presidential candidates to seek the endorsements of prominent politicians from across the country, particularly in states with early nominating contests, such as Iowa and New Hampshire.

Yet the early outreach to Nebraska – a full year before the primary season starts – suggests that candidates don’t believe that Hagel is going to run.

Hagel has said that he would decide early this year whether to make a White House bid, retire or seek re-election to the Senate.

“What startles me is how early this is, to try to line up endorsements when the calendar has barely turned in 2007,” said John Hibbing, a University of Nebraska-Lincoln political scientist.

McCain and Romney, or their aides, have reached out to House members, governors and attorneys general.

Mike Dennehy, a spokesman for McCain’s exploratory presidential bid, said the senator is working elected officials, party activists and others in “every corner” of the country, trying to gauge support for his expected run.

McCain invited Bruning to have lunch with him and several other attorneys general in November in the Senate Dining Room.

It was heady, recalled Bruning. Conversation buzzed about immigration, Iraq and other matters. McCain listened a lot and seemed interested in hearing everyone’s point of view.

“Obviously, he was looking for support,” Bruning said. “I told him as long as Hagel was considering the presidency, I was on Hagel’s team.”

McCain didn’t overtly ask for support. Instead, he gave Bruning and the others a tour of the Capitol.

But in December, a McCain aide called Bruning with a more insistent tone: McCain would call personally – if Bruning would make a commitment then. Bruning got a similar call from an aide to Romney.

Bruning declined. “I didn’t want to waste their time.”

Also in recent weeks, McCain’s people twice contacted Terry “to get on their bandwagon,” the congressman said. Along with 15 other House Republicans, Terry met Romney in the fall for what Terry called “really a soft sell.”

And Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., who has announced his candidacy for the GOP nomination, buttonholed Terry recently in the House gym to ask for his support.

“Until Chuck says otherwise, I’m with him,” Terry said he has told each suitor.

Both Hunter and Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., another GOP presidential contender, have called Fortenberry. Each was starting to lay the groundwork for his campaign, Fortenberry said, but he pledged his allegiance to Hagel.

Fortenberry said he called Hagel himself one day to see if he could get a read on whether he was likely to run for president. He got no clue.

Rep. Steve King, a Republican who represents western Iowa, said he has heard from about nine prospective candidates. He said he’ll withhold an endorsement as long as possible to encourage candidates to get out and explain themselves to Iowans.

“I want to get to know them, and I want Iowans to get to know them,” King said. “I want to see if you cut them, do they bleed red, white and blue?”

Official Lists of Candidates

John Cox
Christopher Dodd
John Edwards
Mike Gravel
Dennis Kucinich
Michael Charles Smith
Tom Vilsack