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Obama ramps up campaign to take out Romney

For all the turmoil of the long primary season, President Barack Obama is right where he expected to be: taking on Mitt Romney and targeting him as a wishy-washy protector of the rich. With the November outcome likely to hinge on the economy, Obama will now engage more directly with the help of an experienced, well-financed campaign organization. The campaign for the White House took on a decidedly different feel on Wednesday, a true two-man race for the first time. Yet even as Republican Rick Santorum‘s withdrawal a day earlier changed the dynamic, beginning the general election in earnest, the
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With Santorum out, Romney still faces distractions from Gingrich, Paul

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum’s surprise withdrawal from the GOP Presidential sweepstakes Tuesday leaves the road more or less clear for former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney to wrap up the nomination by June. But Romney is not home free.  Backbenchers Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul remain in the race and while neither has a chance of winning the nomination both can still be a distraction for the frontrunner as he attempts to hone his campaign strategy for the only real obstacle to his quest for the White House:  Current President Barrack Obama. Most polls show Romney losing to Obama in
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Santorum sure sounded like a moderate in 2006

Rick Santorum boasts that his deep conservative values make him a stronger challenger against President Barack Obama this fall than likely GOP nominee Mitt Romney. It’s an argument he is making in his home state of Pennsylvania, where a primary victory in two weeks is critical to a campaign already seen by many as all but hopeless. Yet Santorum showed a considerably more moderate face in a campaign brochure from his failed 2006 Senate race in Pennsylvania. It highlighted how he steered big federal dollars to the state and teamed up with rock star Bono to fight AIDS and global
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Study says Obamacare increases nation’s deficit

Reigniting a debate about the bottom line for President Barack Obama’s health care law, a leading conservative economist estimates in a study to be released Tuesday that the overhaul will add at least $340 billion to the deficit, not reduce it. Charles Blahous, who serves as public trustee overseeing Medicare and Social Security finances, also suggested that federal accounting practices have obscured the true fiscal impact of the legislation, the fate of which is now in the hands of the Supreme Court. Officially, the health care law is still projected to help reduce government red ink. The Congressional Budget Office,
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With nomination almost secure, Romney’s to-do list is growing

Mitt Romney faces a daunting to-do list as he transitions into the role of likely Republican presidential nominee. Among the tasks: Raise as much money as possible for the general election campaign against President Barack Obama. Hire more people and send them to the most critical states in the fall race. Hone his message to appeal to voters across the political spectrum. And do it all quickly while fending off challenges from GOP rivals who refuse to quit the primary race. Obama, with the advantages of an incumbent, is well ahead of Romney on fundraising, organization and broad pitches to
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Gingrich concedes Romney ‘most likely’ the GOP nominee

Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich once led his rivals for the nomination in polls. Today, he’s millions in debt and describing Mitt Romney as “far and away the most likely” GOP nominee. Running for president “turned out to be much harder than I thought it would be,” he said Sunday. “I do think there’s a desire for a more idea-oriented Republican Party, but that doesn’t translate necessarily to being able to take on the Romney machine,” Gingrich told “Fox News Sunday” in a reflective interview. After his Jan. 21 victory in the South Carolina primary, the former House Speaker said
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CBS legend Mike Wallace dead at 93

Within five months of each other, two of the men who helped make “60 Minutes” the most distinctive news show on television have died. First it was Andy Rooney, the cantankerous commentator who died last November, a month after delivering the last of his show-closing essays. Late Saturday night, it was Mike Wallace, the hard-charging interviewer who frequently led “60 Minutes” and gave it journalistic heft with a showman’s flair. Rooney made it to age 92. Wallace beat him by a year, although he spent the latter stage of his life in the New Canaan, Conn., care facility where he
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GOP superdelegates: It’s over and Romney is the nominee

It’s over, and Mitt Romney is going to be the GOP nominee for president. That’s the growing consensus among Republican National Committee members who will automatically attend the party’s national convention this summer and can support any candidate they choose. Even some RNC members who support other candidates begrudgingly say the math doesn’t add up for anyone but the former Massachusetts governor. “I would be surprised if Romney doesn’t get the number he needs,” said Jeff Johnson, an RNC member from Minnesota who supports former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Bob Bennett, an RNC member from Ohio, was more blunt. “Look,
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GOP leaders to Santorum: Get out now if you want a future in party

Top Republican leaders are telling fading GOP Presidential contender Rick Santorum to get out of the race if he wants any future in the party. Capitol Hill Blue has learned that Speaker of the House John Boehner, Senate Leader Mitch McConnell top a list of GOP luminaries who have contacted Santorum and told him he needs to get out of the race now. “The message is clear,” an aide to Boehner says.  “Withdraw gracefully and there might be a place for the Senator in the GOP future.  Stay in the race and he is dead politically.” Santorum has vowed to
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Gingrich’s old think tank files for bankruptcy

The Center for Health Transformation (CHT), a health-care think tank founded by former Speaker of the House and current but failing GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich, is going out of business. CHT filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and liquidation this week, listing debt up to $10 million and assets of less than $100,000. The Atlanta Business Chronicle reported the bankruptcy was filed in Atlanta.  CHT has offices in Washington, Atlanta and St. Louis. Gingrich sold his share of the company along with his consulting firm, The Gingrich Group, to CHT on May 10, 2011. “CHT went into debt to buy
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